Meet Emma Kate: Hand-letterer, illustrator, perpetual adventurer, and all-round creative wayfarer


Meet Emma!

I’m a designer, writer, hand-letterer, illustrator, perpetual adventurer, and all-round creative wayfarer. I divide my time up between running my little stationery brand, living adventures and writing about them.

I sell my products online and to a growing stockist base around the world - and when I’m not doing that, I’m collaborating with brands on travel and lifestyle based campaigns, and travelling at every chance possible.

I was born in the sleepy city of Adelaide, known for its vineyard-dotted hills that spill into the sea. I’ve had coloured pencils in my hand as long as I can remember and studied design at uni - but my path to making a brand out of my art, photos and words is much more recent! Currently I call the coffee mecca of Richmond in (Melbourne, Australia) home - and I absolutely love it here!


Q&A with Emma Kate

How would you describe your creative style?
My world and my creative style is everything ethereal, punctuated with coffee.

My purpose with anything I create is to bring joy. To make days. To craft delight. To inspire adventure. More than just making pretty things, I want to stir meaning, and weave conscious, considered, generous details into every little thing I make.

For me, this goes far beyond designing exquisite products - it’s about designing entire experiences. I look for ways I can weave in hidden details and for touchpoints of daily life I can gently intersect - that might stop someone short with delight and think, “How did you know - that’s exactly what I needed?”


What inspired you to start your own line of art and stationery?
I had been working as a designer in London for a publishing house - a life of coffee to go, rush hour madness, Europe-hopping most weekends and travelling every single chance I had outside of the 9-5. It was my semi-long-term plan, but when my sponsored visa didn’t work out, my life in London came to an abrupt halt. Plucked out of one reality and thrown into another, I found myself on a one-way plane back home with no plan B. It was a new beginning in every sense - a rare and perfect chance to take a leap to do what I’d always dreamed of.

So I did, full tilt! I spent six months burrowed away in my creative cave, and launched my first collection, Wild Hearts.


In honour of this week’s creative challenge theme ‘wanderlust’, tell us about one of your favourite adventures:
Turkey would have to be my pick. It’s such an exquisite country of colour, texture, kindness and contrast - a place where beauty and ruin coexist. Turkey is a total assault on the senses. I travelled there solo a very pivotal time of transition, between my life in London and relocating to Australia and I remember Turkey with such gratitude and importance.

Turkey made me feel vividly uncomfortable - every morning I woke in darkness to the prayer calls, with the most unsettling yet calming melody drifting through the sky. I covered myself in layers of clothing, yet felt more stripped back and vulnerable than ever. I miss feeling uncomfortable, and think there are more lessons waiting for me, when I next return.


What are a couple of your favourite pieces that you have created and tell us why you love them?

I think that The Dreamer’s Manifesto is my favourite piece in my collection. It’s the most personal piece of writing I have put into my range - it’s the words I really need to read on a daily basis and remember, myself.


I also love the greeting card “You. X” - it’s been a best seller ever since I put it into the collection. It comes from a special place - my partner Charles sent me this message, after our first date. It was so simple and yet, so meaningful. My heart still does somersaults, remembering when I picked up my phone and read: You. X

What will you be looking for when you judge this week’s challenge entries?
I will be looking for something that captures the magic of wanderlust - the image that makes me want to buy a ticket, and jump on a plane most.

You can get social with Emma on Instagram @emmakateco and Facebook and shop her collection at her online store