I met Emilia the day I graduated from Hackeryou’s full time front end bootcamp. Since then she has become a mentor to me giving me great advice and talking me through difficult client situations. I look up to Emilia, she has created Simply Elaborate out of passion and she lives and breathes her mission of helping people turn their dreams into a reality. She has been a wonderful role model, mentor, and friend. She is a successful entrepreneur who has built her business out of a vision of helping others succeed and I hope her story inspires you as well.
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?
My Name is Emilia Farrace and I am the founder and creative director of Simply Elaborate. In a nutshell, I encourage people to go after their dreams and then take them along the path online to help them get there.
2. Why did you start Simply Elaborate?
I don’t know if it was a decision I “made” per say, or more something I kept doing on the side more and more until I finally thought – why not? I was always helping people with their side-passions, and always offering to help them get started online – I started making a name for myself I guess and word-of-mouth increased and I was able to start this business.
3. What inspires you?
Helping other people going after their dreams and listening to classical music.
4. What is your personal mantra or mission statement?
I have two that constantly go through my mind: If you can’t eat, you can’t feed. And the one that got me where I am today: On the other side of fear, is freedom.
5. What does happiness mean to you?
It means having the capability to see and choose for yourself. I believe that happiness is a choice, and too often we think happiness is a direct result of things that happen to us but I don’t think so. I think it’s a choice we make every day and therefore, a day when I’m choosing happy, I’m choosing my day – whether that be reading and taking in my mornings, doing what my mind says I want to do, taking the time for me (because I wouldn’t say I do that TOO often).
6. What are your hobbies?
I really like doodling. It’s so calming. I have a digital pen for the iPad and I use it to write calligraphy (my new thing). I would say that learning new things is my hobby. I love learning about the different ways to feed my design cravings. Whether it’s colouring, drawing, vision boarding, knitting, cooking, styling – there are so many ways and things to do for my mind – I love them all.
7. What are a few things you do every single day to keep yourself on track?
I’m really bad at this one. I try to have a routine, every day – so maybe that’s mine. My routine is figuring out what works for me that day because every day in my life is super different.
8. If you could give advice to someone looking to get into your field what would it be and why?
Get your product clear before you start selling it to the masses. If you don’t know what you’re selling – nobody is going to know what you’re selling either. I would also say never underestimate the power of your relationships and network, but don’t abuse them.
9. What has been your most rewarding experience so far? Work or personal
Every day is a rewarding experience – may sound cheesy, but for me, it is. Sometimes, if I sit back and really think about it – I can’t believe this is the life I’ve created for myself. How much more rewarding can you get? It’s rewarding in a way that I recognize how lucky I am to the fact that I don’t even know how lucky I am – because I never stayed somewhere long enough to hate it. (Thinking of work-wise situations). It’s rewarding for me to be able to be established enough to get group benefits for me and my team; to be able to create/decorate and design my office basement. It’s rewarding to say “hi, I own this company called Simply Elaborate and it’s not just a woman at a desk, it’s a team” who inspire each other and strive to do more, better – every day.
10. What is the biggest challenge you’ve overcome in your life thus far? What did you learn? Are you thankful for what it taught you?
I had a friend who passed away when I was 15. That event was instrumental for my outlook on life and recognizing the fragility of life, and what’s important and what’s not. It taught me to just go after the things I wanted in life. I was a really shy person, and super insecure in high school, and after she passed away, when I was in a situation that had me hesitant and scared, I would say to myself “do this, because Anna couldn’t” and often, it would be the nudge I needed to do the thing that scared me. Now, it’s just how I am, it’s engrained – and it’s really because of that experience, because of her.
11. Who is your role model/ who has been the most influential person in your life?
A friend of mine named Ashley, who inspired me to start believing that I could actually do this entrepreneur thing and make something of it. She got me my first client and a lot of what I know about selling, I’d learned from absorbing her presence when we worked together.
12. When do you feel most inspired?
When I’m around inspiring people and/or at the cottage near the beach I spent my summers at. Love being around the nature, and love how it brings me back to my childhood – keeps me humble.