How one woman who swears a lot changed my life.


So I’m sure that most of you know Naomi Dunford. Ya know – that sassy lady from Ittybiz?

Well today is her birthday. And in honour of her birthday, I’d like to tell you how she sort of changed my life.

Let’s get in the time machine and go back 3.5 years

I had just started my own ittybiz selling my art. The first few months had gone well – better than I’d expected – but I was getting stuck. I didn’t really know where to go next. And I was getting really confused by all of this marketing stuff.

I was reading Naomi’s blog religiously.

One day, in a moment of panicked confusion, I emailed her. I don’t remember what I asked, but the gist was, OMG MAKE IT MAKE SENSE.

And a couple of hours later, I got an email back. And she made things make sense. And she asked me good questions and she gave me good answers.

More importantly, she started to give me hope.

She’s got a pretty colourful backstory, one that reflected my own in some ways. At the time, I was really feeling stuck in that place of “I’m just some chronically ill kid with a tiny dream and everyone thinks I’m going to fail wildly, and I don’t really know what I’m doing”.

Naomi, by all accounts and purposes in the “real world”, probably should have failed wildly as well. She talked about her past. She talked about being scared.

And she was still succeeding.

I clung to that like a drowning woman clings to a lifeboat.

I bought her products, I signed up for her courses. The products helped, gave me knowledge. But her emails, encouragement and support meant even more.

Flash forward to early 2009

I was desperate to move out of my parents’ house. I needed to spread my own wings and take flight, and I was suffocating at home. Something had snapped inside of me – I was no longer prepared to take the fate meted out to me. I had no intention of living at home forever, ironing handkerchiefs, never asking for more of life.

I wanted out. And I wanted to move across the country.

But my business wasn’t really a business yet. Naomi helped me. She gave me tips and ideas, on how to build a list, and how to sell. Most importantly though, she believed in me.

She was rooting for me. She wanted me to get out there and spread my wings. She was so excited for me when I got to Prince Edward Island. (Because yes, I did move out of my parents’ house and across the country to PEI.)

And now everything is different.

Now I’ve got a happily growing art business, a great gallery selling my art, I’m building a second business, and I’m going to France in May to study art in an exclusive studio program. And weirdly enough, now I’m the one giving marketing advice.

My life is freaking fabulous.

And a big part of it was because of Naomi.

Thank you.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, Naomi.

I hope you have the most wonderful birthday ever, and that all of your dreams come true for the rest of your life.

Big love and hugs. And you’ve always got a place to stay on PEI. 😉

And thanks to LaVonne Ellis and Colin Beveridge for planning this! Check out this post to see the other great posts celebrating Naomi’s birthday!