Laura Issell is the founder and director of PUT YOUR HEART INTO IT. She teaches our AIR DRY POTTERY WORKSHOP, KOKEDAMA WORKSHOP, RAINFOREST TERRARIUM WORKSHOP, PHOTOGRAPHY AND STYLING WORKSHOP and our SUSTAINABLE STYLING MASTERCLASS. Laura is also our head designer, stylist and one of our event manager's too.
Laura Issell is a leader in Sustainable Event Management, Creative Direction and Space design specialising in environmental, community and social change. The founding director at Put Your Heart Into It, and a passionate sustainable living advocate. After establishing PYHII over four years ago, Laura has come to specialise in curating thousands of sustainable events with thought provoking installations and displays. Laura has also grown an inclusive community that encourages creativity, sharing and a authentic connection to the environment through specialised workshops and offers ethical catering as educational food art installations supporting community gardens and local growers. Creating essential change that addresses pertinent issues relating to climate change and waste in relation to food waste, event management and a holistic connection to our environment. Extending to society's value system, stemming from an authentic connection to local organic food.
"I wanted to find a way to combine my passion for bringing people together to build community spirit with great design and my love for the environment"
After working for many years as a stylist, designer and event manager, Laura established PYHII in 2013 as a small creative workshop business. The business has since blossomed into a full time event management, community building platform with many varied workshop experiences on offer. Laura specialises in sustainable creative direction and mananagement.
Laura has created, styled and hosted hundreds of events for many high profile businesses, large scale weddings and community events. As well as her past work establishing the Creative Business Posse, connecting small business owners, Laura also managed Interior Hunter, an interiors company. She is now a speaker and college lecturer in sustainable event management and styling.
Laura loves creating unique environments using food art, space design, props, floristry, sound and lighting as away to connect people and create change.
"An unforgettable event should have the wow factor as well as a talking point that brings people together and creates important conversations for change. This can all be achieved whilst treading gently on the earth & creating no unnecessary waste."
“I feel very fortunate to have been able to work closely with Laura Issell from Put Your Heart Into It. Laura was a highly valued industry expert, facilitator, lecturer and creator of unique experiences during my time with the College of Event Management. Laura developed and delivered bespoke workshops for our learners in her studio and in our on-campus learning environments. She was able to customise the experiences to match both the curriculum and the interests of our learners. Some of the workshops Laura ran included: sustainable event management, working with brands/brand activations, sustainable event styling, eco-gatherings, social media and photography skills for event managers. Laura has that rare ability to connect with group and share her knowledge and passion for sustainable events. Laura is an enthusiastic event producer and always delivers a professional and meaningful experience. It's one thing to share knowledge in a workshop environment, but Laura manages to take things to another level and help participants think more deeply, connect and find their purpose in the world of sustainable events. She is an absolute joy to work with and I recommend her highly!” Caitlin Crowley.
What do you do at PYHII (what do you love about it)?
I am the director and feel a great sense of pride for what my team and I have created and grown and I love seeing events come to life. My day could consist of answering emails, attending event consultations, preparing materials for a workshop, choosing seasonal produce, styling a grazing table of food or cleaning up after an event. I try to have as much fun as possible and surround my self with inspiring, like minded talented and environmentally conscious people. Some days I'm here for over 12 hours getting things done but I find myself being so grateful that I get to do this for a job and the variety of opportunities it brings.
What do you do when you’re not at PYHII?
In the little time I have left over I love to make the most of all the food, arts, culture, social change movements, performance and music that we have happening Melbourne. I also collaborate on a community cultural event project called ENQUIRING MINDS exploring the information we didn't learn in school about the history of Australia. I found myself wanting to bring community and connection to country into my life and found that many other people were wanting the same. For ENQUIRING MINDS we collaborate with traditional land owners to create an event that allows space for people to learn through experience.
What are your greatest pleasures? What do you do for kicks?
I love to find peace amongst nature by gardening and growing plants. I also love making my home feel welcoming for myself and others by decorating. I love entertaining guests (because running an events business isn't quite enough. haha) I enjoy roller skate performing with Skate Odyssey Melb, yoga, dancing, spending time with friends and playing with my nieces and nephews. I also find that road trips are great way to help me get a new perspective on life.
What are you listening to / watching / following that makes you light up?
I love watching classic food and art house films. "The cook, the thief the wife and his lover", " Big Night " and "Frida" are some of my favourites. I also love listening to the program "All Our Stories" on PBS radio on Monday afternoons. I have a great love for classical Indian music but listen to a large range of genres and also love teaching workshops at festivals.