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 event manager.
"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 2014 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."
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 create 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 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!
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 in 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 love practicing yoga, tap dancing, kayaking, spending time with friends and playing with my nieces and nephews. I also find that traveling anywhere is a 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 old classic romantic drama or 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. One of the hosts Leah works for PYHII. I have a great love for classical Indian music but listen to a large range of genres. I am hard of hearing so I really enjoy instrumentals. I recently went to Womad in Adelaide for the first time and discovered lots of new talent.