Dynamic entrepreneur succeeding despite the odds
Emily Jupp - or Milly J as she is known - is the founder and artist of Milly J Shoes and All About Shoes. Milly hand crafts strikingly unconventional art to wear as shoes, and creates shoe sculptures for special occasions in her new retail shop - 'All About Shoes' in the heart of Norwich. Every shoe is crafted by Milly in her studio with the shop offering both a bespoke footwear service, as well as limited edition shoes with different themes. The retail space is the first of its kind to stock all things footwear with an environment for the shoe lover. From shoe gifts created by artisans, to shoe cookie cutters, shoe games, and footwear sourced from around the world and beyond!
Milly J has had an unusual life, with many referring to her story as succeeding despite the odds. From abandonment as a baby in Jamaica on a bus, to international upbringing, losing her brother to mental illness and yet still forming what she is best known for - Milly J Shoes.
Originally trained as a classical actress and singer in Europe's leading arts schools, she founded her business after the passing of her incredibly gifted brother. Milly's background allows her to go through with empathy, strength, resilience and a way in which to hopefully help and invigorate others.
Fortunate to have been a BBC 'The Voice' contestant and appearing on other shows, she is a current Drapers awards finalist for Footwear Designer of the Year. Milly is also the current Outstanding Woman in the Creative Industries awarded by the Precious Awards and endorsed by the Prime Minister. Milly was awarded with the 2015 Footwear Designer of the Year awarded by Clarks and the British Footwear Association; her business lives and breathes creativity!
Milly is very proud to have been asked for International Women's Day this year to St Francis' College in Letchworth to share her story, very unique footwear and a song with the parents, older pupils, staff and community. This evening was shared alongside Brita Fernandez-Schmidt, Director of Women For Women, and Paralympian, Wendy Smith. She now also mentors students in the Norfolk area. Milly would certainly be open to sharing her story with particularly vulnerable communities and also privileged backgrounds who may benefit from a hopefully humbling story.
"Thank you so very much for last night; your talk and beautiful song at the end were both exceptional! The feedback has been inspirational, with everyone really enjoying it. I am eternally grateful to you for giving up your time to be involved. The girls have really enjoyed dressing up as women who have inspired them today. We are hoping to have raised enough money to sponsor two sisters from the Women for Women International programme, which will be absolutely fantastic". Mrs Becky Hayes, Assistant Head Teacher, St Francis' College
"Your shoes are truly amazing and your story so uplifting. We were so happy to have you exhibit and give an account of your life on this very special occasion. I look forward to having you back next year". Amanda Moss, Founding/Director, Liverpool Fashion Week
"Emily worked collaboratively with the school's therapy team to develop students' emotional literacy and supported student's to build positive self-image. Emily was reliable, creative and trustworthy and enjoyed working with the students. Emily also worked well with the staff team". Jacquie Jess, Teacher Manager, Insights School ESC