janet lee

Founder, The Story Co.

I have always loved stories. As a child curled up on a couch with my books I was transplanted into imaginary worlds. I coveted my complete box set of The Chronicles of Narnia, and devoured The Hobbit as the world swirled around me. I also learned that hiding with a book could get you out of doing the dishes!

At the age of 10 story telling became a way to pad my piggy bank, when I became a sales rep for a stationery company. Armed with my shiny catalogue and a formidable story I found ways to persuade anyone who crossed my path that inside my catalogue was exactly what they needed. I won the prize for highest sales. Then, they found out I was only 10. A box of pencils (instead of the cash prize) arrived in the mail with my name engraved in gold on them.

Thankfully since then, my marketing analytical skills are more advanced and my brand stories, not quite so desperate. I have devoted over 20 years to studying and understanding marketing and branding. I have learned a few things about why people want. Why people buy, why they don’t. Why people emotionally connect to some brands and not to others. Why some great products take off and equally interesting, why some great products do not.

A formal education, and a strong track record in our business and volunteer community, have all been essential to my success. But nothing trumps learning like doing.

The first brand I built was also the most personal (as the first usually is). Starstruck manufactured a line of women’s clothing that was sold in 321 stores in the U.S including Nordstrom, J. Jill and Coldwater Creek as well as over 110 stores in Canada – now that is a story! Read more about it here where I was featured in Canadian Business.

The Story Co. is my answer to how I can make a difference by helping others to find, and to live their story. We all have stories and sharing them enriches our human experience and connects us all.

The more to my story…my husband still makes my heart smile, my kids make my heart sing, and Duke the dog, well I have got big love for him too! I’ve ridden my bike from Vancouver to California, done three triathlons, and I can only do “leaning” tree pose on a good day.

Mine is a tale of grit, giggles, moments of grace, triumphs and fails, and very heavy doses of humour. I can’t imagine not wanting to be a purpose brand, telling good stories or ever parting with my engraved pencils.

let's connect

kelly hogan

Graphics+Web

Pre Y2K, I kick started my design career working for a groovy start-up with big dreams and a team of amazing young entrepreneurs (who toiled the day away in a crammed apartment with only one toilet…not joking…it was the best :).

But then we were acquired by a software giant which I won’t name, but rhymes with mun picrosystems. Quickly the corporate ‘man’ took all the fun out of design and I was left writing time sheets, attending boring ‘critical path’ meetings and wondering how I got ‘here’.

In 2003, I co-founded Kanvas Ink., a graphic design house specializing in brand identity and Flash website creation. We developed some really cool projects along the way including a line of quirky greeting cards that were featured in 8 national magazines including Style at Home, Chatelaine and Lou Lou.

It was right around this time that the Janet & Kelly Marketing/Design duo was forged. Together at last!

In 2006 I was in need of a fresh new take on life, so I packed up my hubby, big dog & scary doll collection and headed off into the sunset a la green acres style. Branching out on my own, Freshly Hatched Design was conceptualized to expand my creative passion. Specializing in gorgeous brand identities and kick ass website design, I somehow popped out two kids and dived into writing YA books in my free time (meaning I stay up super late and fangirl like a nerd when my family is sleeping).

Carving my own unique design path was the perfect solution to re-fresh my creative perspective. Every day I sit in my little office and marvel at how I got ‘here’…the best job in the world.

crystal ganshorn

Words+Numbers

“Crystal can you edit, please?” are favourite words to see in my inbox. I love to edit. Grammar comes naturally to me and I have never met a dangling participle that I liked. What I do love is getting to be part of the story process. My role involves “dotting i’s and crossing t’s”, but it is also about bringing clarity to the messaging, and editing can do that succinctly. (Besides, the stories being told are really great stories!)

At one time I was an editor for knitting patterns. Trust me, you do not want to miss a dropped stitch or say purl when you meant knit, or you will have legions of angry knitters looking for you. You might not think knitters are a dangerous lot but remember they have sharp needles in their hands. So I learned quickly that being exact is important!

I also take on the role of bookkeeper for The Story Co. Detail is kind of my thing. Letters + numbers just add up for me.

I have had a corporate career and now love to navigate a flexible work life. I am dancing through the busy years with two daughters, my husband, and a family that adds infinite amounts of colour to every day.

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