ELCBWN 30.09.13 guest speaker… Jessica Rose – founder of the London Jewellery School

Guest speaker for September 2013 meet up of East London Creative Business Women Network

Guest speaker for September 2013 meet up of East London Creative Business Women Network

The East London Creative Business Women Network is ever evolving and with Petra, co-founder deciding to give it 100% to her own and deep:black projects I was a little stumped about how to harness such collaborative energy for the post Summer East London Creative Business Women Network meet up…

As luck would have it on that day I received an email from JESSICA ROSE, Award-Winning Entrepreneur and Founder of the London Jewellery School… asking if ELCBWN invited guest speakers…

And thus I had my answer and excitingly Jessica is now the guest speaker for our next gathering… phew! Creative Collaboration back into full swing again…

What you can expect from Jessica on Monday 30th September 2013…

Jessica will give an informal talk about her experience and journey in setting up a multi-award winning creative business from scratch, sharing the good, bad and everything in-between for plenty of inspiration, ideas and advice. Following this there will be a Q&A session and some creative brainstorming.
Everyone is welcome to come along no matter what stage they are at with their business bring your ideas and questions and we look forward to seeing you there. 

Book your place via http://elcbwn.eventbrite.co.uk/ we ask you pay what you can on the night to keep the events as open & inclusive as possible.

A bit more about Jessica and her background: 

Multi-award winning entrepreneur and business expert Jessica Rose is the owner and Director of the London Jewellery School, the world’s largest jewellery training centre. She set up the business aged just 21 in 2009 with only one class a month from a community hall in South London and now the school is a huge success having trained over 7,000 students with the running of over 50 classes per month. Her achievements in building a thriving business from scratch have been recognised by the local and national press including features in Marie Claire, The Times, Vogue, Daily Mail and Daily Experss to name a few and she has stared in interviews/ documentaries on the BBC, ITV and Sky News. She is also a regular blogger for huffinton post and ambassador of a number of organisations supporting young people and women in to business. For more on her story see – http://www.jessicaroselondon.com and for more about the London Jewellery School visit http://www.londonjewelleryschool.co.uk

Are you Open To Create… 3 month volunteer placement offered. Deadline 20th September 2013

I have been a volunteer on and off for over 20 years and know first hand the amazing benefits of volunteering. I have run different volunteer, intern and work placement programmes for over 15 years and love the satisfaction of a person willing to contribute learn and grow from being willing to give to a company.

Charlotte Hogg was an intern whilst I was working with Bow Arts – she was an awesome, go getting woman on a mission to suck up as much experience from working in the gallery, curating P1 show through to handling the rain on the opening night of the Open Studios with grace and good humour. She went onto to secure a place on the Whitechapel Interns programme and now works for the Royal Academy… 

See Charlotte’s reference below…

  1. Charlotte Hogg

    Charlotte Hogg
    Press Assistant at Royal Academy of Arts
    Anna has a clear can-do attitude which makes even the hardest of tasks seem like light work. Dependable, committed and loyal, Anna is a pleasure to work with. Being a natural people person she is happy to share these wonderful qualities with an ever growing professional network, one that helped me begin my own career and which I know has helped many others in turn. My time…more

    May 24, 2011, Charlotte worked indirectly for Anna B. at Bow Arts Trust

So it’s a little nerve wracking to admit to limitations of any kind? Especially when it requires bringing new people to your inner world of your business…

But it’s time to take the plunge at Open To Create… so I can focus on more strategic grow whilst knowing the detail is being handled.

We are offering a 3 month volunteer placement at 1 day a week…

Deadline for applying is 20th September 2013.

See below for a link to the role description…

East London Creative Business Women Network @ The Create Place 30.09.13

The Create Place is co-hosting #elcbwn 30.09.13 meeting

The Create Place is co-hosting #elcbwn 30.09.13 meeti

East London Creative Business Women Network

Next meeting post Summer break

Date: Monday 30th September 2013

Time: A prompt 6.30pm start

Ends: 9pm

Venue: The Create Place, 29 Old Ford Road, Bethnal Green, London E2 9PJ

Cost:  Donations – pay what you can



  • To give yourself  the time and space for you need to move your creative projects and business on.
  • For an evening of connecting with new creative contacts, hearing more about what is out there to help you grow your own ideas, confidence and  new ways of looking at your current challenges.
  • Bring along any promotional materials for your upcoming events or services you want to share.
Previous success stories are one networker taking the leap to set up their own business, new creative commissions for work on collaborative paid projects and deep connections and support networks growing across and beyond East London!!

 You can book your place for the evening networking session via


Have a creative power day


How do you creatively power your day up?

Today I meditated,  cooked up a power breakfast of veggies, artisan bread, British goat’s cheese followed by a power cycle into the wind.

I have a lovely creative catch up with Marianne Hartley – Hartley & Soul Designs @ Tate Modern.

Then some r&r at my acupuncturist.

Followed by reviewing what’s new on the creative project horizons.

What do you like to do to create your most powerful days?

Do tell!!

Posted by Anna B. Sexton out & about on creative & playful journeys
Find out more about Open To Create… http://www.opentocreate.com

Open to Create… known for for igniting people’s creativity in unique, quirky and playful ways.

image by Anna B. Sexton

Creative Coaching, creative mentoring, creative play, creative thinking workshops

Open To Create… offer a creative smorgasbord of creative coaching, mentoring and playful workshop sessions.

Creative MOT sessions will re-ignite your creative process and vision.

Bag of Creative Surprises workshops take your creative ideas to a new depths.

And our magical Ignite Your Creativity Retreats will “open doors onto your imagination, heart & mind you wouldn’t know were there.”

Join in the creative action via Open To Create… Facebook page

Please contact Anna B Sexton, Director to find out more about how we can support you to be more open to creating a thriving and super successful creative business.

We work with people with ideas for start up businesses through to those with more established enterprises who want to take it to the next level.

Your interest in Open To Create… matters as do any questions, ideas & feedback you have.

Drop us a line now using the form below or call 07941 655 856 or 020 7515 9451

Coaching Tasters as part of International Coaching week

Coaching Tasters as part of International Coaching week 2012

A first for Tower Hamlets…

Coaching taster sessions to help you grow your key skills & talents to boost your chances of success in 2012.

To book your place please contact Idea Store by calling into a local Idea Store or Learning Centre. Or email ideastorelearning@towerhamlets.gov.uk or call to leave your details on 020 7364 5665 and a member of the team will call you back.

Calling Bright Sparks! Open To Create…

Calling Bright Sparks

Open To Create… is seeking a volunteer one day per week to support with growing a start up social business. We aim to grow people,  who grow communities.

Volunteer Role outline

You will be creative, practical and keen to use this role to help gain valuable career building skills.

You will be able to demonstrate experience of working in creative office environments, love being organised, be a computer whizz and enjoy being part of shaping new creative community initiatives across London.

We are seeking a suitable person who is willing to complete the following tasks and be enough of a self-starter  to bring new ideas to the company;

  • Data entry for new content management system
  • Social media management i.e. updating Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn
  • Researching new partnership and marketing contacts
  • Support with day to admin tasks

In exchange for your time, energy and input we will cover up to £5 travel expenses per week, provide lunch and offer you one hour of professional coaching each week to help you achieve your on  career, creative and personal goals.

How to apply?

To apply for the role please send in a current CV and a one page cover letter outlining why you want to take on the role, what experience you have to fulfill the role & what you hope to gain from the coaching.

Please supply two references with contact details, letting us know if we can contact them in advance of an interview.

Interviews will take place Wednesday 1st February 2012 from 2.30pm – please state if you are available.

Please send your completed application marked ‘Volunteer Application’ to Anna Sexton, Director, Open To Create… annabsexton@gmail.com

by no later than 5pm 25th January 2012

Open To Create… new business cards!


Excitingly unpacked new Open To Create… business cards fresh off the press from Moo. Thanks to Alex Beeching for all your support and creative input in getting us this far!

Welcome to the blog world of Open To Create…

Open To Create… is an new and evolving company offering creative coaching programmes across London, especially Tower Hamlets & Westminster.

We are currently developing a series of coaching taster sessions with Idea Store & Tower Hamlets Adult Learning Services. These sessions will run during International Coaching week 5th-12th February 2012

And we are developing our Grow Your Own Community © programme  with different community & social enterprise  partners

Read our e-booklet

Seven C’s for Growing Your Own Community


For more information contact Anna Sexton, Director

07941 655 856



Grow your creative business and the rest will follow?

What does it take to grow your creative business?

And what follows once you start that process?

And who else benefits or doesn’t as you grow yourself and your business grows?

Growing your own businesses starts having a seed of a vision to do something only you can bring into the world, mixed together with your own particular view of the world, built up over the years and a culmination of all your experiences to date.

These questions become particularly pertinent when you allow yourselves to re-remember you don’t and your businesses don’t just exist within the space between your ears i.e. your heads.
These thoughts need to become actions to grow your dream into a reality.

So where then do your businesses live once they are out of your heads and in the world?

They live in the communities we live and work in. Be they local, regional, nationally and more increasingly globally spaces thanks to social media etc.

So even if you stay sitting behind the door of your office, beavering away in your head and on your laptops simply stating ‘I don’t do community.’

The truth is you do and we do community, whether we like or not. But what does this mean when you are growing yourselves and your business? How do you/we do this in a way which sustains us and others?

Definitions of community are personal, public and variously wide ranging – the Oxford Dictionary’s version is;

“The people that live in one locality; a group of people having cultural, religious, ethnic,
or other characteristics in common; the public in general; society. Ecology – a group of interdependent animals & plants inhabiting the same region and interacting with each
other through food & relationship.”

Every community has its own unique set of ingredients which gives the flavour to experiences we have when we live, work or visit there.

Communities have a big place in my heart given over the last 20 years I have lived and worked in over 8 deprived inner London boroughs, regenerating Liverpool & Manchester with a stop off in rural Wiltshire to give me another angle on what living in community might mean. I have worked to get myself into the different mindsets and space of the people, organisations and businesses that make up these individual villages, market towns, London Boroughs and re-blossoming regional cities.

I am currently growing my 3rd business and this has really got me into the process of deeply questioning what I want to grow, how and why.

Like gardening people, business and places grow organically with that certain mixture of elements required for them to bloom.

I am more and more drawn to metaphor of how we grow the people, businesses and places in our communities being similar to that of gardening; having recently successfully co-founded Greening Brownfield, an award winning community garden space in Poplar, East London, UK ,

The essential ingredients in the mix

Plenty of light – both our own ability to be light and let our lights shine. And access to sustainable forms of energy to light our offices etc.
Plenty of water – fresh, clean and available to all
Plenty of non-polluted air i.e. the right mixture to grow healthy people
Plenty of healthy earth upon and within which to grow healthy roots/foundations
Plenty of plant food without use of chemicals, pesticides and other pollutants (see air)
Plenty of time to nurture, enjoy the fruits of your labour and share the harvest
Plenty of attention to cut away the dead wood, weed away any sources of potential threat

Seeing it written down makes is seem obvious, and of course it is. Yet how we do & be this on a day to day basis is another thing.

And in the context of setting up and running your business these questions of what and how you will grow the seeds of your mission is more imperative day by day.

“When we place our own individual needs ahead of the broader community we lose our perspective and become ethnocentric. The result is the Three Musketeers mantra in reserve: “All for one and none for all.” Avoiding this deadly pattern requires that we prioritize community as a whole, rather than just ourselves. In doing so we all end up better off.”
Bob Doppelt, The Power of Sustainable Thinking

So how can you grow and sustain your own business yet at the same time grow your own and others communities locally and globally?

Some inspiring examples I have either been part of co-creating or discovering of late are listed below;




Anna Sexton
Open To Create…
Growing people and communities
07941 655 856