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emske founder, white woman with brown hair and glasses, sitting in front of a mirror snapping a photo, she is in a brightly lit room with art on the walls and contemporary furniture, wearing a black top and white pants.
a sticker of the emske logo stuck to a rough and paint splattered wooden surface

The Studio

emske offers products and services that are ethically made in Canada, environmentally responsible and happen to be designed with accessibility in mind. 

We want to create items that otherwise may be hard find, products that celebrate all the ways that we live life.

emske is a full service design studio that is driven by an empathetic core. The mission of the brand is to work towards mitigating stigmas around disability and chronic illness. Counteracting everyday ableism one slow design step at a time.

​We offer in house designed products (coming soon), and custom service offerings from illustration, co-design and consulting.

Join us in creating space to learn and grow together.

You can find more thoughts in our journal, where we jot down ideas and topics that interest us.

Have an idea for a blog post or want to contribute? Send us an email at or send us a note in our contact page form.

The Founder

Em Harmsen freelanced for many years while working in public sector, but decided to switch gears in 2021 to focus full-time on the studio.

She dreamt about running a design studio while completing an undergrad degree in Fashion Design at Toronto Metropolitan University. It wasn't until years later while finishing a masters in Cultural Studies at Queen's University that she conceptualized the focus of the studio.


From an early age, disability and the realization that bodies change in many ways as we go through life was normalized to Em. Having family members who worked in the medical field, specifically in rehabilitation opened her mind to diverse lived experiences from her own.

In adulthood Em's husband was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis shortly after their wedding and Em was diagnosed with fibromyalgia a few years after that. Having first and second hand experiences of the temporality of symptoms that can exist and how much this affects day to day life have been driving factors behind the ethos of the studio.

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