Talking Desserts & Creativity with Lick Your Lips Cakes Founder, Natacha

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Natacha Rodriguez-Pierre, founder of Lick Your Lips Cakes

I won a yummy dessert from Lick Your Lips Cakes in an Instagram giveaway, and kept licking my lips! I have a real sweet tooth, y’all. I couldn’t wait to chat with Natacha Rodriguez-Pierre, the woman behind all this yummy goodness. Natacha started her home-based biz four years ago in Brooklyn, NY, and she  specializes in creating custom flavors and mastering traditional flavors. Lick Your Lips Cakes ships all over the United States, Europe, and Canada. Grab a cup of tea and a comfy chair, and read about this dynamic woman, who says her desserts are a pleasure so guilty, you’ll eat them in the dark. 🙂

Women of color are the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs in the country. What made you take the leap? And what is the most valuable lesson you have learned so far?  

Why NOT take the leap? There are too many ways to succeed in this world to limit yourself. Even if I were to walk away from what I do now, I know I tried my best. This is some hard shit. Lol! I still have a 9-5, because I enjoy what I do! The greatest thing is I don’t have to choose between one or the other.

Anyone coming into entrepreneurship thinking that it’s going to be like Shark Tank, and you’ll just be a hit, needs to reevaluate their whole structure. I auditioned for Shark Tank, and did an amazing job! They never called me back, but it’s their loss. I still keep it moving. One experience won’t stop me. I have learned that if you really want it, you’ll find a way.

Cheesecake in a jar – brilliant! Why did you choose to focus on that particular dessert and present it in that way? Is baking a tradition in your family? 

Hahaha…. funny story. I don’t have a sweet tooth. I do love to cook, and I’ve been in the kitchen since I was five. Baking is no different than cooking to me. As for the jar, that was a happy accident. I had too much batter, and had jars at home from when I was making peach berry jam. I just made them that way.

Through trial and LOTS of error, I figured out how to get it just right. My Mom is all things wonderful in this world and her hands are blessed in cooking, but I can honestly say, and she’ll back up, that I taught her how to bake. Cheesecake is one of those unicorn desserts, you know? Anyone can make it, but only a select few can get it “just right”, so it’s great that so many people enjoy my desserts. Baking is my happy place! I love to make people happy, and my hands help me to do that every day!

You have so many delicious flavors for folks to choose from on your site. What inspires you to experiment with some of these unique blends?

Oh any and everything. I can be grocery shopping, out with family, or just watching TV, and I’ll see something and say: “I’m gonna cheesecake that.” Not that long ago I was inspired by glitter make up! Yup, sounds funny, but true. Glitter makeup is so pretty if done correctly so I decided to do it! It came out wonderful.

I am always looking for new inspiration, and ways to make people excited about the cheesecake. I created cotton candy cheesecake (see below) another one that sounds weird, but kids love cotton candy, and adults love to reminisce. People loved it!

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had some that just didn’t make the cut, and some that I thought would be gross that people LOVE… I mean jalapeño maple bacon? That is a winner,  but you [just] never know. Lol!

What is ahead for Lick Your Lips Cakes? 

Today? Sleep. Luckily I have a very supportive family. Right now I am currently booking dates for events. I cater events – big or small. I add special touches to each event – from custom flavors to custom labels, you name it!

Also, most holidays we have special offers for our customers. Mother’s Day is coming up and we have a great offer (see below). This year I am expanding with some amazing things up my sleeve. I can’t give it all away. Lol!  Stay tuned:)

How can folks stay in touch with you? Where can we find you on social media? 

I’m on Instagram @lickyourlipscakes, Facebook at Lick Your Lips Cakes and Twitter @cheesecake_porn. I’m always around and ready to give out some sugar! Lol!

 Beauty / Style Finds: Lovely Handmade Jewelry from Ivana of Beads and Happiness 

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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I discovered the beautiful work of Ivana at Beads and Happiness through featuring her sister, Zorana (Wanderlust), who creates stunning  handmade eco-friendly bags. When I visited Ivana’s Beads and Happiness Instagram page, the joyful energy and stylish pieces instantly grabbed my attention. I am sure you will enjoy reading about this multi-talented woman who shares happiness through her artful creations!

Ivana Pavlović, owner of Beads and Happiness

Tell us about yourself and your jewelry. 
Hi! My name is Ivana Pavlović. I am a mom of one young boy, entrepreneur, creator, curator, and photographer for my small business. When my kid grew up I had more free time to try and express myself through embroidery. I wanted to create something new, and to share my feelings and vision of beauty.

Photo Credit: Ivana Pavlović

I believe that jewelry is not just for special occasions, accessories make your outfit unique and special. I like simple forms with lots of colors. Every piece that I create is unique.

I like every color (but maybe pink the most :)) and I like to use them – mixing and matching  perfectly. Because of the specific way I mix, it’s not possible to make the same necklace twice.

Photo Credit: Ivana Pavlović
Photo Credit: Ivana Pavlović

That’s why I always tell my customers that I can’t make the [exact]  item from a picture. Similar, yes, but definitely not the same. My jewelry is not expensive, but it is unique. It is the kind of jewelry that any woman can afford, and it’s really wearable and comfortable.

Photo Credit: Ivana Pavlović

What lead you to start your business? What is your business philosophy / mission?
I was creative as a child. I loved taking scissors to cut everything. All of my dolls had short hair; one of my Mom’s coats became a short jacket and my shirts had trendy cut-out spots. 🙂 I grew up with my Grandma who always encouraged my creativity, and had time to help me with everything I needed.

The two of us made a lot of things together. I like to believe that I developed good taste for fashion because of her, but generally every woman in my family is making some handmade products. So I guess it is pretty normal that I chose to make handmade products, too.

Photo Credit: Ivana Pavlović

Jewelry making was just my hobby until a couple years ago; since online shopping became more popular in my country, it is my full-time job.

My aspiration in life is to be happy, and jewelry making is something that makes me HAPPY. I really enjoy doing what I do, and my goal is to make my customers enjoy it, too. That is the reason I named my brand “Beads And Happiness.”

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What inspires you to keep creating?
My inspiration comes from communicating with my customers and people who love my jewelry. When someone who lives on the other side of the world tells me that my jewelry is the most beautiful thing he’s ever seen, that’s what really inspires me.

I have a lot of new ideas; I could make a plan for all the things I want to make for the next couple years, but I never have enough time. Almost all of my photos are made by me. I take them and edit them later. I update all of my profiles (and I have a lot of them), I also sell a lot of my products at some fashion markets in my country.

Photo Credit: Ivana Pavlović

Beads and Happiness Websites:

Visit the website to see all the awesome jewelry. Beads and Happiness is also on Etsy.

Coupon Code for Live In Color blog readers:

Receive 10% off merchandise with the code “liveincolor10.” Valid until the end of this summer.

Keep up with Beads and Happiness on Social Media:  

Follow on Instagram for behind-the-scenes photos

Check out the Facebook page

Follow on Twitter and Pinterest

Note: Beads and Happiness logo design by Tamara Pancic

Beauty / Style Finds: Socially Conscious Fashion from Mompreneur Zorana of Wanderlust 

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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I met Zorana (founder of Wanderlust) on Instagram several months ago, and instantly admired the beauty of her pieces.  However, the message and philosophy behind the work is particularly inspiring. She is a change agent, a woman committed to transforming the world through mindfulness. I’m sure you’ll enjoy reading about the story behind the brand. Plus, Live In Color blog readers get a 15% discount (see coupon in the post).  Grab some tea, coffee, or a smoothie (my personal fav.) and  enjoy!

Zorana, founder of Wanderlust

Tell us all about Wanderlust. What materials do you select? What is your business philosophy?
I am a small business owner, and I embrace the attitude of ethical, fair production and a purposeful life! I strive to grow my business through a route of honest work, and the creation of modern simple goods for life and home.

All my bags are handmade, hand painted and crafted. Every piece of fabric is washed, ironed, painted by hand, sewn, folded and tied up with a hand-printed label in my home studio.

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I have a strict policy for sustainable environmental work. I use only water-based textile colors, acid-free. I use a  100% cotton canvas, producing on a small scale, it gives a soft and natural feel. I do not work with leather.

All my bags are ethically sourced, made in small sustainable batches, responsibly, both on a human and environmental level. I’m all about ethical fashion and care for our planet.

I believe that the stuff we use shouldn’t cause harm to people, the planet and animals. There are no animal-based materials in my designs. 

I also believe that it is very important to know who makes our stuff, too. Each of my bags has it’s own story. I like to think that my bags add style to a life with purpose: ethics + aesthetics.

I create reusable bags that people may  take with them when they do their grocery shopping – this is a small act with a big impact. I encourage taking your canvas tote reusable bag anywhere! Our planet is begging us not to use plastic bags. Make life thoughtful and intentional! My new collection of kitchen textiles painted by hand is expected by the end of the month, so stay tuned.

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Wanderlust Coupon for Live In Color Blog readers
Wanderlust coupon for Live In Color Blog readers

What lead you to start your business?
Women makers led my family for generations. All my grandmothers were seamstresses, dressmakers, and one was a famous weaver of traditional kilims. I guess my calling was probably determined by that [history]. I studied fashion & textile design. After a break to have my twins, my fashion collection grew into an Etsy store, eventually becoming a small business.

Wanderlust Packaging

Wanderlust LogoWhat inspires you to keep creating?
I’ve always had an urge to create, but after I discovered ethical fashion my desire grew! It is the amount and quality of attention that counts – and slow  making equals quality.

I think we are what we wear. We should match our outfits to our beliefs. Act as if what we do makes a difference because it does! We should use our buying power to support brands that produce their products fairly, and are not exploiting people and planet. It’s all about buying smarter.

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I draw inspiration from this [outlook]. It helped me realize my mission. I have  [a] quote by Mahatma Gandhi that currently guides my life, and hangs on my wall: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

I truly love what I do! Textile art and brushstrokes painted by hand are a thrill to create. My favorite cup of morning coffee is served with black textile paint! That’s how I like to start my work day.

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Note: All my photos are taken by Zorana and her sister Ivana Pavlovic of “Beads & Happiness.” 

Stay Connected to Wanderlust:
Web site: www.wanderlust.madefreshly.com

Etsy shop: www.etsy.com/shop/MCWanderlust

DaWanda shop: en.dawanda.com/shop/Wanderlust-Tote-Bags-and-Textiles

Social Media:
Instagram: www.instagram.com/moderncraftwanderlust

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/mcwanderlust