Meet Local Artist Sarah LaPierre

If you live anywhere in Palm Beach County,

you have most likely seen my next guest featured in a number of local publications or at local events! She’s a very busy young woman, making the world a more colorful place, one painting at a time! I’m really excited about the opportunity to interview this super talented local! So, without further adieu, Meet Local Artist Sarah LaPierre!

Tell us about yourself:

Sarah LaPierre, born in Palm Beach Gardens FL circa 1991. Full time resident of South Florida, made a huge move all the way over to West Palm Beach a few years ago. I live there with my partner Michael, our 2 adorable ex-alley cats Dredd and Ditto, and our sweet American pit bull terrier Dex. Dex might possibly think he’s a cat too!

When did you start painting and was it always with a knife?

I’ve been creating in someway or another from early childhood. Since my dad was an artist, and his studio was in our home, the materials were always around. Creativity was very much encouraged.
I didn’t begin painting regularly till I was 18. At that time it was more experimental, exploring brush work across all sorts of genre with different textures and mediums.

Major influences:

My connection to my dad and his work remains the strongest influence in my own. I consider my style the next generation of his. In that, it’s a combination of both history and future, with techniques learned from pop as well as new methods discovered along the journey.

Most challenging about running my own business:

Balancing a creative drive and a “life” outside of work. It’s a battle, but it has become very important to me to manage my time better and realize the difference between the essential and non-essential. It’s easy to fall into a hole of never ending to-dos when you work from home because it’s always present till you consciously make the effort to put it aside.

Most rewarding about managing my own business:

Seeing something I work hard at developing, grow and prosper is very rewarding. But also, the fact that I am able to manage my own time is wonderful. I love having the flexibility to make time for family and travel whenever I choose.

What do I like to do on my days off:

I enjoy spending down time with my family and pets, usually outside. A trip to Jupiter’s dog beach is always a good time!

What living person do you most admire:

I am blessed to have lots of truly admirable and wonderful people in my life, even just here locally. All of them for various reasons, so much that it’s hard to name just one, either within or outside of my life circle.

Where can we find Sarah LaPierre online:

You can find more information about me and my artwork online at www.sarahlapierre.com however the best way to see what’s new or upcoming is to follow my social accounts @thickpaint on Instagram and on Facebook @Sarah LaPierre-Artist

Any upcoming events you would like to share with us?

I’ll be showing at my last festival of the spring season this weekend at SunFest in West Palm Beach May 5th-7th! After that keep and eye out for upcoming events with my new gallery representation Ready2Hang Art in Downtown Abacoa (Jupiter).

 

Thank you for sharing your story and your images, Sarah!

As always, thanks for reading the blog, friends!

Don’t forget,

if you or someone you know is thinking of buying or selling a home in the Northern Palm Beach County area, I’d LOVE for you to Contact Me! Let me help you have an enjoyable real estate experience! ❤️ Nicole

 

Meet Local Milka Gordillo of Dreamallows

Oh my goodness you guys! Today’s featured maker is responsible for some of the tastiest goodies in South Florida! Jupiter local, Milka Grodillo, is the owner & chef at Dreamallows. She makes deliciously awesome marshmallows and you NEED some in your life. Trust me on this one!! I’m pretty excited to share her story on the blog today…enjoy!

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Tell us a little about yourself.

Milka Gordillo, Originally from Venezuela, raised in Miami Beach and have been in Jupiter for 2 ½ years. I have two kids (13 year old Adrian and  2 month old Mateo). We have two fur babies (Julio (lab-13 years old) and Nino (lab-8 years old).

When did you start the Dreamallows brand and who/what was the inspiration behind starting your business?

I graduated from Johnson & Wales University with a baking & pastry degree. I wanted to create a business based on small desserts. I am a firm believer that dessert should be part of your daily routine but it has to be small to avoid the extra calories. LOL! Dreamallows started in 2014 as an idea to re-create marshmallows. I wanted to create a healthier version of the famous marshmallow removing corn syrup and any additives. It took me over a year to come up with the perfect formula, logos, licenses, packaging. The process was fun but challenging. It launched October 2015 at the West Palm Beach Greenmarket.

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What products do you offer?

I offer stuffed marshmallows in all different sizes. The original size is 1X1 making them the perfect BITE! Yes, they are stuffed (inside) with flavored callebaut chocolate ganache & we also make our own salted caramel to stuff them!

Who makes up the Dreamallows crew?

Myself (chef), husband (Hiram) & Adrian (13)- helps out at the greenmarket, packaging and of course “tasting”  🙂 We are waiting for Mateo to get older to get tasting too!

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What do you find most challenging about running your own business?

Not having enough time to be in several places at the same time. It is a small business & most events are on weekends. Having to stick to 2 events per day.

What is the most rewarding thing about running your company?

If it is your passion it is not work! I feel like I am always playing.

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What do you do on your days off?

We are addicted to the beach, outdoor activities as a family. I am a foodie and love trying new places. I also love reading and researching new restaurants and always always work on Dreamallows. Flavors, and packaging.

How do you juggle work & family?

We are a family owned business. We attempt to have fun together while working but I do have a schedule to work on Dreamallows as family time is extremely important. Balance is key to success.

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Where can we find Dreamallows?

You can find them online at www.dreamallows.com, and follow us on Instagram/facebook/twitter @dreamallows. We will also be at the West Palm Beach Greenmarket, Every Saturday (this is our 2nd year at the Greenmarket), we will be participating at the Fresh Fest in February & Arti Gras – Abacoa. Elements Yogurt off US1 in Jupiter carries our 6 packs, and Guanabanas has a s’more dessert (using Dreamallows) which is part of their special menu on weekends only! It comes with a scoop of ice cream!! Follow us on our social media for additional local events we will be part of.

Is there anything else you would like is to know?

Dreamallows are a one bite experience! Enjoy!

As always, thanks for reading the blog, friends! I have several talented makers to feature over the next few months, so stay tuned!

Don’t forget,

if you or someone you know thinking of buying or selling a home in the Jupiter area? I’d LOVE for you to Contact Me! Let me help you have an enjoyable real estate experience! ❤️ Nicole

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Meet Local Nicole Hodson of Boho Garden Crowns And Events

Hi! I’m so excited to be bringing you the first, “Awesome Local” feature for Fall 2016! Today’s blog interview is with the very talented Nicole Hodson of Boho Garden Crowns And Events! I’ve been following Nicole online for quite sometime and I’m in awe of all her amazingly beautiful floral creations! Warning: This post is going to make you want to dance in a flower crown and have pineapple floral arrangements in every room!

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Tell us a little about yourself.

Hi! My name is Nicole Hodson! Born & raised in Syracuse NY, and transplanted here in Jupiter Florida my freshman year of high school! I met my husband (Bob) here while finishing up college (he went to FSU & I went to the art institute of Fort Lauderdale ) and the rest is history! We have one human baby named Bobby (he’s 4 years old) & hoping for another baby nugget this year!

 When did you start the Boho Garden Crowns brand and who/what was the inspiration behind starting your business?

I started Boho Garden Crowns when I graduated college. My husband and I moved to Asheville, NC (my favorite place on the planet) and I was tottally inspired by all the amazing wild flowers scattered all over town! I started making fresh crowns for locals and people visiting the city! I started selling them out of a boutique in downtown Asheville & it was a hit! We moved back to south FL, where I still continued to grow and nurture my business. I started branching out doing floral installations working close with local photographers and the bridal community! My degree is in fashion merchandising and design so I have always tied in the element of wardrobe styling into my business, which is a fun twist that my clients love!

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What are the services you offer?

Fresh flower crowns, floral crown bars (think of a DIY taco station except it’s with fresh flowers to make a floral crown), floral installations for stores, events and parties, workshops, bridal/wedding packages, wreaths, and wardrobe styling!

Who makes up the Boho Garden Crowns crew?

Myself and an amazing co-worker Sara, who always comes with me to large events!

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What do you find most challenging about running your own business?

The work-life balance. I’m a business owner but I’m a mom & wife first. Making sure I set aside time for myself and my family is still challenging but I’m learning to find the balance!

What is the most rewarding thing about running your company?

The look on my clients face when they see the finished product. It’s so self fulfilling. Especially with my brides, a lot of them sit down at our initial meeting stressed, confused and not sure how all these elements will come together. The biggest compliment is when a bride/client leaves feeling relieved and excited knowing all their floral Pinterest wishes will be granted! 🌸

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What do you do on your days off?

My days off consist of waking up slow with my husband & son, cooking a great yummy breakfast or grabbing an Acai bowl and head to the beach!

How do you juggle work & family?

I make sure I set aside time for both. I try and set my phone down at a certain time everyday to be MOM & wife! Owning your own business makes you very accessible at all times. You don’t really ever “clock out” so making sure I’m honoring myself, my business, and my family is crucial!

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Where can we find Boho Garden Crowns online?

I have a Facebook: Boho Garden Crowns & Events. I also have a Instagram: bohogardencrowns  I am in the process of putting together a website in the coming year! You can find all my upcoming workshops and events on all my social media accounts!

Is there anything else you would like is to know?

I love doing workshops, I’m always trying to be very active in the community with local shops and artisans! I have tons of awesome floral workshops coming up in the next few months for the holiday season! I’m also opening a little floral cart in October outside of a boutique called Marston in Abacoa. I’ll be selling fresh floral arrangements and potted succulents!

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As always, thanks for reading the blog, friends! I have several talented makers to feature over the next few months, so stay tuned!

Don’t forget,

if you or someone you know thinking of buying or selling a home in the Jupiter area? I’d LOVE for you to Contact Me! Let me help you have an enjoyable real estate experience! ❤️ Nicole

 

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Meet Local Business Owner Elizabeth Legore of Vagabond Apparel

Hello Lovely Blog Readers! I’m excited to introduce Elizabeth to you all. Vagabond Apparel is one of those shops that has a something for everyone. The moment I walked in, I basically wanted everything! You can tell a lot of time goes into the curating of the shop. Elizabeth offers some really wonderful items for our local men, women & children. So, without further adieu, meet Elizabeth Legore, owner of The Vagabond Apparel!

Vagabond Apparel Boutique

 

Tell us a little about yourself. Elizabeth LeGore, Originally from Maryland, Moved to West Palm Beach, Florida in 2002 to attend Palm Beach Atlantic University. Married to my high school Boyfriend, Eric. I love to travel, explore new places and cultures and enjoy outdoor activities such as surfing, and snowboarding.

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When/How did you start the Vagabond Apparel brand? I opened Vagabond Apparel in August of 2014. However, it’s been a long time dream to have a boutique. I started working in a Surf Shop in Maryland during summer vacations, while in college worked at Rapunzel’s College on Palm Beach. That was a really great experience with the owner had just opened so I was able to experience the start up of a new boutique and learned so much from buying to book keeping. Then from there I spent 5 years in retail management.. So you could say I did my due diligence in retail and it was time to branch out to open my own boutique. The actual process took exactly a year… Finding the perfect vendors, space, securing loans etc.

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How does the Vagabond Apparel brand stay involved with our local community? The main thing for me is building relationships on a personal level with our customers and them knowing we truly care for them. I also enjoy partnering with local charities to help raise awareness and funds through give back shopping. CharitiessSuch as Austin Blu Foundation, Place of Hope, Epic Beauty etc.. I also love to partner with other local businesses! It’s just so great to collaborate with other entrepreneurs in the community to support and encourage each other. This is how the Boutique Warehouse Sale got started, we’ve had two events so far- it’s been a huge success and so much fun working with other local boutiques! On a store level, most of our jewelry is locally made. I love supporting local artisans!

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What do you find most challenging about running your own business? BALANCE!! I love being on the sales floor with my team and customers but their are days where I just need to buckle down to my computer and get work done (like today!)

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What is the most rewarding thing about running your company? Building relationships with my amazing employees and customers. I’ve been so blessed to meet so many wonderful people this past year. I’ve had the opportunity to speak at PBAU, Mentor a few college girls and just see my employees grow and develop as beautiful young women. I love the creativity, the challenge, the freedom of running a business too!

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What do you do on your days off? Spending time with friends and family. Traveling. Exploring New Places Locally. Relaxing and Pampering myself… and now and then catching up on work! eek!

How do you juggle work & family? With me being a business owner and my husband a FireFighter/Paramedic we really don’t have a “normal” routine or life. We support one another, know that everyday is different, and make sure we are having fun along the way. Communication is key!

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Who is your favorite Superhero and why? Wolverine- I’ve always loved him since the cartoons. He has no fear, strong, get’s the job done and has a softer side. Haha!

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Where can we find Vagabond Apparel online?
Website: www.vagabondapparel.com
Check us out on Instagram and Facebook @ Vagabond Apparel Boutique

Is there anything else you would like us to know? Upcoming events, etc.
Be sure to follow us on Social Media for new products arriving daily! Also we will be doing a Sunfest Festival Inspired Trunk Show and Event with Mamie Ruth and a few local vendors on April 23rd!

Thank you Elizabeth, for sharing your story! Your boutique is wonderful!!

Thanks for reading the blog, friends! Please support our local business owners. They are a very important part of our little slice of South Florida.  Northern Palm Beach County has many small businesses that make living here great! – ❤️ Nicole

 

 

International Women’s Day 2016

What is International Women’s Day 2016?  From the International Women’s Day site: “It’s the day to Celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women. Yet let’s also be aware progress has slowed in many places across the world, so urgent action is needed to accelerate gender parity. Leaders across the world are pledging to take action as champions of gender parity.”

 

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This past year, through the Jupiter Local blog I have had the opportunity to meet so many amazing, local women! I’m so thankful that I am able to see first hand, women working hard, following their dreams and in turn helping to make our community an amazing place to live! Keep doing your thing, ladies! It’s an encouragement to everyone around you.

Meet Ashley Raicovich of The Ileen Boutique

Today’s blog interview is with Ashley Raicovich, owner of the new Ileen Boutique in Downtown Abacoa. I started following the Ileen Boutique on instagram first and finally met Ashley when I went into the shop. Not only is Ashley the owner of this beautiful boutique, but she also designs & manufactures all the clothing! I’m so excited to introduce her to all of you. So…meet Ashley!

{ All photos by Edelle & Co }

Ashley Raicovich, owner of the Ileen Boutique

Tell us a little about yourself: I moved from Seoul, South Korea to Jupiter, Florida in 2014. My husband Joe & I have a 3 year old daughter named Olivia. Joe is a native Floridian, and we decided to raise our daughter in Jupiter.

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When did you start the The Ileen boutique  brand? In 2006 I opened my first two retail shops in Seoul, South Korea. In 2009, I sold my designs to various retailers throughout the world through my wholesale manufacturing label. After my husband Joe & I, relocated from Seoul, South Korea to Jupiter, Florida in 2014 I decided to open The Ileen Boutique in Downtown Abacoa in October of 2015.

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Who makes up the The ileen boutique  crew?  I work with Stylist Leslie Schor every Monday and recently hired Jay Oh who is working with me part time.

What do you find most challenging about running your own business? Keeping the balance between trendy and timeless with all my designs. Also, starting a business here in South Florida. It’s a new world with a new language.

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What is the most rewarding thing about running your company? Meeting new people, seeing my clothes on the street. I even once saw one of my  designs on TV!

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What do you do on your days off? Family time, going to the beach, surfing & paddle boarding.

How do you juggle work & family? With lots of help from my awesome husband. I cook and Joe helps with so much!

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Where can we find Ilene Boutique online?

Ileen Boutique Website, @ileengirl on Instagram, and Ileen Girl on Facebook.

Is there anything else you would like is to know?

We have several events scheduled and would love for you all to attend!

Thursday, March 9th, 6pm-9pm: Beautycounter’s Pop Up Shop by Shawney | Toxin free, high performance, chic color cosmetics!

Friday, March 11th, 5:30pm-8:30pm: A Pop Up Shop with Heart Swell | Naturally Thoughtful Paper Goods

Tuesday, | March 15th, 7pm-9pm: Easter Wreath making workshop with Flower & Fringe | Send email to Flower & Fringe to sign up for the class. Limited Tickets! $35

Thank you Ashley, for sharing your story! Your work is so lovely!! I love visiting your boutique!

Thanks for reading the blog, friends! Please support our local business owners & entrepreneurs. They are a very important part of our little slice of South Florida. Northern Palm Beach County has many small businesses that make living here great! Know a business owner you would like to see featured. Contact me and they just may end up on the blog! – ❤️ Nicole

** Are you thinking of buying, selling or moving in the Northern Palm Beach County area? Interested in how much your current home is worth? Just let me know, I’m happy to help, just email me!

Meet Kristy Grant of Sporty Girl Apparel

All I can say is WOW about this next interview. Kristy is a young, Jupiter Local, that is hard working and making things happen in Jupiter and beyond! I get so excited when I do these interviews. The hard working women in this area are seriously awesome. Kristy is no exception. Read on to learn more about her & her local business.

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Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Kristy Grant I was born and raised in South Florida. I have lived in Jupiter Farms,West Jupiter, my whole life. I’m 27 years old and love the outdoors. I have two fur babies. One pit bull hound mix named Woodrow and the other is a blue tick hound named Gus. If you’re familiar with the old western Lonesome Dove (my all time favorite movie) then you’ll know where I got the dog’s names.

When did you start the Sporty Girl Apparel brand?
I started Sporty Girl apparel in 2008. I was 20 years old at the time and wanted to created something that looked cute and showed off my passion for the outdoors, that was completely different then what was out on the market at the time.

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Andrew & Kristy in Georgia with Woodrow (brown dog) and Gus (Black dog).

Who does the artwork for your apparel?
I do all my own artwork for the line. Unfortunately, I don’t have as much time anymore to draw or paint like I used to, so I only come out with one or two new designs a year.

Who makes up the Sporty Girl Apparel crew?
The crew consist of family and close friends. The best way to have it. My mom, Kim, who is the book keeper & manager, deals with my wholesale accounts, primarily Gander Mountain, helps run the store and many other things in between. My sister, Jenny, was working full time running my store but she had a little baby boy 7 months ago, and now she helps wherever we need her to fill in. Then I have a few other amazing workers that are also great friends Jan, Sherry, Miranda, and Patricia. They are lifesavers whenever I need them and help me with everything from making products, working the store, internet, and helping out at shows.

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Kristy, with her Mom & Sister at a show.

What do you find most challenging about running your own business?
The most challenging thing about running a business, is finding time for yourself. I just recently discovered how important it is to have some time away from work. It’s not easy to shut your brain off from all the things that need to be done when running your own business, it’s a full time job. When you
leave work you never actually leave, so it was super hard to learn to try to leave work at work and I still struggle with that most of the week. But I know how important it is to take time to rest and enjoy other things about life.

What is the most rewarding thing about running your company?
The most rewarding is all the accomplishments and seeing the hard work pay off.  Every year the the things I tackle get bigger but the feeling is the same. From surviving my fist craft fair show in Dec 2008 to opening up my second shop location this year, the feeling of accomplishment and huge achievements is the same and keeps me going. Success is super rewarding and thankfully I’ve been lucky enough to continue to grow every year. Seeing excited happy customers keeps my drive to survive in the business world strong.

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Kristy with her sister & friends at the boat show.

What do you do on your days off?
I really don’t get many days off. Sundays I take off most the year, and that’s to catch up on household chores I let go all week. I do however try to leave work at 6:00PM and when I get off I do things for me. I love to take bike rides or walks through the woods and take wildlife pictures, that’s one of my passions. I luckily do get to take lots of little vacations throughout the year and for those I’m either hunting, fishing, or going on spear fishing trips to the Bahamas. I love to be either in the woods or out on or in the ocean, away from the hectic city life, where there are no people and it’s so peaceful.
Right now I’m writing this interview In my tree stand, on my annual 3 week hunting vacation at my family’s ranch in Georgia. We’re in the middle of nowhere and I’m just soaking up the peace, beauty and quietness of nature. Plus it’s my dogs favorite place as well, they love the freedom of running the fields, in the cool crisp air. I work super hard in order to take the time off though. Before this vacation I worked 2 months straight, 12 hours a day, 7 days a week to get everything I needed to get done. The busy holiday season will start as soon as i get back. But all the hard work is total worth this!

How do you juggle work & family?
I’m so lucky and thankful I get to work with my family everyday, all day long. We’re super close, even on days off we hang with each other. Since my sister had the baby she’s not working that much but she can’t be away from us too long. LOL She and the baby come and hang with my mom and I almost every day of the week for an hour or two. Friends are another story. I’m grateful they are so understanding to my busy schedule. I hang out with my friends the most while I’m working. Like I said work never ends! LOL We do lots of photoshoots together and grab lunch or
breakfast to catch up after if there’s time. If not, they come to the shop and hang for a little bit to catch up. My boyfriend, Andrew, is super understanding and he is busy doing his own things most of the time anyways that he never complains when I work to much. We’ve been together for 10 years now, so he has grown used to me working a ton. Last year I took  the internet and a computer out of my house so when I get home I’m done with work. I used to come home and do computer work till 10-11 every night. When I started to get sick and rundown I knew things had to change. Now when I’m home I can focus on myself, my boyfriend and my dogs. For all the women who run businesses and have kids, I give you a TON of credit! I can’t imagine that right now.

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Sunrise photo shoot for the 2015 summer line.

Who is your favorite Superhero and why?
Honestly I don’t have a favorite super hero. I was never into those kind of shows or movies. I don’t really even know who they all are other than Batman and Spider Man. However, I always thought it would be so cool to have the power to fly. That sounds like a super hero trait 😀

Where can we find Sporty Girl Apparel online?
You can buy Sporty Girl  Apparel online at www.sportygirlapparel.com
You can also follow my Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Wanelo
You can also buy us at 15 different Gander Mountain locations.

The Sporty Girl shop is located in Jupiter, North of Indiantown Rd, just North of Dune Dog or Center Street on Alt. A1A.
Sporty Girl Boutique
1001 N alt A1A
Jupiter fl 33477
561-972-6300
Our new store will be located in the Jupiter Dive Bar restaurant in the Jupiter Yacht Club, the south part of Riverwalk. Opening Black Friday.

We will have our Grand Opening for the new location December 5th from 11am-6pm. Please come and check out the new store! There will be lots raffles and discount coupons for buyers. The perfect time to get some holiday shopping done as well. It’s the day of the Holiday Boat Parade so the shop location will be an awesome spot to stay and watch it.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read a little about myself and my business. Happy Holidays!

Thanks for reading the blog, friends! Please support our local business owners & entrepreneurs. They are a very important part of our little slice of South Florida. Northern Palm Beach County has many small businesses that make living here great! Know a business owner you would like to see featured. Contact me and they just may end up on the blog! – ❤️ Nicole

Meet Corey Morrow of Ink, Letter, Love

Those of you that don’t know me personally may not know that I have always been an artsy person. I studied art in college, worked in the art field for 15 years, and have dabbled in different medias for many years. One of my favorite things is beautiful, custom typography. I personally am horrible at it and failed miserably at it in college, but I’ve never lost my appreciation for it. While I was shopping at a local shop here in Jupiter, my eyes were drawn to some adorable hand lettered signs they had. When I got home, I did some research and found Corey’s website & work online. Now I’m am totally a HUGE fan of hers. What a talented woman, right here in Northern Palm Beach County!

ILL-fullLOGO-blackbackground-PNGTell us a little about yourself.
I am originally from Michigan, but I moved to Palm Beach Gardens when I was six and I’ve been a Florida girl ever since. I graduated from Florida State University (GO NOLES!) with a BA in Creative Writing, and have a MA in Writing from Nova Southeastern University I love a good story! For as long as I can remember, I have been a lover of words reading them, writing them, singing them off key in the shower & drawing them. My company, Ink Letter Love is just another way for me to celebrate my favorite invention words! I am a writer, editor, & artist with an affection for rainy, napfilled afternoons, frozen yogurt with sprinkles, & colorful socks. I have an incredibly supportive and hilarious husband, Matt, and a sweet little pug named Junebug. They are both highly entertaining and keep me laughing!

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When did you first have an interest in hand lettering?
My mom is incredibly artistic and encouraged me to play with my creativity growing up, and I have always been a lover of words it seemed natural that the two would intersect. When I was younger, I often tested out different handwriting styles when taking notes in class just to see if I could mimic a font I really liked and I am a big time doodler. Hand lettering is just something I have always done without really thinking and is an art form I truly love especially since there will always be more to learn! These days picking up a pen and writing by hand is somewhat foreign to many people, but it is
something I do every day and it makes me really happy.

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How did you get started in the “Hand Lettering for a living” field? How long have you been in the biz?
Earlier this year, my Mother in Law, Barbara, passed away after a terrible struggle with ALS. We were really close, and losing her hit me hard. Even writing this now brings tears to my eyes. A friend of mine, Caroline, hosted a daily hand lettering challenge through Instagram shortly after Barbara passed and I participated in an effort to distract myself and have something to look forward to each day. It reignited my fire for lettering and for the first
time in months, I was happy. Some friends of ours were getting married around the same time and had asked if I would hand letter some items for their big day I was overjoyed to be included in such an important day and obviously said yes! I had been planning to leave my fulltime job over the summer to pursue writing and editing full time, and figured I would letter on the side since I enjoyed it so much. As it turns out, the lettering was really popular and has completely taken off! Quitting a job with a steady paycheck was terrifying, but starting my own business has been the best decision and I wouldn’t trade my long days of lettering for anything! My company is Ink Letter Love because I honestly can’t live without ink, letters or love and the company can’t either!

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What has been your favorite project so far?
Oh gosh, this is a hard question! Every time someone asks me to be a part of their wedding day through lettering, I get misty eyed and am always so honored! I created a series of prints last month for couple expecting their first baby and that was a really special project. Each piece I create is unique and I am always overwhelmed by the positive response to my work. Recently, I was asked to letter on the mirrors behind the bar at Michael R. McCarty’s restaurant on Palm Beach and that was a really fun project! I love it when someone calls me and says, “I have a really crazy idea” because it means I get to do something I haven’t done before. It’s especially fun if the project is on a large scale like the mirrors at McCarty’s! I love that people get to go somewhere public and see what I have created it’s very surreal and humbling! I also recently did some really fun things for a styled photoshoot with other wedding vendors in the area and that was awesome! I do a lot of lettering on vintage windows and I got to hang my windows in a large tree for the photoshoot and it was a dream come true!

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Corey & Her Husband Matt

What do you find most challenging about running your own business?
All the computer/numbers/legal stuff that comes with starting & running your own company is really overwhelming and unfun. I don’t love sitting at a computer crunching numbers, I’d much rather be covered in paint making something!!

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What is the most rewarding thing about running your company?
Every day I wake up and get to do something that I really love to do and there is nothing better than that! My day is exactly what I want it to be and my schedule is really flexible so I can create and work whenever I want to!

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What do you do on your days off?
These days I don’t really ever take a full day off, but I really love being outside! So whenever I have a few free hours, I like to try and get out of the
house for a walk or something! I also really love spending the whole day in my pajamas on the couch watching movies with Matt and June we don’t get to do that too often, but when we do it is completely perfect!

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How do you juggle work & family?
I am honestly not good at it! I work at all hours of the day and my schedule can be crazy sometimes, so I really haven’t gotten a good grasp on that
elusive “balance”. Mostly, I try to put away my phone and my markers for a little bit each day and spend real time with my husband. A lot of what I do happens after normal work hours or on the weekends, so getting an hour or two of nonwork time each night can be hard. I don’t think I will ever truly achieve a perfect balance but I will always try to let my family know how special they are whenever I can!

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Who is your favorite Superhero and why?
I watched the Netflix series Daredevil over the summer and am now completely hooked! Daredevil is a superhero I didn’t really know of before watching the show, but I really fell in love with his story! He is determined and resourceful and is a total badass.

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Where can we find You and your artwork online?
The best place to see my latest work is on Instagram, I am @inkletterlove over there. You can also follow along on Facebook at www.facebook.com/inkletterlove or visit my site at www.inkletterlove.com! The best way to get in touch with me is via email inkletterlove@gmail.com I
love meeting new people, so say hi!!

Thank you Corey, for sharing your story! Your work is so lovely!!

Thanks for reading the blog, friends! Please support our local business owners & entrepreneurs. They are a very important part of our little slice of South Florida. Northern Palm Beach County has many small businesses that make living here great! – ❤️ Nicole

Meet Katie Choy, Author of Family Secrets Cookbook

Katie and I have known each other for several years now. Her three children and my daughter swim on the same swim team. Over the last couple of years or so, I’ve learned more about her. Let me tell you something… Katie is amazing! Read on!!

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Tell us a little about yourself.
I was born and raised north of Pittsburgh in rural Western Pennsylvania. I moved to South Florida in 1994 to work as a travel nurse at the Jupiter Medical Center, where I met my husband Rogelio. In the short time I was here, he convinced me to marry him and make my home in Jupiter! We married in 1995, and in the next three years, had three beautiful babies. We have raised our children on the Loxahatchee River and have one cat, KitKat. Our oldest son has left the nest and made his home in the San Fransisco Bay Area as a computer programmer.

Why did you first decide to make a cookbook?
The idea to make the cookbook came about years ago. I loved my Mother-in-law’s food, and it was so different from what I had ever had. I used to watch her cook and write down the recipes. When the kids came along, I had no time, and it was put on hold. Once they were older, I started learning to cook from her again. I was collecting them purely for my own use, and one day my husband said, “You should publish this.” I sort of chuckled, but kept the idea in the back of my head.

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Presenting Christine Najac, director of South Florida Food and Wine, with her copy. She also gave an amazing review quote for back cover.

How did you get started on the book? How long did it take from start to finish?
I can’t tell you the exact date I started the book, since I had been collecting recipes for a long time. I hit a lot of roadblocks along the way, and I am very busy with my family, so it was a long process. I would safely say that from when I took it seriously, until the book was actually published, has been at least 5-6 years.

What do you find most challenging about making the book?
The most challenging part of the book for me was actually submitting the work. I tend to feel things aren’t “good enough” and have high expectations. Letting go, and realizing it will never be perfect was my obstacle to overcome.

Presenting Mike Moir, owner of Food Shack and Leftovers, his copy. He gave an awesome review quote for back cover.
Presenting Mike Moir, owner of Food Shack and Leftovers, his copy. He gave an awesome review quote for back cover.

 

What is the most rewarding thing about the final project?
The most rewarding part of the final project is knowing I am helping to contribute to the medical care for the underserved people of Peru. A portion of the proceeds goes directly to the Peruvian American Medical Society providing clinics and medical mission trips in the remote regions. Peru educated my husband, and I want to give back.

Do you have a favorite recipe from the book?
My favorite recipe…that is so hard, because most every recipe is my favorite. Well…..except the beef tongue (that is my husband’s favorite)!

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Do you plan on doing a book tour?
I have no tour scheduled yet, but I would love to do a book tour!

What does your family think about the book?
My family loves the book. They better, because they were all a part of it. My husband and daughter did the photography, my oldest son created the iBook version, my younger son helped with the writing and editing, and my cousin did the professional editing. It was truly a family affair.

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Where can we find out more about Family Secrets Peruvian-Chinese Cuisine?
You can learn more about Family Secrets at katiechoy.com. I am doing my own marketing and distribution and will ship anywhere in the U.S., or locals can contact me directly at katichoy@outlook.com. to get their signed copy.

Is there anything else you would like is to know?
I am fortunate enough to have wonderful friends who have hosted some book-signing parties in their home to help spread the word. I am planning on attending local events such as The Benjamin School’s Kid’s Corner holiday shopping and Harbourside’s Farmers market. After the holidays, I would like to start offering personalized cooking classes. I have an exciting event scheduled for April at the Oakland Park Culinary Art Showcase. I have a lot of ideas in the works. I have been asked to arrange culinary trips to Peru, and am in the process of working with a local travel agency to make this happen. We are scrambling to put the first one together for late February.

Thank you Katie, for sharing your story! Congratulations on this wonderful project!!

Thanks for reading the blog, friends! Please support our local business owners & entrepreneurs. They are a very important part of our little slice of South Florida.  Northern Palm Beach County has many small businesses that make living here great! I’m totally ordering a few (signed) copies of this gorgeous cookbook for the chefs in my life. What great holiday gifts!! – ❤️ Nicole

Meet Brooke Hartman of Sea Lustre Jewelry

The best part of doing these Local Super Women posts is reading how these lovely ladies are following their hearts and doing something that they really love. I am constantly amazed at how many local women are doing just that! This week’s feature is no exception. I’ve been following Brooke on Facebook & Instagram for awhile now, but had no idea what her story was. I’m so glad I get to share it with all of you. Meet Brooke!

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Tell us a little about yourself.
Hi!  My name is Brooke Hartman, I am a born and raised Jupiter Florida Native (and never leaving!) I am recently married to my hubby of 7 months now, Eric. We don’t have any babies yet except for our chocolate lab Finn.

When did you start the Sea Lustre brand?
Sea Lustre Jewelry was born in the summer of 2013. I have worked in the jewelry industry for 10 years and graduated from the Gemological Institute of America in December of 2014. I have a passion for pearls (especially Tahitian) and designing. There is not anything sweeter than seeing a client walking around town sporting your very own jewelry line.

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When did you start the Sea Lustre brand?
Sea Lustre Jewelry was born in the summer of 2013. I have worked in the jewelry industry for 10 years and graduated from the Gemological Institute of America in December of 2014. I have a passion for pearls (especially Tahitian) and designing. There is not anything sweeter than seeing a client walking around town sporting your very own jewelry line.

What do you find most challenging about running your own business?
The juggle. I recently left my 10 year career at Jupiter Jewelry to pursue my passion for Sea Lustre full-time. I want to give it everything I have inside of me. I am so lucky to have everyone (especially Eric) support me every step of the way. This is a crazy road but I wouldn’t want it any other way.

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What is the most rewarding thing about running your company?   
Everything!  I am so blessed to be on this journey. I wake up every morning smiling, ready to see what a new day will bring.

View More: http://jessicabordnerphotography.pass.us/enchantedbridesstyledshoot

What do you do on your days off?
(ha!) A day off is rare. Especially with the Holiday’s fast approaching..but Eric & I love to travel!! Luckily for us, I get to travel with Sea Lustre, my favorite pearls come from the French Polynesian Islands.This past summer we visited the Island of Tahiti, where we hand chose the most beautiful pearls ever!! But, when we are not traveling to exotic islands..(just kidding) my day off consists of my pup, yoga, fishing, paddling with Eric. We have a pretty large family and love to spend time together.

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How do you juggle work & family?
It is definitely hard sometimes to balance, but for me, I just have to remember to stop and breathe and know when to take a break.

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Where can we find Sea Lustre online?
You can find Sea Lustre Jewelry at:
Our online store: www.sealustrejewelry.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sealustrejewelry
Instagram: @sea_lustre_jewelry // Definitely check in for sales and promotions ☺

Thanks for reading the blog, friends! Please support our local business owners. They are a very important part of our little slice of South Florida.  Northern Palm Beach County has many small businesses that make living here great! – ❤️ Nicole