Local Favs: Tender Metal

Meet my friend Carolina!! She is the woman behind Tender Metal ( @tendermetal ), an online gift shop specializing in custom-made jewelry.

Carolina lives in Calgary with her husband and their son, where she volunteers as a La Leche League Leader, and as the director of diversity and inclusivity at Attachment Parents’ Village Calgary. How cool is she?

I’ve been such a fan of her designs since she started, especially the ones that have those powerful messages, and the best part? They are handmade!!

I think is the little details what makes this brand so special, so I wanted to invite her to the blog for us to get inspired with the story about her brand, and also get some tips on how to start a business! Enjoy!

1-How did you get your idea or concept for the business?

When I was in my mid twenties, I had my heart broken in Halifax. I was in a period of transition and was looking for a more permanent change. I walked into a jewelry store, looking for a piece to lift my spirits and landed on a pink pearl bracelet with a tiny silver lotus charm. The clerk handed it to me and said, “the lotus flower signifies new beginnings and endless possibilities.” I took it home. I loved its significance and how beautifully it applied to me at that point.

That day, I bought a one-way ticket to Cancun where I spent a few months healing from that loss and getting my internal ducks in a row. I learned to enjoy my own company and wrote a paragraph on the kind of life I wanted to have, and who I wanted to have it with.

One night in July, I had a dream where someone told me that my husband was looking for me in Vancouver. Obviously, I bought a ticket to Vancouver. People do that. Right? It was the right thing to do. The next six months were a delightful adventure. It was truly one of the most magical times in my life, where I simply chose to trust that, if I was true to myself, I would end up with the right outcome. Do you know Jason Mraz’s song “I’m yours?” It goes,

“Well you done done me and you bet I felt it

I tried to be chill but you’re so hot I melted

I fell right through the cracks

And now I’m trying to get back

Before the cool done run out

I’ll be giving it my best-est

And nothing’s going to stop me but divine intervention

I reckon it’s again my turn,

To win some or learn some

But I won’t hesitate no more, no more

It cannot wait, I’m yours.”

January eighth was that day for me. The day preparation, opportunity, and the light of the universe came together to put Matthew and I on the same path. Our life together has been a gift and a pleasure, and that January eighth was the day it all began. We were engaged two weeks later and married that summer, a year after I had that dream in Cancun.

I made a piece of jewelry to honour the magic of that day, to remind me that dreams come true, and that romantic love exists. I figured that, if I wanted a piece of jewelry like this, others would too. And I was right. Everybody has a story.  

2- What is your mission/goal?

My goal is to create pieces of jewelry that celebrate emotion and connection. Pieces that people wear every day because they are meaningful as well as beautiful.

3-What products do you offer?

I hand-stamp tiny letters on pieces of metal and use those, as well as Swarovski crystals, freshwater pearls and gemstones to create pieces of jewelry that celebrate significant events and relationships in people’s lives.

 

4-How do you advertise your business and why?

Most of my clients come to me via word-of-mouth, meaning one of my existing clients was thrilled with their piece and told their friends, and those friends then told their friends. There’s been a lot of that. Instagram and Facebook have been useful too. And lastly, I wear my jewelry everywhere I go and talk about Tender Metal to anyone who’ll listen.

5- Any tips of how to attract clients?

I make pieces that I’m proud of, I give excellent service, and I tell everyone about Tender Metal. When I’m taking care of those three things, I relax and trust that my prospective clients will find me and that my existing clients will come back.

6- To what do you attribute your success?

I think Tender Metal has resonated with people because everyone has a story they want to celebrate. Everyone has loved, everyone has mourned a loss, everyone has relationships they want to honour and cherish.

 

7- What is unique about Tender Metal?

It’s my clients’ stories that make Tender Metal unique. Every custom-made piece is a co-creation between us.

8-What made you choose this type of business?

The romance. The emotion. Also, the logistics of it are perfect for my family and I at this stage of our lives. I’m able to do what I love in my Calgary studio while my husband and son work and play 3 feet away.

9- Have you turned down a client?

Not yet! I’ve been fortunate to work with clients who are respectful and who are and eager to own one of my pieces.

10- If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out what would it be?

Find a way to add value to other people’s lives where you can be your authentic self.

If you love her story, watch us this Wednesday at 9PM for a Wine and Talk on ilove604 Facebook Page! And stay tuned for our Mother’s Day Giveaway!

Xo,

Athenas

Mother’s Day Gift​ Guide with The Mason Jar!

It’s time for that Mother’s day blog post! And I’m happy to partnering with The Mason Jar to give you some ideas for your gift search!

I’m super excited about this holiday because we DO deserve to have a special day! And I know is marketing and blablabla but sometimes with our busy lives we tend to forget about us, and we do deserve recognition!

I love supporting local, and The Mason Jar has everything that you need to make your mom or a special girl in your life happy! Another plus? they ALSO support local! How cool is this?

 

I asked Cathy, the Owner, What would her recommendations be for you and here are some her favs:

*All K pure Products ( Totally agree with her! I’m such a fan of them! )

*Brunette ( For those fashionistas! )

*Maccs the Label

*Pyrrha Jewelry

*Vancouver Candle Co.

*Smash and Tess

*Riot Therapy

*Sonja Picard Jewelry

*Reminded Design Jewelry

*Karyn Chopik Jewelry

You can find all of our suggestions of course, at the beautiful Mason Jar in White Rock! Happy Shopping everyone!

Xo,

Athenas

Getting Ready for Summer with The Chopped Leaf at Morgan Crossing

Everyone’s ( except me ) favorite season is almost here! Is already April, so there are only a few months before it’s time to show up our bodies and put those bikinis on. I haven’t lost the baby weight.. and when I say, baby, I mean since my 3-year-old was born lol!!

I gained soo much weight with my 2 pregnancies, and I haven’t get back in shape because I still make excuses to no wake up at 5 am and exercise.

They said is 70% what you eat and 30% exercise, so I’m trying to focus on eating as clean as possible, adding greens and nutrients to my diet to replace that lack of exercise, HOWEVER now that I returned full time to work, and Francisco keeps traveling, there is no much time left to cook and sadly I had lots of visits to Tim Hortons and Subway ( ewwwk lol ) until I discovered The Chopped Leaf!

It is very rare to find healthy quick meals, so I love having this option just 5 min from my home at Morgan Crossing!! Their Salads are to die for, and if you need more than greens you can make it a wrap, a sandwich, whatever you get I promise is going to be totally enjoyable!

Their customer service is amazing too! So I’m partnering with them to give away a $30 gift card for you to try their menu and judge for yourself!

I want to make your life simple so you can enter either via Facebook or Instagram!

For the instagramers:

You have to like my pic for the contest, follow me @ilove604 and @jdrai and tag someone that lives in the South Surrey/White rock area or that you would like to invite for a healthy lunch. 1 tag= 1 entry.

For the Facebook lovers:

Like our pages:

https://m.facebook.com/ChoppedLeafMorganCrossing/

https://www.facebook.com/ilove604/

And tag someone that lives in the South Surrey/White rock area or that you would like to invite for a healthy lunch.

That’s it! The Winner would be announced next Sunday! Happy Healthy Eating everyone!

XO,

Athenas

My Netflix Lately..

Even tho I do not have much time left for TV, There are those rare weekends like the last one, that my agenda is free, and I’ll sit in front of the TV to start my Netflix research.

I wanted to write this post for you because I know sometimes we will be scrolling down until we get bored of trying to find something good to watch, and we would end up distracted in our phones with Instagram, so I want to help you with your selection!

Here is a list of my past/new favorite shows and movies on Netflix Canada ( I think the only one that is not available here is The Sinner, I watched while we were in Mexico and it became quickly one of my favourites! ) for you to watch on your free time!

For Her:

  • The Sinner ( If you are mom, I’m pretty sure you are going to like this lol! )
  • How to get away with a murder ( Love all of this solve the crime shows! )
  • Scandal ( Woman power! )
  • But first, they kill my father ( This is an emotional and awesome movie to watch! )
  • Greys Anatomy ( My all time fav! Let’s keep the happy dance alive! )
  • Gossip Girls ( OF COURSE )

For Him:

  • The walking dead ( This was our, my husband and I show! )
  • Pablo Escobar ( If you are Latin, or if you like gangsters movies, this show is for ya!)
  • Prison Break ( My old time fav! )
  • Breaking Bad ( Boys, boys, Boys! )

Do not forget to share your favourite ones in the comment below!

Happy Thursday all!

Athenas

Marketing Survival Guide

If you watched my Insta stories, you know I attended the CIMC ( Canadian Internet Marketing Conference ) in Squamish, and I have to say.. it was a life-changing.

Even tho I graduated in Marketing, I’ve been working in Customer Service and Management for the last 5 years, so all this new Marketing world is completely new for me, and seriously, I couldn’t have a better training than the one I got there.

The speakers where AMAZING! the tips, the PR, I can’t wait to be there next year!! So.. with that being said, I want to share with you my favourite top 5 speakers, and what did I learn from them!

1-Dunkan Wardle ( Former VP of Innovation and creativity at Disney )

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Photo by:www.speakerscorner.co.uk

He was my favorite male speaker! And particularly I have one quote that he said stock in my mind “If you don’t feel awkward, you are NOT innovating”. What a big true! We are so scared to try something new, that we ended up coming over with the same ideas and we just add something, and that’s NOT what marketing and creativity are about. One great tip I got was, that whenever we want to start something, think about it in your most creative moment. For example, myself, when I’m going to write a post, I got most of my ideas while I’m in the shower or in a table next to a cup of coffee. Write everything down, and most importantly, take time to THINK.

2-Adam Wills ( Sales and Marketing Director at Four Winds Brewing Company )

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Photo by: vanmag.com

He was one of my favourite not only because I love the story behind his company, but because he reminded me something that is extremely important to succeed: ” DO NOT FORGET TO DREAM “.

3- Rachel Hariri ( Digital Social Media manager, McDonald’s Canada )

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Photo by http://marketingmag.ca

She was my favourite Female speaker, her tips and techniques make total sense with the new era of digital marketing, ” Listen what people are saying about your competition” be proactive AND reactive, and most importantly, have your eyes in your customers! Every comment matter!

4- Rob Khazzam ( General Manager, UBER Canada )

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Photo by https://bbj.hu/

I’m very surprised that I’m writing this because if you were following me on twitter last year, you know how upset I was at Uber. I perfectly remember the moment when I sent them my cancellation email telling them I would not support a company that supports machismo AND racism. But, we all deserve second chances, we all make mistakes, and the most important thing is to take action to correct them, and that’s what they did. “An AD will end, a happy, a satisfied customer will not”.  Cannot be more agree with him, the best marketing/advertising you can have are your customers!. He talked about how they didn’t really have marketing campaigns when Uber started, everything was word of mouth of happy customers. and yes.. a reputation WOULD kill a great product!

5- Diana Luu ( Head of Marketing Solution, LinkedIn Canada )

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Photo by https://www.linkedin.com

“The B2M Buying process is especially emotional”. And this is totally true, think about it, we do care about the price BUT we tend to care more about how do the brand would make us feel. Do we trust the brand? Would I feel proud supporting them? .. that’s why is so important that TOP leaders connect with their customers. “New doesn’t sell, RELEVANCE and Familiarity DOES”.

Xo,

Athenas

 

 

Local Fav: Zensa Cream

If you know me, you know how much issues I have with my skin. I suffer from keloid scar, if you don’t know what keloid is, well in basic words I would describe it as a 3D scar! It usually has a smooth top, is pink or purple, and is bumpy.. basically my worst nightmare!

During the summer, my scar gets super itchy with the contact with the sun, so I’m always on the look for products that would help with this, and a couple weeks ago, I was reached by this brand called “Zensa” to try their new healing cream. Even tho is manufactured in the USA, it is produced by Alera skin care here in Vancouver. The timing couldn’t have been better as I received before my trip to Mexico, and I used it all the time! ( As you can see in my pics lol! )

I love how good it felt on my scar, I would put it on at night after all day at the pool without feeling guilty as this product doesn’t contain any crap that that is bad for you.

This cream is Health Canada certified and is proven to reduce itching, inflammation, and scarring post procedures! Steroid-free, Cruelty-free, all natural ingredients (Calendula, Tea tree oil, shea butter, aloe, green tea extract, etc. ) it is safe for sensitive areas such as the face or around eyes, and the best part? Their fresh grapefruit scent used in aromatherapy!!

The more I used it, the more I like it! If you are into the microblogging, tattoo, etc. This cream is going to become your BF! For more here: Microblading Zensa 

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Hope you find this review useful, It should be available at Shoppers Drug Mart at any time! Or you can just go to their website, clicking here: https://zensaskincare.com

XO,

Athenas

Matias Spring Closet

Athenas+Francisco = Mia&Matias-60

Morning loves! It is a long weekend..which means.. I have time to write! Even tho I’ve been super busy, I keep adding more stuff for ilove604 and I’m so excited for what is coming!!

As you know, we went for a little trip to Mexico, so I HAD to go shopping for spring/summer clothes for the kids and myself ( yes, because sometimes, just sometimes, I’ll remember to buy something for me lol! ) so get your coffee cups, that today I’m sharing Matias closet for those boy’s mom’s out there!

1-Bamboo Long Sleeve Hoodie Coverall BabyOutfitters

I’m Obsessed with their clothes collection! When they sent us samples of their beautiful store, I totally fell in love with every single piece! They are stylish, their fabric’s are incredibly soft, and the best part? Matias has very sensitive skin, so Bamboo is well known for no irritate the skin. Another plus? they are LOCAL! made in Vancouver! Yasss! You can find these beautiful rompers here: Earthbabyoutfitters

Athenas+Francisco = Mia&Matias-69

2- Carters 3 piece shirt

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I have Carter’s store 5 min from my home, so sometimes it’s just so easy to stop by and fill out their closet there lol! I love this little set and right now is only $9.97!!! Carters

3- Whistle and flute Taco Shirt

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When I saw this taco shirt, I know I had to have one! I love their designs because they are gender neutral, it is very difficult to find matching outfits for him and Mia! This was the perfect shirt for our little trip! You can find one in here: Taco shirt

4- Joe fortes summer romper

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Love Joe Fresh!! They have such a cute baby boy collection, this is a recycle for one of my friend’s, so I don’t think this is going to be available in the stores anymore lol! But check their sites, sometimes I see big stores coming with the same designs every year LOL!! Joe Fresh

5- Organic Cotton Long Sleeve Pullover

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This is the perfect sweeter for those spring\camping chilly night! It is fun, cool and hip! If you are into organic cotton you can find yours here: Earth Baby Outfitters

What is in your baby’s boy closet?

Happy Long weekend everyone!!

Xo,

Athenas