Babes Promoting Babes – Kasia of Isabelle’s Bridal

Isabelle's Bridal - Martin Thornburg wedding dress

MY MISSION: To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entrepreneurs and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them, and you, my subscribers.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU …

In the mid 2000’s while I was studying Fashion Merchandising at VCC (Vancouver Community College), I was working part time as a receptionist at Beverly Ball Hair Design on West Esplanade in North Vancouver. It is unfortunately no longer, but when I was working there, and for as long as I can remember, I have admired the stunning dresses on display in the store front windows at Isabelle’s Bridal.

I recently featured their window displays on my Instagram and sought to find out more about the people behind Isabelle’s. The local bridal store is a perfect fit for my Babes Promoting Babes Interview Series. I am very honoured to introduce you to Kasia Bulva, one of the owners of the North Van iconic store.

M: What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like? 

K: I was born in Poland and lived there until I was 9 years old. I grew up in a city called Sanok with my twin sister Basia (who also happens to be my business partner). Growing up in Poland was great but it was during Communism when life was quite difficult at times. My parents decided to immigrate our family to Canada to give us an opportunity for a better life. 

Isabelle's Bridal - Wedding Palette
Isabelle’s Bridal – Wedding Palette

M: What did you want to do when you grew up?  

K: I was hoping to get into advertising. I’ve always had a passion for coming up with creative ways to sell and market products. As I grew older, I developed a passion for the art of selling and excellence in customer service.

M: Did you go to college or university? If so, what did you study?

K: I went to college and studied business development. 

M: When did you move to Vancouver?  Why did you move to Vancouver?

K: I moved to Vancouver in 1999. I was living in Toronto at the time and came to visit BC and I was hooked! It wasn’t long after that trip that I made the decision to move here. 

M: When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?

K: My business was started in 2005 under different ownership. Funny thing is, I actually came in as a bride looking to purchase a veil. The previous owners and I had an instant connection. I felt like they had been my friends for years. After going home I quickly realized I wanted to spend more time with them so I became their first employee! I became the store manager and learned many valuable aspects of the wedding industry over the 10 years spent with them.

Isabelle's Bridal - Sweet flower girl dresses
Isabelle’s Bridal – Sweet flower girl dresses by Ooh La La Boutique

After the fantastic 10 years the previous owners decided to change pace and close the store down which forced me to look for other employment options. Upon my search it quickly became evident that my passion was bridal and that I wanted to continue working in the industry. I then had this “it” moment! I literally sprung out of bed at 3am and said out loud to myself “I’m going to buy the store!” And I have now owned the store for 7 years. 

M: What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?

K: I love having the freedom of choosing how I spend my time and the ability to make my own business decisions.

M: What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?

K: I would advise future Boss Babes to look within themselves and if what they are planning to do is really their passion. Running a business takes a lot of hard work and dedication. The 9 to 5 workday will not exist anymore and often you will take your work home with you in paper and emotional form.

Having said that, it is also very rewarding and exciting. Your business is your baby so you will need to make sure you do whatever it takes to make it run smoothly. Number one advice – get a very good bookkeeper!

M: Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book?

K Remember to keep it fun. Stay innovative and motivated. There will be great days and there will be not so great days. Always remind yourself that this a journey of your passion, enjoy the ride! My favorite quote is, “if you love your job, you’ll never work another day in your life”.

If you would like to see more of Isabelle’s Bridal’s beautiful wedding dresses follow their Instagram and visit their website to book an in-store or virtual appointment.

I AM Grateful …

I'm Grateful

I am GRATEFUL …

I am grateful for so many things but top of mind — Mama Izumi, Big Sis and a certain someone who has recently come back into my life …

I risk “scaring” him off if he reads this blog BUT I guess that’s the risk I take for expressing my thoughts in the moment.

This moment is sooo delicious too … Leave it to a foodie to describe time with a food adjective. Hahaha … I’ve got my ear buds plugged into YouTube music and Shawn Mendes’ song, “In My Blood” and I’m feeling really happy.

Sooo back to gratefulness and this certain someone … We are supposed to go on a date today. I have the perfect outfit picked out too. My thrifty finds that I purchased from a Facebook Marketplace seller yesterday — sleeveless white & blue blouse that ties in the back with a teardrop opening $5.00 and stretchy jeans with a proper waist $8.00 (I hate low-waisted pants – they give me muffin top – yuck!).

We recently reconnected on Facebook and exchanged numbers and spoke on the phone a couple of times. Almost every time I think about him I get butterflies … Awww … I’m such a girl. Hahaha ….

This blog is going to be short and sweet like ME. I shall end this here for: 1) fear that he will read this and I may reveal TOO MUCH and 2) I will continue this later and let y’all know what happens …

Question is — WILL HE ACTUALLY CALL TODAY …. Fingers crossed, Babes.

Babes Promoting Babes – Francisco of Tequila Cocina Restaurant

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entrepreneurs and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them and you, my subscribers.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU … 

I first met Francisco Sonora, Owner of Tequila Cocina Restaurant at the Lonsdale Ave Magazine launch party as I did our first Male Boss Babe, Eamonn Duignan, when we were introduced by the magazine founder.

Francisco is affable, friendly and very easy to talk to. He is in the perfect industry …

M;  What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like? 

F:  I was born and raised in Mexico City and have an older brother. I grew up in an ordinary family, playing soccer in the streets and drinking water from the hose in the summer. Nintendo was also something I enjoyed playing back then.

I helped our family in a small restaurant, doing everything from washing dishes to cooking, and serving customers.

My mom who raised my brother and myself with a strong work ethic and morals, set a good example for us.

Tequila Cocina’s yummy nachos

M:  What did you want to do when you grew up?  

F: Having my own restaurant was always one of my dreams because cooking is one of my biggest passions.

Also, I wanted to have my own family and I feel blessed now to have baby Ana, she’s my sunshine!!

M:  Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study?

F:  No I didn’t.

M:  When did you move to Vancouver?  Why did you move to Vancouver?

F:  I moved to Vancouver when I was about 20 years old and worked in construction for years (which I still do).

First, I visited on vacation and loved it and all the opportunities that are here. I’m lucky to get to live in this city.

Tequila Cocina’s live entertainment on Friday Nights – Mariachi Los Dorados

M:  When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?

F:  We first opened on May 31st, 2019 but it took us about one year to build and renovate the place.

We are going to have our first anniversary in a couple weeks. It falls on a Sunday and we will be preparing a lot of specials for our customers.

M:  What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?

F:  Well, I’m just the face of the restaurant but there’s a team of many people involved who I appreciate and have to thank.

We have become a family at Tequila Cocina — from my business partner, Mami Matsumura, to kitchen and front staff and of course, my wife and baby who are my motivation to keep me going everyday.

M:  What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?

F:  I’d say just go for it, everything is going to make sense down the road.

Vancouver is an open ocean full of fish and we are the fisherman. Martin Luther king once said,  “Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”

M:  Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book?

F:  There’s a quote that I like and it goes something like,

“The key to success is start before you are ready. Don’t look for happiness, create it …”

You can follow Tequila Cocina on their Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tequilacocina/ and have a look at their menu — their first anniversary is just around the corner: https://www.tequilacocina.org/

Babes Promoting Babes – Mayumi of Fashion INVESTIGATOR INC

Mayumi Izumi

I have been enjoying the Babes Promoting Babes Interview Series so much that — I decided to interview myself …. Lol.

Answering my own interview questions is good way for you to get to know me better and what I’m passionate about.

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entreprenuers and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them and you, my subscribers.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU …

Q: What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like?

A:  I was born in Vancouver, BC — Yes, I am a true Vancouverite and proud of it!  I grew up in East Van as an only child to Masako and Hiroaki Izumi.  We’re Japanese, as you can see from our names… Hahahaha …

Q:  What did you want to do when you grew up?  

A:  I wanted to be famous. Actress, singer, model, fashion designer.  It’s funny because my Dad named me after a Japanese actress — Mayumi and an Italian Singer — Rosanna.

When I was 11, I wanted to be a lawyer.  Very fitting as I am good at arguing my point.

Q:  Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study? 

A:  Yes, I studied Fashion Design at the International Academy of Design & Technology in Toronto, Ontario and Fashion Merchandising at VCC (Vancouver Community College). 

Because I love to learn, I also completed the Small Business Program at VCC as well as the Applied Digital Communications & Social Media Program at Capilano University.

Right now I am in the Bachelor of Communications Program also at Cap U.

 Q:  When did you move to Vancouver?  Why did you move to Vancouver?

A:  I was born and raised in Vancouver. But I lived in Edmonton, Alberta for 2 years and when my Mom (capitalized on purpose for respect to the woman who raised me on her own) & I moved back, we moved to North Van and I attended high school here.

I moved to Toronto in 1999 and lived there for 3 years to study Fashion Design as I mentioned above.

 Q:  When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?

A:  I started Fashion INVESTIGATOR INC in 2018.  My inspiration was my love and passion for writing.

Q:  What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?

A: I love waking up and being excited about my day.  What am I going to work on … How am I going to help my clients … What angle am I going to use to make my clients’ businesses shine …

I am an artist.  Any outlet that allows me to use my creativity makes me happy.

Also, working at home is AWESOME!

Q:  What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?

A:  GO FOR IT! But do it with intelligence.  Save money  — 6 months to 1 year of income to have a cushion while you’re building your business before you quit your day job.

I did not do this BUT it is ideal to feel safe while GOING AFTER YOUR DREAMS …

Q:  Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book?

A:  My favourite quote is from one of my favourite books and authors:  

“The seventh spiritual law of success is the Law of Dharma.  Dharma is a Sanskrit word that means ‘purpose in life.’  The Law of Dharma says that we have taken manifestation in physical form to fulfill a purpose.  The field of pure potentiality is divinity in its essence, and the divine takes human form to fulfill a purpose.” — Deepak Chopra

You have to do what makes you happy.  When you find what that is and can make money doing it then you’re in Dharma.

Babes Promoting Babes – Insha of Insha Artistry

Insha of Insha Artistry

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entrepreneurs and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them, and you, my subscribers.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU … 

I originally met Insha Pathan at the bank she used to work at and although all the customer service representatives were great, she was my favourite!

Before the bank closed down, we exchanged numbers and we kept in touch. 4 years later, here we are!

M:  What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like?

I:  I was born in Mumbai, India and where I spent my early childhood. It was so amazing growing up in Mumbai and my time there has definitely influenced who I am today. 

Growing up, I would say my childhood was wonderful, filled with so much love and laughter with family and friends.

As a teenager, I was blessed with an awesome group of friends and we always found an excuse to make the most of every day. Whether it was playing outside, going to movies or exploring new areas in Vancouver.

M:  What did you want to do when you grew up?  

 I:  I was always very artistic and studious but if you asked me what I wanted to be, I wouldn’t be able to give you a clear answer.

The truth was, I didn’t know myself what I wanted to be, because I had so many interests. My main focus was trying to figure that out while I was growing up.

But sometimes things happen in their own time and you find your path without looking for it.

M:  Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study?

I:  I went to Simon Fraser University and got a Bachelor’s in Communication with a Minor in Publishing. Many years later, I went back to school to study Global Makeup at Blanche Macdonald.

M:  When did you move to Vancouver?  Why did you move to Vancouver?

I:  I moved to Vancouver when I was 8 in 1997. We moved here with the prospect of a better future for the family.

M:  When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?

I:  I graduated Blanche Macdonald in 2017 and after that my journey as a Makeup Artist began.

Holi Festival Makeup
Insha was inspired by the colours of Holi & wanted to do makeup to celebrate the festival. Holi marks the beginning of Spring and signifies the victory of good over evil. It is celebrated as a day of spreading happiness & love.

At the age of sixteen I always had people tell me I should get into makeup because I was good at it, but my response at sixteen was, that is not a realistic career.

How wrong was I? I never would have guessed ten years later, I would be in school for that exact profession. After working a 9 to 5 job, I realized that I wasn’t fulfilled creatively.

I learned that I couldn’t live the rest of my life working a job that I hated. That was when I left my full time job and took the leap to follow my dream.

I knew I wanted to do something artistic,  but I wasn’t sure what that would be. Then one day I was scrolling the internet and the word Makeup Artistry stood out to me and it just clicked. I was an artist and people’s faces were just another canvas for me to explore.

It also gave me an opportunity of doing makeup for TV, Film and Fashion which have always been huge interests for me. It was in that moment that I just knew this was it.

M:  What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?

I:  The best thing about being a Boss Babe is doing a job you love every single day of your life. I am so grateful that I was able to follow my creative passion and turn it into a profession. Work never feels like work, and every day I am excited to see what new adventure is going to come my way.

M:  What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?

I:  My biggest take away from this is that the leap is so important to take. You have to tune out the voices of others and really listen to what you want out of life.  Sometimes it will work and sometimes it won’t but at least you tried. This way when you look back years later,  you will not have regret over why you didn’t ever try.

If you wish you had your dream job or that you could follow your passion, nothing will happen until you take that first step and put your energy into it. So I say, take that jump and follow your heart. It is terrifying but sometimes the best things in life happen when you face your fears and follow your dreams.

M:  Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book?

I:  Follow your dream and pursue what you really want. Things will always work out when the timing is right and as cliche as it sounds, everything does fall into place when it is supposed to. 

I will leave you with a quote from one of my favourite books which is all about following your dreams: 

“Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself, and no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams.” – Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

If you would like to learn more about Insha Pathan, follow her on her Instagram profile: https://www.instagram.com/insha_artistry/ and her website: https://www.inshaartistry.com/ I am excited to announce that Insha will be a regular Beauty Contributor here, at Fashion INVESTIGATOR INC — so remember to subscribe!

Babes Promoting Babes – Daisy of DSS Creatives

Daisy-Babes-Promoting-Babes-Interview

I met Daisy Salvacion-Shields at VCC (Vancouver Community College) in the Fashion Merchandising Program in 2007. She was in some of my classes, but it wasn’t until after VCC that we connected on a personal level.

She is the talented artist who did my make-up and photos featured here, on Fashion INVESTIGATOR INC. Daisy was working on a project called, “Celebrate You” and she asked me if I wanted to be a part of it. I said, “YESSSS!”

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entreprenuers and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them, and you, my subscribers.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU …

M: What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like? 

D: I was born in Calgary, Alberta but at a very young age moved to the tiniest town called Hope, BC. Childhood was full of fun, creativity and adventure. I learned to love the outdoors but stayed a city girl at heart.

Bedroom walls consisted of magazine collages inspiring me with fashion and style, down time was dress-up with friends. I even organized my first fashion show in grade 7!

M: What did you want to do when you grew up?  

D: So many things, and still do … ha! Singer, dancer, teacher, writer, and artist (I loved doing cartoon drawings of Betty and Veronica).

M: Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study?

D: I was in the Film Program at Capilano University and also took Fashion Merchandising and Screenwriting courses at VCC. 

M: When did you move to Vancouver?  Why did you move to Vancouver?

D: 2001, to go to Capilano U. 

M: When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?

Parent company, DSS Creatives was just born this year. And under the umbrella of DSS, are two divisions.

The first is Conceptual Portraits, started in 2011, the focus is on Editorial Portraiture (photo shoots) . Bulan Productions is the second and newer division, with its first film made in 2017 and its focus is Digital Film Making.

Daisy - DSS Creatives - BPB Interview
Daisy making her first film in 2017.

My biggest inspiration is storytelling, especially when it can help to motivate others and DSS Creatives houses my two favourite mediums to do that with.

M: What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?

D: I’m doing work that is speaking to what I really love doing so it’s work that gives me energy back.

Energy to keep going as opposed to work that sucks the energy away. I am all about committing to a career that I love because life is too short.

M: What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?

D: I’ve gone down that path. I quit my career of 15 years with a small amount of savings, support from my husband and no solid structure of what I was going to do next but a solid commitment to feed my soul. That’s it.

I knew what made me feel alive and I went in that direction. It’s been such a rewarding career ever since, monetarily, creatively.

So definitely, my advice is when you are at the point where you can’t ignore the whispers  (they don’t go away for a reason)  take the freaking leap. Of course it will be scary, but stay genuinely committed to your truth, whatever that may mean to you.

You are growing. It’s human. You’ll be met on the other side with synchronicities in your favour and I’m cheering for you!

M: Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book?

D: Favourite Book:The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron. It changed my life. 

Favourite Quote: “When you want something, all the Universe conspires in helping you to Achieve it.” – Paulo Coelho

Daisy Salvacion-Shields is the founder of DSS Creatives, a creative agency that specializes in visual storytelling through its digital film-making division, Bulan Productions and its editorial portraiture division, Conceptual Portraits. Check out her Instagram profile: https://www.instagram.com/daisysalvacions/

Babes Promoting Babes – Sonja of The Queen of the Closet

Sona & Bella - The Queen of the Closet

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entrepreneurs and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them and you, my subscribers.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU …

I met Sonja Brooke last year at Earnest Ice Cream in North Vancouver. We were introduced by Sarah Murray, Fashion Program Coordinator at VCC (Vancouver Community College) when she sent over Sonja, Fashion Merchandising student to help me organize my fashion show. For those of you who missed my last interview — “For the Love of Local” is my First Annual Fashion Gala and it is still in the works.

STUDENT?! –Sonja, with heels stands about 6 feet tall and wow, what a stunner! She is a former model and working actress, not to mention a Boss Babe with her own business, the Queen of the Closet, that she started with her daughter, Bella (left in the photo shown above).

M: What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like?

S: Born in Australia – raised there, England and the States. My childhood was awesome, as were my parents.

M; What did you want to do when you grew up?  

S: Growing up I wanted to be an artist and a News Broadcaster.

M: Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study? 

S: I went to Sydney University and studied Journalism.

M: When did you move to Vancouver?  Why did you move to Vancouver? 

S: My daughter was born in Vancouver  but spent the first years of her life in Australia. We moved back to Vancouver about 15 years ago.

M: When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?  What is the Queen of the Closet’s mission? 

S: I am a gemologist by trade, but my love of the land and environment is what prompted the creation of The Queen of the Closet.

Our mission is simple — we spread the narrative that asks consumers to, “Buy better – Buy less – Save money and in turn save the planet”.

Sonja holding sustainable fashion handbag - BPB Interview
Sonja holding sustainable fashion handbag by Staud Clothing

M: What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe? 

S: Hilarious, I never saw myself as a “Boss Babe”. I have always worked as a team. I am a very private person and always enjoyed taking the back seat.

M: What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap? 

S: I think it depends on the person and the situation. If a person is young and has no responsibilities by all means – JUMP!  

It really depends. I have always taken calculated risks but then again, I have always had responsibility therefore I had to really think the situation through.

M: Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book. 

S: I always love to paraphrase a  couple quotes by Maya Angelou – “When a person tells you who they are, believe them”  and “Stop making someone a priority when they are making you an option”

Babes Promoting Babes – Shane of Goodlad Clothing

Grandpa Goodlad

I had the pleasure of meeting Shane Meier last year when I walked into Goodlad Clothing and introduced myself.

I chose to visit his store because I wanted to feature their Men’s Clothing in my First Annual Fashion Gala, “For the Love of Local”. And to my delight, Shane agreed on the spot. He was also a gracious host and gave me a tour of his store, barber & coffee shop — All contained in the one location.

Shane told me the reason he named his store Goodlad. It was his grandfather’s last name. Grandpa James Goodlad’s portrait was rendered by an amazing local artist, Kevin Keeler. It is hung in the center of Shane’s store & shown above .

A portion of my fashion show ticket sales will be donated to Not for Profit Organization, Harvest Project. Designer garments from their thrift store, Clothes For Change will be highlighted and 3 suits designed & constructed by VCC (Vancouver Community College) Fashion Design students will be auctioned and all proceeds will be going to help families in the Harvest Project program. Stay tuned, I will be announcing when and where the gala will be taking place when it is deemed safe to do so.

Goodlad Clothing
Goodlad Clothing Store – Men’s Fashion in North Vancouver

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entreprenuers and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU … 

M: What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like? 

S: I was born and raised in Saskatoon, Sask (Saskatchewan) but lived most of my life in the Lower Mainland.

Spent about 30 years in the Film/TV Industry both locally and in Los Angeles, as well as across most of Canada.  Currently live in Yaletown but cannot wait to get to the North Shore where my business GOODLAD is located.

M: What did you want to do when you grew up?  

S: I had ZERO clue. Lol … In FACT, I didn’t know what I wanted to do (for the rest of my life) until I was in my late 30’s.

Acting was a hobby and that was it. I was too small to play most sports as a kid so Film/TV performances were a natural fit for me and I was very fortunate to get work steadily as a kid.

M: Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study?

S: I did not. I moved to LA when I was 17 and lived there for a year. THAT was my post secondary education.

M: When did you move to Vancouver?  Where in Vancouver did you move to?

S: We moved from Saskatchewan around 1988. I lived and grew up in Coquitlam.

M: When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?

S: Goodlad was born about 2 years ago. We officially opened for business in August 2018 so we are still new!

Inspiration came just wanting to be a business owner. I’ve always worked for myself my whole life in the Film World.

I wanted to open something special where people would gravitate towards. I wanted each person that comes through the doors to have a great experience.

Goodlad's Coffee Shop
Goodlad’s Coffee Shop – drink coffee & grab a breakfast sandwich or snack

M: What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?

S: If you ask ANY of my staff I DO NOT use the term BOSS in or around the shop. I am their colleague. Co-worker. Mentor. I just so happen to be the signing officer on their paychecks — That is it. 

I do, however, like being able to do just that. Mentor and point people in the right direction. 

I was once in their shoes. And learning from people with experience only helped push me in the direction I wanted to go. 

M; What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?

S: YES. Take the plunge. Commit. A lot of people get scared and stay in their 9-5’s and are miserable for most of their lives.

Goodlad - Barber Shop
Goodlad Barber Shop – get your hair cut, and a shave while you shop

Being an entrepreneur is one of the most exhilarating  experiences I have ever had. Stressful at times, but once you see what you have created for people, there is no better feeling.

I may have brought this mentality from my performing days…

M: Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book.

S: Never be afraid. Attack projects with KNOWING that you will succeed. Hard work always pays off in the end.

Motivating books?? Gino Wickman writes a ton of VERY useful books for running anything from 2 to 2000 staff business. Very useful for me when opening Goodlad. 

And you cannot go wrong with Mr. Jordan Peterson’s “12 Rules of Life”. It’s a true game changer!!

Shane Meier is the Owner of Goodlad Clothing, North Vancouver’s premier Men’s Fashion store, barber & coffee shop all rolled into one. Very unique concept and a triple threat: https://www.goodladclothing.com/ and follow them on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/goodladclothing/

Babes Promoting Babes – Eamonn of Green Coast Rubbish

Eamonn & Brother - BPB Interview Series

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entrepreneurs and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of male and female CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU … 

I had the opportunity to interview our first male Boss Babe this weekend and it was an absolute delightful experience!

I originally met Eamonn Duignan at the Lonsdale Ave Magazine launch party a few months ago and we were introduced by magazine founder, Adrian. It was an intimate gathering of North Shore business owners and fun was had by all.

Eamonn is the Owner & Founder of Green Coast Rubbish and his brother Cein is his partner (he is on the left in the photo). They have been in business since 2006 removing junk, disposing waste, deconstructing and taking care of any demolition needs their clients may have.

The name Green Coast comes from their commitment “to sustainable waste diversion practices and recycle or donate as much as possible of the useable goods they collect, thereby diverting waste from taking up precious space in local landfills.”

M: What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like? 

E: What’s my story? Starting with the easy questions!  I’m a Leo (if that means anything), and summer is my favourite season.

I was born in Dublin, Ireland, and moved to Canada when I was young. I was raised mostly in Ontario.  I was always focused on something, had way too much energy and was usually getting into some sort of trouble!

I have lived in North Van (North Vancouver) for the last 22 years or so and have been a part of a sport that has evolved from a few renegades building rogue trails to a legit community with an organized association and a world-respected trail network.

I am living in a place that is my mecca and very appreciative of this fact. I strive to achieve my daily goal of getting out for a ride with a cohort of incredibly talented and inspiring riders.

Eamonn's Mtn Biking Photo-Babes Promoting Babes Interview
Eamonn’s passion — mountain biking in North Vancouver

I have built a bootstrap business that I could never imagine possible; I am surrounded by a team and friends who inspire me professionally, as well as athletically. Basically, I am forging my own path, fumbling plays along the way, while still excited about learning.  

M: What did you want to do when you grew up?  

E: Great question! Honestly, I can’t really answer this question, but I would speculate, a deep-sea diver, race-car driver, professional mountain biker, an educator, and at one point, a geologist. When I grow up, I’ll let you know.

M: Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study?

E: I have a degree in Education and Human Kinetics from UBC (Certified Teacher but I have never taught). I also have a Diploma in Forestry and I went to Cap U for 2 years.

When did you move to Vancouver Why did you move to Vancouver?

E: I moved to BC (British Columbia) in ’89 because I wanted something more. At the time I was racing mountain bikes and was somewhat motivated by that. But mostly by the fact that I was at a party, a few evenings before, and promised a friend that I would accompany him on a cross country adventure.

M: When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration?

E: May 6th, 2006 was the day that our doors officially opened! I thank my younger brother, Cein for holding my hand and pushing me to make it happen. He was my sounding board and our founding partner.

My inspiration was simple, I was introduced to a niche industry I knew very little about, and me being me, saw a better way, took the leap, and held fast.

Fourteen years and counting. In short, I would say happenstance and seizing an opportunity. Chance, luck, timing, or just an openness to exploring the unknown — Maybe all of those things, or none of them

M: What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe?  Men can be Babes too… 

E: 100%! Boss and babe aren’t gender-specific!

What I love the most is the learning, the daily challenges, and affecting change in the community I call home, as well as the inspirational team of fantastic individuals who share the same passion for life. 

I also really cherish the creativity and problem-solving I get to practice everyday in my role.

M: What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits – what would you say to them? Should they take the leap?

E: My advice — know your numbers, be kind, have a solid purpose, give back when you can, and most importantly, treat your team well.

Don’t be motivated by potential margins, let passion lead, and all else will follow.  Expect to fail, reflect, learn, and move forward.

M: Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book.

E: Don’t forget to smile and get outside!   

Fave quote = Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving — Albert Einstein

Eamonnn Dunignan is the Founder & Owner of Green Coast Rubbish. Eamonn & his brother, Cein have been in business since 2006. If you would like to learn more about their company or the services they provide, check out their website: https://www.greencoastrubbish.com/ and follow them on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/greencoastrubbish/

Babes Promoting Babes – Jessica of JC Inspired Wellness

Jessica's Photo - Babes Promoting BabesI Interview

I had the pleasure of meeting Jessica Cerato at Steve Nash Fitness Club in North Vancouver, BC when she was substituting for another one of the instructors. I liked her immediately and her style of teaching much better than the instructor she was subbing.

She is full of energy, vibrancy and openness. And a motivating and encouraging Fitness Instructor.

Jessica is also the Founder of JC Inspired Wellness and is a Certified Essential Oil Specialist. She consults, sells, and educates her clients on doTERRA Essential Oils.

MY MISSION:  To motivate and inspire Boss Babes in the making. To uplift, encourage, and promote male & female entrepreneurs and to share aspirations, goals and dreams with them.

To provide and build a warm, loving, and supportive community of CREATORS. Creators of art, a business, or a NEW YOU … 

M: What’s your story?  Where were you born, where were you raised?  What was your childhood, growing up years like?

J: I was born and raised in a small town in Pennsylvania.  As a middle child of two teachers, I was involved and active in a lot of things growing up. 

I loved anything to do with a team, so was drawn to sports.  I battled with weight growing up, but my activity kept it at a manageable level.

M: What did you want to do when you grew up? 

J: So many things!  I wanted to be an author, a professional chef, a news anchor – basically everything except what I am doing now!

M: Did you go to college or university?  If so, what did you study? 

J: I went to American University in Washington, DC to play Division 1 Field Hockey and study International Business and Finance.  I spent a year abroad in Madrid, so I also minored in Spanish.

M: When did you move to Vancouver?  Why did you move to Vancouver? 

J: After graduation and 2 weeks before set to start my career on Wall Street, I decided to alter course and went to work on a cruise ship! 

I spent 7 years at sea managing the onboard Youth Program and during that time, met my now, husband.  He is from Vancouver, and after sailing out of this amazing city for an Alaskan season – I fell in love with both him and Vancouver! 

M: When did you start your business?  What was your inspiration? 

J: I became a Fitness Instructor in 2010, and was inspired to make fitness accessible to all. 

You see, I battled with my weight all my life and my relationship with food and fitness overcame me in my early 20’s.  At 210 pounds, I felt horrible — both mentally and physically. 

I was living in Miami at the time and inspired to do something about it, I walked into my neighborhood gym.  I stood in the lobby for 20 minutes.  No one helped me.  No one even acknowledged me. 

And I left that day, inspired to do it for myself and everyone else who feels invisible.  My philosophy is to make my classes accessible to all — to have fun, and join together to lift each other up.

I kept teaching through my two pregnancies and felt awesome.  However, after going back to work in 2017 after the birth of my second daughter, I struggled. 

Struggled to sleep, struggled with debilitating headaches, struggled with my emotions.  I was medicating with chemicals that I knew my body couldn’t sustain long term, and I knew I wanted better.

Then, I found essential oils.  They started out helping with my physical ailments, but over time offered so much more support.  I became obsessed with learning, and got my Essential Oil Specialist Certification. 

After seeing what they did for my family, I was again inspired to help others get help too.  And so I partnered with doTERRA and became a Wellness Advocate. 

Now, I educate and help those looking for natural solutions, on what essential oils are, and how to use them. 

I am so passionate about bringing both sides of my business together.  Not just physical fitness, but emotional health and wellness too.  JC Inspired Wellness was born in 2019.  Many think JC is my initials, but the abbreviation and inspiration is actually Justine and Charlie – my two kids.

In addition to teaching fitness classes at studios, I also founded and offer signature programs of my own – “Squats with Tots,” “Barre with Babies,” and “Yoga Birthday Parties for Kids.”

M: What do you love the most about being a Boss Babe? 

J: That’s easy.  Helping others.  Whether it’s teaching a step class, flowing through yoga, offering sleep solutions, teaching green cleaning classes, or just holding a baby while their Mom does squats — it’s the connection, knowing we are all in this together that I truly love.

M: What would your advice be for Boss Babes in the making?  If they are contemplating leaving a secure 9-5 job with benefits — what would you say to them? Should they take the leap? 

J: Do what’s in your heart. 

I look back at my life, and see so many times when I decided to pivot.  From Wall Street to Cruise Ship, from the US to Canada … And I continue to pivot. 

It’s not about choosing a path and making it your goal forever, it’s about living life and doing it your way — Whatever that looks like for you.

M: Any last words? What’s our favourite positive/motivational quote or book. 

J: So many that have made a difference in my life.  But for this audience, anyone contemplating going out on their own, I love Cathy Heller’s, “Don’t Keep Your Day Job,” podcast and book. 

And, don’t feel like you have to have it all together, all of the time.  It’s okay if you fall apart sometimes.  Tacos fall apart and we still love them. 

You are enough, just as you are. 

Jessica Cerato, Owner of JC Inspired Wellness, believes health and wellness is for everyone. Through fitness classes and natural health supports like essential oils and mindset mantras, she works with individuals and families to reach their goals.

To learn about Jessica’s tips, tricks, and inspiration on living your best life while sharing her own perfectly imperfect one, follow her on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jcinspiredwellness/

And if you would like to purchase doTERRA Essential Oils, or book a wellness consultation with her: https://linktr.ee/jcinspiredwellness