Images by: top 2 Cedrix Maddox bottom four Anna Ugbo
BUSINESS / ORGANIZATION:
Eclectically You ExperienceHouston, Texas
ABOUT THE BUSINESS / ORGANIZATION:I am a Jackie of many trades. Like a cat, I have had many lives in one and look forward to evolving. My heart is Eclectically You Experience. It is a company that was formed out of a passion to celebrate the moments in life, big or small, that make us who we are. Eclectically You Experience is a lifestyle brand that is all about defining, planning and designing an experience that you, as an individual, can put your style stamp on. In a world of people who want to fit in, we are steadfast about helping you and your vision stand out! We cater to bookies, creatives, and bosses who are serious about their purpose.
My background is in education, journalism, design and the arts...so as a creative director, I can bring all these skill-sets together for those who we gladly serve. I love how the job has aspects of defining, planning and designing for client needs and we help to ultimately brand memorable moments. It can range from designing a banner for their business, creating flyers for their pop-up shop or planning their book launch event.
I want to also continue to bring positive, lit for life, public programs, outlets and events to the community. Our two flagship events are BYOBook Club for Busybodies (monthly) and Vision Board Night (annually). We are growing and it is always a good time!
We recently branched out and debuted as a publisher with the 10 Year Anniversary re-release of my first fiction novel, Tangled Web of True Love Tales. The book brings social issues to the forefront in a conversational way. Throughout the years, I have gotten many questions from authors and aspiring authors about navigating as an indie author. I am super excited to help other authors with our new writing services and courses for self-published authors that will be announced in 2020.
THE STORY:Designing jewelry was my first eclectically you experience. In middle school, high school and college, I had 3 stints in my life where I'd have to make something with my hands. I'd make jewelry and wear it. I noticed that many of my classmates, teachers, church members, family and ladies at the salon would take notice. "That's different. That's cute."
Although it was a hobby, after a project in Economics class and working in retails for years, I started Eclectically You Accessories in college and committed to this brand during my junior and senior years. I learned a lot from being hands-on. So in college, I made jewelry and even designed handbags. I'd cater to the client by customizing 80 percent of what was ordered. It was an eye-opening experience. I never expected people to sport stuff I made with my own hands. What warms my heart even more is hearing from many that they still have items I made from over 10 years ago and it means something to them, they hold those items dear to their heart.
It was great days of understanding the purpose and power of original style. I have carried that into today's brand. Although the products and services are different, the premise is still the same. We must celebrate what makes us, us and sport that special aspect of self with out style and we must put our heart into what we commit to.
ACCOMPLISHMENTS / ACCOLADES / AWARDS:It has been a blessing to be recognized for doing what you love: the most recent special occasions have been having the honor to be featured nationally for my fiction novels and poetry (NAACP, NABJ, Congressional Black Caucus, Delta Sigma Theta's Literary Cafe (SHFBA Chapter) and launching my own "Lit for Life" Book Tour.
In 2017, Basic Invite formed a print partnership with EYE. We were the Morgan Falls Event Center Event Design Competition Winner in our first year of business. I've had the privilege to share my company's story on various platforms (Start-Up Masters, Afro Vibes, and Voyage Houston Houston Style to name a few.)
Launching a creative coaching series for HABJ's Educational series at Fox 26 was an exciting opportunity and I will continue to offer more workshops that empower the creative in us all to come out!
ROADBLOCKS AND CHALLENGES:I have always had bigger dreams than my budget. I have worked as an educator for 12 years and people know we don't get paid overtime or better yet, close to what the job entails. Working a full-time job while building a business is challenging and I have had to stay creative figuring out ways to do it. I have poured any extra money or savings I have into a dream. This landscape is ever-changing and there are many learning curves. So it can be a struggle balancing many obligations all at once.
ADVICE:"Ask for help." I am learning to do more of that now versus taking so much on myself and figuring it out on my own. I am also at a point where EYE will be seeking investors who are aligned with our core values for future funding in order to help grow this message and get the brand out to the masses so it can help more Eclectics all over the world.
CONTACT INFORMATION:Micole Williams
PO BOX 818
Fresno TX, 77545