Three cheers for the women that make Peachtree Center great! March 8 marks International Women’s Day, a day recognized worldwide to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, and we want to honor some of the women-owned businesses at Peachtree Center. We profiled a few lady bosses that have a location at The Hub to learn more about their journey to becoming a business owner. Read more below!
Karen Hoard from Karen’s Kreations
Karen’s Kreations was established in 2010 after my sister brought me some semi-precious gemstones from a show in Denver, Colorado, my hometown. I went and took a couple of classes for jewelry making and I was hooked. I began doing festivals and events on the weekends. The opportunity presented itself for me to be a vendor at the Green Market here at Peachtree Center. Every Thursday from April to September I would set up on Peachtree Street and sell my jewelry. I had customers who would look for me each week. In November 2018, a space became available in the marketplace in the lower hub of Peachtree Center. Now, I share space with three other businesses: My Phone Fixery, Flower Paradise and Flame of Life. My business is open Monday-Friday from 10:00 a.m.-3:00p.m.
What motivated you to start your own business? My business started as a hobby and a way to exercise my creative brain. Previously I worked as a contract analyst at a telecommunications company for 25 years. Jewelry making was a way to use my hands and create something beautiful and functional.
Can you name a woman who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader? Why and how did this woman impact your life? Mrs. Thelma Herrington Edwards has been my mentor for over 20 years. I am also a member of a fantastic group called the International Association of Ministers’ Wives and Ministers’ Widows. Mrs. Edwards is the immediate past president of the Georgia Association of Ministers’ Wives and Widows (GAMWMW), and she is an amazing woman who never ceases to amaze me. She led the GAMWMW for eight years and always inspired me to go further.
What inspires you? My inspiration comes from the look and feel of semi-precious gemstones. There is a vast amount of colors, textures and shapes that can be used to create unique pieces of jewelry. Most women enjoy having a piece of jewelry that reflects their taste and lifestyle. My clients inspire me as well to make custom pieces.
What do you like most about PTC? I love meeting the different people who make up the clientele at Peachtree Center. Along with the different businesses and the employees, we also have the convention visitors. I’ve had customers who look for me when they attend Dragon-Con every year. Also, having access to the Mart for the various events during the year is very exciting. Prior to the pandemic, I was able to catch the express bus and relax and think about what I would create for the day.
Mindy Lopes from Flower Paradise
Flower Paradise proudly serves Metro Atlanta and surrounding cities. We are a minority, female-family business committed to offering a signature customer experience in the creation of uniquely created floral arrangements and gifts. At Flower Paradise, people come in as customers but quickly become lifetime friends and “floral families.” Our team brings over 30 years of local and international experience in the floral industry. From elegant corporate events and weddings, to birthday parties, funerals, and community events, we are committed to creating a “Floral Paradise” of memories and joy well beyond the experience!
What motivated you to start your own business? I am truly excited about working with our clients on a multitude of events and occasions. It gives me a chance to bring our clients’ ideas, expressions of love and care to life! My vision is fueled by a desire to build a business that feels like family and community to each and every person we encounter! This is at the heart of creating inspiring business relationships that last a lifetime. The idea and vision of Flower Paradise came from an event that some would have seen as a hardship. I was laid off from a brand I helped to build and grow. The owners decided to sell it. I took this as an opportunity to build my own brand, one that I would be the only one to make the decisions, one to put my love and personal touch into it. And so I did what it took to bring to life my vision of Flower Paradise.
Can you name a woman who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader? Why and how did this woman impact your life? The woman that has inspired me the most is my mother Maria Reyes who is brilliant, loving, and dedicated to her family and community. My mom became a widow during my teenage years, yet, she managed to ensure all seven of her children (6 daughters and one son) received an excellent education, exposure to diverse cultures and experiences that allowed us to love all people. At Flower Paradise, we bring the spirit of our native country, Honduras, Central America to Metro Atlanta and infuse the beauty of both countries into our work daily!
What inspires you? My customers inspire me, flowers bring me joy daily, and the smiles received daily, are the highest compliment anyone could ever receive. True job satisfaction is knowing that our company is viewed as a “standard of excellence” in this highly-competitive space.
What do you like most about PTC? To the entire Property Management at Peachtree Center Mall – thank you! You have welcomed us with arms wide-open. Thank you for your continued support, trust, and excellent service. Peachtree Center supports and promotes our small business and graciously shares innovative ideas to help and motivates their vendors. During these unprecedented times, you have been a world class company caring for each and every member of your business community. We salute and thank you for being amazing leaders and supporters. Peachtree Center Mall Owners, Management team, Maintenance And Security Staff… you are the best!