I'esha GaptoothDiva interview Melody Short and Adrienne Cole of Artisan Cafe about being Mothers and Business women

Video: Mommy Business (Awesome Mothers/Entrepreneurs) w/ Melody and Adrienne of Artisan Cafe

I'esha GaptoothDiva interview Melody Short and Adrienne Cole of Artisan Cafe about being Mothers and Business women


Watch Full Interview Video Here:

In My Own Words….

What I don’t see a lot of, and this could have a lot to do with the area that I’m in, but… I don’t see many women empowering one another. It’s that sense of compassion that we are missing, too much competition and not enough camaraderie. When I do see a partnership or dynamic that appears positive, mutually beneficial and supportive, I stare in awe. It’s like looking at a unicorn or a rainbow, you have to let the feeling of what you witnessed settle in and marinate. It’s a wonderful thing. This is what I think about when I see Melody and Adrienne of Artisan Café. Their friendship and partnership, consist of two beautiful women, both of which are mothers, who saw a vision and pressed forward. They have two totally different lifestyles and backgrounds, yet they make it all look effortless in their own way.

For a new segment, that I call Mommy Business, I wanted to tap these two incredible entrepreneurs for advice. I wanted them to share with you how they maintain, how they coexist and make magic together. By creating an artistic and cultural cooperative dedicated to promoting creative people and bringing their talents to retail, these women have managed to motivate and inspire hundreds of other women to also find their purpose. Inspiring isn’t just something they are, it’s like fumes that release from their skin. You can just witness their grind and feel compelled to push harder and more fabulously. They have that energy, which should ignite any young mother looking to start a business, be an artist, or pursue her dreams. Although they admit that it is not always easy, by their graceful demeanor and positive outlook on the challenges of being business women, it’s kind of hard not to want some to rub off on you.

I sat down with them and was instantly fed, by their tips and advice of finding courage, becoming fearless, and loving yourself. “It all starts with loving yourself” they say and I could feel my heart thump in agreement. They seem as if they have it all together, even throughout the occasional storm, these women appear unbreakable. The large amount of support they receive from the community isn’t undeserved. It’s not as if they are selling buckets full of anything worth becoming addicted to, it’s their energy that keeps people coming out time and time again. It’s the ideas and the vibe of two positive women who support the arts and people who enjoy it. It’s these mothers who exude a passion and dedication that no one can deny, that keeps community members coming in droves ready and willing to show their love. They have inhaled new life into RVA events and then created a brick and mortar location to define themselves as a force to be reckoned with. It’s impressive to watch them work, and even more enlightening to hear that they too face struggles and challenges. Nevertheless, their ability to endure shows me and many others that it’s possible. They are a testament that young beautiful and successful black women can and do work together. They are proof that communication is key to a friendship and the success of any project. Most importantly, they are the evidence that although it’s not always easy, you can have your business, your children, friends, and love all at the same time.

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Check out the interview with Melody Short and Adrienne Cole of Artisan Café and tell me what you think.



*Are you a Mommy with a Business? To be featured contact me at Teamgaptoothdiva@gmail.com

I'esha Hornes: GaptoothDiva's Online Vintage & Thrift Store

My Lifestyle: DashA’veri Vintage & Thrifted Redesigns Launches 2/11/2013

I'esha Hornes: GaptoothDiva's Online Vintage & Thrift StoreFighting back tears, I finally just said, “I’m going to do it!”

I love thrifting, I love vintage, and I love DIY and collecting unique items. I love it so much that the Hubs had to ask me to scale back on the haul videos, because he didn’t want me to look like a hoarder with a shopping disorder, his exact words. Lol. Despite having a passion for something, I’m not going to front and pretend I wasn’t scared just a little. Now, don’t trip, because my faith is strong. Nevertheless, like anything you love and appreciate, you want to see it succeed.

I'esha Hornes: GaptoothDiva's Online Vintage & Thrift StoreTherefore, I’ve created DashA’veri, named after my two boys (and my motivations) which is a Vintage and Thrift Shop online, for the bold, creative, quirky, and fierce.  I understand that I’m putting it out there and that you’ll either love it or you won’t, I just hope that the creative side in you, finds something that you want. If you don’t… we do customize and bring YOUR old items back to life as well. So regardless, you can utilize DashA’veri for all your thrifting, vintage, and creative styling needs. It doesn’t just stop with clothing, we are venturing in accessories, and home décor as well. So you can understand why I’m running around like a chicken with my head cut off. So while I’m still blogging, writing, doing interviews, reviews and more, I will now have an online vintage and thrift shop for you to shop for creative and quirky pieces.

I'esha Hornes: GaptoothDiva's Online Vintage & Thrift Store

I'esha Hornes: GaptoothDiva's Online Vintage & Thrift StoreI love this, though. I can’t deny that this rush of venturing into online retail is making me feel some kind of good. It’s something about being fearless and presenting your secret love to the world to see, to judge, to critique, and/or admire that makes me feel stronger. Whether I want it or not I know some people will hate, but I’m not talking to them. I’m talking to the people who supported me, that understand that I’m trying to promote the way WE think. That everything beautiful is NOT trendy, name brand, or perfect. That fashion is a lifestyle of creativity and individuality, to be beautiful to those that can receive and understand your purpose, not the majority. DashA’veri will represent that. My online store is for those that like wearing something different. The people who enjoy feeling creatively inspired and love color, prints, funky embellishments, etc. My store is for the girl who saw that weird sweater and wanted it, just because. Moreover, the great thing is I keep it cost-effective as well, because we all are trying to make something amazing with little to no way of doing it. By making broke look chic, we throw caution to the wind and dress how we want.

Check out the video from my very first model call/shoot with photographer Amor Jay.  It was awesome!

I can’t wait to debut the store to you all and I look forward to sharing new creations and items with you here, on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and everywhere else. I want you to know that your style isn’t constructed out of a bunch of rules and regulations; it’s as limitless as your creativity. DashA’veri is here to support that.

Dash A’veri Vintage & Thrifted Redesigns Launches 2/11/2013

Tune in for the link and more information to come

For more of the Baddest Creative motivation, follow me on Twitter @GaptoothDiva

GaptoothDiva shares her fall 2012 haul from Diversity thrift Store

Diversity Thrift Store Haul Fall 2012 – I love thrifting!

GaptoothDiva shares her fall 2012 haul from Diversity thrift Store

Last year when I did my first haul video, I enjoyed myself so much. I wasn’t sure if people would like it or not, part of me didn’t care. I just wanted to share one of my passions, which happened to be thrifting. Most girls do their fashion haul videos and it’s consisting of stuff bought from all the major retailers. I don’t think that’s interesting at all. In my opinion, it’s easy to go to Forever 21 or Charlotte Russe, and just pick up the latest trend and take it home. Then these girls sit in front of the camera as if they did something amazing. They did not.

I think it takes more creativity and courage to post a video of stuff you found at a thrift store or flea market. Not everyone else can see the potential in thrift store treasures. In addition, more people are pretending as if they are too high class to shop at thrift stores. With today’s economy and my eclectic personality, I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t. I love it, with no trepidations I shop until I drop. That’s why I’m almost complete with my challenge of “At Least 90% Thrifted”, where I only where items that I either already own or I’ve thrifted. I can’t buy new retailer items, unless it’s cosmetics or accessories.

So look forward to me sharing new stuff… and try to see the potential. I dare you!

Follow me on twitter and Instagram @GaptoothDiva


Artisan Café Sets the Summer Off With More Space and Culture, Now Let’s Support Them

GaptoothDiva and Adrienne Cole of Artisan Cafe

GaptoothDiva and Adrienne Cole of Artisan Cafe

GaptoothDiva and Melody Short of Artisan Cafe
GaptoothDiva and Melody Short of Artisan Cafe

Melody Short and Adrienne Cole did it again, with another spectacular edition of Artisan Café. I’m so blown away how I honestly feel like I’m somewhere else in the world at each rendition of this event. This brought my summer in right, especially since my options these days are so rare. I was scheduled to attend another event the same day and the same time, however it was so hard to pull myself away once I was in the building.

The energy is electrifying and contagious, like a wave of support just gushes over each person involved. I love seeing the smiling and happy faces networking, almost in a vibe and connecting, each making lasting impressions on one another. It’s amazing! The vendors transcend the level of retail that we come to expect from average events and touch on our sense of sight, touch, hearing, sound, and even taste. There is no table of half-ass marketers only looking for you to buy, but sections of people wanting to call you family. “Check out my art, but let me tell you a story”, words pouring from a vendor into my ears. I love it. Even if your pockets are small, you still enjoy the atmosphere of eclectic style and so much love. Artisan Café is definitely the place I want to be every time.

I was pleased to see familiar faces like Wild Child Dzigns and Jay Sharpe. I was even more pleased to see new faces on the creative and retail platform, like newcomer Melanie Wade of Modgyrl. I was so proud that she was able to participate and sell her beauty products (which we all adore).

There was also an incredible performance by BlackRVA, which was so amazing that you really had to be there.

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See more pictures on my Facebook Fan Page - www.Facebook.com/gaptoothdivaonline

There is no question the level of success that comes from this event, which is why I did not hesitate to support them immediately. They still need our support as they compete in the The Entrepreneurial Trilogy/i.e. Start-up Competition this Thursday June 21, when their Start-Up competes for the title of the Region’s Next Best Start-Up and $10,000 in cash!

I really want them to win! It would change the game for artist, entrepreneurs, and creators all over RVA if they did.

Go to Facebook:

Help the ARTisan Cafe to become the Region’s Next Best Start-up!!! http://www.facebook.com/#!/events/484942991532066/

From the event’s page: “The ARTisan Cafe is a Finalist, and we would love to have you attend! We want to pack the entire theatre with our supporters and loved ones who have experienced the Cafe and would like to see us take it to the next level of a consistent weekend market for business owners to do commerce in Richmond, VA.

We are excited, and now we need you to be pumped up! Bring yourselves, your friends, your kids, spouses, and parents. This will be a fun event…and we NEED your support through attendance.

The judges will collectively decide the winner, based on our presentation and reviewed materials throughout the competition. However, there will also be a Crowd Favorite Award based on the electronic votes from the audience that night!! Again, we NEED your support through attendance!!

Lastly, we encourage you to get in the spirit and make signs, and posters, and other fun gadgets. We are rounding up at C’est Le Vin (15 N 17th street) on Wednesday, June 20th from 5:30 – 7:00 to create some posters. Let us know if you plan to join us!!

Thank YOU for all that you have done so far. We couldn’t have done it without you!! Now let’s spread the word and get our networks to this event! The ARTisan Cafe is a Finalist, and we would love to have you attend! We want to pack the entire theatre with our supporters and loved ones who have experienced the Cafe and would like to see us take it to the next level of a consistent weekend market for business owners to do commerce in Richmond, VA.”

Attending the event is FREE, you can register here -


Location: Richmond’s CenterStage – 600 East Grace Street Richmond, Virginia 23219

Let’s support something bigger than ourselves for a change, something not associated with making any one person the star. Let’s stand behind a positive movement in our culture that will turn around the face of what we see everyday, something to be proud of. I’m so excited and I pray that I can get you excited as well. Let’s help Artisan Café!


GaptoothDiva Fashion Find – ShoegasmGallery.com Launched This Weekend

Shoegasm – The peak of a plateau phase during a visual response when viewing a shoe displaying beauty, originality, and/or fierceness.

Yes, you read that correctly. That good ‘ole feeling you get when you want to yell out in ecstasy after seeing that shoe of your dreams. Nicole and Bennika have defined it right and created a business after it. Shoegasmgallery.com is the premier website to purchase the perfect shoe for your personality. Do you want creative? Want stylish? Or do you want something that will make all of your office haters, hate you more? Check out this site and tell the owners what you think.

I was livid with myself when I got too sick to attend the launch party for these entrepreneurial mavens on Saturday, May 14th at the ultra chic Aloft Hotel in the Short Pump Area. Everything I heard about the event was what I expected. Words like fabulous and amazing were thrown in the air by many of Richmond’s fashionable and chic. All you had to do was check the wire for updates on this event. What was more special, were the encouraging words of support to Nicole and Bennika that many don’t have the luxury of receiving. These young ladies are truly blessed to have such an awesome support system behind them as they embark on taking over the world of retail shoes, by providing women a creative option to shop online.

Reaching out to Nicole to apologize for my absence, I got a quick quote from her:

“The event was a huge success. Despite the weather a lot of people came out to support us, both male and female. The site is completed and fully functioning. We have a wide variety of styles and price points, including shoes that were hand made in the European country of Bulgaria just a week before the launch. We are excited for what is to come in the future, including launch parties in Atlanta and DC.

– Nicole Tyler

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Girl, so are we!

By creating a fabulous boutique online, Bennika and Nicole save on overhead and are able to provide their customers a more personal online experience. Although they just launched this weekend and there isn’t a huge assortment of shoes on their website (thousands of shoes) at this time. They still do offer a wide range of styles to choose from, that will fit any Divas lifestyle. From flats to super high platforms, you can register online to receive updates on new arrivals directly from the website.

These ladies know that presentation is everything. With a sleek website design and fully functional links, minus a few kinks here and there. We are all going to be amazed when these savvy ladies take shoe shopping by storm. They understand that finding the perfect pair of shoes is much like finding love… Always staying ahead of the fashion curve, their mission is to help you find your SOLE mate! I know for sure I got some lost loves somewhere on that site. I’m feeling Alexander at the current moment, so back up ladies. Just kidding. Be sure to add them to your favorites bookmark, because I’m sure Nicole and Bennika have a few more tricks up their fashionable sleeves.

Check out – www.Shoegasmgallery.com

Email: Info@shoegasmgallery.com for more information