From College Drop Out to The Flirty Girl
How I stumbled into entrepreneurship and meandered my way to happiness.
About Stacie Tamaki
I think my life became really interesting when, at 19 years old, I realized I didn't want to become a commercial artist and dropped out of college 3 months before graduating with a degree in Advertising Art.
With less than a hundred dollars to my name I moved to Los Angeles and found a job working as a restaurant cashier/waitress and as a sales person in a womens clothing store and would work in retail sales for the next decade.
It was only after my second divorce that I became, almost completely by accident, self employed as a bridal accessory designer. I had stopped by a store to visit my friend Wendy when the owner of the boutique asked her "What are we going to do about bridal veils?" for a fashion show they were planning. Wendy saw me walk through the door and said "Where are we going to get veils for the bridal fashion show?" Wendy looked over, saw me, and said, "This is my friend. She's really crafty. I'm sure she could put some together for us." So her boss hired me on the spot to create 6 bridal veils for their fashion show.
I went to the fabric store, bought a pattern, a rotary cutter and a self healing cutting board and got to work. Within days the boutique began referring clients to me who wanted custom made veils. Soon, other friends were recommending me to their clients from a nearby hair salon and shoe store and before I knew it, I was a self employed bridal accessory designer. You can read the whole story on Stacie Tamaki.com by clicking here.
I named my business "Happily Ever After" and worked in the San Francisco Bay Area bridal industry from 1997-2008 creating custom couture bridal accessories. A few years after opening I re-branded my company twice eventually choosing the name "The Flirty Bride." To say I was surprised and delighted by the way people embraced both the name and logo I created to go with the company's new image would be an understatement. It was fun. It was flirty. People loved it!
Being Flirty: I believe that we should treat each day as if it were a special occasion. There is so much in life to celebrate but so often we get distracted, caught up in negativity and as a result, miss out on some wonderful opportunities to be happy and content.
For me, the concept of being "Flirty" is about being open to considering new ideas and not adhering to the status quo, traditions, or restrictive expectations others (even ourselves) have put upon us. I enjoy being around people, who revere tradition but also embrace the concept of putting my own personal twist on things. To me, being flirty is about seeing life with optimism and imagination. It's about being authentic and embracing my own life and others around me with hope, goodwill and positive energy.
The Flirty Blog
When I started my accessory company I immediately had a story to tell. I was surprised by how many people, women in particular, wanted to know how my company came into being. It seems many people have a dream about being self employed but fear holds them back from pursuing their dream.
I honestly never intended to become the entrepreneur I am today. Had I known then what I know now I often tell people I probably never would have become self employed. It's hard, there's no guaranteed paycheck every two weeks, health benefits aren't covered, there's no sick pay, vacation or bonuses. And if you can't afford to hire others all of the responsiblity will fall on your shoulders: Production, marketing and adminsitrating.
Looking back I'm glad I chose this path despite the hardships. Yes it was challenging, but through it all I loved what I was doing and the ability to work with the kind, authentic and ethical people I wanted to surround myself with, both clients and colleagues.
So, early on I shared my story of how my business began, the good the bad and the ugly and found it resonated with those who heard it.
When I started my blog in 2006 I realized that I could share not only what I do but the how and why with my readers. On The Flirty Blog you will find posts that I hope will inspire you to try more than you would have before, or help you to believe you are more capable than you may think you are. I want you to approach life with the optimism and courage needed to live the richest experience possible by discovering your hidden talents, meeting new people and just being unafriad to try new things.
Photo by: Allure West Studios
John is Canadian, born in Toronto at the age of 4.
John is the Head of Mac Desktop Software for the iPod Division at Apple, Inc. John joined Apple 13 years ago when it was called Apple Computer, Inc.
John is a big fan (and in the words of Tim Farriss "friend") of the rock band INXS. He sang for the band for a short amount of time in Los Angeles back in 2005.
John is like the average guy who lived next door to you. That is if your neighbor was a totally freakin' awesome dude.
(Just for the record: John wrote this bio himself)