Passion For Profession – Brenda David

Passion For Profession – Brenda David

Hello beautiful readers of AuntyLulu blog 😊, I trust you’re all in great spirits 🤩.

Let me shed some light on why I started the ‘Passion for Profession’ series. The series is a spin-off of one of my favourite blog posts – Talent, passion and interest. So far, I have shared the inspiring stories of ladies who have made a profession from their passion -but I have something extra special today 😋. If you will recall, I mentioned in the article that it is possible to earn by pursuing both passion and talent, and I ended it with this statement – “blessed is the one who can combine it all together 😊. This is the case for my personality of today, Brenda David

Brenda is a woman of many faces, she has a day job which I’ll say is based on interest and she has successfully built a brand from her passion for entertainment. Wait, wait that’s not all 🤚🏽, She has also built something special out of her prowess in the kitchen, isn’t she such a multi-faceted woman 😃. Well then, let’s meet her.

Passion for profession  Brenda David

Can you please tell us a bit about yourself 

My name is Brenda David, I’m a wife and mum to 3 wonderful children. I work as a housing manager with the home office and as an event manager – hosting children and adults events. I also created my own sauce two years ago and it’s called Celario sauce.

What do you like most about your job

My day job as a housing manager as well as both of my businesses involves meeting different people. I enjoy that part of it.

What are your hobbies

Dancing, I love to dance, if you look through my social media posts I’m dancing in a lot of them. I love listening to music, well anyone who loves dancing must in some way appreciate music, if not what do you dance to 😊. I also enjoy swimming and visiting interesting places

Tell us something people don’t know about you?

I’m a very homely person. When I’m working, people always see me playing around and joking and I’m pretty sure they think I’ll be some kind of lazy woman! I’m actually very homely, I love cooking and the comfort of my home. I love hanging out with my kids just by watching something interesting on TV. It is plausible to assume I love going out because of my job, but I actually don’t mind staying home all day. Let’s not forget the sleeping 😄, I actually sleep a lot too.

How did you get into entertainment?

I studied Theatre Arts in school so I’ve always loved production and entertainment and I love children. Relocating to the UK, I always thought children entertainment could be better, then I saw a male entertainer (now my friend and colleague) in action and I was challenged, I felt with my background and nature I can do this. The timing was also perfect for me, so I delved right into it, tried different styles did some fine tuning and voila, 😃, its all Brenddaisy entertainment now. I love children and doing something that makes them happy is priceless.

Where do you see your business in 10 years?

I see my businesses become global. I see Celario Sauce stocked in all major grocery stores worldwide.

How did you come up with Celario Sauce?

Celario sauce was birthed from my love for cooking. I cook every day, I have a natural talent for cooking. There were days I would come home tired from work and most of the meals I make (most Nigerian meals) are sauce based. I would always think there has to be something, something already prepared. I’d tried some popular sauces in the market but they just didn’t do it for me, the taste was never right. Every time I complained, I always had this nagging thought to do something about it rather than complain.

So I finally gave in, did my research and realized there was nothing like Selario sauce in the market. Next, I started asking around just to see if other people would find it useful. The responses I got also challenged me to find a solution to ‘our common’ sauce problem. It took three years of research and tests to come up with it.

How did you come up with the name Celario and what can it be used for?

I came up with the name Celario based on my conviction that Celario will be global one day. I thought a name with an international ring to it would be appropriate. Luckily for me, I was able to achieve this without neglecting my roots – as Celario, broken down in my native language is a combination of ‘Se (cook it) La (taste it) and Ro (stir it).

Celario can be used by anyone to cook anything. Just like you use Dolmio, Ragu or any other sauce in the market, it can be added to anything or used on its own. It can be used for Jollof rice,moi-moi, efo riro as it can be used for bolognese, seafood sauce etc. It is really good with anything, a trial will convince you.

Passion for profession  Brenda David

Where can Celario be purchased?

It’s in local stores in Enfield, Grays, Dagenham, South East, Borehamwood, Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham, Barking, Tilbury and we’re looking to expand. It’s a long way from when we started, then it was just available on-line, so I’m excited by the growth so far and even more excited for the future. We still have it on our website – www.celariosauce.co.uk

What are the challenges – if any – you face in your jobs?

With my day job, I have to deal with tenants with different challenges ranging from depression, mental issues to different social issues.

With entertainment, I sometimes have to deal with parents getting crazy over party bags. Sometimes it just goes so fast and they take it out on the entertainer, this happens mainly with big parties though. Sticking to a time frame with children’s parties could also be challenging sometimes, with children it’s sometimes difficult to stick to a plan.

The sauce, gosh, funding! It is very capital intensive and I keep investing every day, hopefully, this will change when I can get it into the big stores. I’ve also been unable to do any major marketing, I’m just doing it bit by bit. But I’m positive that I’ll get there, I love what I do and I’m determined to put everything into it.

Passion for profession  Brenda David

Is there anyone in this business you look up to or admire their work?

There are people whose job I admire but I generally look up to God and the holy spirit to guide me. Both in my day to day life as well as my business. I’m always happy when I see others flourishing and I’m always happy to support in any way possible.

Any advice for budding entrepreneurs especially in your field?

Believe in your dreams, don’t be too scared, just go for it. People who are successes today started somewhere too, they were probably scared at the beginning, but they have their success stories now. Even big brands still have fears of failing, so just go for it, follow your dreams.

How do you juggle your work and businesses with family life?

I honestly don’t know, I must say though that I’m blessed in the area of sleep 😃, so once I get a good night sleep, I’m refreshed and good to go. I also don’t worry too much, since I gave my life to Christ, I just leave it all in his hands.

Are you always cheery and in a happy mood?

Oh yes, I’m a happy person, I’m very joyous. I find it very difficult to be upset, I see joy and happiness in everything around me. Of course, there are times I get upset but I don’t let it linger. I radiate joy, I carry it everywhere with me 😊. I don’t like seeing anyone gloomy around me, even if they’re strangers I try to do something about it, even if it’s just a smile I try to lift people’s spirits as much as I could.

What drives you?

Life and God. There’s so much happening in the world, people dying, people are hungry, homeless so many challenges! so life drives me. Having family, good health, shelter and friends drive me. I didn’t become this strong overnight but I trained myself by reading books, listening to sermons, reading the bible, so being thankful for life and all I’m surrounded with drives me.

Passion for profession  Brenda David

If you had a chance to pick one superpower, which will it be?

Ability to make everyone happy, kind and nice to others. I would love for everyone to get along, for peace, love and unity.

Thank you so much for your time.

Follow Brenda;

Instagram @brenddaisy

www.celariosauce.co.uk

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Turning my passion into my profession – Mojoyin’s story

passion for profession

“We adorn your feet with our classy shoes”

jojo Shoes

Here’s another lovely passion for profession story.

I had a chat with sprightly Mojoyin -mum of three boys and founder of Jojo Shoes – a brand that designs beautiful shoes for ladies. Mojoyin is making a profession out of her passion for fashionable shoes.

Mojoyin was one of the fastest girls in my secondary school 😚and it was always a delight to watch her on the track. It’s interesting to see that she’s dropped her track spikes for stilettos and the likes 😀. This buttresses my point that we can excel at anything if we work hard at it.

Mojoyin could have easily chosen a career path following her natural talent as an athlete, but she chose her passion for fashion (shoes) and is putting all necessary efforts to make it flourish.

Let’s meet Mojoyin…

My name is Mojoyin Abolarin. I’m a mom, wife, homemaker, IT database Administrator and now an entrepreneur who designs beautiful shoes for women.

I was born and grew up in Lagos, went to boarding school for 6 years, studied biology at the University of Maryland with hopes for going to medical school. That didn’t work out as I had my first son, got married and decided to go for a masters in Information Technology.

passion for profession
Mojoyin in ‘Isokan’ booties

Tell us about what you do?

I am the owner of Jojo Shoes, a brand that I started in April 2018.

After finishing from grad school, I started working as a database administrator and later on as a software developer. I then decided to start my own business of buying and selling clothes which failed so badly after so much investment. My love for fashion was still intact and I still desired to start a business around fashion.

I’ve always loved shoes, most shoes that caught my attention were usually either too expensive or not comfortable. So I decided to start making shoes for myself first and then others. Most shoe samples are in size 8, but mine is in 10 because there was a part of me that was afraid of failing and thought “ well if I fail at this at least I would be wearing all my samples to console myself.”. 😁

How did you get into Shoe production. 

As stated earlier, I love shoes and I’m often drawn to the classiest shoes on display which usually turned out to be high-end shoes, but just couldn’t afford to buy them.

Also, I have bunions (even though not too big) , but enough to make my feet look weird and uncomfortable in stiletto shoes.

About 4 years ago, I bought a pair of green stilettos from Christian Luboutin and it was hell walking in them. I returned them and bought another style, thinking changing the style would help, but I also couldn’t fit! That’s when I thought of designing shoes for myself and making sure I enjoyed the comfort of those shoes while making them affordable to most at a high end taste.

Why shoes?

Not why shoes, but why good shoes 😊? Good shoes will definitely take you to good places 😉. Just kidding. Shoes because I’ve always loved shoes and that’s the first thing I look at in a persons outfit.

I also want to make the feet beautiful. You see people wear clothes, makeup and accessories to beautify and enhance their figures and looks, so why shouldn’t we also adorn the feet that supports the whole body and make it look gorgeous.

passion for profession
‘Subulade’ Sandals

Are there any big shoe companies you look up to, and why?

I really love Aquazzura. Their shoes are so unique and stylish, yet not as highly priced as some of the other high end shoes and they also have their original and classic designs.

What are you goals for your brand?

My goal for Jojo’s is to see it in every woman’s closet and to have it in main chain stores. I will like every woman to have at least one pair of Jojos.

How do you come up with your designs?

I have a designer I work with – Andrea (my Italian designer) he helps with the design process. If I have an idea, I draw it on a sheet of paper, he then marks out all measurements and uses design software to help perfect the design/idea so the manufacturer will understand.

I sometimes also draw in my dreams and they are crazy drawings but my designer in Italy understands me a lot and also helps improve my sketch. We eliminate until we sure we’ve created something wearable.

What do you mean by drawing in your dream?

Drawing while sleeping 😚. Sometimes I dream of shoes, and some designs and I just notice I’m drawing in my dreams, immediately I’m aware of it, I get up (I always have my pad and pen on my bedside table) and scribble a reminder or draw what I have in mind and then go back to sleep immediately. This has happened several times, the fear of failure is real I guess 😄.

What are the challenges you’ve faced in running your brand?

Well I have enjoyed every stressful part of designing , sourcing for manufacturers, going broke, sourcing for materials, choosing colours etc. I tend to be conservative but decided to go out of my comfort zone and bombard my shoe line with colours.

There are however many challenges, biggest being funding. This business is capital intensive. I started with my paycheck as a software developer, so I’m trying not to starve my kids all in the name of starting a new business especially as I’m avoiding getting a loan.

Another major challenge is getting a manufacturer to work with my minimum order quantity. Since I started business, I’ve had to switch between 3 manufacturers, and I’m still researching for better manufacturers in terms of price, quality and minimum order quantity. One thing I’ve realized is that the research never stops.

Sizing is also a problem, as is the issue of customers trying to make you go crazy! The numerous voices demanding different shoe styles is unbelievable. Some want wedges, some want, flats, some want even higher heels. One thing I realized is just to follow my vision and not lose track of where I’m going with my brand.

passion for profession
‘Arike’ Sandals
Where do you see your brand in 10 years?

By Gods Grace, I want Jojo Shoes to be in all Major retail stores. I also would like to have several physical stores in all major cities.

How do you manage running your business with motherhood?

It’s tough, but I just plan ahead – I do most of what needs done when my kids are in school. I have a flexible remote job and good support from family and friends.

Advice for budding producers?

Just start from somewhere with the little you have, do lots of research, be prepared to do a lot of advertising, be patient and just trust God.

passion for profession
‘Adun’ Booties
On a lighter note, What would you do if you had special powers?

If I had special powers, I would make everyone in the world peaceful with each other. It’s so scary with how much hatred and atrocities going on in the world. So I would want to be known as “Peace woman with a white cape and an all white outfit 😋. Imagine how the world would be if they wasn’t hate. 🏳👼🏾

Please follow Mojoyin on Instagram @myjojoshoes.

You can shop for Jojo shoes on www.myjojoshoes.com. Let’s support our own, let’s help build our own high end brands.

Aunty Lulu

Read our first passion for profession story here.

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