Start:ME Spotlight:

Heart Mercedes

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Entrepreneur

Mercedes Rivera

Community

East Lake

What the business does

Handmade artisan goods and creative management services promoting the "Random Acts of Kindness" movement

What is meaningful about "Random Acts of Kindness" and how does your business promote it?

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"When we think beyond ourselves, we allow room to receive abundantly more - causing a chain reaction into the universe."

I believe kindness is the answer to many of our problems. When we think beyond ourselves, we allow room to receive abundantly more - causing a chain reaction into the universe. Each season we choose a cause to donate proceeds to and raise awareness. Over the holidays it was Operation Smile and every $20 spent placed a book in the hands of a child. Kicking off 2019 we're donating proceeds to The End It Movement, a non-profit focused on ending modern day slavery. Outside of that we seize opportunities to give back when they present themselves - from meal programs in SE Asia, art classes for kids, and ponchos individuals dealing with homelessness. We serve a spectrum of populations because kindness does not discriminate.

What motivated you to start making handmade goods?

"My mom made my jewelry growing up literally until high school."

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Handmade accessories have always been a part of who I am. My mom made my jewelry growing up literally until high school. She would take my ideas and bring them to life. I not only felt special sporting my one of a kind pieces but they were a great conversation starter. I attribute much of my outgoing personality to the excitement of sharing my style with others, even on the present day!

What is your source of inspiration for your art and jewelry?

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"Most importantly my customers inspire me, we build friendships and I learn what they like!"

What doesn't inspire me?! People I meet, places I go, observations in passing. Life is inspiring! I do try to keep up with the trends, I follow stylists and subscribe to fashion magazines. I'll also base color schemes off of Pantone and New York Fashion Week colors of the season. Most importantly my customers inspire me, we build friendships and I learn what they like!

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