I recently interviewed mompreneur Casi Densmore-Koon about her fun fashion site cupcakeMAG. She has some great tips for all you mompreneurs, plus she’s giving away a makeover! Check it out:

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What inspired you to start cupcakeMAG?

As the ringleader of four girls, my darling hubs, and our dogs Stella (a beagle), and a newly adopted Weimaraner, Hausse, cupcakeMAG became my full-time job very quickly. Majoring in fashion merchandising and journalism in college (while running a high-end boutique), I wanted the best of both worlds – to write about fashion. I started cupcakeMAG as a place to showcase my reviews and designer interviews while attending celebrity events, fashion events, and fashion week in Miami, LA and New York. I wanted my site to be a go-to place for all things fashion. Rather quickly, it branched out to product reviews, giveaways galore, DIY projects, home trends, beauty must-haves, celebrity interviews, and one of my favorites — a place to showcase artisans, Etsy designers and anything handmade. I am passionate about supporting small businesses and being a cheerleader for others in the same industry. In my eyes, we have no competitors, and I truly believe in karma. I never imagined that I would need to bring on a team, let alone call myself an entrepreneur! I am thrilled with the reputation cupcakeMAG now has – the support has been amazing!

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Casi

What will readers find when they go there?

You will immediately read super-fab celeb interviews, must-have products we can’t live without, and pretty much all things stylish. We have lots of fun photo shoots and giveaways too! We like to keep readers in-the-know with all things fashion, home, and beauty and give them great content.

We have some super exciting news we are thrilled to share too! After lots of emails, tweets, and questions about what to wear and requests for fashion help, we are launching cupcakeMAG styles – virtual styling services! If you’ve always wanted a personal stylist but can’t afford one, cupcakeMAG has got you covered! We can thank our readers for inspiring us to put our styling skills to work – we now offer many different options for all different budgets, from a full-virtual makeover to la carte services for our clients, and we’re thrilled to be interacting with readers even more.

What’s your most popular feature?

Okay, I am not just saying this for obvious reasons, but cupcakeMAG fans love the Spelling-McDermotts! We have interviewed Tori four times on cupcakeMAG and Dean was our Man of Style and did an oh-so-fab interview with us too! Our celebrity interviews are always the most popular, followed by Etsy designers we showcase and our product reviews. Besides celebrity interviews, one of our most popular featured bloggers was Kelly Stamps – her cupcakeMAG interview got well over 25,000 hits.

What do you love best about your job?

I absolutely love being able to network with such amazing people. Every day I build new relationships with great people and I have met such supportive friends along the way. It truly is amazing what a little tweeting can do. Next thing you know, you’ve got yourself a best friend. And the reward factor is just incredible – I love getting emails asking to be featured, and when we respond the excitement is endless – you can feel the love in the email or the phone call. I love seeing a super small biz starting off with no sales and watching them grow. Being able to help them along the way by sharing them with our readers and being a mentor is a great feeling – knowing our jobs made a difference in their life. At the end of the day, you have to “do what you love and love what you do” in order to be successful – you have to follow your heart and every day that is just what I do – give your all or go home is what I live by. For our cupcakeMAG styles clients being able to see the end result and see how we have changed their life – even if it is a pair of shoes, it is so worth all of those sleepless nights.

Is entrepreneurship for everyone?

I was raised in a never give up, reach for the moon, you can do anything you put your mind to household, so yes, anyone can be an entrepreneur but in order to be successful – you definitely need to check a few things off your list before you give it a go.

Being an entrepreneur can often times be one of the hardest jobs in the world, besides being a mom. It takes lots of all-nighters, passion, drive and a go-getter attitude. There is no time to give up. You don’t have sick leave, you can’t just take a personal day – you can’t afford to lose that time. As an entrepreneur your biz becomes like a child – it is your baby so you devote lots of time. It is all about finding that balance. During New York Fashion Week, I barely sleep – same thing goes when we are working on anything with a time crunch, which is almost always. Business is always top of mind – even at home you will be concentrating energy on the next feature, photo shoot, review, client needs, etc. You must have a never give up attitude and tough exterior – you must push and be self-confident because most of the time you are working alone. You learn to accept things as they are and deal with them — you quickly learn from mistakes. You have to constantly be ready to solve a problem because there will be no one else there to blame it on. It is always go time.

You can never give up. If you want it, go after it and get it. I constantly am making lists of everything I want to do and I am happy to say I have checked so many off of the list. I write it down, get it done and check it off. You have to push yourself and believe – you can do it and sometimes you have to think with your heart to get there.

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Casi’s daughter McKenzie

What are the biggest challenges you face as a mompreneur?

Time! If only we had 34 hours in a day. Ah, that would be amazing.

Another challenge is for some reason, people think I am some crazy robot but they need to realize, I am only human! Yes, I get hundreds of emails a day and everyone knows I most likely will read them right away but sometimes I don’t have time to immediately reply. Yes, I am professional and run a business, but I am also a mother of four girls and have a household to maintain. Sometimes your kids are sick, so you don’t have time to sit at your desk for twelve hours responding to emails, editing photos, taking conference calls, etc. I work 24/7 – all the time. Unless I shut off my iPhone (which never happens unless it died from over-use), I am constantly working. It also becomes very hard to shut off your mind – biz is constantly on the brain.

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Casi’s daughter Sadie

As a mompreneur, how do you approach risk taking? And how does being a mom factor into your decisions?

When you take a big risk and beat the odds – the wow factor of the success is amazing – you live for these feelings. You have to take risks in order to be successful. I truly believe in going with your instinct – if that means taking a risk you have to go for it. Being a mom absolutely factors into my decisions. I don’t write about something I am not passionate about. I won’t suggest something I don’t absolutely love or have in my home, or use on my Littles.

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Casi’s daughter Zoe

Is the professional personal? Do you find that you sometimes need to create boundaries between home life and work life?

You have to work on that perfect balance, which is hard. Yes, I will admit. There have been times where I get a last minute email to find out I am doing a phone interview with Steven Tyler just to realize I am home with my girls and this was so not in the schedule. True story! So what do I do? Immediately figure out a way to keep them entertained quietly while I hide in bedroom because shockingly, I don’t have a nanny. When you have a job like mine, disconnecting just doesn’t happen. It is hard to shut off work life and walk into home life especially with social media and technology. I can’t remember the last time I just really relaxed and had nothing on my schedule but I wouldn’t have it any other way! My schedule is always jam-packed and I’m a list-aholic. If you look under reminders and notes on my iPhone – it never ends. It is the only way I can truly stay organized.

The professional is personal – absolutely! I only have one twitter account – it is my business account but it is also personal. For example readers followed my youngest, Sadie, through her four week stay in the NICU while I still tweeted biz updates and tweeted pictures of Sadie in the hospital. Who I am professionally is very much who I am personally. What you see is what you get, and I don’t change my personality for business. However, you do have to create boundaries and balance the personal and professional. I often find myself filtering. Your presence online is a matter of choice. You choose the content, you create your comfort level – you are an original, or at least should be. I remind myself that I choose what to publish and when. You shouldn’t be paranoid about being too personal, you just need to remind yourself to balance in order to consider how you want to be perceived – after all, you are monitoring your own reputation.
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Casi’s daughter Kennadi

What’s coming up for fashionable mamas this winter?

You can thank Kate Middleton for our ultimate accessory this season – hats. Berets, faux fur Cossack, turban headband – grab them up now! Knee high boots is the must have length and my daily go-to because it instantly makes a casual outfit pop. A great coat is always a must – go for a great pattern, bright color and opt for something that isn’t your average plain Jane pea coat. A great grey nail color is a must! We are in love with the Touring America collection from OPI! And lastly, any dress or top with a great Peter Pan collar. It instantly ups the ladylike factor and adds a little flare – you won’t even need a necklace!

What are your top mommy must-haves for busy moms on the go?

I am absolutely obsessed with Lehla Shop’s Magnebloom headbands (sold at InvenTORI) because they are perfect for those terrible hair days when you can’t just throw on a hat. Perfect for busy moms on the go!

My Timi & Leslie Charlie Pewter diaper bag is a must. Not only does it look like a fabulous bag (it doesn’t scream diaper bag), it fits everything I need for me and my Littles. I am all about the big bags. Oh, and of course, my iPhone 4.

MomAgenda Zebra Desktop Planner & lots of stylish notebooks from Vera Bradley are a must! Phil & teds strollers – couldn’t live without them – yes, my Verve is now a must-have accessory. They make life so easy!

My desk wouldn’t be complete without my Clairebella Personalized Melamine Zebra Tray from Layla Grayce — it is a major must – just love it! And lastly – I can’t go a day without my Star Candy undies {I know, ahhh!} but – I can’t wash them enough. Seriously, everyone needs the entire collection. Your booty will thank you later!

Thank you, Casi!

Win a Makeover From CupcakeMAG!

Casi is giving away a makeover to one lucky editorial reader! Details below:

One winner will get a full red carpet package valued at $500. This makeover package can be used for yourself, as a gift, or for a room in your home that needs updating. The package includes:

  • Two 30-minute consultations, one before and one after we complete your portfolio along with constant communication during the process via email.
  • Brief questionnaire to get all the details! Discuss options, style, budget and goals. This includes personalized wardrobe, accessory, hair and make-up styling.
  • We will send inspiration boards and all links to purchase your looks online.

 

For full details about this package and more, visit CupcakeMAG!

To enter for a chance to win, leave a comment below telling us why you need a makeover, then “like” CupcakeMAG’s Facebook page. I’ll announce a winner next week, so start commenting!

Photo Credit: Whimsy Baby Photo

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