It takes a lot more than an idea to build a business, but there can’t be a business without the idea. So we asked folks who’ve built wonderful businesses to tell us about how they came up with the idea in the first place.

Destiny Denay | Owner of Boards By Bae (Charcuterie Arrangements) & Business Partner at Westside Wings 214

The idea behind Boards By Bae came from my love of hospitality, celebration and creative expression. The ability of providing a memorable experience along with providing aesthetics too good to eat, it was like the universe was saying “Hey sister, this is for you!” It all clicked, so organically. I wasted no time, dove right in and have enjoyed everyday since. Read more>>

Vivian Zhang | President and Founder of Words To Heart

Words to Heart started as holiday cards, thank-you notes attached to presents, and encouraging texts from friends. Even though each message was simple, its beauty lies in its ability to brighten someone’s day with just a few words. Vivian, our founder, hoped to transform these everyday, private messages into something that could be proliferated throughout the entire community — that’s how Words to Heart was created. Today, Words to Heart is a project to funnel support into the lives of public service workers and groups in need while simultaneously forming deeper relationships between Plano West’s student body and our surrounding community. Read more>>

Linnea Jordan | Travel Blogger

I created Popovers and Passports as a travel blog designed to guide my readers on how to make the most of their trips with a limited number of days to spend in a new place. I coined the phrase “popover trip” after witnessing how it was possible with a little planning to visit a city anywhere from 12-72 hours, see the major sights, experience the culture, and sample a few favorite local dishes all in 12-72 hours. The word always rolled off my tongue and I loved the concept of essentially popping in a place and popping out shortly after. Hence a “popover trip” was born. Read more>>

Rikki and Sharmeen of Gray Matters The Blog | Bloggers, Podcasters, Writers, Educators & Activists

We (Rikki and Sharmeen) met through the Multicultural Women’s and Gender Studies graduate program at Texas Woman’s University and were inspired to create Gray Matters the Blog, a platform that bridged academia and activism. As scholars studying social justice theories and movements such as feminism and womanism, and as activists working in our communities, we found a lot of overlap and were motivated to bring the work of activists to the classroom and make complex academic theory more accessible. We chose a website based blog and podcast as the best methods to have these often uncomfortable topics and to center disenfranchised voices and experiences. As women of color, we are motivated by our own experiences and want to promote positive change and equity through addressing and educating others on systemic injustices. The website, podcast and our social media pages are accessible and aimed for a wide audience. Read more>>

WOAC | Work of Art Community

Work of Art started with all the little things: a group of friends, a desire to bring a smile to people’s faces, and some squares of paper. We won’t lie—as inexperienced high school sophomores, we had no idea what we were doing. In the beginning, our ideas weren’t too far from your average art club (i.e. making crafts to take home); we just wanted to do what we loved. But, as the year went on, it came to our realization that a lot of creating (especially when it came to visual arts) was individualistic. While there’s nothing wrong with operating alone, we wanted to see what would happen if we created a space where art was collaborative, both at and beyond school. We hoped to use what made us happy to bring happiness to the communities around us. Thinking pragmatically, the reality is that our reach is still quite small, but that’s why we keep moving one step at a time! Like when one creates a work of art, Work of Art takes risks. Read more>

Kenya Graves | Graphic Designer

My business, Kenya’s Graphics, started off as just a side hustle for me to get money as I was an at home mother. For me just being an at home mom wasn’t enough. I was tired of just being in the house, not making any money and being depressed. I remember being on youtube and seeing in my recommended section a video that showed you how to make youtube banners, I clicked it out of boredom really. As I was watching I wondered if I could do that to. That was the start of Kenya’s Graphics, Youtube banners. I started watching more tutorial videos and then I went of to making youtube banners for free for people just to get practice. Then they started looking good enough to where I could charge people and that’s when I decided to get into logos as well. With that it was the same thing, practicing until I got good enough to charge. Once I felt like I was getting good at one thing I wanted to learn new things so as time went on I started adding different services to my business. Read more>>

Czarina Lynell | Author, Peace Influencer, & Mental Health Advocate

The idea and mission for my business is all centered around my name – Czarina (Serena). My name is the name of the Russian Queen. The root word Czarin or Serene, means just that – peace, calm, and serene. Amongst family members and friends, I have always been the peacemaker. Yet, there was a constant war battling within my spirit between guilt, resentment, shame, stress, anxiety, anger, and depression. It wasn’t until after my diagnosis that I realized many times in my life all I wanted was peace. I wanted to be at peace. I wanted others to be happy and be at peace, but it had been a while since, I felt that true sense of peace. During my breast cancer treatment journey, I experienced a peace like never before. I wanted that feeling to stick around for the rest pf my life. I know it was the Peace of God. So, as I was writing my debut memoir, Finding Czarinaty: The Journey to Peace Through Cancer and Chaos, I realized it was time for me to heal in all areas of my life and truly find peace. Read more>>

Kertrina Dauway | Singer, Author, TV Producer, Award Winning Business Development Consultant

I came up with the YOU CAN LIVE AGAIN brand because of my own experience. As a young adult I made choices that weren’t in my best interest. I saw how people treat you when you self harm in life. Outside of my family, no one really tried to help me. I really had to work hard to believe in myself and that I could push past my mistakes all the while helping others believe in themselves. I didn’t want the ones I could help go through what I went through in not having someone to encourage them. I wanted them to know there was someone they could depend on. YOU CAN LIVE AGAIN is very dear to me and that is why I believe it is a movement to empower others that whatever has happened to them in life they can LIVE AGAIN. Read more>>

Loren Sanders | The Brand Style Coach ™

In 2018, I launched my blog, Lavishly Loren as a birthday gift to myself and a creative outlet. I wanted to create a safe space to express myself. The blog focused on fashion, travel, and self-love. I felt like I had the best of both worlds, I career that I loved and my own little corner of the internet that I could create freely in. Little did I know, I would be encouraging other women as well as positioning myself as an expert for style. As I began to grow and focus more on the style side, many of my followers that were entrepreneurs would come to me for style advice. This is when I realized that I really enjoyed the feeling of empowering other female entrepreneurs using style. I decided to invest in a business coach that specialized in coaching stylists and style coaches. In addition to having someone that has mastered their own styling business coach me, I wanted to be fully knowledgeable in all things branding and style so I educated myself further. Here we are close to two years later and it has been the greatest decision I made and I’m so thankful for the journey. Read more>>

Candi Bleu | Owner/Master MUA/Professional Singer

LipSerVce was Birthed out of Love & Need. My Love for cosmetics & skincare & A Need due to skin allergies that wouldn’t allow me to use mainstream products. I received my license & certifications in Makeup Artistry & Skincare & the rest is history!💋. Read more>>

Monica Buskuhl | Founder of FACE Foundation of Texas

FACE Foundation of Texas started with a passion for helping others and a desire to give back to our community. As my children began attending elementary school, I found myself with more free time on my hands, giving me the perfect opportunity to devote my attention to making this life long dream a reality. I began brainstorming ways I could make a difference. I researched the needs of local shelters, specifically those devoted to helping women in need. Time and time again, I found the items frequently requested on these shelters’ wishlists included toiletries. That was my lightbulb moment! I had a drawer at home full of unused hotel toiletries, makeup, and skincare products that I had collected, but refused to toss them out, knowing these products could serve a purpose one day. I placed several of these products in individual bags, neatly tied with a bow, and included an inspiring quote. Read more>>

Demetrice Lopez, Esq. | Attorney, Life Coach, & Motivational Speaker

Our business was born from a desire to help people succeed in every area of their lives: relationships, career, health, and overall personal development. Our team of coaches each dealt with having to navigate these areas of life without much guidance so after gaining the life experience, professional experience, and acquiring the knowledge and skills needed to excel as coaches we decided to team up to help build the next generation of leaders. It’s not often you see attorneys, a doctor, an engineer, and an entrepreneur join forces to change the narrative but we knew it was something we had been called to do so we made it happen. Read more>>

Lorena Vanbeuren | Jewelry Maker

I’ve always wanted to start my own business and be an inspiration to other women. During the pandemic I was laid off, so I decided to take a leap of faith and start my own business. Most women love jewelry but I wanted to make jewelry that stands out, something unique. After a lot of thought I decided to make handmade jewelry that would be fun, unique, and bring out women’s natural beauty. Once I made up my mind to start Lorena Jewelry, I found the perfect material: clay. I didn’t know much about clay at fist but I love learning new things and creating things from scratch. Read more>>

Jasmine Johnson | Health Unit Coordinator

Came up with the idea just from experiences. I love T-shirts with quotes or saying on them. I also love to travel, eat, workout and have fun so why not put it on shirt. Read more>>

Dr. La’Boris Cole | Dancer, Entrepreneur, Psychotherapist

My passion has always been dancing and helping others. After taking dance classes from a professional dance company in high school, my desire to teach dance grew. I, then, decided to use what I learned professionally by integrating skills and techniques within my dance company and ministry. As a result, I was hired by different churches to teach different forms of dance to members of their dance ministry. Eventually, I started Born 2 Danz to broaden my reach to allow others in the community to have the same opportunity and experience. As it relates to my counseling profession, the idea of pursing private practice and opening a substance abuse treatment center started towards the end completing my PhD. While pursuing my secondary degrees, I had the honor of interning at a private practice and a substance abuse center. Read more>>