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Interview with Kristen Bradley, Founder of The Chic Maven



Interview with Kristen Bradley, Founder of The Chic Maven

Kristen Bradley is a woman with a unique blend of skills – she has a background in finance and an innate sense of style that allows her to excel in the high-end event organizing sector. Kristen is the founder of The Chic Maven, a YouTube channel focused on luxury clothes shopping and styling. She also has experience creating floral and decor for weddings, corporate events, and lavish parties. Her clients appreciate her keen eye for detail and her ability to create unforgettable experiences.

“Bradley has always been a person who values her time. As a result, she has dedicated herself to leading a meaningful life where her time is her most valuable asset. She also counsels others to view their time as their most precious resource. Bradley knows that if people do not use their time wisely, it will be gone before they know it.”

Kristen Bradley is the brains behind The Chic Maven, a platform providing young women fashion and lifestyle advice. Kristen started her YouTube channel in 2021 and quickly garnered a following for her relatable, down-to-earth style.

She’s worked in luxury retail for Saint Laurent, Neiman Marcus and consulted for several small businesses. Kristen is dedicated to helping young women build their confidence and feel stylish on a budget.

As the proprietor of Panache Style, She concentrates on floral and event design for numerous high-end events. No matter where the event is situated, be it Miami, Florida, or anywhere else in the world, Panache Style offers an upgraded experience to personal and business clients alike. The company provides complete floral design, event decor services, and installation of seasonal decor.

Where did the idea for The Chic Maven come from?

I always wanted to do a fashion blog but I never really had the time. I worked in fashion for so many years and truly developed a love and appreciation for beautifully crafted clothing. Over time I’ve also collected a lovely collection of well curated pieces in my closet. There were many times in the past when I considered starting a fashion blog to share my love of style, but I just didn’t see how it could fit into my extremely busy schedule. At one point I was producing three events in a weekend. Whether it was a wedding, Bat Mitzvah, or birthday party my team and I literally had a non stop event production schedule for months on end. The pandemic came and changed everything. Once the world was put to a halt and social gatherings were pretty much non-existent, like the rest of the world I found myself in a place I’d never been before. This was going to be the first time in years that I wouldn’t be processing flowers, or going over designs and warehouse protocols with my team. I suddenly had all this free time that I needed to pour into something. This is when I decided to visit the idea of actually starting a blog. I thought of what I would call it and how I would market it. I’ve always considered my style to be quite classic, feminine, and elegant for the most part. I do have my moments where I occasionally venture outside of this aesthetic. Most of the people that know me have always called my style chic and I knew whatever I named my blog would at least revolve around the word “chic”. I started looking for domain names that were available and everything that I could think of was unavailable. It was almost as if it was destined for me to name the blog The Chic Maven; due to the fact that this literally was the only name that popped in my head that was available as a domain name, instagram name, and a youtube name. I felt like it embodied my style aesthetic perfectly and went with it. I purchased the domain and set up the website. I took a few pictures and published a few blog posts. I really didn’t know what blogging fully entailed and after doing my research I realized that blogging was even a thing anymore. I decided that Youtube might be a good way to showcase my style instead. I had never posted a youtube video in my life and I didn’t know much about how to run a channel. I heard it was quite difficult to grow on Youtube from a number of people so I didn’t have much expectations going in. To my surprise my Youtube channel grew much faster than I expected. I posted my first video in February and by November I had 50,000 subscribers.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

My typical day involves me getting my son ready for school, making my family breakfast and then dropping my son off at school. Afterwards, I head to my office / warehouse to start my work day. I usually begin with checking emails. I meet with my team to go over the details of the upcoming events. I go over floral orders, and all the aspects of the events from lighting to linens, tables, chairs, floor covers, custom pieces we need to produce etc.. We also go over timelines and check what we have in the warehouse that needs to go for the weekend. There are numerous details and so much excruciating work that goes into event production. Most people think producing events is an easy, glamorous business. It definitely looks glamorous when every flower and detail is in its place but it’s far from glamorous when you go through the process of putting it together and setting everything up. At the end of the day I pick my son up from school and take him to karate or football practice. We go home for dinner, do homework and then I relax with my family.

How do you bring ideas to life?

I’m a planner by nature so I do lots of research and critical thinking before I execute any ideas. I see things quite vividly in my mind before I put them to paper. After I come up with an idea I consider what would be the most cost effective way to execute it and what gives the most wow factor. For my weddings and events I have honed this process over the years so it’s second nature. I consider what my clients want their guests to feel when they enter a room, how these elements work together to create a seamless experience and how they fit within the budget. I then pick out the variety of flowers I want to use, the furniture that coordinates with my design, the mood of the lighting, and the remaining design details. I create a proposal and floor plan in my design program and then submit it to a client. Once it’s approved I go over it with my team to source the items we need to make it happen. For my youtube channel this is a whole process that I’m still trying to figure out. Coming up with ideas of what to share with my subscribers is not always easy. I try to ask them directly what they want to see and filter out the ideas I’m comfortable with. Sometimes this is a double edged sword. Oftentimes I find that the audience isn’t always on one accord about what topics they actually want to watch. I hope to get better at coming up with ideas through studying my analytics and understanding how the audience responds to help with this process.

What’s one trend that excites you?

For my fashion channel one trend that excites me is fall fashion. I love the fall outfits and the fabulous looks you can create when the weather cools down.Layering sweaters, vest, jackets and wearing boots is just the best part of the year. I also thoroughly enjoy fashion week during the fall. It’s always exciting to see what designers have created for the coming season.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

Having great time management and sticking to a schedule helps me be more productive. Trying to juggle all these hats would be chaotic if I didn’t have a strict schedule.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would tell my younger self to persevere no matter what adversity I face. I bought my event business and you would think that buying an established business would make it a lot easier to be successful but it was quite the opposite. I’ve dealt with a lot of obstacles to get to where I am at including racism, and sexisim. I had a vision of taking this business to a level far beyond the type of events they were produced before I took over. I’m happy to say I accomplished that despite many trials and errors. I’ve learned a lot over the years. There have been many times where I wanted to quit but I stuck with it.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

Flowers should be the second thing you book for your event after the venue. Of course I am biased because I am an event designer. I think flowers provide the wow factor of the event and should be higher in budget priority when people are planning their events.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

I recommend not mixing business with friendship. In my personal opinion this is just never a good idea. Especially if you truly value your friendships you don’t want a business deal that goes array to ruin your relationship.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

To grow my youtube channel I would research topics that had previously performed well in my niche. I would then think of ways I could add value to the topic and make a video that my audience would enjoy. My goal was never to copy anyone else’s work but to put my own take on the topic.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

In the past it was difficult for me to delegate duties to my team to help me with running my business. It was hard for me to let go and allow others to take over tasks I was used to doing myself. This caused me to have issues growing a solid team when I didn’t allow people to feel important in their roles. I ended up short staffed and almost was unable to pull off an event because I didn’t have enough people. I had to learn to allow others to shine in what they were good at and build a team I could trust so I could scale my business and grow to another level. I’m actually at this point now with my youtube channel. I need to allow a team of people to support me so I can grow to the next level.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

This is a tough one. I have a lot of great business ideas but I’m not sure I want divulge them at the moment. That said, I would say it’s always a great idea to spend time recruiting the best people before beginning any business project.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

The best $100 I spent was on a new tripod for my camera. It’s so much more convenient when I’m filming for my youtube channel.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?

Adobe premiere pro is the best purchase I’ve made in growing The Chic Maven. It makes the process of editing videos so much easier and more effective. It truly enhances the quality of the footage and streamlines the process of creating videos.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

I’m currently reading Viola Davis’s book “Finding Me”. I think it’s a very inspirational biography that anyone could benefit from reading. She shares some heart wrenching details about her life and obstacles she overcame to get to where she is now.

What is your favorite quote?

“Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak” Rachel Zoe

Key Learnings:

  • When faced with adversity you must persevere because your future is greater than your past..
  • Time is your most valuable asset and I’d rather spend my time trying to achieve success rather than fearing the what ifs.
  • When you know something is destined for you, you just have to go with it.
Originally published on IdeaMensch.


Exclusive Interview with The NET ZERO ENERGY Buildings Expert Anastasia Makarska: Shaping a Greener Future



Anastasia Makarska

Welcome to an exclusive interview with Anastasia Makarska, a renowned figure in the world of commercial real estate development. Anastasia’s resolute commitment to sustainability and her unique background in physics and engineering have revolutionized the real estate landscape, transforming spaces into sustainable and coveted marvels. 

In this interview, we delve into the concept of Net Zero Energy Buildings (NZEB) and the challenges associated with building codes for NZEB. Join us as we explore the visionary force behind Anastasia’s remarkable projects and her dedication to shaping a greener future.

Anastasia, thank you for joining us today. Let’s start by discussing the concept of Net Zero Energy Buildings. Could you explain to our audience what exactly is meant by a Net Zero Energy Building (NZEB)?

Anastasia: Certainly. A Net Zero Energy Building, or NZEB, is an approach to construction that focuses on creating energy-efficient buildings that are connected to the power grid while also generating renewable energy to offset their energy consumption. The aim is to achieve a balance where the amount of renewable energy produced either on-site or nearby matches or exceeds the building’s annual energy needs, resulting in virtually no net energy consumption.

That’s fascinating. It’s clear that NZEBs hold tremendous potential in terms of sustainability. How are developers and building owners embracing this concept, and what are some innovative features we can find in NZEBs?

Anastasia: Developers and building owners are increasingly interested in constructing zero energy buildings, driven by corporate objectives and regulatory requirements. The building and design community is actively embracing this challenge and leading the way with innovative and forward-thinking projects.

NZEBs incorporate a wide range of energy-efficient strategies, from simple to highly intricate. These include maximizing the utilization of passive solar heat gain and shading, integrating high-efficiency heating and cooling systems, appliances, windows, and doors, enhancing insulation, natural ventilation, air sealing, and incorporating advanced renewable energy solutions like solar photovoltaics and geothermal energy systems. 

The goal is to create buildings that regulate temperature fluctuations, minimize energy consumption, and reduce environmental impact.

It’s impressive how NZEBs combine various technologies and strategies to achieve sustainability. Now, let’s delve into building codes. What role do building codes play in the construction of NZEBs, and what codes and standards exist for this purpose?

Anastasia: Building codes play a crucial role in guiding the construction of net zero energy buildings. Currently, there are codes and standards in place to assist designers, architects, builders, and contractors in creating more energy-efficient and sustainable structures compared to previous years.

In the United States, professionals in the building industry can refer to the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), which has been adopted in approximately 44 states and territories. Across North America, ASHRAE 90.1 provides significant guidance, and the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) serves as another valuable resource. In Canada, there are the National Energy Code of Canada (NECC) and the National Energy Code for Buildings (NECB).

That’s helpful to know. Given the increasing need for more rigorous energy and building codes, what are some of the challenges faced in developing codes specifically tailored for NZEBs?

Anastasia: The development of codes specifically tailored for NZEBs faces several challenges. As industry professionals and officials work on designing new codes to facilitate the transition to net zero energy, there is still no consensus on the structure of the code, its comprehensive scope, and ensuring that buildings achieve net zero energy status throughout their lifecycle.

To ensure buildings perform as intended, it is essential to establish post-construction reporting, analysis, and a framework for oversight and enforcement. 

Current codes and standards often rely on energy proxies without a requirement for actual quantification of energy usage. There are also gaps in the inclusion of certain types of energy usage in calculations. 

To achieve the goal of net zero energy buildings, methodologies need to evolve, modeling capabilities should be enhanced, and real-world outcomes must be measured.

Overcoming those challenges will be crucial for the success of NZEBs. Could you tell us about the advantages that net zero energy buildings offer to building owners, occupants, and the environment?

Anastasia: Absolutely. Net zero energy buildings provide several advantages. Buildings account for a significant portion of fossil fuel energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. By increasing the number of net zero energy buildings, we can reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and effectively lower carbon emissions.

Some key advantages of NZEBs include protection for building owners against future energy price hikes, enhanced occupant comfort, health, well-being, and productivity, reduction in energy consumption and associated costs, improved reliability of energy supply, increased resale value due to high demand for net zero buildings, contribution towards achieving zero energy targets, and minimized environmental impact. These advantages create value for building owners, occupants, and the planet.

Those advantages make a compelling case for embracing net zero energy buildings. As a visionary force in real estate development, how do you see the future of NZEBs and their potential impact on communities and the environment?

Anastasia: I believe the future of net zero energy buildings is incredibly promising. As awareness of the need for sustainability grows, NZEBs will become the norm rather than the exception. They have the potential to reshape communities and serve as catalysts for positive change.

Net zero energy buildings can create vibrant, sustainable communities that prioritize the well-being of both residents and businesses. By reducing energy consumption, minimizing environmental impact, and offering enhanced comfort and productivity, NZEBs have a transformative effect on the communities they serve. They not only contribute to the preservation of our planet but also provide value for investors, businesses, and communities alike.

Thank you for sharing your insights, Anastasia. Before we conclude, could you tell our audience about any upcoming projects or initiatives that you’re particularly excited about in the realm of net zero energy buildings?

Anastasia: Certainly. I’m thrilled to be working on a groundbreaking project that aims to create a net zero energy residential community. This community will embody the principles of sustainable living and showcase the potential of NZEBs on a larger scale. It will integrate cutting-edge technologies, energy-efficient systems, and sustainable materials to provide residents with an exceptional living experience while minimizing the community’s environmental footprint. I believe this project will serve as a blueprint for future developments and inspire others to embrace the vision of net zero energy living.


As we conclude this insightful interview with Anastasia Makarska, it is evident that she is a visionary force transforming the real estate industry through sustainable development. Anastasia’s dedication to creating sustainable and desirable spaces, her commitment to excellence, and her unwavering belief in the power of net zero energy buildings have positioned her as a leading authority in commercial real estate.

Through her innovative projects and expertise, Anastasia is shaping the world we live in, one groundbreaking project at a time. Her visionary approach, fueled by her unique background in physics and engineering, has redefined the boundaries of commercial real estate development and paved the way for a greener and more sustainable future.

Witness the remarkable journey of Anastasia Makarska as she continues to revolutionize the real estate landscape and leave an indelible mark on the communities she transforms into sustainable and coveted marvels.

If you would like to get in touch with Anastasia Makarska you can contact here

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From a Small AC Repair Company to a Household Name in Austin TX



AC Repair Austin

The Success Story of Grande Air Solutions

What makes a successful company?

Well, while there is no one secret alone that can make you a success in the business world, the story of determined employees and aspiring entrepreneurs shed light on what makes a business thrive. Grande Air Solutions was established in 2011 by young, honest entrepreneurs Isael Garcia and Petra Lugo. They are both described as honest entrepreneurs ready to take on any challenge, which is what drove them to make this company a success. You’ll be able to find Isael and Petra engaging regularly with their customers and employees. As both will tell you, honesty is the first and foremost important feature to have in a company. Customers look for honesty in an AC repair Austin team when they’re looking to spend their money on a service. Whether the customer needs a new HVAC system or AC repair, they want to make sure that they’re getting their money’s worth.

Grande Air Solutions | Best Austin Heating And Air Company

Reliable and Affordability Make a Difference

Another key aspect that can take an HVAC company from a small-sized business to a household name is reliability. It can be a distressing situation when the AC breaks down in the middle of a hot summer day. The homeowner does not want to wait for hours on end waiting for the technician to arrive at their home. An HVAC company like Grande Air Solutions that is known for reliability will always be there for their customers, especially if it’s an HVAC emergency. Along with reliability, affordable prices are other factors that can make any company a success if it’s done right. This is where Grande Air Solutions shines as well. They offer their services along with affordable prices for all customers.

Building a Solid Reputation

How do you stand out from the rest of the competition?

It can be difficult to achieve a level of uniqueness among your competitors. However, this is where this company has also succeeded when it comes to Austin heating and air services. Building a solid reputation for years has propelled Grande Air Solutions from a small AC repair company to the well-known, trusted name it is today within the Austin area. The company has been able to deliver high-quality service to its customers, which has resulted in returning customers. This is also known as customer loyalty. The business has many five-star reviews, which potential customers look for in an HVAC company. Isael and Petra envisioned a company that carries the type of professionalism and friendly service that has exceeded the expectations of many of the company’s customers. In a nutshell, the entire team of employees are the ones who have helped build a respectable reputation for Grande Air Solutions.

Trusted and Trained Technicians

A company is only as good as its members. Another reason why this HVAC company has excelled in every aspect of the business is the team. The company’s technicians are well-trained and experienced in the HVAC field. When the technician arrives to fix or install the HVAC system, the customer knows exactly what they’ll be getting. The homeowner will always get quality service because it’s the results that speak volumes. Grande Air Solutions hires technicians who are experienced in the field and properly trained. Having the proper credentials also essential for any successful HVAC company to have, such as certifications and proper licensing. 

Connecting With the Community

Starting from a small, humble HVAC company, Grande Air Solutions has been able to grow significantly thanks to the help of people. As a family-owned business, the company also knows the importance of closeness in the community. The company has been able to give back as much as they’ve received from their local communities. In fact, the company strives to give much more. By collaborating with local charitable organizations, they are able to offer the basic necessities of life, much-needed monetary donations, help for nonprofit organizations, and other support. Being a household name among the people holds a responsibility to provide a role model as a reliable HVAC company in all aspects, including helping the community. 

Expanding Service Areas

Although it may be difficult to expand services in the beginning as a smaller business, one of the reasons the company has been able to grow is because of its determination to expand. Now, Grande Air Solutions is proud to offer Austin heating and air services throughout more of the areas. The company has been able to offer services in Buda, Cedar Park, Georgetown, Kyle, and more, just to mention a few. All of these cities are located in Texas. Investing time and money in their employees is one reason why the company has become a household name in Austin. As the team grows, more service areas are sure to open in the future.  

Offering a Wide Range of HVAC Services

Knowing about the HVAC basics is important. However, this company has been able to expand and grow because its technicians are always learning something new in the field. As technology advances, the area of HVAC also continues to improve. This can include learning about smart thermostats, the new A2L refrigerants, and the new UV light purifiers. Whatever the case may be, the company has continued its success by offering new and improved HVAC services. The wide range of alternatives gives customers the power to choose what they want for their home.

Continuing the Success Without Letup

It can be discouraging and even disheartening when the challenge of a business gets you down. However, the key is to keep on going. Just like this company has shown continuous effort to succeed, it is vital for a business to keep on going without letup. Any business is likely to face ups and downs as they continue to expand. The important thing to keep in mind is that you are doing everything for the customer. Grande Air Solutions is an excellent example of a company that has put its customers first. It is their top priority to deliver quality AC repair, installations, and other HVAC services. Rest assured that the future looks bright for the company as it holds a special place for the residents of Austin, Texas, and nearby communities. 

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An Inside Look at One & Only Electrical Service Inc. with CEO Moshe Sabag



An Inside Look at One & Only Electrical Service Inc. with CEO Moshe Sabag

With thousands of electrical problems solved and many years of experience, they’ve become a reliable and experienced choice for those in need of electrical solutions. In this interview, we’ll be speaking with Moshe Sabag, the CEO of One & Only Electrical Service Inc. We’ll explore the ins and outs of the electrical industry, the company’s commitment to quality service, and their approach to customer satisfaction. So, let’s dive into the world of electrical services with Moshe Sabag.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your role in One & Only Electrical Service Inc.?

Moshe Sabag: My name is Moshe Sabag and I am the CEO of One & Only Electrical Service Inc. I have been in the electrical business for over a decade and have gained extensive experience and knowledge in the field. As the CEO, my role is to oversee the company’s operations and ensure that we provide top-notch service to our clients.

What inspired you to start One & Only Electrical Service Inc.?

Moshe Sabag: My passion for the electrical industry inspired me to start One & Only Electrical Service Inc. I saw a need for a reliable and affordable electrical contractor company in the Tri-Valley area and wanted to provide that service to the community.

What sets One & Only Electrical Service Inc. apart from other electrical contractors in the area?

Moshe Sabag: One & Only Electrical Service Inc. stands out from other electrical contractors in the area because of our commitment to providing exceptional service to our clients. We take pride in being the best local electrician for our clients.  We are licensed and insured, and our electricians are highly trained and experienced. We also offer a wide range of services, including EV charging station installation, smart switches ( Lutron, Brilliant, Leviton, Noon) installation, and all house rewire.

Can you tell us more about the EV charging station installation service you offer?

Moshe Sabag: We specialize in EV charging station installation and can install a charging station for any electric vehicle, including Tesla (car charger tesla ) and BMW. We also offer a range of electrical services, including recessed light installation,led light, electrical panel upgrades, and wiring repairs. We will assess your home or business and recommend the best charging station for your needs. Our electricians will install the charging station safely and efficiently, ensuring that it is up to code and functioning properly.

What is your approach to customer service?

Moshe Sabag: At One & Only Electrical Service Inc., we prioritize customer satisfaction above all else. We offer same-day service and are available 24/7 for emergencies. Our friendly and dedicated customer service representatives are always ready to answer any questions or concerns you may have.

Can you share a success story from One & Only Electrical Service Inc.?

Moshe Sabag: We recently installed an EV charging station for a client who had just purchased a Tesla. They were thrilled with our service and professionalism, and have since recommended us to several of their friends and colleagues. It’s always rewarding to know that we’ve provided a valuable service to our clients and exceeded their expectations.

What kind of training and certifications do your electricians have?

Moshe Sabag: Our electricians are highly trained and experienced, and we make sure they are up-to-date with the latest technology and techniques in the industry. They are all licensed and insured, and have undergone extensive training and certification programs to ensure they are able to provide the highest quality service to our clients.

As a Bay Area electrician, what are some of the unique challenges you face when providing electrical services to your clients?

Moshe Sabag: “Being a Bay Area electrician, we face a range of challenges when providing electrical services to our clients. One of the biggest challenges is keeping up with the latest technological advancements in the field, as the Bay Area is known for its innovative and tech-driven culture.

What do you see as the future of the electrical industry?

Moshe Sabag: The electrical industry is constantly evolving, with new technology and advancements in renewable energy. As the demand for renewable energy sources increases, we will likely see a shift towards more sustainable and environmentally-friendly solutions. We also expect to see continued growth in the EV charging station industry, as more people switch to electric vehicles.

What are some of the biggest challenges facing the electrical industry today?

Moshe Sabag: One of the biggest challenges facing the electrical industry today is the shortage of skilled labor. As the demand for electrical services continues to grow, there is a need for more qualified electricians to meet that demand. Another challenge is keeping up with the latest technology and advancements in the industry, which requires ongoing education and training.

What advice would you give to someone looking for a reliable electrician?

Moshe Sabag: When looking for a reliable electrician, it’s important to do your research and choose a licensed and insured electrical company. Look for reviews and testimonials from previous clients, and ask for references. It’s also important to choose a company that offers a wide range of services, so that they can address all of your electrical needs.

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