Tag Archives: peru

Graduate Feature: Cake Artists Lyzbeth and Elda

19 Nov

Lyzbeth and Elda met through their daughters, who are both in pre-school. Soon, they became good friends and realized that they both shared the same passions—love for their children and love for celebrations. Both women are self-taught bakers and their company, “D’Ellizia” was founded after many friends urged them to enter competitions, create a business, and seek out wider opportunities to market their spectacular talent. Together, they work to make “dreams out of cakes.” What they love about their business is that it is a fun and unique job and there is never a day that is the same because no cake is alike. They see every cake as a new challenge and every time they come back triumphant!

A Peruvian native, Lyzbeth moved to Arlington 10 years ago, and when she had her first daughter, she knew she wanted to keep the same traditions alive that she grew up celebrating in Peru—particularly when it came to celebration. Coming from a Mexican family, Elda has been surrounded by celebration her whole life, and has always to share with others the wonderful parties she makes for her four children filled with spectacular centerpieces such as piñatas and cakes. Both women knew they had a remarkable talent and made a great team, but were not reaching maximum potential when it came to marketing and sales. That is the moment when Elda and Lyzbeth turned to EWI and began working to make their visions a successful business reality. They have received expert advice on pricing techniques, budgeting, and legal aspects—all of which have contributed to their concrete and modified business plan.  According to Lyzbeth, “I feel that this training helps you not only to grow at a business level but to believe in yourself and boost your confidence so much that you feel you could do anything.”


Evelyn’s VIP Reception and Jewelry Show

10 Oct

Former Entrepreneur Training for Success graduate, Evelyn Brooks, has found great success since her time in the program.

Her jewelry design has brought her recognition internationally, with designs featured in the National Building Museum, The Women’s Museum for the Arts, the Harvard Museum of Natural History, and the Museum of Art & Design in New York, among other places.  She recently has been awarded with the Fashion Chamber Choice Award, the Young Entrepreneur Award, the Anna Maria Arias Memorial Business Funds Award, and was labelled one of the most notable peruvian artists in Washington DC by Washington Life magazine.

In honor of her enormous success, the always humble Evelyn will be hosting her annual VIP reception to thank her wonderful clients.  The event will feature an in-house Peruvian chef, and a collection of Evelyn’s latest jewelry designs.

The reception will be on:

November 11th, 2012
from 2-5pm
at the Hawthorn Suites,

420 N. Van Dorn st
Alexandria, VA 22304

And in honor of the 10th anniversary, Evelyn will be generously donating 10% of all jewelry sold to EWI!

Evelyn was born and raised in Peru.  Her father was a jeweler since the age of 14, and her mother ran a successful fashion boutique.  At the age of 21, Evelyn graduated from a business school in Peru and began a career in the travel industry.  Luckily enough, her travels brought her to the DC area, where she found her passion in jewelry, while taking classes at the Torpedo Factory, the Gemological Institute of America, and Empowered Women International.  And as they say, the rest is history….

Best of luck to you, Evelyn, and thank you for your generous gift of donating a portion of your jewelry show sales in honor of EWI’s 10 Year Anniversary!

Student Spotlight: Elda and Lyzbeth

26 Sep

Imagine a world in which baked goods are currency… Where, instead of bank vaults, there are bank ovens… Wallets are discarded to be replaced by tupperware… In this world, Elda and Lyzbeth are queens; the richest women in the world…

But until this dream of mine comes to fruition, these two ETS students will have to make due with their wonderful smiles, and delicious cake pops.


The story of Elda and Lyzbeth’s baked goods begins in Latin America…

Lyzbeth grew up in Peru, and attributes her culinary skills to her mother.  She recalls the parties her mother would prepare, with sandwiches, appetizers, drinks, desserts, candy, cake and much more. Similarly, Elda remembers her childhood in Mexico, where her mother would take the reins and put out lovely displays for each party.

Upon coming to the United States, the women settled down and started families of their own.  Soon, they were assigned the task of birthday duty for their own sons and daughters.  The two recall having to buy different cakes for different children, and often feeling the homogenous selection of cakes was just sub-par.  Elda and Lyzbeth became disappointed in American culture,  noticing a lack of birthday-party preparations, and citing mothers as being “too busy” to properly furnish each event.

Elda LARUE family photo Lyzbeth Monard family photo

Then the idea occurred to them, why dont we cater birthdays.  Why dont we provide a service that is too often overlooked in this bustling American society.  So, Elda and Lyzbeth began practicing, researching, and creating beautiful cakes and baked goods for their friends and family.  The two felt a “magic” in each cake, and would celebrate after each beautiful accomplishment.  Soon enough, the culinary duo were comfortable enough to act upon the suggestions of their loved ones, and begin a business of their own.

Lucky for them, Lyzbeth had a friend in the ETS program at EWI.  They saw her business grow with the help of EWI, and aspired to find the same success.  Through the ETS class, Elda and Lyzbeth hope to be able gain a better understanding of the market and how to sell.

Elda Larue & Lyzbeth Monard /Cakes

“…Every time we did a cake and delivered a product, it [was] so much fun to see their faces, the reaction in people, it is really like, ‘hey we did something good’, and it makes us feel good inside, and if we can achieve that every single time and go bigger, I think that would be wonderful – it helps us inside, helps us monetarily, it’s like the whole package”.

Here at EWI, we know these two women CAN and WILL succeed. We are so excited to have them in our ETS class, and we look forward to watching them grow and prosper.

Best of luck, Elda and Lyzbeth!

-Jeremy Brandt-Vorel
Media and Outreach Intern

Item of the week!

25 Jun

Red Peruvian Huayruro Seed Bead Bracelet

Get an extra 10% OFF item of the week! 

Huayruro seed beads are produced by the ormosia coccinea plant and as they are naturally occurring, each bead is unique, with no two being alike.

EWI is a non-profit organization that helps immigrant and refugee women in the Greater DC Metro area integrate, participate as new citizens, and become self-sufficient by using the arts as an economic driver and a catalyst for social and cultural integration. All of the work available in the EWI Etsy Shop is handmade by our members or supporting artists. Learn more at http://www.ewint.org.

Peruvian-born Evelyn Brooks is a graduate of EWI’s Training for Success program. She has received much press and recognition for her efforts in fighting poverty by giving proceeds of her jewelry sales to local and international causes. Evelyn has built a profitable arts business that provides work and learning opportunities for over 10 people each year. She also teaches at-risk youth and women ex-offenders jewelry-making and marketing to build confidence, self-esteem and re-enter in the society.

Member Spotlight: Evelyn Brooks

4 Nov

Evelyn Brooks is making a difference in the world one design at a time. She is committed to social responsibility and uses her jewelry line to spread awareness about global issues. A native of Peru, Evelyn traveled the world with the airlines industry prior to becoming a designer. A critical point in her life came on September 11th, 2001. Evelyn was due to fly on the United Airlines flight 93, but was rescheduled to fly one day earlier. As result of this profound experience, Evelyn firmly believes she is living her life as she is meant to by using her talents to help those in need.

Although Evelyn’s father was a jewelry designer, she never expected to follow into his trade. But after her father asked her to design a piece from a box of rubies and sapphires he gave her for Christmas, Evelyn was hooked. She and her husband Bryan launched Evelyn Brooks Designs in October 2004. Since then, Evelyn has used her jewelry to advance the causes of various global issues. She supported environmental conservation by designing pieces for the Green Cup Polo and fought poverty as the exclusive designer for the 2007-2008 Fashion Fights Poverty line of charms. She also uses her jewelry to help her native country, and many of her designs are influenced by Peruvian art and culture.

Evelyn hand-crafts her pieces using precious metals, gemstones, and huayruro seeds from the Amazon. These red or red and black seeds are a signature Evelyn Brooks design. Huayruro seeds represent good luck, protection from negative energy, and happiness. The solid red seeds, which carry feminine energy, are complemented by the seeds that are red and black, which carry masculine energy. Evelyn also designed a men’s jewelry collection in 2010, featuring intricate geometric designs influenced by the Moche civilization of ancient Peru.

Evelyn’s talent and commitment to social change have won her many awards. She was honored as a “jewelry designer of rare talent” after receiving the Young Entrepreneur Award at the Dialogue on Diversity Entrepreneurship Conference in 2010. She was awarded the 2010 Fashion Chamber Choice Award by the Greater Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and was named an Entrepreneur on the Rise in 2009 by Council Magazine. Evelyn graduated from EWI’s 2007 Entrepreneurship Training, and received the Outstanding Artist Achievement award by EWI.

Evelyn continues to use her jewelry business to fight for global issues. EWI applauds Evelyn for the positive work she is doing with her unique and beautiful pieces of jewelry!

To view more of Evelyn’s work or to purchase an item please visit our Etsy Shop.

To learn more about Evelyn’s work, visit her website: http://www.ebrooksdesigns.com/index.html

EWI Artist Graduate Evelyn Brooks Design’s to be Sold Nationwide!

26 Jul

“EWI gave me the confidence to continue growing my career as a Hispanic American jewelry designer” -Evelyn Brooks

Empowered Women International would like to celebrate the recent success of 2007 Entrepreneur Training for Success Program graduate Evelyn Brooks. Evelyn Brooks Designs will be featured nationwide in Uno Alla Volta’s online and mail order catalog!  Uno Alla Volta, is dedicated to preserving cultural heritage through the sale of their unique offerings crafted from artisan from around the world.  They pride themselves in offering treasures that are intricately handcrafted uno alla volta (one at a time).  Evelyn Brooks beautiful hand crafted collection fits perfectly with this mission and spreads the artist’s work to customers across the nation!  Evelyn prides herself in her native Peruvian culture and believes that there exists an enigmatic sense to everything in Peruvian art and her beautiful hand crafted pieces reflect this.

 Evelyn graduated from EWI’s Entrepreneur Training for Success Program in 2007.  Evelyn stated “My experience with EWINT has been a gift from GOD. EWINT is part of my life, my family and my destiny. Taking the training for entrepreneurship  class was just the beginning of my professional career as a jewelry artist, without my portfolio I wouldn’t be able to introduce myself to galleries/boutiques interested in my work.”

Evelyn continued, “When I came to this country and started my jewelry career I met a wonderful woman named Marga Fripp, who I consider my mentor and someone who is providing opportunities for artists who are serious about taking their art professionally to the next level. EWI is always creating new programs and improving existing programs, to help more inmigrants like me, making their dreams come true.”

“Now my work is going nationwide through Uno Alla Volta catalogs. Last month I was recognized as one of the most active and prestigious entrepreneurs within the US Hispanic Business Community by Latin Vision New York. Next month my work will be available at the prestigious Baltimore Museum of Arts, The National Building Museum of Washington DC and  Spanish Art in Sacramento California.”

In addition to Evelyn’s expansion nationwide she was awarded the Fashion Chamber Choice Award of 2010 and the Young Entrepreneur Award of 2010.  Congratulations to Evelyn Brooks and to the continued success of her business and career as an EWI artist!

Visit Evelyn Brook’s Website to learn more about the artist and her work.

View or purchase Evelyn Brook’s work at EWI’s Online Store.