Shall I save a seat for you at 2×4 Live?


In 2008, I was summoned to Washington DC to serve as a small business advocate before Congressional members who were debating an overhaul of federal cosmetic regulations.  Little did I know how drastically that trip would change my life!


2x4 live


Somewhere between dashing down the halls of Congress and sweating my ass off around the FDA offices in DC in the middle of summer, the seeds of some of my most important relationships were sown. Donna Maria of Indie Beauty, Anne Marie of Brambleberry, and Kayla Fioravanti of KaylaFioravanti (celebrated writer + former owner of Essential Wholesale) and I became more than partners in a legislative crusade… we became dear friends.


In the 7+ years that have ensued, we’ve become accountability partners and support systems for one another. We’ve celebrated the births of babies, marked the passing of loved ones, toasted accomplishments in our personal and professional lives, and gotten into some fantastically naughty fun (Cocktails with comedian Tom Green? Check. Tattoos in Mexico? Check.)  I had no idea how pivotal a “tribe” was in business until I had one- a team of people to cheer me on, hold my feet to the fire, provide solid guidance in times of tumult, and a support system who’s always ready to raise a toast to a job well done. We truly “get” each other and these relationships have become some of the richest of my adult life.



2x4 live


Which is why I’m ridiculously excited to share a “secret project” that the ladies and I have been quietly planning for  months.  We’re hosting an intimate gathering of makers + shakers in sunny Nashville, TN for two days of empire-building goodness.  Kayla, Anne Marie, Donna Maria and I have very different areas of strength and you’ll benefit from time with each of us.


A mix of wisdom-filled workshops, enlightening panel discussions, and small group breakouts, 2×4 Live is a once-in-a-lifetime gathering designed to propel your business forward under the mentorship of three of the most dynamic and successful business women I know! Collectively, we’ve spent more than 50 years as entrepreneurs and we’ve launched more than two dozen brands. Together, our companies have generated more than 9 figures in revenue (yes, that’s $100million+), and we’re really eager to share the ups + downs, the ins + outs of building a business with a determined group of makers on the move.


We have a very special weekend on tap and I’d love to save a seat especially for you. Seating is extremely limited and almost 50% of tickets have been reserved in the first 48 hours, so I don’t recommend waffling on this one.  Grab a spot and mark your calendar for 2 days with 4 mentors for one business-changing weekend!


Snag your spot before they’re gone…

Join me at Craftcation in April!

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Whaddya up to this April? I hope you’ll come join me at Craftcation in Ventura, California for four days of makerly and business fun. I’ll be there enjoying the gorgeous California sunshine and teaching a few sessions on branding, alongside some amazing makers + business mavens and I can’t wait to share my knowledge with you. Also on tap? Hands-on food and craft workshops, lectures, and interactive panels. Sounds too good to miss, doesn’t it?

As an added bonus, one of my 2016 LBU Experts will be speaking at Craftcation, too. I’m thrilled to present alongside Caitlin Bacher as she gives the lowdown on social media. I’ll be there taking notes!


Craft cation Business + Makers Conference


When: Thursday, April 7, 2016 at 9:00 AM  Sunday, April 10, 2016

Where: The Ventura Beach Marriott in Ventura, California

Early bird tickets are on sale now! Grab yours before they’re gone on January 10th. You can reserve yours here.


I hope to see you there!


Meet me in New Orleans!


Have you heard? I’m heading to New Orleans next month for a special event sponsored by Stay Local + Good Work Network! These amazing nonprofits are hosting a day-long workshop for makers, artists and product designers who are keen on cracking the wholesale market and I’m thrilled to be presenting 4 solid hours of wholesale workshop goodness.  Even better? Registration for Stay Local + Good Work Network members is a mere $20, which includes refreshments, lunch and  some fun entrepreneurial swag from Lucky Break. Not a member? You’re welcome to join the fun! Tickets for non-members are just $75 and I promise to make it worth every penny. This workshop is jam-packed and I’m doing-cart-wheels-excited to hit up the Big Easy with makers on the move. Reserve your seat + let’s turn up the volume on that burgeoning empire of yours…




I’ll be teaching all morning and the afternoon will see a fantastic session on branding and an expert panel hosted by some fantastically successful makers who are rolling up their sleeves to offer insight + experience.  Here’s the run-down for the day…


Time: Wednesday, September 9, 2015, from 8am-4pm

Location: Café Reconcile (1631 OC Haley Blvd.)

Cost: $20: StayLocal and Good Work Network Members // $75: Non-Member (Includes workshop, lunch, and refreshments)


8am: Doors open

8:15: Featured speaker Lela Barker of Lucky Break Consulting will explain:
– Laying the Foundation: Product Pricing + Wholesale Policies
– Putting Your Best Foot Forward: Designing Line Sheets & Order Forms
– Making the Sale: Finding Stores + Woo’ing Wholesale Buyers

12:30: Lunch catered by Cafe Reconcile

1:30: Branding Session

2:30 Q&A Expert Panel with…
– Tippy Tippens of Goods That Matter
– Tereson Duprey of Fuzzi Buns
– Molly Babineaux of Loomed


Seats are very limitedClaim one now and I’ll see you there!

Event Recap: The 2015 HSCG Conference


Melissa and I are back from a busy week in Indianapolis and I wanted to share some of the fun with you! For the second consecutive year, I was invited to present at the Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild’s annual conference. We spent five solid days meeting LBU alumni, answering questions + supporting new brands, teaching about brand development and doing our damn level best to apply custom gold tattoos on virtually every square inch of bare skin we could find.


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I taught a four-hour, small group workshop on brand development on Friday and spent 90 minutes on Saturday dissecting the anatomy of successful brands for a crowd of 450 attendees. The workshops were well-received and I was so very grateful for the opportunity to coach creatives on the importance of thoughtful branding that creates emotional resonance with their audience.


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Melissa, the Lucky Break Operations Manager + Client Concierge, works out of her Boston-area home office and I work out of my Columbia-area home office, so I’m always doubly excited to get us in the same room together. We spent a few days together in Greenville last month for The Makers Summit (which I cannot recommend enough!) and the chance to see her in-person two months in a row had me positively giddy. Melissa is expecting a wee one this summer, so this will likely be our last “hurrah!” for a few months. Like the trooper she is, Melissa still managed to put in long days at the conference and I pampered mother + son with room service breakfast each morning.

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The Lucky Break booth was uber-fun to design as we brought the Lucky Break website to life. A custom-printed table runner in our signature watercolor print, mondo-sized gold mylar ballons that spelled LUCKY, and bouquets of my favorite flowers (ranunculus for the win!) garnered enough compliments to make us blush.  We stocked that vendor booth with heaps of fun + free goodies:



  • Snappy doorhangers drenched in gold foil (designed by the geniuses over at Ink + Mortar)



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Hundreds of entries were tossed into my sexy Tom Dixon gold geo for a chance to win a copy of the Price-O-Matic system. We drew one name from the pot and the lucky winner is: Deborah Kraemer of Abbey Brown in Chicago. Congrats Deborah!


We offered show specials on two of my favorites: my just-launched Brick House Branding class (four solid weeks of branding goodness) and Price-O-Matic, my product pricing software that puts makers + products designers in the driver’s seat of their numbers. We’ve decided to extend those show specials for just a few days… conference attendees: check your inbox for details. If you had your eye on the Price-O-Matic but didn’t win the drawing, we’re able to offer that same price of $149 through Sunday, April 26th.


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The conference was punctuated with cocktail parties, a disco night, networking lunches and a small avalanche of workshops for makers in the personal care space. This was my fifth conference and I always enjoy seeing old friends and meeting new ones, too.  Thanks for being so welcoming to Melissa and I- we had a blast with you all!

Fancy some serious empire-building in sunny California?

The Nova Studio is renowned for its business + formulation workshops for bath and body entrepreneurs and I’m honored to be teaming up with proprietresses Lori, Ruth and Cassie to offer a jam-packed Lucky Break bootcamp schedule this spring. It’s not often that I make it out to California to teach and I have an amazing roster of workshops lined up over the course of 2 weekends in beautiful Point Richmond, less than 30 minute’s drive from San Francisco.

The early bird specials for these events end in just three (yes, THREE!) days. That means you have a mere 72 hours or 259,200 seconds to hop on the best deal in town and take advantage of the absolute best pricing you’ll ever see attached to my teachings. As of March 1st, bootcamps fees increase by $50, and wouldn’t you rather buy cocktails with that money? I’d love to carve your name into a desk and share that cocktail with you.


2-Day Creative Business Boot Camp:
Savvy Strategies for Serious Makers

April 26 + 27

This camp is perfect for makers of all types: from stationery designers to ceramic artists to bath + body entrepreneurs. The strategies and resources shared are designed to build a solid foundation beneath your business, helping you avoid some the hairier pitfalls of entrepreneurship and positioning your company for long-terms success.

$399 early bird rate through February 28th
15 hours of instruction (a steal at just $26 per hour!) + more handouts than you can shake a stick at

Day 1: Saturday
9:00 am – 11:30 am
The Foundations of Wholesale Success: Product, Pricing & Process

11:30 am – 12:30 pm
Designing Your Playbook: Developing Your Wholesale Terms

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm: Break for Lunch

1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
The Art of the Pitch: How to Approach Wholesale Buyers

4:00 pm – 5:30
First, Do No Harm: Building Social Responsibility Into Your Business

Day 2: Sunday
9:00 am – 11:00 am
The Mechanics of Product Pricing: How to Accurately Price Products for Sale

11:30 am – 1:30 pm
An Introduction to Price-o-Matic: A Practical Pricing Workshop

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm: Break for Lunch

2:30 pm – 4:00 pm
Romancing the Press: Building a Media-Friendly Company

4:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Imitation is Not the Sincerest Form of Flattery: An Intellectual Property Primer

Grab your seat right here.



2-Day Advanced Business Boot Camp:
For Beauty Entrepreneurs Ready To Take it to the Next Level

May 3 + 4

This camp was created especially for bath + body entrepreneurs, mineral makeup mavens and nail polish queens who are deadly serious about empire-building. We’re diving deep into an array of strategies designed to take your business to the next level, including a few workshops you won’t see taught anywhere else. Fancy seeing your products on the shelves of the swankiest spas in town? Interested in learning how you can tap the export market to dazzle Dubai or Milan with your products? I’ll show you exactly how to do it (and we’ll have a ridiculously good time learning all about it).

$449 early bird rate through February 28th
15 hours of instruction (a steal at just $29 per hour!) + more handouts than should be allowed by law

Day 1: Saturday
9:00 am – 10:30 am
Anatomy of a Happy Stockist: Strategies of Creating Long-Lasting Relationships

10:30 am – 12:00 pm
Moving on Up: Scaling Production & Saving Time

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm: Break for Lunch

1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Oh La La, I Want to be in Spas: How to Sell on the Spa Market

3:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Your Products Need a Passport: Selling Through International Distributors

Day 2: Sunday
9:00 am – 11:00 am
The Mechanics of Product Pricing: How to Accurately Price Products for Sale

11:00 am – 1:30 pm
An Introduction to Price-o-Matic: A Practical Pricing Workshop

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm: Break for Lunch

2:30 pm – 5:30 pm
Welcome to the Big Leagues: Sales Reps & Trade Shows

Grab your seat right here.