Morning beauties. How have you been? Sorry I only posted once last week but I’ve been suffering with insomnia (more on that at a later date) and the post I was working on, didn’t get finalised in time. Anyways, moving on to today’s post I wanted to do something different for Valentine’s day.
There are tons of amazing bloggers who can put together beautiful outfit suggestions and makeup looks. I wanted to do an interview with someone who is linked to Valentine’s day. Needless to say when I met Layla, I thought bingo! You may be wondering who is this Layla? Well she is the creator of Cocoa by L. Basically, she does what most of us chocoholics only dream of doing for living and that’s making artisan chocolates, tasting chocolates and ….basically chocolate is her world.
Her bespoke chocolates are all handmade and don’t have your regular flavours, like her coffee chocolate. With her cacao being sourced directly from Peru, you know you’re getting intense flavour and it’s healthy for you! Yes it most certainly is because they’re gluten, diary and sugar free… your welcome J
I sat down with Layla one cold evening and picked her brain about what’s it like to be an entrepreneur but more importantly, what her favourite flavours are. Enjoy!
How did you get started?
I initially wanted to start up an events company but the amount of investment it required was too high and it fell through. I have always really loved chocolate and need my fix on a daily basis but, I am also relatively health conscious. Disheartened by the amount of chemicals a lot companies put into chocolate, I randomly decided to do an experiment in my kitchen I was attending a yoga event and decided to give them out and it was a hit! Realised that I was on to something and decided to go into the chocolate business. I am self-taught and after a while I managed to find a small space in the basement of a bagel shop in Chalk Farm, that I turned ino a mini kitchen. I started by selling to the cafes in the area.
What’s it like running your own business?
Being a solopreneur I do everything myself. Eventually I would like to bring in a business partner to help with digital marketing, I.T. and operations. Also, because I am self-taught it is a lot of trial and error. I have definitely learnt some lessons!
What are the things you’ve learnt about being your own boss?
Keep it simple in the beginning whilst being creative. Creativity is really important because you need to have some level of it to thrive. Also, it’s so important to be transparent in the chocolate world because you will get found out if you lie. Ethics is a contentious issue and so is cutting corners for maximum profit. Be ethical and be open. You will always get found out.
What are your tips for budding entrepreneurs
- When you get a business loan get enough, because you would be surprised at how fast the money goes.
- Surround yourself with a good team of advisors. When you start, you will get a lot of advice and some will be really bad advice. You can get lost.
- Do your leg work then launch your product/service.
- Make sure you have friends because you will need them.
- Enjoy the journey and know there will be hellish times.
- You will be skint but still enjoy!
As you’re the chocolate lady what flavour represents Layla?
Extremely chocolatey, a sweetness to it but also savoury. A chilli/lime/rose/rock salt combo
Valentine’s day is coming up, so what flavours would you suggest?
Either a chocolaty caramel with a runny centre or something fruity (strawberry or raspberry) or, moussey ganache
Side note: I was drooling at this point J
To order your own box of Chocolates by L visit their website.
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Until next time, be well!