UBR Spotlight: Design Maven Tina Shoulders

This week on The Urban Business Roundtable, UBR Contributor Dywaine Betts talks with designer Tina Shoulders, who used digital marketing and social media to take her home decor products from boutiques in Brooklyn, N.Y. to the shops on the streets of Japan. Shoulders launched her home decor and design company, Laidback, in 2006 and already has taken her designs global.

Before launching her own company, Shoulders was a graphic and textile designer who created designs for Tommy Hilfiger, Phat Farm, CK Jeans and Kenneth Cole. In addition to her success as a designer, she’s the founder of the nonprofit Exposure Camp, a series of workshops designed to introduce teens to digital technology, and the author of the e-book 28 Days of Diversity in Design.

Also, UBR Contributor Samantha Pass talks with Marino Orlandi, vice president of banking for Fifth Third Bank, about how entrepreneurs can successfully apply for business loans. And in my “Alfred’s Notepad” segment, I explain why I believe every entrepreneur and aspiring business owner should watch ABC-TV’s Shark Tank, the reality competition where real entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas to millionaire “sharks” to invest in.

And finally, every week on UBR, you’ll get motivation and inspiration from author and entrepreneurial icon Farrah Gray, a weekly wrap-up of business news from USA Today business correspondent Charisse Jones, our Patient Investor Report from Ariel Investments and key economic intelligence for small business owners from our UBR economists Derrick Collins and Rasheed Carter.

If you have a question you want answered or a topic you want addressed on The Urban Business Roundtable, connect with me at BE Insider, the social media network for people who are serious about Black Enterprise. You can also find me on Twitter and Facebook.

Alfred Edmond Jr. is the senior VP/editor-at-large of Black Enterprise and the host of the Urban Business Roundtable, a weekly radio show, sponsored by Ariel Investments, airing CST Wednesdays at 8:30 a.m., Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 9:30 a.m. on WVON-AM 1690, the Talk of Chicago. You can also listen live online at WVON.com. Check back each week for UBR Spotlight, which features additional resources, advice and information from and about the topics, entrepreneurs and experts featured on the show.

SAVE THE DATE for the 2013 Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo hosted by Nationwide, May 15-18, at Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio. Expect innovative sessions, high-powered speakers, and an early peek at the products, trends, and services you’ll need to stay ahead of the curve. Nominate your company or an outstanding entrepreneur in your network for our Small Business Awards! Also don’t miss the chance to enter our Elevator Pitch Competition to compete for $10,000 for your business. To find out more, visit www.blackenterprise.com/ec/