Culture, Editor's Journal, News


After four successful courses, The Workshop at Macy’s, the retailer’s innovative “business of fashion” program begins accepting applications today for the 5th Anniversary class of entrepreneurs, who are poised for bigger retail success. In the Spring of 2011, Macy’s created this one-of-a-kind business of retail development program with the aim of mentoring and fostering growth within up-and-coming minority and women-owned businesses. This industry-first initiative has resulted in a number of new vendor relationships with Macy’s and has created a pipeline of enterprises that the company can tap for future product opportunities.

“We are very excited to kick-off the application process for the next Workshop class,” said Shawn Outler, Macy’s group vice-president of Leased Businesses, Vendor Collaboration and Multicultural Business Development. “This program was created to develop minority and women-owned businesses that make great products, but needed additional real-world knowledge and expertise to successfully manage and maintain a thriving business with a large-scale nationwide retailer such as Macy’s. Going into our fifth year, we are truly encouraged by the results so far with a number of graduates of the program now providing goods as Macy’s vendors and a host more in the pipeline for future opportunities. This program helps reinforce Macy’s long-standing commitment to vendor diversity and to providing customers with unique goods and services that meet their lifestyles. We can’t wait to see what the new applicants have to offer.”

The Workshop at Macy’s is a four and a half-day intensive training course developed by a consortium of experts from Macy’s Learning & Development, Macy’s Multicultural Merchandising and Vendor Development, Babson College, the nation’s leading business school for entrepreneurship, and with select Macy’s merchants and vendors. The specially designed business development curriculum is aimed at minority and women-owned retail businesses that make department store products and are poised to grow beyond self-distribution or low volume retailing. The goal of this annual program is to help create a pipeline of viable enterprises that will grow to become successful partners within Macy’s own vendor community often bringing unique goods and trend perspectives to stores across the country. 

The Workshop at Macy’s allows selected participants to collaborate with fellow aspiring vendors, gain access to industry experts and solicit one-on-one business coaching. The course work includes classes on merchandising and assortment planning, marketing, EDI, financial management, and access to capital.

From intimate apparel to jewelry and cosmetics, the Workshop at Macy’s vendors all conclude that the program helped them identify opportunities and put into practice policies that have led to successful and long-term growth. Psychelia Terry, President and Founder of Urban Intimates, stated, “I found the Workshop at Macy’s to be more than just a ‘workshop,’ it was life changing. Every team that worked with us demonstrated unparalleled knowledge about retail and wholesale partnerships. They sincerely cared about our business and our future success as a brand and company. We will be forever grateful for the 700% revenue increase that we have seen companywide because of the training, hand-holding and detailed instructions we learned from the Workshop at Macy’s.” She added, “Our company now successfully partners with Macy’s and other retailers in the US because of the information we learned and put into practice during our training.”

Alex Woo, President and Designer of “Alex Woo,” a fine jewelry vendor concurred, “The Workshop at Macy’s provided an amazing support network of industry experts and leaders in the field of fashion and retail like nowhere else. As a Made in New York brand, the chance to work with the world’s largest and most iconic store was an opportunity that no one should pass up!”

Built as a long-term program, the Workshop team is in constant communication with current vendors and past participants as they progress through the opportunities outlined during the coursework. Mateo Bijoux, a graduate and Macy’s men’s furnishings vendor under the “Mateo New York” brand, referred to this ongoing open dialogue and follow-through, when he stated, “The Workshop at Macy’s was and is the foster father of my business! It has made me a sharper entrepreneur!” 

New applications will be accepted beginning on October 7, 2014. To be eligible, an applicant must be the majority (51% or more of equity) owner, co-owner or otherwise have operational control (per applicable status rules) of a business that has been in operation for a least two consecutive years and be its primary decision maker.  Eligible applications will include a 250-word biographical statement, look book/line sheets or images of product including costs, resumes on all owners, financial statements for the business for 2 years, fall within the minority and women-owned definition of the program and provide verification of the business as a legal entity (i.e. Corporation, LLC, etc.), among other requirements. Applications must be submitted online or postmarked by February 1, 2015 by 11:59pm EST. All information including full program requirements are available online atwww.macysinc.com/workshop. All eligible applications will be reviewed and select applicants will be asked to attend an in-person interview. Final selections will be made after all prospective candidates are interviewed. The program will take place in New York City in late April/early May of 2015. 

Mateo Bijoux CeniaAlex Woo

For more information on The Workshop at Macy’s, please visitwww.macysinc.com/workshop.

A Worthy Guide For Picking Your Signature Cocktail


One of our favorite Mimosas mixed with grenadine and served with a strawberry garnish at W Fort Lauderdale 401 N Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd

Photo Credit: Ju’lia Samuels

Signature style is important. It helps to define your taste and set you apart from everybody else. So what makes your signature cocktail any different? Knowing what you like and dislike is key, especially when it comes to your drink(s). When going out on a date do you frantically reach for the drink menu or do you tell the bartender your drink of choice with confidence. You don’t want to ask for a “surprise drink” or you’re sure to be disappointed by the sweet Vodka concoction the bartender is going to make you. With endless amounts of cocktails and specialty drinks out there mixing it up is easy, however there are some great fallback drinks when a drink menu is nowhere in site (and no a Vodka Cranberry is not one of them).


Sour Apple Martini at Rok BRGR’s new location in Gulfstream 600 Silks Run #1210
Hallandale Beach, Florida

Photo Credit: Ju’lia Samuels

Strong Yet Sweet Martinis

Martinis: The classiest of the cocktails. A martini ensures that your cocktail isn’t being loaded with sugary juices and mixers, all while looking sophisticated and beverage savvy. Being that a martini is the strongest drink one can order at a bar, they can still be tasty and bearable. If you’re looking for a sour drink, go with a Green Apple or a Lemon Drop. A girl’s night out calls for a Sex and the City traditional cocktail, the Cosmo. While some find the Cosmo outdated and “totally 90’s” I think that it’s a good upgrade for the boring Vodka and Cranberry drinker, with a guaranteed kick. The Pomegranate Martini is another fun and pink cocktail that is sweet yet strong for girls’ nights around the nation.

Don’t be afraid to experiment with your martins but when ordering, know what you’re talking about. Most specialty martinis are crafted with Vodka, yet a traditional martini is with Gin. Dirty=Olives, if you don’t enjoy olives do not order dirty. Extra Dry or straight up=liquor. Unless you want a fancy glass with chilled vodka or gin you shouldn’t be ordering this.  If you’re hesitant with what you like in a martini, stick to some of these fallbacks that no bartender can mess up and you will enjoy.

Fun and Tropical

Tropical drinks are not only for vacations anymore. These drinks are for someone who doesn’t want to necessarily taste their alcohol, but have confidence that it’s there. Popular Rum Tropical drinks include the Bahama Mama and the Mai Tai. These fun and fruity drinks are filled with different rums, liquors, juices, and both are topped with dark rum floaters. Although they may not frequent many drink menus, the ingredients are common and carried at most bars. If you’re a Vodka fan there are tropical drinks for you to choose as well. Everyone knows the traditional Sex on the Beach (and yes, everyone smirks while ordering) but to mix it up try a Bay Breeze or Sea Breeze. While these drinks are basic, they add some flavor to your traditional Vodka and juice drinks that people frequently order. If you’re a fan of the popular 5-liquor drink the Long Island, try a Long Beach to add some sweetness. It’s essentially the same drink, yet with a little cranberry instead of sour mix. You don’t have to wait until vacation anymore to enjoy your paradise cocktail.


While the mojito and the margarita may be some of the most common drinks known to man, people often hesitate to order them! If you enjoy a fresh mojito don’t be afraid to order it, they take time to prepare but it’s part of the job. Mojito’s are great drinks to pair with dinners or just to have while out and about with friends. With no mixers in them, mojitos can also be very low calorie (tip: If ordering a fresh mojito, ask your bartender to use a sugar substitute instead of simple syrup for a healthy mojito) yet just as tasty as sugary cocktails. Margaritas are also a great fallback cocktail, and if you want to mix it up try asking for a Pomegranate Margarita. Skinny Margarita’s are equally as good if you’re looking for a healthier alternative (simply: tequila, agave, and lime juice topped off with soda water- no sour mix).  If you want a basic yet flavored cocktail, pair flavored Vodka with soda water or lemonade. By sitting down and ordering a “Stoli Raspberry with Soda” you’re putting your own spin on cocktail and it’s also a drink that will never let you down. Plus Vodka flavors are endless and they just keep coming out with more. Bartenders appreciate a confident customer who knows what they want, so don’t be intimidated to ask.

On the other hand, there are some drinks that should only be ordered under certain circumstances. Frozen drinks such as Daiquiris and PiñaColadas are great drinks… when you’re lying at a pool. Ordering a frozen drink like this is a guaranteed for a weak and sugar filled drink. You’re sooner to get brain freeze then you are a buzz. Go for a Rum Runner on the rocks instead of these frozen concoctions and do yourself and your bartender a favor. Mimosas and Bloody Mary’s are great for brunches and hangovers, however after 5pm you just look silly ordering them at a bar.  Try a tequila sunrise or maybe a screwdriver instead for a similar evening drink.


Signature Blue Nun Cocktail 50 Pound Blue Nun, 1 oz 50 pound gin, 1 oz Blue nun authentic white, 3/4 oz honey syrup, 1 oz lemon juice, 3-4 dashesof lavender bitters with a basil leafgarnish and lavender sprig glass.

Photo Credit: Ju’lia Samuels

Going out for cocktails is a way that we socialize with others. Knowing what to order and your fallback drink is important no matter who you are. Educate yourself and experiment to find your cocktail of choice. Once you find your signature cocktail, you’ll wish you had it all along. Drink responsibly and always be sure your cocktail is drink-worthy.


– Mackenzie Brown