Candice-Louise Craig

MAMA Queensland, Buderim

As a former accountant with a background in marketing and human resources, Candice-Louise Craig is no stranger to the business world. But when it comes to her joint venture with business partner Kelli Zakharoff, she is paving a very different path by taking on the business of babies. The MAMA centre in Buderim is the second holistic midwife-led care centre to open under the banner of MAMA Queensland, and offers Sunshine Coast parents-to-be with a unique antenatal and postnatal service that ensures continuity of care throughout their entire journey into parenthood. It’s a service Candice-Louise is highly enthusiastic about, having experienced their care first hand as a client when she was pregnant with her first child. “We’re so passionate about creating a place where people have choice and feel like they do have a voice and that they can work towards the birth they desire for them and their baby,” says Candice-Louise. “Parenting can be a tough gig – that’s why it’s important to allow women to have the choice and have the freedom to be comfortable in the choices that they make.” Candice-Louise explains that the biggest challenge for her and Kelli’s team at the MAMA centre is educating people to realise that birth isn’t as scary as it seems – but it’s a challenge they love overcoming. “It’s not just education about labour and birth itself, it’s education about how much their bodies are changing and allowing them to be as informed as they possibly can be,” says Candice-Louise. But ultimately, she says her favourite part of her job is seeing new parents come back to the MAMA centre after welcoming their bundle of joy. “We love seeing their babies grow, but we love seeing them grow as parents as well,” she says. “Once you become part of the MAMA family, you never really leave it.”

Laureen Maschek

Maschek Couture, Caloundra

For Laureen Maschek, art is a way of life and fashion is her medium. In the two years since she began Maschek Couture, the Caloundra based mother-of-two has made a name for herself in the fashion world with her exquisite designs composed of swirling colours, breathtaking patterns and detailed beading, and it’s a name that is only set to become more recognised as her star rises and her brand gains traction. “There’s a spiritual aspect to my designs,” says Laureen, explaining the process behind her work. “I look at a lot of sacred geometry and nature, and that ‘oneness’ kind of spirituality that you find in meditation and in Indian culture. And when I’m drawing, it’s actually like meditation – I listen to meditation music and that then translates into my art.” The fact she has already showcased her collection on catwalks at fashion festivals in both Brisbane and Byron Bay is proof that Laureen’s designs have struck a chord with the state’s fashionistas – the label’s lightweight, flowy fabrics and bright, summery prints are perfect for the south-east’s gorgeous weather by balancing comfort with chic. In fact, Maschek Couture is doing so well, Laureen has been sought out for interviews with Brisbane radio shows. “It’s exciting to have people view your art and like it,” says Laureen, “I’m very humbled by it.” Continuing her success with her first collection, The Flight Up, Laureen is currently working on her next line, which she hopes to showcase on the runway by May. “This collection will include a lot more darker prints and a lot of continuous patterns, and in addition to maxi dresses and kaftans, it will include some wrap dresses and sarongs.” With her beautiful fashions available both online and at a range of local and Brisbane markets, there is no doubt we’ll be seeing plenty more of Laureen and her designs throughout 2017 and beyond.]]>