From strawberry shortcake to home furnishings to a fitness business, Melody has trotted down virtually every entrepreneurial trail in existence. With 23 business ventures under her belt — a few of them even successful! — you might call her a lifelong “start-up junkie.” Her current entrepreneurial love-child is Urban Campfire, a movement to create a different conversation, produced by the CRAVEcompany. CRAVE connects savvy business women through networking events, symposiums and a series of smash-hit city guides. She’s always scouting for the next crop of start-up superstars, solopreneurs and socially-conscious capitalists. Author of CRAVING Success: a startup junkies path from passion to profits. Includes 132 tips for ambitious entrepreneurs.
The CRAVE Story
The idea for CRAVE came about in 2001 when, then 39-year-old, Melody realized how much she missed spending time with her girlfriends. As Melody and her girlfriends followed their various journeys through life, it was clear that their busy schedules allowed for little time together.
Wanting to reconnect in a fun way, she was inspired to create the first CRAVEguide: CRAVE Seattle, The Urban Girl’s Manifesto, which was published in 2002. Women from around the Sound bought copies and called their girlfriends for shopping and lunch expeditions. A movement was born.
In the following years CRAVE rocked the Seattle social scene. Hundreds attended the first party in 2003 and thousands have attended CRAVE parties since. In 2005, CRAVE expanded from Seattle to more than 20 additional markets, delivering an excellent excuse for girlfriends to get together across the world. CRAVE also turned its attention more to the business side of things and began hosting popular business chats and symposiums for women business owners.
Now prominent in more than 35 US and international cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington DC, Vancouver and Amsterdam, the CRAVE team is hard at work developing new CRAVEguides, bringing entreprenesses together, and spreading the word about women-owned businesses.