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Meet Maria Livia Leao of Be Unique | Paper Art in Brickell, Tampa and NYC

Today we’d like to introduce you to Maria Livia Leao.

Maria Livia, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I am an architect and passionate about design, decoration and events. Our story in United States started in 2013 when my husband got a job offer in Miami and we decided to accept the challenge to move to a new country. As you know, it is not easy to start again in a new country.

After our move in March 2013, I started the process to validate my diploma in US, but then I learned that this process would take a long time to be finalized. Because of that, I decided to pursue another dream – to become an entrepreneur in the personalized party/events industry. In the end of 2013, I met Camila, who is one of my closest friends and loves party decorations/events. So, we realized that our friendship would go beyond that and became partners in this business.

We started personalizing parties/weddings/baby shower for our friends and people started to see our work in Miami. A few months later, we were planning several events in Miami. In 2014, we decided to start BE UNIQUE PAPER ART. Our idea was to do something unique that could not be found in the common party-store/supply stores. Since day one, our goal was to transform ideas into something unique!

Over these three years, we have planned unique parties/events that always fill us with love. Last year, we started to work with corporate events, design and concept of new brands.

In 2017, Be Unique expanded. I’ve moved to Tampa and Camila to NYC. Today we are providing services in different locations in United States (NYC, Miami, Tampa).

Our next goal for 2018 is to launch our online store!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Well, it was not easy. We have faced several struggles such as language barrier, find the appropriate supplier network in the locations we operate and of course, the different cultures in US that required from us the ability to deal with multiple points of view.

Be Unique | Paper Art – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
As an architect, I had a chance to work in one of the best offices in Brasilia, Brazil that was specialized in residential architecture, design, decoration and events. During the years, I worked in this office I had a chance to work in great projects ( decorations, interior design, etc.).

Although, we very much believe in what we do – it’s not a marketing gimmick – if we hadn’t actively taken steps to differentiate ourselves, we’d be just another personalized party company, which makes marketing even harder.

In the last years, we have created a vibrant business that allows us to provide services that are configurable to fit your need. We are creative and love to think outside the box! Challenging projects such as wedding decoration, baby showers, personalized birthday parties, corporate events are what we live for! You can take a look at our Instagram for some ideas. We leave no stone unturned in our efforts to make sure your event is exactly how you dreamed it would be. From the event design, invitations and decorations, to the setup and day-of coordination.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I think that one of proudest moments is the fact that I have planned the events more than one time for most of my clients. So, I have done their baby shower, birthday parties and even weddings. It is a good message for us that they like our ideas and respect our hard work.

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Maria Livia Leao

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1 Comment

  1. Valter Cadore

    May 7, 2018 at 3:47 pm

    Congratulations to Maria Livia for overcoming this new stage of life and for the dedication and professionalism with which you are focused on this endeavor. Success.

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