Friday, November 27, 2009
One Latina's Christmas Needs Turns Into The Unexpected
Three years ago, Darlene Tenes of San Jose, California was looking for Latino-themed Christmas ornaments to decorate her Christmas tree. She searched everywhere for the ornaments and found nothing.
Darlene says "It's amazing that Hispanics are the largest minority in the U.S. and there was nothing out there for us that reflect our culture and traditions."
Darlene knew right away there was a need for Latino themed Christmas tree decorations. In 2007, she designed her first two hand painted glass ornaments. The "Pancho Claus" is a Santa riding on a piñata and "Sancho Snowman" is a guitar toting snowman wearing a poncho and a sombrero.
Now her Christmas ornaments are being sold in 40 stores across the country, and on the internet www.casaqornaments.com. Her newest ornaments are The Lady of Guadalupe, the Star Piñata and La Catrina.
Darlene credits her Mexican family for getting into business for herself. Darlene's father, uncle and grandfather were bullfighters. She says "My paternal grandmother used to get their earnings and invest the money into property and businesses." Her grandmother who had no formal education was a businesswoman in the 1930's and 40's when women were not known for having their own careers.
Darlene's ornaments are so popular that they have been included in the celebrity gift bags at the Latin Grammy Awards and at the NCLR Alma Awards. Her full time job is running her public relations company called Marketing Maniacs www.maniacidea.com, and CasaQ www.casaq.com, a Hispanic lifestyle company that provides products and services for those who embrace the Latino culture.
Darlene is not done designing and creating more Christmas ornaments for her collection. And even though at Christmas time you'll find her home decorated with her own Christmas decorations; she admits her favorite holiday of the year is really Easter.
Posted by Rebecca Aguilar at 1:36 PM