After getting laid off from her 20-year career due to the pandemic, this Vancouver woman is showing her daughter how to be a boss

The AlessiaAdora homewares brand is making learning to cook easier, but also making entrepreneurship a reality for an 8-year-old girl

Mirabela Muresan worked for the same luxury automotive business for more than two decades, but when the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, she was laid off. “I felt very vulnerable,” shares Muresan. “After dedicating my career and my life to the company, I realized that the feelings were not mutual.” 

Muresan says the one upside of losing her job was getting to spend more time with her then-six-year-old daughter, Alessia. Pre-COVID, the two only had a few hours a week together, but during the pandemic, they found plenty of mother-daughter quality time to share. The two chose to spend it cooking.

“We tried to develop our own recipes, and that didn’t turn out that great,” recalls Muresan with a laugh. “So we started following bloggers and Youtubers.” 

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Following a recipe on a tablet can get real messy, real fast. “We were using an iPad in the kitchen, and always getting it dirty and getting fingerprints on it,” she says. When the pair couldn’t find an ideal solution, Muresan decided to make her own—and show her daughter what it means to be your own boss.  

“I realized we are basically training our kids to become good employees,” she says, explaining that she wanted to educate Alessia to be a leader instead of a follower. Muresan has since been rehired and continues to work in the automotive industry, but especially after being laid off, she felt it was important to show her daughter how to be self-sufficient. “You can be a great employee—I was that, for many years—or you can be your own boss,” Muresan says. “I want her to understand that there is an opportunity for her to do that.” 

So Mirabela and Alessia Muresan founded AlessiaAdora, a B.C.-based homewares brand, in July 2020. Their first product is the sousShelf, a stylish, modular counter organizer that holds a tablet (and includes porcelain containers for herbs or go-to kitchen tools). The sousShelf also has four coasters, a bottle opener and a stylus—a helpful instrument for pausing or scrolling when your hands are sticky. 

“The idea was to create a kitchen helper that would help the many people watching and following recipes during COVID,” Muresan says. The product is designed in Vancouver and manufactured in Montreal. Available in maple or walnut, it retails for $159.99. 

Alessia (the official creative director of AlessiaAdora), who is now eight, has gotten a crash course in entrepreneurship from her mother. “In the future, whether she works for someone else or herself, she knows that there are options out there,” Muresan says. “I am so glad that I could teach her that from a really young age.” 

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