Woman of The Month: Zee Countee

I am proud to announce Zee Countee as WOMAN OF THE MONTH ! Please enjoy learning more about Countee and her inspiration behind her business.


Zee, please share with us the inspiration behind ModesByZee?


I found solace for my grief when Mom passed away from cancer by returning to my love of creative ideas, writings, drawings, and feelings. She was always amazed at my creativity. In fact, finding a one of a kind gift for her often resulted in me creating one. 


A promise to her to follow my dreams, and an opportunity to share a vendor booth with a friend sealed the deal. ModesByZee became my creative outlet and a way to honor Mom’s memory. Handmade Jewelry, DreamCatchers, Wood Burnings, Poetry, Photography, Stained Glass and more. The hardest part was finding a name that encompassed everything I wanted to do.

What do you enjoy most about being a small business owner, and what keeps you passionate about your work?

 I enjoy putting the time and energy into my dream that I put into making other people’s dreams successful over years in Service and Corporate settings. 

It’s my love of nature’s beauty and uniqueness, empathy and fascination with channeling energy, displaying individuality and the overwhelming and joyful feeling when a person connects with my art that keeps me passionate about creating.

 What do you enjoy most about being a small business owner, and what keeps you passionate about your work? 

Being a small business owner validates my dream and gives accountability to my ongoing levels of personal growth and development. It’s my way of stepping into the light and proclaiming Self Love and One Love by spreading my love with a wider audience. 

Transforming from a hobby to a business increases my dedication to continually grow. 

Is there a woman who you would say inspired you the most in starting your business?

I have been surrounded by hardworking, determined, unyielding women my entire life. Many of whom weren’t business owners but displayed the necessary tenacity and dedication as they worked thru everyday life. 

Perhaps the most inspiring business owner was Lyn Foley, Owner of Greetings, a small greeting card and novelty shop in the Piedmont Avenue area of Oakland, CA in the late 80s. I watched and admired her hard work and dedication amongst the primarily male dominated arena while I worked for her. Many people saw her as fierce, but I saw the care and compassion behind that ferocity on a daily basis. 

After I formed ModesByZee, I was reflecting on her inspiration. Thanks to social media over 25 years later, I reconnected with her and found that she had formed a beautiful jewelry line, and she still continues to evolve. She gave me lots of insight and immediately sent me boxes of beads, jewelry findings and supply books and encouraged this journey. Not only was I touched by her generosity I was able to participate in the Celebration of Life of her husband Jim, an iconic jeweler, which affirmed my belief in paying inspiration forward.


Any other words of advice you would give to others who are reading this right now?

"Continue to follow your dreams, even if from a distance. When the time is right they will become reality."

"Pay inspiration forward."


Website: www.modesbyzee.com

Instagram: modesbyzee 

Instagram Photography Page: https://www.instagram.com/modesbyzee_photography/

Facebook: modesbyzee

TikTok: modesbyzee

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