November is the month of Thanksgiving, giving back, gratitude, cozy sweaters, and of course, new intentions. The focus of the month is unconditional love to the self and to others. Opening up our hearts to see the world with compassion, so we can live in gratitude and be of service to the community. We do this by adopting new habits, trying new things, and connecting to new people. Connecting to new people is my favorite part of this job. The "girl of the month" feature has allowed me to build new friendships and create a small (for now) tribe of like-minded women. I was so honored to connect and spend a full morning with our GOTM for November: Mrs. Tara Benmeleh, founder and designer of Espiritutara Jewelry.
Describe a day in Tara’s life.
I try to only have a few concrete things on my schedule per week. My daily schedule revolves around little things I’ve set up to give my self/family some type of routine. This means, taking my vitamins every morning (I set them up in tiny containers at the beginning of the week so I don't forget them…visual memory); I have coffee and make breakfast with my husband, Jack. My son, Max Aero, loves his power smoothie, which I pack with superfoods. I try to get an hour work out in at least 3 times a week, usually yoga or pilates. I love walking to Mimi’s class at Ahana Yoga. Max and I love to go for lunch dates, Wabi Sabi, is our favorite. At some point in the day me and Max do some kind of learning /creative activity. In the afternoons we like to hang out outside in our backyard or go for a walk around the Design District. I work primarily from my phone so we can be anywhere all day (even my digital collages are done from my phone.) Jack is really present so we go on a lot of family adventures day to day. We love unwinding at the beach on the weekends, and staying home or walking around the neighborhood.
Tell us a about your career. My career began at 16 working in retail, where I started doing visual merchandising and styling. I wasn't even old enough to work in the store and the manager had to lie about my age to her superior in order to hire me. I studied Fashion Merchandising and Fashion Design, and went on to work at the coolest stores in Miami (Steam on Sunset, Simons and Green, At ease on Sunset, Alchemist…. and designed for Sweet Pea and Alexis). I learned a lot and found balance between personal shopping and image consulting. I always went back to work with Vicki Simons at Simons and Green who truly is my mentor and taught me everything about intentional jewelry. My grandmother also schooled me in fine jewelry growing up, until she retired. During my honeymoon in Peru I found some handmade beads which I mixed intentionally with healing stones and Espiritutara was born. The name Espiriutara slipped off my tongue as if I channeled and created a desire to dive deeper into spirituality. Through this exploration of the self and spirituality I have developed healing tools and knowledge to help guide others spiritually, creatively, and intuitively. Now everyone is calling me Mama T...where this is going is yet to be discovered...
What’s the best thing about living in Miami? To me, Miami is like an onion, when you're ready for the next thing you can peel through a layer and find whatever it is you were looking for.
What are you most proud of? Being who I am right now, which is exactly how I had imagined my older self to be when I was a kid.
What's next for Mama T? I’ve been working on is the Espiriutara X Soho House sleepover. It’ s really going to be like the sleepovers you loved as a little girl--with all your best friends, magazines, collaging, and good food. It’s my way of bringing the spirit of Espiritutara to a group of like minded women, plus who doesn't need a dose of spirituality and plant based food?
HOMEHow long have you lived in Miami?
born and raised baby!Favorite spot in Miami.
Home - we renovated a historic house from the 20’s in Buena vista. We created a tropical jungle in my backyard, I'm definitely the happiest there. Can’t leave the house without?
Crystals in my bag, my reusable water bottle, & my son Max Aero. Coffee or tea?
Both! I can't open my eyes without coffee, but I also make this special “mama T” blend of rose & hibiscus tea which is always in my fridge.Favorite coffee shop in Miami.
OTL, but I go there for the cabbage salad (add avo) and matcha tea (in water no milk or sugar). Favorite season.
Miami season! December-March.Best way to decompress at home.
I do a breathing exercise while laying in my backyard (front or back to the earth). I ask the earth to take away whatever doesn't serve me anymore. Favorite scent.
CopalLast thing you cooked.
GF, dairy free, sugar free muffins (they were really good!). What’s on your reading list
. High vibrational beauty, Healing Magic, Be Here Now, Braiding Sweetgrass. Having a dinner party. What are guests going to expect?
High vibrational food, Shamanic house music, laughter, love, and some kind of spiritual activation.
How do you usually start your mornings? I
n our house, we drink coffee before we open our eyes. Then we do the healthy stuff. I have my vitamins and an elixir of some type. Probably another coffee. I'm really into spiking my reusable water bottle with Sakara’s beauty water. What’s a regular breakfast for you?
it's usually the vitamin elixir combo and two cups of coffee. Sometimes I add a soft scrambled egg (pasture-raised) in coconut oil or a big bowl of sautéed greens with hemp seeds sprinkled on top. What’s your go-to fitness routine or regimen?
Pilates and yoga. I don't like high-intensity workouts, but I'm really into the Class by Taryn Toomey (who's currently doing a monthly residency at the Sacred Space)-- thats been kicking my ass. Where do you work out/practice and why do you go there? I
walk to Ahana Yoga
to take Mimi’s class, and I also LOVE Brooke Grossfeld and Sharon Aluma’s class. If I'm trying to lose extra weight I go to Jet-Set pilates to die. Do you have a personal trainer?
I have been doing private pilates with Karen Schacter for about 6 years, both Karen and pilates have changed my life and my body.What is your approach to nutrition?
My approach to nutrition is all about high vibrational food - no dairy, gluten, red meat or processed food. I really try to use the freshest ingredients possible.What are your lifestyle “must-do’s” and your absolute “no ways”?
I must always have time to chill and I never
overbook. BEAUTYWhat’s your “passed down from Mom” beauty secret?
Take really good care of your skin so that you don’t have to wear too much make up. Best beauty tip you ever received.
Natural and organic for food and beauty products. Beauty secret.
I use detoxifying masks under my arms, a great face cleanser is a raw honey mask. Must have beauty product
. Tata Harper beautifying oil.Best facial
. Jen minimal beauty.What’s your philosophy about beauty.
Less is more. Clean and organic. I
try to take really good care of my skin so that I don't have to wear too much makeup.TECHFavorite app.
bazaart i have so much fun making digital collage Favorite social-media platform.
insta Last google search.
mexican hemp lamps (inspired by san miguel)FASHION & LIFESTYLEWhere’s the best cocktail in Miami? My house. I add mezcal to Mama T’s rose and hibiscus iced tea. Who’s your favorite artist. I have so many favorites, but right now I'm doing a jewelry collaboration with Lazaros. We made a pinky ring intended for the left hand that combines all the symbols of the 9 dimensions. It's an astral projecting tool. It will be available soon through Capital Gallery.Best concert you’ve ever been to. David Byrne - talking heads a few weeks ago. Jack got us amazing seats, we felt like we were in the vortex of the stage. It was outer worldly, to say the least. What’s your idea of a perfect date. A 3 day get a way with plenty of time for self care, amazing food, together time and lots of baths. Favorite city in the world. Paris Where do you want to travel next. I want to be here in miami for a little, but I want to go to Paris for my bday in Feb.What words do you live by. be here now.How do you describe your personal style. simple but risky Favorite designer. isabel marantAll-time favorite clothing purchase you ever made. my breeze by kd harley motorcycle shirt. been wearing it often for years. Where did you go on your last trip? san miguel de allende If you could offer advise to your 18 year old self, what would it be? Everything is going to turn out amazing, enjoy every single moment along the way and none of the things you think matter, actually do. Everything you want will happen, you just have to have the vision. Start your self-care routine YOUNGER. Drink WAY less, dance so fucking much, and yoga always yoga.