“I’m way happier than I was before because I’m doing things that put smiles on people’s faces. It’s affordable for most people, and you don’t have to go to Barneys to find it,” she says. Her sweets range from $12 for a kosher bracelet (Maayan was born on a kibbutz in northern Israel before her family emigrated to Canada) to $30 for a long-stem candy rose and upward for her bespoke candy artworks—which, Maayan confirms, her clients most certainly do not eat.
Alongside Sweet Saba, Maayan is working on a number of other projects. There’s Radar, a line of mood rings that began when Maayan sought to replace her favorite piece of jewelry—a mood ring purchased in a toy store that had started to tarnish her finger a grubby shade of black. After pricing it out, she realized it would be far more cost-effective to produce 500 rings and peddle the rest at a profit. Her hunch paid off; Maayan made all of her money back and more. “I have friends who have tons of ideas, who are so creative and are some of the best artists I know,” she reflects. “But I feel like what makes me an entrepreneur is that I come up with the idea, then I make it. And then I figure out how I can make it for many other people, and create an industry out of it, and employ other people.”
Then there is her line of marijuana edibles, scheduled to launch toward the end of 2017. “It’s a no-brainer,” she says of her plan to enter the fastest-growing industry in the United States. Maayan expects the products to appeal to an aesthetically driven clientele seeking marijuana as a means of relaxation or as an alternative to prescription drugs. “I’m looking to create something geared toward people who would shop at Whole Foods,” she says. “People who want to know what they’re putting into their body and who want something that doesn’t look like it came from a rave.”
Maayan’s world is kooky, colorful and fervently fun. Her fittingly sweet disposition is supported by a knack for transforming offbeat ideas into commercial ventures; she looks to Martha Stewart’s one-woman empire as proof that sweetness and success go hand in hand. “I got to meet her and was featured in her magazine, and it was the highlight of my life thus far,” she says, guffawing excitedly at the memory. “I respect someone who can maintain a veneer while being tough and getting what they want.”
This story appeared in The Kinfolk Entrepreneur in 2017.