From style to parenting to finance, a new speaker series offers go-to solutions and advice for Charlotte women.
By Whitley Adkins Hamlin
When Louisiana native Cate Gutter moved to Charlotte from Chicago in 2017, she realized she had more questions than answers on matters such as parenting, home design and other life hacks. “I needed help streamlining all the information I was getting,” says Gutter, 32.
“As a woman and a stay-at-home mother, life can be isolating. I craved more meaningful time with my friends and more opportunities to expand my knowledge and thinking,” says the UNC Chapel Hill grad who had owned her own baking business in the Windy City.
In October, she launched a monthly forum series — Good Taste with Cate & Company — to provide lifestyle advice for women on topics ranging from home design to style and personal finance to entertaining.
“Through Good Taste, I am bringing women together in a creative and open space to ask questions of Charlotte’s most experienced female professionals in various fields,” says Gutter, who lives in Eastover with her husband, Emerich, and three kids.
“From hostessing how-tos to financial quandaries, we’ve all got questions, and I know where to get reliable answers — skipping the research and self-doubt and going straight to the woman who knows the ins and outs in her specific field.”
Comments were edited for brevity and clarity.
TelI us a little bit more about what you are creating.
Women are impressive. I love when Margaret Thatcher said, “If you want something said, give it to a man. If you want something done, give it to a woman.” I am creating a speaker series where women gather over drinks and bites to hear more from badass experts in their respective fields. (Can I say badass?)
Women make 80% of the household decisions in a multitude of areas — finances, nutrition, parenting and so many more. I’m just creating a way to connect the women of Charlotte to share their knowledge, focusing on education and personal growth. … we can do so much more together than trying on our own.
Today we look to our phones and computers for advice from what we assume is a trusted online resource, but what if we turned to each other? I think the outcome would be much more impactful.
Who is it for?
I have learned by making a million mistakes, and as a result, I have built up an arsenal of female experts. Not only are the forums for the women who are coming to learn, but it is also a powerful platform for successful women in Charlotte who have a lot of expertise to share.
What can people expect?
The monthly forums are limited to 30 tickets per evening to encourage easy and inviting communication among attendees and the speaker of the evening. With the intimate nature of the events, people are able to sincerely connect and ask questions comfortably after a brief 15-minute interactive presentation by the speaker.
Each Good Taste forum will be founded upon three tiers: social networking, personal education and purposeful giving. In addition to the fun opportunity to meet new people, network and gain knowledge in an unfamiliar field, there will be a featured local nonprofit that ties into the topic of the evening. When bringing together all of these amazing and accomplished women, it was a no-brainer to have a give-back component.
This is your second business. Is there anything you learned from your first experience that you’ve been able to apply to this?
What a gift to have second chances! My first business brought me a lot of joy, and I met an incredible bunch of people who taught me a lot. But one thing I really learned was you can’t get very far by yourself. And that is really what stirred the idea of my second business — the need for help from others. Sometimes it’s a little scary to ask for help, but when you do, you’ll be surprised about how much a little help can change your life.
What’s been the biggest obstacle so far?
When I first started, all of my friends laughed at my very long-winded elevator pitch and said, “I hope you have a long ride on that elevator.” I feel so passionately about the mission of Good Taste that I often want to get into all the details of the business, when the mission is simple — this is a space for women to connect, learn and give back.
Any tips for squeezing an extra 30 minutes out of a day?
It’s only taken me 32 years to realize this, but setting the clock to wake up 30 minutes earlier gets you 30 minutes extra time in the day. Even when I’m exhausted and I want to press the snooze, I now count on those 30 extra minutes before my kids are up in the morning — and it is usually the most productive time of my day.
What is something interesting about you that most people don’t know?
I moved to North Carolina in 2001 because my parents left their corporate jobs to follow their dreams of owning a summer camp for kids. We actually lived in a cabin my first year we lived in Asheville! It was one of the best things to ever happen to me.
To learn more and to sign up for a forum: goodtastewithcate.com