Black Cake founder and owner Erika Mark’s story begins in Youngstown, Ohio where she grew up. At a young age, Erika’s parents encouraged her to be the creative, independent, unique, and free spirit she is today. Much of Erika’s childhood was spent playing dress up in her grandmother’s vintage slips and jewels. In third grade Erika wrote to Esprit to declare her undying love for them – she wanted to work for them when “she grew up.” By the 5th grade Erika became enamored with Marilyn Monroe and started dressing up in leopard print, fur boleros and red lipstick so she could be just as fabulous as the blonde bombshell!
Erika took the first steps in pursuing her dreams by studying fashion first at Philadelphia University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and then in Florence, Italy. After returning to the states, Erika moved west to pursue her career in fashion – seeking the individuality, freedom, and magic of Hollywood, California! She has since worked with such high fashion names as Betsey Johnson, Baby Phat, Nanette Lepore, True Religion, and Christian Audigier.