After studying fine arts and design in Toronto and Vancouver, Jackie Kai Ellis went on to a career as a creative design director, co-owning a design firm specializing in strategic branding programs.
After 9 years in the industry, she went to Paris to pursue her passion for pastry, studying at École Gastronomique Bellouet Conseil. Shortly thereafter, she founded the award-winning pâtisserie, Beaucoup Bakery & Café in Vancouver – featured in countless publications and media including Bon Appétit Magazine.
Passionate about holistic business development, Jackie crafted an authentic company culture together with her team of 30. She developed and invested in internal scholarships, charity programs, and implemented an innovative structure of transparency to empower her team, which eventually led to the company’s sale to two of her original team members.
During this time, Jackie also started The Paris Tours, leading food tours of the best pâtisseries in Paris, which was featured in Vogue.com amongst other national publications. She also expanded into lifestyle journalism; writing articles that curated inspiring food, design and travel experiences for various publications including a nationally syndicated newspaper column in Canada. This naturally flowed into a national brand as a media personality, regularly appearing on TV, radio, online and print as an expert on lifestyle and topics promoting passionate and inspired living.
She has been a critic, guest and judge on stages such as Iron Chef Canada, Feast Portland and Canada’s Top 100 Restaurants. As a leader in fashion and lifestyle, she has partnered with brands such as Nordstrom, Four Seasons, Whole Foods, Toronto Fashion Week sponsored by Kim Crawford Wines as well as being featured in publications such as FASHION, House & Home, ELLE, and the Globe & Mail as one of Canada’s best dressed in 2018.
Known for her ability to build engaging and impactful brands and for her authentic style of leadership as an entrepreneur, she has spoken at conferences for companies and executive teams such as Accenture, Whole Foods, Beedie School of Business, Four Seasons Toronto, Diffferent in Berlin, and TEDx.
In March 2018, Jackie turned her passion for authentic storytelling, launching her instant bestselling memoir, The Measure of My Powers: A memoir of food, misery and Paris, published with Penguin Random House. It was shortlisted for awards including the Rakuten Kobo Emerging Writer Prize. In 2019, the book was launched in French as La Mesure de Mes Forces: souvenirs de saveurs, de souffrance et de Paris.
Jackie then focused her design skills on a personal project, renovating her Paris apartment, which has since been featured on the cover of House & Home Magazine, on ArchitecturalDigest.com, Curbed.com, Hello Blogzine and other international publications.
With her apartment as a backdrop and inspiration, she has styled for such clients as Télérama France and luxury wine labels, and is currently designing a line of kitchen and dining linens with Flax Sleep launching in spring 2020.
Most recently, Jackie launched an online project, www.aptlafayette.com, a platform for sharing inspiration and ideas for creating meaningful and enduring beauty in the details of the everyday – a philosophy that she lives by.
She currently resides in Paris.