While in El Camino College in Los Angeles 22 years ago, Cozmo-El and his wife, Akilah Moor-El used to make desserts and small crafts to support the Black Student Union’s activities.
Years later, when they found themselves weary of the corporate world, he with a tax company, she in the hotel industry, they went back to their creative and entrepreneurial roots.
They tested the water in Southern California, found that they did well and have stayed the course since. About four years ago, they moved to Northern California’s family.
They wasted no time entering the vending scene here, finding it to be a ‘good grass-roots environment,” Cozmo-El said. “Everbody is glad to see us.”
Cozmo-El can be seen wearing the signature fez, and other clothing of his design expressing Moorish American culture, but he is most known for his jewelry: copper chokers, rings and bracelets. He takes a holistic approach, preferring to mine and cut the stones he uses, and selects copper as the metal for chokers, rings, earrings because of its healing properties.
“Copper is known to help with anemia, arthritis and blood circulation,” he said. His most popular items are the air chase bracelet, while he gets many compliments for and his patina copper items including plates.
Akilah has a line of skin and hair care products made of shea butter that are light in weight and subtly scented. She recently added a liquid spray cleaner made of natural ingredients that cause no harm.
It’s very much a family affair, including their home-schooled children, Sabeerah, 17, Karim, 15, Saleem, 10 and Kaliyah, 5 months who may sometimes be found working the table with their parents.
Their newest endeavor is in a food and catering business, which they are calling ‘The Good Life.’ Even though they had a successful resturant in Los Angeles, they are starting out focusing on perfecting their vegan desserts: carrot cake, zucchini cake (each one with a chocolate version) and three different cobblers: peach, mango and blueberry.
You can find Cozmo-El’s work on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cozmoel/