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Rivka Shapiro

Rivka Shapiro

COSMETOLOGIST, FASHION DESIGNER, ARTIST

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THORNHILL

COSMETOLOGIST, FASHION DESIGNER, ARTIST

In the Soviet Union I studied fashion design and was a master tailor for high-end women’s clothing. In Canada, I graduated from college with a degree in cosmetology, which includes many elements of beauty: Hair and facials, hands and nails, ear piercing, and makeup. I enjoy cooking interesting dishes and decorating for the holidays. While in high school in the Soviet Union I also discovered the ability to draw, and I began to attend classes at the art studio, where I learned to experiment with color. I love to draw still life with fruits, and also to prepare aesthetically pleasing gift baskets using exotic fruits and berries.

How long have you lived in Ontario, and why did you choose Thornhill? 

I have live in the Toronto area since 1989. I like the small-town feeling of Thornhill, like in Israel. My children go to a nearby Jewish school, and we live near the Jewish shops and synagogues. Our children are very comfortable here, and it is pleasant to live in the Jewish community.

Where does your family come from? 

My family comes from Kiev. Despite the fact that our family was not always observant or traditional, my soul was always drawn to my Jewishness. As an adult I decided to pursue the path of Torah Judaism. It was not always easy and it took a long time to learn and adjust, but today I am happy and proud to say that my house is kosher, we observe and celebrate Shabbat and holidays, as well as all the laws of Jewish life. 

What do you do in your free time? Do you have any hobbies?

I am the mother of four children, so my most of my time is devoted to them. I love to read, especially about things that are connected with the teachings of Judaism, so that I can continue to grow in my Jewish journey. I find Jewish texts inspiring, and am always excited to learn something new. As a fashion designer and cosmetologist, I am also interested in the latest developments in those fields. I’m always watching the news, and when I learn something new, I try to immediately apply it in practice.

If you were given the opportunity to meet anyone, alive or dead, who would you choose, and why?

I would like to meet with one of the four Jewish matriarchs: Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah. I inherited from them the spiritual fortitude, endurance, and patience that help me to better understand and educate my children. I would like to garner wisdom from them about what it means to be a Jewish woman, a mother and a wife.

Do you participate in JRCC programs?

Throughout the years that I have lived in Ontario I have been participating in a variety of JRCC programs. They were and are an important part of my life.

What are your future plans?

I would like to continue growing and developing spiritually, and to further my Torah studies. I am very focused on raise my children to be healthy and happy, and to pass on to them my love of Torah.

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