The name is Kotae

One of the most critical and challenging decisions when starting a new business is to choose a name for it. How can you express, preferably in one word, all that your business represents? Besides, there is a practical issue: if you want to have the chance to trademark the name, so only you can use it for that kind of business, it must be unique.

Usually, before starting a process like this, you define as many paths that can potentially tell the story behind your business. From there, you will derive words that could turn into good names. It's a beautiful but tiring iteration process, eliminating the words you can't use and electing the favorites. In my case, one of those paths was the word answer. It was inspired by the meaning the accidental hearts you find in my cards had for me: love is the answer.

Starting in 2019 and during most of the lockdown in 2020, I took a couple of courses that made me reflect on life, especially what love is and where we find it. The truth, I found out, was simple: you don't have to look for it anywhere because love is within. Indestructible, permanent, accessible, infinite, ready to share.

A search showed that the word answer was already taken by another business. The alternative was to look for synonyms and terms with the same meaning in other languages. Two words in Japanese, meaning answer, stood out. But with the translation available online, I couldn't know which one would be the right one for my store.

Help came from an unexpected source. Talking to my friend Sandra Hermoso,  she suggested I spoke to Rogerio Seiichi, who had worked with her in the past. He is a Japanese Brazilian who lived in Japan for a while and spoke Japanese fluently. Rogerio patiently explained to me the meaning of both words, and then something fantastic happened. I found out that one of the words I chose had a special meaning that would perfectly fit.

Kotae, pronounced /KohTAH.eh/, is a word in Japanese that means answer, but it can be an answer to a question you ask yourself. And I knew that for that kind of question, love was the answer.

Was that just a happy coincidence?

I love the name of my store. If our cards can inspire people to stop and think that we all can see life through the lens of love, it will be a fantastic accomplishment. I'll do my best!

How about you? Do you agree that love is the answer?


If you want to know how to say Kotae, click here to check our post on Instagram.