Posts in Entrepreneurship
Style Talk with Luisa Lucia

I've always admired the California cool aesthetic, but unfortunately have never been quite able to pull it off myself. Which is why I was so excited to interview Cali-girl, stylist and blogger Luisa Lucia to see if I could learn a little bit about her approach to style, and convince her to share some tips! 

 Luisa is on Instagram  @LuisaLuciaStyle

Luisa is on Instagram @LuisaLuciaStyle

How and why did you become a stylist?

I knew I wanted to work in fashion since I was a little girl.  I studied fashion design in college, but when I realized how challenging it is to "make it" as a designer, not to mention all the barriers to entry, I decided styling was a better fit.  I studied at the School of Style and quickly started interning and assisting to work my way up.  That was in 2011 and I've been styling ever since.      

Which celebrities do you think are really slaying the style game so far in 2018?

I don't follow celebrity style all that closely anymore.  For one, I specialize in styling regular people, so most of the brands I work with are more mainstream/affordable.  And because of the way social media has changed the industry, I'm more inclined to follow fashion influencers than celebrities.  In that respect I'm totally obsessed with Stephanie Hill of The Style Bungalow and Elizabeth Keene of A Keene Sense of Style, among others.  

What style advice would you give your younger self?

I'm pretty happy with my style choices throughout the years.  My style was definitely more eccentric when I was young, but that was all part of the process.  If anything, I would say don't buy cheap stuff.  When you're on a budget it's easy to fall into the trap of cheap shoes or cheap jewelry, but as I've gotten older I've realized that was really a waste because I've cleansed my closet of many of those items.    

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How do you curate your own closet? 

I'm a bit of a collector, so I own wayyyyyy too much stuff.  In that sense, organization is key, or my closet would be total mayhem.  I keep my entire wardrobe organized by type of item, then color.  So all my dresses are in one section, then all arranged with like colors grouped together.  This is even true for my shoes and accessories, though I can't always keep it perfect, especially when I'm busy and don't have the time.  I'm also constantly purging, which helps make room for new items.  I love getting rid of stuff almost as much as I love buying new things.   

Looking at your own closet, what are your favorite investment pieces and what trends are you loving this season?

I don't have favorite pieces per say because I really wouldn't know how to choose.  But I strongly believe in investing in quality shoes and handbags.  High-end accessories (especially leather goods) are built to last.  Don't buy a bag that's going to fall apart after a year of use.  Regarding trends, I adore straw circle bags for the summer season.  I also swear by prints and bright colors when summer rolls around.  

What is your go-to style tip?

Don't go overboard with trends.  Dress for yourself.  Wear what flatters you and what suits your personality regardless of what's "in".

What’s the one piece every woman should have in her closet?

Black pants.  A pair that fit your body perfectly and that can be dressed up or down.  The silhouette might vary depending on your body type, but as long as they flatter you, you will make use of them!  

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What would you be doing if you weren’t a stylist? 

Interior design.  I love remodeling and redecorating.  Especially taking an old house with potential and making it something beautiful.  I'm starting to branch out and do more interiors for my clients as well.  

What's your top pick from Bombay Taxi Boutique and how would you style it?

I'm in love with the NAMRATA DUAL TONE EARRINGS.  Mixed metals are modern, eclectic, and easy to style.  Plus the leaf pattern evokes a tropical vibe that's perfect for summer.  I would pair these with a cute printed sundress or colorful flowing maxi, and avoid wearing a necklace to keep it simple and chic.  

 

HUGE thanks to Luisa for this fun interview! You can find her online at LuisaLucia.com and StyleMeSenseless.com, and on Instagram

Come Over All The Time

I'm a huge fan of Cleveland artist Erin Guido's work. Her fun, colorful, art pieces bring me so much joy. This may sound a little weird, but in person, she is exactly like her art - spending time with her will make your day better. And it's this spirit that she and her collaborator Lora are bringing to their kickstarter campaign for their new creative guest book

"We (not-so) secretly hope that this book will give you an extra nudge to hang out with friends IRL as often as you can. The world is a stressful place-- good friends make it a little less so."

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I think I mentioned this before, but Nick and I went two years without hosting our friends for dinner parties, until we got wild and hosted 3 dinner parties in 4 weeks. While we don't plan on such an aggressive schedule going forward, we do plan to entertain more this year, and this guest book will be such a fun way to keep track of great times! Also, let's not kid ourselves - I'm really looking forward to some weird and funny drunk messages LOL

So if you have an opportunity, go check out Erin and Lora's kickstarter campaign, and maybe even fund it if you feel so inclined!

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My Spring Wishlist

It only took until the beginning of May, but bring finally showed up! Warmer temperatures, flowers in bloom, longer days -- i forget how much I really love Spring until it gets here. While I'm usually in a rush to hurry up and get to Summer, this year I'm really going to make an effort to embrace Spring with my Spring Wishlist. 

Plant an herb garden: I plant an herb garden every year, but honestly, I don't think very much about what I plant in there and typically miss out on some essentials. My usual go to is basil and mint, but this year I'm looking to plant some chives, parsley and thyme in addition to the usual. 

Decorate our front porch with tons of plants and flowers: Last year we finally bought some comfortable furniture for the front porch and added a hammock, and this year I really want to add some planters. I LOVE flowers, and in addition to hanging baskets I want to add even more plants and flowers to our front porch - I want it to look like a mini garden, or like the entrance to a London pub in the summer!

 My front porch inspiration

My front porch inspiration

Attend a garden party: I just want to sit in a beautiful garden surrounded by flowers, drink champagne, and eat mini sandwiches with the crusts cut off. 

 Photo credit:  Jungle Jetsetter

Photo credit: Jungle Jetsetter

Establish a consistent yoga practice: This one shows up as a resolution almost every single time I make a resolution, and unfortunately it's one I haven't turned into a habit...yet. I'm hoping this time is different. Having read part of Charles Duhigg's book on the Power of Habit, I learned that I need to focus on the reward in order to create a habit. In the case of yoga, it is savasana, zen vibes, and a sense of accomplishment that comes at the end of a session that I need to focus on, and in theory, it will help me build a habit and ultimately crave yoga. In full disclosure, I got really bored with the book and didn't finish it, but I'm pretty sure I got the essentials. 

Complete a bunch of online and IRL courses that I've been interested in: I recently read a really great book called Designing Your Life, that applies the principles of Design Thinking to your life. I've heard a lot about Design Thinking from Nick (he's an architect, so this is part of his job), and even did an exercise at work, but had not really thought about using it to design my life and my career! As part of the exercises in the Designing Your Life workbook, I'm taking some online classes to try things out and get a sense of what I might want to do when I grow up. I'm hoping that this groundwork really allows me to bloom this year (sorry not sorry for the Spring pun). 

What's on your wishlist this Spring?

5 Apps That are Worth Paying For

There are so many apps in the app store, many of which seemingly do the same thing. There are plenty of free apps, but which paid apps are actually worth paying for? Today I want to discuss a few of my favorites that I use on a regular basis. 

Headspace: I was always very skeptical of meditation. SUPER skeptical. I felt like I wasn't really super stressed and didn't really need a mental break. And then I found myself making errors in my work - at my day job, here on the blog, just in every day life. It took me making a lot of mistakes to realize that something had to change, and perhaps I needed a break. I tried Headspace's free trial, and was immediately sold and bought a year-long subscription. I have since been using it on and off, but I've found that I always end up more balanced and efficient when I'm in a regular meditation practice. I am too inexperienced (and likely to fall asleep) if I meditate unguided, so this app is exactly what I need.

Planoly: This may come as a bit of a surprise to you, but my Instagram feed is very rarely updated in real time. I use Planoly to schedule most of my posts and auto publish them. There is a free version, but some of the automated features require a paid subscription - totally worth it. Sometimes I schedule out the bulk of my week in advance, and at other times, I schedule them during my commute to and from work (I take the bus) and let them autopost at optimized times. Now you know my secret. 

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Lightroom CC: This has been a game changer for my photographs. I work with professional photographers quite frequently, but I take a lot of my product pictures myself. And since I'm not a professional photographer, and I don't have a great professional camera (mine is a good point and shoot with some customization), my pictures need some help, at least where the light is concerned. This app has been super helpful with that. I recently bought some Lightroom presets (another not-so-secret trick) and am working to learn how to use those too!

Audible: I love books, but the sad truth is that I don't really have a whole lot of time to read. Between my day job and all my entrepreneurial ventures, I just run out of time. So audible has been a lifesaver in allowing me to catch up on some great books while I'm doing other things like walking the dogs, or driving to yoga class, or commuting to work. I alternate between Audible and the audiobooks via my public library, but the truth is the audible has a more extensive collection of new releases, and there's the instant gratification of the immediate download. It's part of the reason I've been able to read 17 books already this year (and its only April). 

Five Minute Journal App: I was in a funk about work recently, when I read an article that suggested that scientists have proven that gratitude has a positive impact on your brain. The article further suggested that starting the day with gratitude can change your brain waves so that even if you woke up grumpy or tired, you can reset with the simple act of being grateful, and that journaling over a period of time can have sustained positive impacts on your life. The Five Minute Journal App takes this notion and applies technology to it - a little gratitude in the morning, and a little reflecting before bed. They say 5 minutes, but honestly, you can do this exercise in less time each day. This is possibly one of my most favorite apps and 100% worth every penny.

What apps are you using, paid or unpaid, that you love?