Aces Interview: Chanelle Laurence

Fashion blogging is so. freaking. BORING lately. Somewhere along the line, fashion bloggers all started to look and dress the same - and where's the fun in that? The industry may have jumped the shark, but it only makes the ones who go against the grain stand out even more. I adore following a lot of L.A. fashion bloggers for this reason - no matter what, they are always reppin' that perfect California style. One of my favorites is Chanelle Laurence of The Penelope Times. She's got a distinct style that's all her own, and I love it. I'm also a fan of her store, Penelope's Vintage, and had the pleasure of blogging alongside her at WWDMAGIC in August. She's bold, sassy, laid-back and one of the nicest bloggers I've ever met. Real recognize real and I'm happy to know her. Meet Chanelle:

Chanelle Laurence

Chanelle Laurence

What's on your playlist right now?

Running by Jessie Ware, Another Tomorrow by Lusine, Jessica by Major Lazor, Kilo Kish and anything Classixx.

Describe your style.

My style is edgy with a hint of vintage and ALL LA. I love looking like a tomboy one day and throwing on a dress for brunch the next... it’s always changing but that’s why I love fashion: I can wear whatever I feel like being that day.

Chanelle Laurence

Chanelle Laurence

Who inspires you?

Entrepreneurs, Designers, Go Getters and Edie Sedgwick.

What are you reading?

Right now I’m GLUED to the Shopify blog because I’m a social media + marketing nerd. I also recently started reading The Secret which I can’t wait to finish.

Chanelle Laurence

Chanelle Laurence

What are you most excited about in the coming months?

My boyfriend and I are in the process of working on a clothing line which has been occupying my day dreams for quite some time now. We both graduated from FIDM so it’s been something we’ve been planning for a while. I can’t wait!

Chanelle Laurence

Chanelle Laurence

Aces Interview: Kate Franco

In this wonderful world of blogging, I am both a contributor and a reader. Today's Aces interview features one of my favorite bloggers to follow. Meet Kate Franco of Undeniable Style!

Fashion bloggers are a dime a dozen these days, and there's a small handful I keep up with regularly. They each have a distinct style that's all there own, making them standouts in a sea of the same same (see "Do you dress like a 'blogger'?" on IFB.) Kate is definitely on that short list, always coming strong with a savvy edge to that bohemian California style. Every time she's got a new outfit up, I'm like, "YES, GIRL" and wondering where she scored each piece. Most likely, some of those pieces came from Poshmark, where Kate is one part of a wonderful assembly of human beings. Seriously, the Poshmark team is comprised of some of the sweetest, most stylish people in my universe and if I worked anywhere (not for myself), I'd want to be there.

Anywho, I consider Kate my style soul sista because she is always on point. Aside from her sartorialisms, I admire Kate's love of meditation, green smoothies and wellness. You can wear all the clothes in the world, but it's always what's inside that counts.

What's on your playlist right now?

Great question. I have to preface the answer by saying that I am terrible with music! You never want to play name that song/artist/album with me, I'll lose 9 times out of 10. So, I'm going to rely on Spotify to give you the true answer:

Alabama Shakes, Lana Del Ray, Kings of Leon, The Temper Trap & Massive Attack.

Also: John Mayer, Hot Bodies in Motion, Thievery Corporation & Mark Farina. I love Miley's Wrecking Ball. Sorry, can't help it!

My daily commute consists of country, some jazz, classic rock and '90s jams. And Oprah. Lots of Oprah. I'm all over the place. Gotta love satellite radio!

Describe your style.

Constantly evolving. (Thanks for the revolving closet, Poshmark!)

I think in the last couple of years it's settled somewhere between bohemian and edgy -- which I guess is pretty trendy right now, so that works.

I feel my best when I am comfortable. I like oversized, slouchy shapes, cool draping, piles of jewelry and lots of leather. Notorious for buying clothes that are a couple sizes too big for me. I'm going through a hat phase. And a minimalist phase in terms of colors; I'm drawn to neutral palettes lately.

Most importantly, I dress for me and no one else.

I secretly wish I could pull off the granny chic J. Crew kind of look!

Who inspires you?

I consider Gabrielle Bernstein my guru. She's been a huge part of the change in my life the last couple of years and is a constant source of inspiration. I am continually in awe of the passionate team I work with at Poshmark. My soul sisters keep me going, and I am blessed to be surrounded by driven and motivated ladies who are living out their entrepreneurial dreams. Lila & Abby, I'm looking at you!

What are you reading?

I LOVE reading! My grandparents were worried when I was young that I was going to be socially awkward because I always had my nose in a book. (Don't worry, I turned out okay.) Sadly, I don't have the time to pick up a physical book these days. I am currently doing the May Cause Miracles 40 day workbook.

Some books I've listened to recently via Audible:

Blogs & Websites I have bookmarked:

  • Tiny Buddha

  • IFB

  • Plus, a MAJOR twitter addiction. It's seriously my main news source.

Additional:

What are you most excited about in the coming months?

There's so much to be excited about! When you look at each day as a gift, your perspective changes.

Having never traveled abroad, I'm looking forward to upcoming international trips (St. Martin, Tokyo, Greece), celebrating milestones of dear friends, and majorly fun projects both at work and for the blog. Stay tuned!

Aces Interview: Jasmin of Vintage Vandalizm

My next Ace is a fellow blogger who's inspired me with her laser-like focus on crafting a personal style that's all retro but decidedly refreshing and different. I write once a week for the Independent Fashion Bloggers and thus pay a lot of attention to the fashion blogging landscape, and I can say with 10000% confidence that Jasmin Rodriguez's Vintage Vandalizm is one-of-a-kind. I had the good fortune to meet Jasmin in person at IFBcon, where I spotted her while speaking on a panel, and had to run up and tell her what a big fan I was of her blog. I was surprised by how humble and shy she was in real life! She's one of my favorite people to see whenever I'm in NYC.

She's got legions of fans all over the world just like me - and also critics, haters and copycats. Some try to emulate, others straight up duplicate - but none of Jasmin's imitators come close to her clear and unabashed love for rockabilly and other fine vintage eras. She lives and breathes the lifestyle as much as the modern world will allow. This is why she's no trendy throwback (what up Katy Perry) - Vintage Vandalizm is the real rockabilly deal. Her commitment to this life & style is what makes her one of my favorite bloggers on the interwebz.

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

What's on your playlist right now?

  • Lots of Lana Del Rey

  • Pervov Stelar

  • The Great Gatsby Soundtrack

  • The Weeknd

  • Niki and the Dove

  • Frank Sinatra

  • Ella Fitzgerald

  • and some rockabilly compilations.

Describe your style.

I'd like to think of it as a marriage of the timeless beauty of vintage & the gritty rawness of my vandalized city, NYC.

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Who inspires you?

I am deeply inspired by the classic hollywood actress' of the 40s, 50s, and 60s like:

  • Debra Paget

  • Ivonne De Carlo

  • Diana Dors

  • Grace Kelly

  • Eartha Kitt

  • and of course Elizabeth Taylor.

What are you reading?

Right now I am enjoying listening to many inspiring TED Talks like my recent favorite by Shawn Achor, who says that we have to reverse our perspectives on success. He says that we are taught that "We must be successful to be happy;" but in fact..the happier and more positive we are, the more successful we will be :).

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

What are you most excited about in the coming months?

I am working on a few projects to be finished by next year but you will have to stay tuned to find out ;). I am also excited to be attending Lingerie Fashion week and NY fashion week before my big move to Vegas. I am pursuing my dreams and though it is quite scary to leave a place I called home for 26 years, I am ready for the big change ahead of me.

Thank you!

Find Jasmin at VintageVandalizm.com.

Read all of my Aces interviews here.

August Fresh: A Recap

It's been a ridiculous August and I have a severe lack of blog posts to show for it. I'm sorry my dear readers! As I'm sitting here watching Justin Timberlake and *NSYNC light up the MTV Video Music Awards, I thought it'd be fun to share some photos of what I've been up to this month. Tomorrow I'll back with the first of some seriously amazing interviews, outfit shots and recaps of my time as a WWDMAGIC Official Blogger :)

Most of my time has been devoted to LUNA & CLIF Kid Bar. It's our busiest couple of months in the year, but winding down now. I've been having such a blast at all of our events but I'm excited to have a little quiet time to blog in the coming weeks.

I'm stoked to be on the team bringing Slideluck to life this year in Seattle! Part potluck, part art extravaganza. Coming in November to Pioneer Square! Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for updates leading up to the event.

Still getting my workouts & superfood diet on. Been traveling a lot so it hasn't been as consistent, but I refuse to give up on it completely. Never that.

Thoroughly enjoying summer but looking forward to fall, because that means SEAHAWKS FOOTBALL! Caught the last day of training camp a couple of weeks ago. Thanks Bing for having me!

My family is everything to me, and now we will have one more to add to the mix (officially!) Congrats to my cousin Erick and his beautiful longtime girlfriend Ashley on their engagement. 

Super honored to be included in "The Voices of Fashion" piece in 425 Magazine this month! Read the article here.

If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram then you know my last week was spent in Vegas covering WWDMAGIC. Such a life-changing experience. I'm still trying to comprehend all the wonderful things that happened there, and you'll see a few posts going up in the next few weeks detailing them!

Go Places By Yourself (& More Lessons Learned from Create + Cultivate PDX)

Two weeks ago I rolled down to Portland for Create + Cultivate. As a regular attendee of fashion, tech, and blogger conferences, C+C was such a breath of fresh air from what I'd gotten used to. To be honest, I wasn't sure if I was going to last all day (starting at 9:00a.m. and going well past 10:00p.m.) but I truly enjoyed and savored every moment. It's days like these where I find myself learning so much - not just about new things, but about myself. Little shifts in perspective, if you will. I left C+C with a lot to ponder. Here's a snippet of lessons learned in my reflections (along with my photo diary):

The perfect setting on a perfect day

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Go places by yourself.

Like a lot of events, I chose to attend this one alone. It used to be scary (sometimes it still is), but I've always found that I try harder to start conversations and meet other people than when I have a networking buddy. Don't get me wrong - it's always nice to have a friend and familiar face with you, and a lot of people just don't go to things unless they have a +1. I got in the habit of going to events alone back when I'd attend them as part of my Chamber of Commerce job. I've always looked at it as 'part of the job.' Going places alone gets you out of your comfort zone and puts you in an environment that's ripe with new ideas and people. Try it sometime, whether it's an event you've always wanted to attend like I did, or just a new coffee shop or park. Try having a meal or going to a movie by yourself. 

I couldn't fit into this vintage skirt last year so I thought it merited a gratuitous selfie. 

Zara tank & heels; vintage skirt & bag; Nike FuelBand + various vintage bracelets; wooden polka-dot ring gifted from Anisa in Africa

Fresh Jess Create + Cultivate Portland
Fresh Jess Create + Cultivate Portland

Alright. There was one familiar face. Thanks Jaclyn for a fabulous day!

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Get outside of your own bubble.

When you go places alone, you are bound to get out of your own bubble. I have never considered myself a "creative" type, perhaps because I had a pre-conceived notion that 'creatives' had to be, look and act a certain way. If you would've told me I'd be right at home and really (REALLY) enjoying getting my hands dirty in a crafty way, I would've asked you if you maybe saw someone else who looked like me. Yet here I was, thoroughly enjoying making flower crowns with Riley of Erba Floral Studio; constructing my own earrings with Betsy + Iya and mixing the perfect summer farm-to-glass cocktail with Rachel of Art in the Age

Our team even won Best Drink (a Thai-inspired, bell pepper rinsed sage spirit concoction) and I won Best Cocktail Name (for our other drink, the Blackberry Hussy!)

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Makin' earrings with Betsy + Iya

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Tahitian princess vibes with my DIY flower crown taught by Erba Floral Studio

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Talk to everyone.

This is one thing I continue to work on. It's one thing to work up the courage to go to an event like this alone. It's a whole 'nother thing to come completely out of your shell. I still get shy, but do my best to force the fear away and just strike up some conversation - with my table mates, sponsors, speakers, vendors, etc. I like to look at it as getting my part out of the investment - I took the time, energy and money to be here, so I better make the most out of it!

Dang Jess look at all these new people to talk to!

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Katie and I caught intensely focusing on our photo art. We were talking, promise.

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Everyone is inspiring.

The beauty of trying to talk to everyone is that each person presents an opportunity for you to be inspired. About humanity. About challenging yourself to do better. About your passions. About life. Some people can be like inspiration espresso shots, jolting you into a new frame of mind. For Create + Cultivate, the No Subject L.A. team brought in a few female powerhouses to do just that. How to look at things differently. 

I loved hearing from everyone, but Jeanine Pesce of Range and the ladies Emma and Tara of Wildfang especially struck me. Jeanine's perspective on trend forecasting and personal branding stems from a background I feel is very similar to mine - heavy in fashion and marketing, but with a yearning to bring more of her real passions (sports and the outdoors) into her career. Emma's tenacity, wit and fire has helped make her e-commerce site, Wildfang, a true community for tomboy lifestyle. She not only filled a business niche that's hugely missed by the rest of the industry, but she's managed to make thousands of girls feel like they have a team that's always behind them. 

Clockwise from top left: Jeanine Pesce of Range and Jasmine Takanikos; Melissa & Jessica of Stay Forever Photography; Rachel of Art in the Age; Emma and Tara of Wildfang.

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Liz, founder of Sseko Designs, has a moving story of how she's helping women in Uganda attend college through her products. Everything on the right came home with me :)

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Be a sponge.

I stole this from Nike's list of Maxims - look them up because they're solid statements to live by and have stuck with me long after my time working there. Anywho, absorb everything. Remember how the colors, smells, vibes, and smiles make you feel. Take those knowledge and creative bombs that were dropped on you all day and give yourself the time and space to truly reflect on them. This is what I told myself as C+C was winding down. All in all, a fun day that will leave its mark on me long after those sensory memories fade.

Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland
Create + Cultivate Portland

Special thanks to the No Subject team for a great day!

10 Fashion & Style Instagram Accounts You Must Follow

Nowadays, who doesn’t have an Instagram account? Fashion and style have created a huge presence on the hip social media site and I’m here to show you my top 10 picks for “Instagrammers” that are a must-follow for you fashionistas!

sydney fashion blogger instagram
sydney fashion blogger instagram

1) @SydneyFashionBlogger

This Sydney-based stylist and creative producer is one of my favorite Insta-fashion accounts. Although she tends to rock a lot of expensive designer wear, including that Chanel brooch that appears in many of her posts, I love taking inspiration from her “bougie” outfits.

Beyonce Instagram
Beyonce Instagram

2) @Beyonce

The famous singer jumped on the Instagram bandwagon fairly late in the game but nonetheless she has an account that I turn to a lot for style tips. I bought a pair of houndstooth print loafers and leather leggings earlier this year because I saw that Beyoncé posted a photo of herself clad in sexy leather leggings and an eclectic pair of loafers.

Sincerely Jules Instagram
Sincerely Jules Instagram

3) @SincerelyJules

Julie Sariñana is a fashion blogger and a popular “Instagrammer.” I found her account one day while browsing through some of the photos that made it to the Popular page. I enjoyed her laid-back style and how she puts together sophisticated feminine clothes and accessories with some designer pieces (like that irresistible pair of studded pointy-toed Valentino stilettos she owns!)

jnelv instagram
jnelv instagram

4) @JNELV

This Insta-famous fashionista has an urban flair to her style and she’s not afraid to take a risk with bold prints and bright colors. I love how she doesn’t try to follow any trends but instead she forges her own personal style with her eccentric clothes, accessories and shoes.

katrinacamille instagram
katrinacamille instagram

5) @KatrinaCamille

Another Insta-famous fashionista, Katrina Camille, posts cute and mostly casual ensembles. She spreads the pieces of clothing, the accessories and shoes out on her floor – unlike the majority of Instagrammers who model their #OOTD (outfits of the day).

Jessica Fang Instagram
Jessica Fang Instagram

6) @JessicaFang

This account is for jewelry lovers! She showcases accessories from body chains to stackable rings that you can purchase on her website: mod4rntrend.com.

karrueche instagram
karrueche instagram

7) @Karrueche

The infamous on-and-off-again girlfriend to R&B singer, Chris Brown, has the best Instagram account if you’re one for streetwear. Karreuche Tran sports clothing from Karmaloop, Dimepiece, Crooks & Castles, and Jeffrey Campbell among many others.

ewat24 instagram
ewat24 instagram

8) @ewat24

The other half of football player, Victor Cruz, has an Instagram account that will have you drooling over her high fashion and designer style. Although her photos don’t typically make it to the Popular page, her everyday ensembles and red carpet gowns are going to wow you.

monicarosestyle instagram
monicarosestyle instagram

9) @MonicaRoseStyle

The stylist to the Kardashians has created a name for herself by posting pictures of her adorable toddler, Alaia, in miniature versions of outfits that her mom would be dressed in. She also showcases her picks of the latest trends and of course, photos of the Kardashians styled by her.

3.1 Phillip Lim Instagram
3.1 Phillip Lim Instagram

10) @31philliplim

The fashion designer has a high-end clothing line but that’s why I love following the Instagram account of 3.1 Phillip Lim! I enjoy looking at pieces from his collections and taking inspiration from them. I saw his embroidered Souvenir Jacket (which looks like a floral bomber jacket) and soon after purchased my own from Crossroads in the U-District.

Who are your favorite fashion and style Instagrammers?

------

Courtney Liu is a Hawaii native in the journalism program at the University of Washington. She loves clothes and styling herself and her friends. She hopes to pursue a career in public relations or in the fashion industry.

Find Courtney on  Twitter, and view all of her posts here.

Bloggers Know Best: Featured in Styled Right Magazine

Last month, I had the honor of being a part of Styled Right Magazine's "Bloggers Know Best" feature. Seattle's inimitable stylist and power girl, Darcy Camden enlisted the help of Swink Style Bar and photographer Nicole Firestone to make us look so fly. We met up at University Village on a beautiful weekday for these shots, then answered a few questions about our personal style and why we blog. I had a wonderful time getting dolled up for the event (Swink did my hair but I did my own makeup - a very big feat for me!) I think Darcy did a great job pulling together four women with distinctly different styles, who are all very much Seattle in their own way. 

Thanks again for letting me be a part of it!

Peep the top shots and the full issue below:

L to R: Dana of It's My Darlin, Mollie of MollieinSeattle, Kate of All Things Kate and moi

Zara bag, heels and tank; AllSaints sequined skirt via Poshmark (similar); Aritzia's Wilfred Free satin bomber jacket (fun print option here); vintage Alexander McQueen denim jacket (pictured above & below)

Subscribe to Styled Right's quarterly magazine on iTunes.

Moves & News from Fresh Jess

Hey everyone!

I had a good cadence of daily posts going for awhile but have been st-st-stuttering lately. What's up with that?!? Just working on a few fun projects that I want to share with you!

I'm delighted to be a contributor to the Independent Fashion Bloggers (IFB)'s site once a week. Every Wednesday afternoon, you'll see an article from me waxing poetic on social media as it pertains to bloggers. My first post went up last week, on Balancing Your Social Media Plate.

Holy shh! Props from a (legitimate) social media guru, Mari Smith!

I was INCREDIBLY nervous to put this post out there. I'm not sure where all the nerves came from, but I haven't really written about social media since I left my job at a social media agency last year. I wrote about social all the time on their blog, and for some reason, never really picked it up on Fresh Jess although it's something I live, breathe, and have built a career on. I have a lot to say and I'm glad to have IFB as the forum to share that. If there's a topic you want to see, leave me a comment & let me know!

One of the cornerstones of Fresh Jess is being able to share with you all of my favorite people, places and things in Seattle. I've partnered with Gilt City for the next couple of weeks to highlight some of my favorite 206 businesses. Check out Grim's and Sugar Plum Spa in today's email, and enjoy a sweet deal from them too!

Shop my closet! This Thursday night, I'm hosting a virtual Posh Party with AlixRose. We'll be sharing our favorite Poshmark finds in our Fresh Fashion Party. Peep our closets here and here - and if you haven't signed up for Poshmark yet, use my code HUWKM for a $5 shopping credit!

As for this little blog, Fresh Jess is almost five years old (!) To celebrate this and my 30th birthday, I'm cooking up 30 Fresh, a whole month of extra-special posts for you. Every day in April will feature the people, places and things that are nearest and dearest to my heart. In addition to that, I'll be introducing five fresh new voices who'll be contributing to Fresh Jess at least once a month. They are five of the coolest young Seattleites I know, and I can't wait for you to meet them!

Fresh Jess is (mostly) a labor of love, and I've loved sharing events, music, style and other things with you that light up my life. I'm eternally grateful for your readership, and if you've got anything you'd like to see or ask me on Fresh Jess, leave me a comment or email me at jess(at)freshjess(dot)com. I'd love to hear from you!

IFB Conference Photo Diary

The Independent Fashion Bloggers (IFB) team put on another great conference last week, kicking off New York Fashion Week at the Altman Building in Chelsea. IFBcon is a great anchor for my week-long Fashion Week visits to NYC for so many reasons. It's a way for me to support IFB in one more way, giving thanks for the invaluable resource they provide us with this community. 

I always meet new amazing bloggers, catch up with other blogging friends and discover new fashion startups or up-and-coming bloggers when I attend. IFBcon's content is great if you are a casual or beginning blogger, with a variety of topics ranging from affiliate marketing, the future of blogging, social media and the business of blogging as a career.

Day 1 outfit: Crooks & Castles varsity jacket (similar) / Madewell Heartstripe sweater / Zara corduroy trousers & boots / Barney's Co-op collared sleeveless blouse

Seattle in full effect at IFB! Andrea of SkinnyPurseAlixRose and Sydney of Sydney Loves Fashion

Blogger bestie Alix and I had so much fun in the Alex & Ani photo booth :)

I was so excited to meet one of my favorite bloggers in the game! Rachel Seville of Pizza Rulez & Four Pins

With my NYC blogger bestie Vintage Vandalizm; the lovely Poshmark girls and Jennine, founder of IFB

More fun in the photobooth

Oh hey Tyson Beckford!

Day 2 outfit: Thrifted ASOS romper (similar) / Uniqlo Heat-Tech tights (fleece tights were a must this week! Similar here) / Zara boots

Couldn't resist :)

IFB Links a la Mode 5/24/12 - edited by Fresh Jess

I edit the Independent Fashion Bloggers' Links a la Mode once a month (every 4th week.) If you're an IFB member, Links a la Mode is a great way to be featured in the massive community. Each week, you can submit your best blog post for consideration in LALM. We (the editors) then read each submission and select 20 for that week's roundup. I'll be writing another post soon that goes more into detail in what I specifically look for when I'm going through submissions. If you're not an IFB member, take a look at some of my favorite fashion blog posts from the last month :)

DIY Days of Summer

Edited by: Jess of Fresh Jess

The bloggers are taking it to the crafts these days! What better way to get your wardrobe ready for summer than breathing new life into what you’ve got? This week’s Links a la Mode is chock full of quick & easy DIY projects for everything from crystallized shoes and Miu Miu-inspired clutches to top buns and accessories laced with neon. If getting crafty’s not on your to-do list this week, don’t fret. We’ve also got thoughtful posts on personal style, dressing for summer events, supporting local designers and blogger besties. These posts are getting better and better every week and it was hard to choose just 20 of them. Keep ‘em coming!

LINKS À LA MODE: THE IFB WEEKLY ROUND UP: MAY 24TH



SPONSOR:
Spring Sale at Shopbop: Magda Berliner, Weitzman, Rachel Roy, Badgley Mischka, Raquel Allegra, Garde Paris, Rebecca Taylor,Oliver Theyskens & Sonia Rykiel

PLEASE READ IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PARTICIPATE
If you would like to submit your link for next week’s Links à la Mode, please register first, then post your links HERE. The HTML code for this week will be found in the Links a la Mode group will be published later today. ~Jennine

Fresh Jess the Freelancer

It's true. I left my job a few weeks ago and am freelancing full-time. I thought about keeping low-key, but I've realized I don't owe anyone anything. Except myself, of course, and I owe everything to the opportunities that have come my way thanks to blogging and social media. I have wanted to do my own thing for so long and for me to not put myself out there is doing myself a severe disservice.

I am extremely thankful for my friends and family who've told me I should've been doing my own thing all along. It's humbling and encouraging to hear things like "I'm so excited to see what you'll do!" and "It was only a matter of time!" I am grateful to the agencies and brands who've reached out to me about full-time gigs, but I know this is the best thing for me right now. I've taken the last few weeks for some personal time, the Lucky FABB conference, and organizing my thoughts.

So what is it that I'm doing? Quite simply, stuff I've already been doing. Blogging mostly, because what I've wanted more than anything is to grow FreshJess.com to the amazing blog I know it will be. I am also writing, strategizing, creating, speaking, mentoring...doing. In short, helping tell amazing stories, launch awesome campaigns and bring fantastic ideas to life through words, networking and media.

One of my favorite Russell Simmons quotes is "Only do shit you believe in. Period." I can't tell you how excited I am to create a work life that weaves seamlessly with my blog and personal life, and most of all, to work on things I truly believe in.

Source: thewellnesswarrior.com.au via Jess on Pinterest

For a full run-down of my services, you can take a look at my new Freelance Services page and contact me at jess@freshjess.com for more information.

Lucky FABB: Conference Day Recap

After a jam-packed Sunday of networking, mimosas & sun, I was eagerly anticipating Lucky FABB conference day. Though the skies were grey for most of the conference, the beachside venue made for a perfect day full of awesome photo opps in the midst of learning from some inspiring speakers.

I was really impressed with the diversity in talent, industry and experience that Lucky brought together for this conference. I was actually drawn more to the tech mavens like Brit Morin, Randi Zuckerberg and Soleil Moon Frye. It was also super cool to learn about the great things Jessica Alba is doing with The Honest Company; Mad Men costume designer Janie Bryant's various ventures; and Elizabeth Banks' lifestyle website. All of the speakers and panelists had such unique insight from brand, personality and blogger experience that I left with a ton of wisdom and to-do list items.

If you'd like to take a look at my notes (they're messy!), check them out on my Evernote.

The view from the Annenburg Community Beach House. A perfect place for a conference!

Credentials in hand. Ready to roll!

Conversation wtih Zac Posen

Stay True to Your Voice

Sophia Rossi, HelloGiggles.com / Kristin Ess, The Beauty Department / Jane Marie, The Hairpin / Bri Emery, DesignLoveFest / Brit Morin, HelloBrit.com

Just one of the many beautiful installs in The House of Zappos

A Conversation with Jessica Alba & Christopher Gavigan of The Honest Company

What Hollywood Can Teach Fashion

Christin Trogan, Funny or Die / Will Gluck, Film Director, Screenwriter & Producer (Easy A) / Ashley Madekwe, Actress & Blogger, Ring My Bell / Hillary Kerr, WhoWhatWear / Jeannie Mai, television host & digital correspondent, NBC Fashion Star

A Conversation with Mad Men's Janie Bryant & Kiernan Shipka

My outfit via Value Village Fashion Ambassador: thrifted yellow wool blazer / Banana Republic silk sleeveless top / H&M high-waisted skirt / With Deena & Ozzy nude booties

How I Became An Entrepreneur

Soleil Moon Frye / Alli Webb, DryBar / Wende Zomnir, Urban Decay / Jenni Radosevich, I Spy DIY / Kate Sommerville, Kate Sommerville Skincare / E.J. Johnston, co-creator, NBC Fashion Star

How Brands Work with Blogs

Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, OPI / Quinn Donnelly, Benefit Cosmetics / Geri Hirsch, Because I'm Addicted / Gabrielle de Papp, Neiman Marcus / Aimee Song, Song of Style

A Conversation with Elizabeth Banks

A Conversation with Randi Zuckerberg (My absolute favorite part of the day!)

After all of these fabulous panels and fun times in the sponsor gifting suites, it was time for the closing  party. I got to say thank you to Lucky's editor-in-chief,

Brandon Holley

:

After the party, we were sent home with LeSportsac duffle bags FILLED with countless beauty, skincare, fashion & fitness goodies. This is the most serious swag bag I've ever seen in my entire life. So much amazing stuff:

Lucky FABB was without question my favorite conference to attend. Lucky took such great care of us for the short time we were together. I made countless connections with brands, other industry professionals and fellow bloggers. I'm really looking forward to the next!