30Fresh Aces: Byron Gronseth

Each week during 30Fresh, I'll introduce you to a couple of incredible people whose soul, energy, humor, talent, intellect and dreams light up my life. I think the world of them and hope you do too!

Today it's my pleasure to introduce you to my next Ace and creative director behind Fresh Jess -Byron Gronseth!

Byron and my friendship is another one that blossomed via Twitter. A transplant from all over the place, Byron used Twitter to find a few fun people to talk to in Seattle and we've been friends ever since. We've got a shared love for scathing sarcasm, the color black and all things Harry Potter. Seriously, if we could be in a movie, we call the parts of Sirius Black & Bellatrix LeStrange! He's the only one I trust in helping me carry out the visual design behind the Fresh Jess brand. He's responsible for the background and header you see on FJ today, as well as the 30 Fresh banner. It's always awesome to see your friends hit a good stride, and Byron's been on one for the last couple of years, landing his dream girl and an amazing job at a design agency. Read on for more:

What's on your playlist right now?

  • How to Destroy Angels - Welcome Oblivion

  • Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - Push the Sky Away

  • Talib Kweli's Attack the Block mixtape

  • Some random shit with violins and yelling.

  • I heard there was a "Trent Reznor Aggressively Touching Things In An Antique Store" EP—i'm on that.

Describe your style.

Villainous, usually. Heavy, textured blacks, leather, slates and greys, dull, muted patterns and rugged edges. However, at some point in 2012 I bought some brightly colored v-necks. It sounds cheesy as hell but I guess my fiancée brought color into my life. My dreams of being Sirius Black when I grow up were officially dashed with heavy doses of gingham & orange accessories.

Who inspires you?

I'm extremely critical of my own work and everyday I worry that I'm a fraud. So naturally, my heroes come in two flavors: creative peers (industry folk from all disciplines) & appreciators (family & friends with real jobs.) Sometimes I need hard-hitting peer review and critique to remind me how much better I need to be. Other times, I need someone to be there for me, whether I rise or fall. I need someone to share my process and inspire me, beyond my peers and mentors. to watch the transformation. ...and to remind me what is most important. (Tacos & hugs #RealTalk)

What are you reading?

Great Gatsby, the last few books of the Sandman series by Neil Gaiman, just rolled through Lord of the Rings and now finishing up Stardust also by Gaiman. You could say that my hobbit, sword & whiskey-based inspiration is at an all-time high.

What are you most excited about in the coming months?

Duh, marrying my damn soul mate, my voyager, my dancer, my sun chaser, my most enthusiastic cheerleader, my philosopher, my scientist, my queen.

Also, by the way, i'm producing the absolute best work of my life at an agency that challenges me every day to not suck.

Thank you!

30Fresh30 days of posts celebrating 30 years - and 5 of Fresh Jess!

Home, Let Me Upgrade You (Sponsored)

One of my major goals this year is to show a little more love to my home. From decor to design, my abode had always been one of uncoordinated aesthetic. A rug I got on sale here, a sweet table I scored at a garage sale there, etc. While that eclectic approach might've suited me in my early twenties, it feels like a messy afterthought now. It's past time I take the steps to make it feel like a home (slash office!)

We've been making conscious changes here and there, with attention to overall color palette (black, white & grey with pops of primary color) and materials (reclaimed wood, concrete, metal, natural or organic fibers.) We once favored functionality over design, but now they're equally important. I need things that make my life easier or that take little to no maintenance while still making my place look good.

Here are a couple of ways I've done that, and a couple of things on my wish list to simplify life even further.

Fancy up the walls

We've collected tons of art over the years that just need to go up! One piece I put up immediately was a Brooklyn Flea find, by a Washington state native who beautifully portrays quotes on recycled pieces of wood.

Mixing patterns

My couch has always sat bare, with just a couple of random throw pillows I'd use as cushions for my laptop. A few new pillows of varying shapes, textures and sizes made for a quick but visually-appealing upgrade!

Reclaimed and vintage

One of the hottest trends lately is the use of reclaimed materials and vintage furniture. We traded in our non-descript computer desk for a tall, reclaimed wood, steel-enforced long table. 


If you're anything like me, you've got your phone near you at all times. I got this little iPhone charger / speaker dock that looks like an old phonogram. It's so cute, and kills two birds with one stone - charging my phone while playing music for me to sing along with in the shower!

Organization booster

The one major thing I haven't cemented in this home is a good place for the random but important stuff. You know - car keys, mail, grocery list, reminders, bills and such. I'm in the market for a good organizer, and am leaning toward this bamboo wall panel by Seattle-based Three by Three.

Tidy town

We are in dire need of a new vacuum. We've got two huge, clunky ones that are on their last legs and just taking up space in the closet. The holy grail of vacuums, of course, is Dyson's entire line, and I'm hoping to make one the next vacuum in my life.

Dyson Digital Slim™ vacuums have a detachable long-reach wand for floor to ceiling cordless cleaning. Powered by the Dyson digital motor, they’re the most powerful cordless vacuums. Learn more at www.dyson.com/digitalslim.

What tips or upgrades have you made to simplify or spruce up your home lately? Let me know in a comment below!

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Dyson via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Dyson.

Fresh Jess Loves Room & Board: #RoomToOutfit Giveaway!

There's nothing like a statement piece to really make an outfit stand out, right? 

The same can be said for a stellar piece of furniture to bring an entire room together. One of my goals this year (part of my 2013 theme, "Be Responsible") is to get more comfortable in the space I'm in. That includes my physical space, and dressing up my home a bit more. I am a tragic victim of a busy lifestyle in that my place doesn't have any kind of thoughtful decor theme to it. That's why I was delighted to work with Room & Board on a fun project to feature the 13 new products in their 2013 collection.

First off, a tour of their University Village location to see all of the new collection pieces up close and personal. I love walking through the store vignettes and seeing how certain pieces can come together. I may know my way around a closet, but I have no idea how to style a room quite like these!

So, what is this fun project Room & Board and I are doing? Well, Room & Board is partnering with bloggers on a #RoomToOutfit Pinterest board collection. After the tour, I went home and used the 13 new collection pieces as inspiration for the various outfits and fashion pieces featured on my board. 

Peep the full Fresh Jess Loves Room & Board #RoomToOutfit board on Pinterest!

Some of the new 2013 collection. See them all on my Pinterest board!

All of the outfits!

Now you know I always look out for my readers. Room & Board and I are giving you a chance to spice up your abode with a $500 gift card!  How do you enter?

1) Head to Pinterest and follow me: Jess Estrada

2) Like, repin or comment on one of my #RoomToOutfit pins - one entry per action!

3) Not on Pinterest? Just leave a comment below and tell me what your favorite piece is from Room & Board's 2013 collection!

It's that simple! Contest closes

Monday, March 4th at 11:59p.m. PDT

This is probably the sweetest prize I've given away so far. $500 to spend at Room & Board? Are you kidding me? You'd be crazy NOT to enter! Multiple times!

Follow Room & Board on PinterestTwitter and Facebook.

Happy Birthday, Moksha!

Sometimes you meet people and you just want them to succeed. You have seen many of my inspirations covered here on Fresh Jess, and one of those I'm most supportive of especially. Moksha Clothing on the Ave in the University District has held it down for nine years, celebrating their anniversary last weekend. It's difficult for many small businesses to survive a couple of years, yet Moksha has stood strong throughout a recession and more.

I am incredibly humbled and honored to have the Moksha team (Elvia, Aleph et. al.) support me - keeping me stylish from my days as a brokeass college student to my life now. It has been a pleasure growing up with you, Moksha. To many more!

Shop Moksha now through Friday, July 22 and enjoy 30% off most everything in the store.

RSVP on Facebook

Here are some of my favorite outfits from Moksha over the last couple of years:

Dress & earrings from Moksha - HollyHood

Skirt from Moksha - SXSW

Dress & earrings from Moksha - illin on the Hill

Dress from Moksha - SAM Remix

Our event together in 2009!

Happy birthday Moksha! Love you!

Follow Moksha on TwitterBlogger and Facebook

Dream Room

I always told myself that one day I'd have a home complete with a Belle library. As in, the one Beast gave Belle in Beauty and the Beast:

While my dream isn't a reality just yet, I've found a perfect prototype in Karl Lagerfeld's library/studio:

Oh my God. I can't. This is the most amazing room I've ever seen in my life.

I would never leave it!

Are you giving tours, Mr. Lagerfeld? Eh? :)

Lagerfeld images via The Selby

Fresh Friends: JUXISM

FreshJess.com got a little facelift early last month, thanks to the talent & creativity of design artist Dan Dejos. tonight, to express my sincere gratitude, i wanted to share a little background on dan's work and give a little preview of things to come!

Back in 2006, Dan founded Juxism to encompass all of the creative projects he received shortly after his time at The Art Institute. the diversity of his work range from print, interactive, web, fashion, product & creative direction.

Juxism has worked with commercial & non-commercial clients, including Adidas, T-Mobile, Publicis, DJ Scene, Soy Clothing, Blue Scholars, Ride Snowboards, Hope Heart Institute & the Department of Energy.

Dan's designs have graced the pages of Rolling Stone, Inked, URB, Antenna and Sound magazines, in addition to numerous flyers of some of my favorite nights out on the town :)

Juxism's attention to detail, use of color and creativity have opened a ton of doors, including spearheading art direction for VXRSI, bringing the art of style and MMA together in innovative streetwear & competition sportswear.

Take a look at Juxism.com for more projects, and add it to your RSS or favorite reader. Stay tuned for some exciting additions to the Juxism site in celebration of the team's 4 year anniversary - including a limited edition tee!

all over the place!

thanks to the power of networking on Twitter, i have gotten to know a few really great ladies here in the city over the past few months. 

one of them is Kim of Boutique Culture who graciously offered me the chance to guest post for their blog. Of course i had to feature my favorite boutique in Seattle and a vendor at this weekend's Boutique Culture Warehouse Sale - Moksha.

Read my interview with Moksha's Aleph Geddis here

Another one of my Twitter friends is Jordana of Clutch 22, social media & style maven, absolute sweetheart and one of my blog heroes. She's just posted a feature on yet another fave Twitter lady, Seattle eco-designer Sara Seumae of Spun. did i mention there's a giveaway for a SPUN tank? get on it! in this feature you will see a familiar face modeling Spun's Diane wrap dress remixed by Tara Smith of Revival Ink with a beautiful unicorn.

Truly honored to know these ladies!