Look Good, Feel Good

When: Thrusday, May 8th, 2014

Where: Expect Home Office

I first decided that I wanted a career in fashion when I was a sophomore in high school. That's when I started cutting Goodwill curtains on the floor of the living room, sewing on the coffee table, and throwing backyard and quad fashion shows. I felt really lucky that I knew what my path would be, especially when I saw my friends struggle to figure out what colleges to apply to, what majors to eventually pick. But with my career mapped out ahead of me, I soon became overwhelmed with a sense of guilt that I was dedicating my life to an industry that mars the wellness of women by asserting unrealistic standards of beauty upon them. I worried that I would be considered vapid and vain for choosing to become part of a world that solely focuses on the appearance of things. I felt ashamed that I wanted to be a part of a system that gives so little a contribution to bettering humankind.

Since the day that I decided to make fashion my lifestyle, I have been searching for a way to instill meaning in it.

One part of my job that I draw great enjoyment and personal solace from is connecting to other women. Little did I know when I decided to focus my thesis on maternity wear, one day, having a business focused on motherhood and children, that I would connect with so many families and become a small part of their life story.

A phrase I constantly repeat to myself is, 'look good, feel good.' I've always clung to this colloquialism as a way to encourage myself to make clothing that makes women feel great about themselves. Especially during the beautiful, but sensitive, period of pregnancy, when a woman's body is undergoing constant change, it is important for her to feel comfortable, not only in her clothing, but in her body as well. As much as we all hate to admit it, the way we look in the mirror does affect the way we feel about ourselves. If I can make a woman look in the mirror at her new baby bump and squeal, "I love the way I look!" my job is done. I strive for that moment of glee in everything that I do. Hearing moms and grandmothers whisper, "Look how cute that is!" when they pass my booth at art shows steels my confidence in what I'm doing with my life. I'm making people happy. And that means so much!

Having this fashion blog has also brought me a lot of joy. What might look like a narcissistic webpage filled with images of myself in different outfits, makeup changes, hairstyles, has actually become a really fun way for me to connect with like-minded woman across the world. Getting a 'like' on my instagram photos has become more than ego-feeding gratification... It has become a way for me to join forces with beautiful women everywhere in saying, "Look at me! I LOVE me!!!"

When I put this outfit on last week, it wasn't just because I felt like sharing a new look on my blog. I wore red to show my support to fellow blogger Jacqui of Baby Boy Bakery who lost her son suddenly in a tragic accident. Raising #RedBaloonsForRyan by wearing red, brought women together to remember Ryan, honor Jacqui and her husband, and open a conversation about loving each other more openly, appreciating each day, and making waves for children's safety.

Connecting to others through fashion has really enriched my experience in an industry I felt would be cut-throat, lonely, and frowned upon. The community I've found through Coast to Coast, instagram, and blogging has meant everything as I continue in the business of making women "look good, feel good."