And out of nowhere, I hear God say to me, Just be you. Nothing else, I am in love with you, I am pleased with you. I felt overwhelmed by the realization that I am enough, just as I am…..
Sometimes, with the struggles of our daily lives and everything around us we get too “caught up” with trying to be something we aren’t and forget who we are along the way. The last couple of months, I have been struggling with so much. Trying to find the answers, trying to figure it all out. At times I felt like God and my faith abandoned me. I started to lose hope in a lot of things. I know we all have been lost, even seen a lot of dark times in our lives. Let me tell you, the struggle is real, and I mean that in all honesty. Life is never easy by no means. Life can be beautiful and challenging all at the same time. But, hey that’s life right?! Sometimes the strongest among us are the ones who smile through silent pain, cry behind closed doors, and fight battles we know nothing about. I know I let out a good cry here and there and that’s okay. Letting out a good cry here and there doesn’t make me weak, it makes me real and human. Even moreso open and honest with you all by telling you all this, but I like to keep it real and 100% with you always.
Sometimes, we need to take a breath and realize, we need to love ourselves wholeheartedly always. At times, we can let society, the media, our circle of friends, colleagues, family whoever it is tell us what we need to be, who we should be and what we should be doing with our lives. No matter what anyone says, just be yourself. Don’t try to be something your not. Be authentically you. God created us to be unique individuals, and sometimes we need a reminder from time to time. We need to stop comparing ourselves to this person and that person and be comfortable with ourselves and who we are.
I know this is a constant struggle for all of us, myself included. Life isn’t always perfect. With social media ruling over us these days, there’s a constant need to strive for perfection. Just remember, looks can always be deceiving, and nothing is ever as perfect as it seems. And that’s ok, don’t strive for perfection, try and work through your struggles, learn and grow from it. Add value to your life and purpose that is more fruitful beyond measure. It’s all about perception and what you believe is perfect and right for you. Just remember, you are beautiful, kind, loving, unique, intelligent, humble, and amazing just the way you are. Never forget that. I too, have to remind myself of this all the time, so trust me you’re not alone. I hope this will encourage and motivate us all to never lose sight of who we are and what is important. And if we do, it’s these little reminders and words of wisdom from the big man up above speaking to us always. God’s always on our side watching over us and guiding us along the way. Let’s never forget him, our faith and all he has to show and tell us. No one is you and that is your power.
I’ll end by saying, keep your faith. I know it may not seem like it now but listen theres a message in the word always. This is my message to you today and always. Stay true to yourself, stay inspired, be empowered, have faith, never stop believing in yourself and never give up loves!!
As always, thanks for reading, following along and supporting the journey!
This year I was invited to the annual Simply Stylist event here in NYC. It was held at the Yotel hotel on the west side in Midtown.
Simply Stylist : Founded in 2009, Simply Inc. is a beauty and fashion brand consultant
Our host for the day was none other than the fabulous Catt Sadler from E! Entertainment. The day was filled with speakers, influencers, entrepreneurs, reality stars and fellow bloggers like: Lauren Bushnell, Claire Sulmers of Fashionbomb Daily, Lilliana Vasquez from the Today Show, Vanessa Simmons, Kattanita of With Love Love From Kat, Jacey Duprie of Damsel in Dior and many more. It was great to hear from each speaker as they shared their experiences, trials and success over the years. The event overall was eye-opening, inspiring, enlightening and empowering. I enjoyed speaking and connecting one on one with some of the guest speakers– Liliana Vasquez, Claire Sulmers even our host Catt Sadler. Their words of wisdom and advice were admirable and inspiring. I know that I’ll utilize these tools and apply them to my blog, my growing business and in life. I’m grateful and humbled for the experience and the invite. It was a true pleasure to meet fellow Ladybosses and connect with a few. I look forward to connecting and collaborating with many more of you soon! I love meeting and connecting with fellow bloggers, lady bosses and entrepreneurs. Please feel free to write to me or leave a comment below. If your in the city I would love to meet for lunch or even coffee, and discuss possible collaboration ideas.
I’d like to call this my fashionably chic look for the day.
Shop my look by clicking the links for each item.
Chloe and Isabel Necklace: Aventine Long Pendant Necklace
Marc Fisher: Kassie Perfed Loafers
Blank NYC: Denim Low Life Skinny Jeans
Saint Laurent: Dome-Studded Leather Moto Jacket
Equipment Shirt: Slim Signature Silk Ombre Python Print Shirt
Hermes: Hermes Clemence Evelyne III PM
Cartier: Love Ring in Pink Gold
I love hearing from you, leave me a comment below or send me a message.
As always, thanks for reading, following along and supporting my journey. I hope you enjoyed!
Anniesa Hasibuan’s show was simply captivating and moving. At the young age of 28, Hasibuan was the first Indonesian designer to showcase her collection at NYFW. This show has been heard all over the world, and with good reason. History was made in New York at NYFW, for she was the first Indonesian designer to present her collection, where the hijab made its debut on the catwalk. Featuring colorful headscarves in pink, silver and gold. The hijab was styled with eye catching jackets, gowns, colorful silk and patterned tunics, velvets and brocades adorned with pearls and sequins. All handcrafted and beaded with precise detail and care. Anniesa Hasibuan’s collection was inspired by her hometown Jakarta. The final outfit was the most gorgeous showstopper that left the audience stunned. It was truly inspiring to see a young designer like Anniesa Hasibuan present at NYFW. Not only inspiring but empowering, making you believe that dreams really do come true. The look of joy and happiness shined bright on her face has she walked the runway at the end of her show. The show concluded with a standing ovation, that gave me goosebumps.
I fell in love with the beaded jackets and gowns shown that evening. You can clearly see the time and effort that went into making each piece. How they were all handcrafted with the utmost love and care. Truly remarkable. I would totally rock one of those jackets any day!
[The hijab is a veil traditionally worn by Muslim women in the presence of adult males outside of their immediate family, which usually covers the head and chest. The term can further refer to any head, face, or body covering worn by Muslim women that conforms to a certain standard of modesty. Hijab can also be used to refer to the seclusion of women from men in the public sphere, or it may denote a metaphysical dimension, for example referring to “the veil which separates man or the world from God”. (Wikipedia)]
Most often the hijab is worn by muslim women to display modesty and privacy. Most women are often stereotyped as disempowered, and constricted when wearing the hijab. Although, many women today choose to wear it for personal reasons. The hijab is in fact seen as a feminist statement to many. The women of the muslim culture have been neglected in the fashion industry for quite some time. But thanks to designers like Anniesa Hasibuan–she made her mark which was well received by many in the fashion industry. At the end of the show, I along with fellow blogger and friend Ellese Launer of Rock Paper Glam had the pleasure of speaking with the designer. A lovely women, with such great talents and a heart of gold. We asked, ” How long did the beading take?” And she responded, ” Quite some time, all were hand beaded and crafted.” When you speak to her, you too, will see her grace, charm and passion for fashion.
I’ll concluded with a statement Anniesa Hasibuan made to CNN, “I am so proud and thankful for everyone on the team who helped me so this event could happen, and I am thankful to international and local media from Indonesia for exposing my show. I did not realize the result can be this amazing, and I am thrilled and humbled by the welcome reaction given.” (CNN)
Thank you Anniesa Hasibuan for inspiring and empowering many of us with your collection and making a huge impact on the world. Your designs are truly amazing and well respected.
If you saw the show, and if you caught my Snapchat story that evening, what were your thoughts? Comment below, I love hearing from you!
As always, thanks for reading, following along and supporting me in my journey. I hope you enjoyed reading and I hope this post inspired you just as much as it did me.
My New York look in full effect. It’s so basic, yet so chic all at the same time. For the daytime I like to feel comfy, and this is a great casual and chic look. For a more daytime casual feel, as I’ve done here, wear flats. For the night time, throw on a pair of heels to make this outfit sizzle for a night out on the town. My favorite heels to pair with this outfit: Jimmy Choo Kiki Suede & Fringe Heels. In addition to the heels, change up your lip color to be night time ready. My suggestion would be: a bold red lip or even a deep mave or brown lip color. My favorite Fall shade lipsticks are: Bobbi Brown’s lipstick in the Shade Cocoa and Tom Ford’ Lip Color Matte in shade Ruby Rush What I love about wearing all black, it’s a look that’s so effortless and stylish. An outfit so basic, you just need to accessorize it to take it to the next level. I’m a huge fan of accessories! With the right accessories, you can make your outfit POP! If you’re looking to take your accessories to the next level, and you’re looking for unique, stylish and chic jewelry, head on over to my boutique: www.chloeandisabel.com/boutique/emilydesouza.
Shop my look by clicking the links below
Blazer: Revolve Clothing
Top: Equipment ( Similar Top, I purchased my Equipment top last year)
Bag: Gucci (Old, Purchased back in 1998 at the Gucci Boutique, Atlantis, Paradise Island, Bahamas
Jeans: Frame Denim
Shoes: Chanel (Old, Purchased these back in 2010)
Sunglasses Quay Australia
Lipstick: Urban Decay
Necklace: Chloe and Isabel
Rings: Chloe and Isabel
All photos were taken by the lovely: Fay Photography @FayPhotos_NYC
The Shopstyle Social House was one event that I was SUPER excited about this season. I was thrilled to get invited to the Social House again and experience it all this NYFW SS17. I started my day with the Dan Liu show at the Skylight Clarkson Gallery. Then I headed uptown to the Glasshouses for the ShopStyle Social House event. This was one event I was looking forward to since I got the invitation. I was so happy and thrilled to experience and enjoy it all with my gal pal and fellow blogger friend Loren. She’s the writer and creator behind the blog: Enlightened By Bravery. If you aren’t following her yet, you should. She’s just a great women, with great style and an amazing personality. Such a beautiful soul she has, and I’m happy to have met her. Check her blog out: www.enlightenbybravery.com and her Instagram: @EnlightedByBravery.
This look was my favorite outfit I wore during NYFW. Probably not the best choice for that particular day though, because it felt like a sauna outside in early September. But hey, it’s all in the name of fashion. And let’s be honest, I’m a slave to FASHION. Rock it and own it, which is exactly what I did. What’s great about this dress is that it still can be worn and style for the Fall months. Can’t wait to style and rock the look again soon.
We enjoyed getting our hair done by the hairstylist there that day. Sipped on champagne and Rose, browsed the clothing racks to borrow some FAB pieces to rock during NYFW. Thanks to Shopstyle, Sole Society, The Outnet Iris and Ink and Sam Edelman, for keeping me looking stylish and fashionably chic all throughout NYFW. We were also gifted great cross body bags by Gigi New York which were personally monogrammed for us by the Gigi New York staff. It was great to meet old and new friends as well as connecting with all the vendors at the event.
Dress: Tularosa (You can find the dress on this website as well)
Oxford Lace up Brogues: Kurt Geiger
Sunglasses: Quay Australia
Velvet Choker Necklace: Chloe and Isabel
A special thanks to Shopstyle and @altamiranyc for the mini photoshoot. It was such a pleasure shooting with him. Thankful to have been photographed by someone so talented and amazing. Check him out on Instagram: @altamiranyc.
As always, thanks so much for reading, following along and support me in my journey.
Marissa Webb is one designer I love and admire. When I attended her show last season, I was simply amazed by her incredible work. I can definitely say the same for this season. She presented on Day 1 of NYFW on September 8th at the Skylight Clarkson Gallery. Marissa Webb is one designer who perfectly balances feminine and masculine elements into her designs. Her designs exude cool, sophisticated, chic, and effortless all at the same time. Her SS17 Collection featured a soft palette of neutrals with pops of burnt orange, chartreuse in delicate silks and subtle ruffle accents. One of my favorite looks from this collection was her take on a suit. A modern day version of a traditional suit, and the back detail was just to die for. Every piece was absolutely AMAZING! I definitely had my favorites from her Ready-to-Wear collection. I wanted every piece in my size for my closet. I loved how she paired a military inspired jacket with her soft, pretty, floral dress. And how she paired a silk floral top with leather pants, seemed fitting and oh so stylish!
(MY FAVORITES FROM THE COLLECTION)
When it comes to design, Marissa Webb doesn’t need to dig deep to find inspiration. She dresses what she knows best, and what speaks to her. Her inspiration comes from what’s around her, specifically ” The Modern New York woman,” as she stated backstage before the show. Although, her designs are inspired by the Modern New York woman, they aren’t the only ones who will fall in love with this collection.
What’s your favorite from the collection?
As always, thanks for reading, following, and supporting me in my journey. I hope you enjoyed my photos and recap
Motivational “Soul” Monday’s
I discovered SoulCycle at a time when I needed it the most. I had just gotten engaged and I was about to plan my version of “My Big Fat Filipino-Guyanese Wedding.” With wedding stress on my mind, work and other things happening at the time, I needed something that could help relieve me from everything going on. Running usually is my go to, source for exercise and the ultimate stress reliever. But I started to see my body plateau and I wasn’t seeing any results, my body had gotten used to my routine and daily workouts, and I too, started to get bored with it. I started to explore different options, even classes that would still give me a great workout, help me get fit and in shape for my wedding, but also fun and something that wasn’t tiresome or tedious. Let’s face it, we all have those moments where we don’t want to workout, but we all know we should. It only makes us better and in turn its great for our overall health.
Thus, began my obsession with SoulCycle. I was hearing the word Soul everywhere. It was the latest craze in the fitness world and heard all over New York City. All the celebrities were doing it, it was literally everywhere. I was hearing many different reviews about SoulCycle, but the only way I would ever really know what all the talk was about is if I would try it for myself. I’ve taken a spin class before, and I will be completely honest, I had my butt kicked. But when I walked into my first class SoulCycle class in the Tribeca, I will admit, I was intimidated. But, I was eager to see what Soul was all about. I was determined to get thru my first class. What I did notice is that everyone was so welcoming, it wasn’t just your normal spin class. It was a fun-filled, upbeat 45 minute class that worked all parts of your body. What makes SoulCycle different from your normal spin class, is that you work all elements of your body, while moving to the beat of the music. After I started to get the hang of it, I learned some new moves on the bike and was moving and grooving to the music. My intimidation soon passed when my instructor, Krista, reassured me and other newbies, we could go at our own pace. If we couldn’t get on the beat, not to worry, just as long as we listened to our bodies, have fun and follow along as best as we could. No judgements! You can just feel the energy in the room, it was contagious, I wanted more. I craved for more soul. After 45 minutes was up, I knew I was definitely coming back. While I still went on runs and to the gym, I began going to SoulCycle regularly. I started to see the changes in my body, mind, and soul. I felt stronger both mentally and physically. I felt more at ease and less stressed. I truly can say that SoulCycle has helped me become a better me. Not to mention, it was fun riding alongside the likes of : Tyra Banks, Bradley Cooper. and Kelly Ripa When I say everyone is joining SoulCycle, I mean EVERYONE! 🙂 So happy I found Soul cycle especially before my wedding.
What you learn in Soul isn’t just about the physical. It’s a mind, body, spirit experience. Soul cycle is more than just a spin class it allows you to find perspective, get centered, change your body and find your SOUL. If your looking for a class that’s fun, strength building both mentally and physically then SoulCycle is for you. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.
I’ve said this time and time again, every ride is different but the outcome is always the same, AMAZING! I love the feeling I get after each class. I feel empowered, refreshed, and ALIVE. No one can ever take what you’ve worked on and what your working towards away from you. You are in control, and you decide. SoulCycle, a brand, a community, a way of life. Get your Soul on today!
If you haven’t tried SoulCycle yet, I highly recommend it. You can always find me on the bike either in Tribeca or the West Village. Come ride with me! Let’s get our Soul on together.
My favorite move on the bike: TAP BACK!
Are you a renegade?
Find your tribe, your squad and keep them close. They’re hard to come by!
What is your favorite workout? I love hearing from you all, comment below or write to me.
As always, thanks for reading, subscribing, and following along on my journey!
All photos were taken by me and are owned by Emily Sotera, Social Fashionista Beauty
The sun’s out and the heat is back in NYC. So, you know what that means… It’s ROOFTOP SEASON. So grab your best gals and guys and hit the social scene. With the hot Summer nights upon us, check out the best and hottest rooftops in NYC enjoying the amazing views of the Big Apple while enjoying your favorite cocktail. Here’s my list for the top 10 Best and Hottest Rooftops in NYC to check out.
ZERZURA – Formally known as The Plunge at the Gansevoort Meatpacking. The lounge has since been transformed into this modern Saharian inspired chic and stylish rooftop venue located in the famous Meatpacking district. Offering light bites, cocktails, great music, stunning views of NYC, and an overall great time. Who wouldn’t want to join the party. If you haven’t checked out this ultra plush and luxe rooftop bar and lounge, you should. Grab your girls, take your out of town guest, or if your visiting the NYC area be sure to visit Zerzura. Enjoy the social scene, the spectacular views and you might even spot a celeb or two… So ladies get ready to paint the town red and gents dress your best, grab a drink and enjoy the day/night. Located at: 18 9th Avenue at W 13th Street
LOOPY DOOPY – Now this rooftop is one of my favorites. A seasonal rooftop bar and lounge, a great mix to a happy hour and dessert. A modern lounge offering lite fares, craft cocktails, with stunning views of the harbor and the Statue of Liberty. This hidden gem is located at the Conrad Hotel in Battery Park at: 102 North End Avenue. My fave part about this place is their alcohol infused ice pops a great touch to your cocktail during those hot, steamy NYC nights. Best nights to check this gem out: Friday, Saturday and Sunday. My fave is the Prosecco with their signature pops.
ST. CLOUD- This upscale and luxurious rooftop is one not to miss. I mean the name says it all. Located in the heart of Times Square, with stunning views, lush living walls of greenery and private spaces, this is the ultimate rooftop and place to hangout especially during the summer months. A great escape after work to enjoy a cocktail, small bites by Charlie Palmer, and if your into Cigars this would be the ideal spot for you to visit. Located at the Knickerbocker Hotel at: 6 Times Square.
LE BAIN- Also located in the Meatpacking District this seasonal rooftop is the perfect spot to visit after a long day at the office or even a weekend hangout. This penthouse discotheque takes over the entire top area of the Standard hotel, offering a plunge pool, creperie and stunning views of lower manhattan. If you’re ever in the Meatpacking district stop by, enjoy a cocktail, catch some sun, enjoy the views, take a dip or even take a bite out of a savory crepe.
230 FIFTH GARDEN ROOFTOP BAR AND LOUNGE – This has to be my all time favorite rooftop. This was the first rooftop bar that I discovered and went to 9 years ago when I first moved to NYC. And it’s remain a staple and favorite of mine. Known as the largest outdoor garden rooftop in all of NYC with an enclosed penthouse rooftop and stunning views of Midtown and the Empire State Building. If your in the midtown area or just looking for a place to take in stunning views of the city that are postcard and Instagram worthy, check out 230 Fifth, which is also the address for this hotspot.
PHD ROOFTOP – If your looking for the ultimate party head on over to the PHD Rooftop bar and lounge. With iconic panoramic views of the Manhattan Skyline, equipped with chandeliers, marble and a terrance, PHD Rooftop is the hottest party spot to visit this summer. Grab a bite, enjoy a cocktail and dance the night away at PHD Rooftop, this is one party you don’t want to miss. Located at the nightspot destination the Dream Hotel at: 355 W 16th St.
MR. PURPLE- This ultra sexy and posh rooftop is located at the Hotel Indigo in the Lower East Side. With stunning views of lower Manhattan and two opposing roof decks this hidden gem will be a sizzling spot this summer. I mean even the name sounds sexy. Go for brunch, enjoy afterwork cocktails, host a party there, whatever the situation maybe this is one hot spot you’ll want to check out. Located at: 180 Orchard St. 15th floor of Indigo hotel.
LA PISCINE- It’s not as flashy or luxe like most of the NYC Rooftops, but it’s the perfect place to sit back, relax while enjoying a few cocktails on a nice summer evening. Take a dip and enjoy an all day pass at their pool for as low as $40. Can’t beat that! Catch some sun and lounge on one of their daybeds and do try the food. No matter what you order you’ll sure be greeted and served by the friendliest staff you’ll ever meet. Located at the chic Chelsea Hotel Americano which overlooks the high line. Sit back, relax and enjoy! Great spot to get after work drinks, best nights: Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Located at: 518 W 27th st.
ROOF AT PARK SOUTH-This last rooftop bar is located in the Flatiron area. With stunning views of the Chrysler Building and the NYC Skyline. Offering superb cocktails and Mediterranean bites by the team of Boston O’ Ya’s. Great venue to have a birthday or just a fun night out, very trendy and hip. Best nights to go to Roof are: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Located at: 125 E 27th st.
Enjoy Rooftop season loves! No matter what rooftop you choose you’ll sure have an amazing time. Enjoy the beautiful weather and Happy Early Summer 2016 to you loves.
Which Rooftop bar would you go to? Which is your favorite rooftop bar in NYC?
What’s your favorite cocktail?
Don’t forget to follow me on:
Tweet me: @SocFashBeauty17
Follow me on IG: @SocialFashionistaBeauty
As always thanks for stopping by, reading and following along.
FASHION FRIDAY: TRUE LADY BOSSES WHO MADE THEIR DREAMS INTO REALITY EDITION PART I
Happy Friday Loves!!
For my Fashion Friday’s, todays edition will feature two fashion designers. This SFBFashionFriday Edition will be broken up into two parts. The first will feature my Q&A session with Fashion Designer Lavandya Coodly. Where she tells us all about her designs and how her passion for Fashion came about. To learn more continue reading!!
Ever wondered what it was like to design clothes and what goes into it? How to make a garment from start to finish? Continuing reading my Q&A session with Fashion Designer Lavanya Coodly.
Q. What is your name?
A. Lavanya Coodly, of Indian decent.
Q. Give us a little background of yourself, how did you get started in jewelry design?
A. My start in design came very early in life and inadvertently. Growing up in India at a time when we did not have mass production in clothing that could be purchased off the rack, designing one’s garment was not unusual. My aunts living in the USA would send me Sears and McCall’ catalogs. Outfits I saw in these catalogs were my original sources of inspiration. I began designing my clothing at the age of Seven or Eight.
Q. Did you have any formal training for clothing design? How did you come to realize your talents?
A. I have had a lot of formal schooling but none in garment design! To that extent, I am self-taught, learning through experimental trial and error. With the help of my talented team members. The brand aesthetic and design ideas are my own.
Q. What lead you into the direction of designing?
A. I have always been interested in textiles, weaves, colors, prints and personal presentation ever since I can remember. I could never get tired of being engaged in any of these. After spending many years in bio-medical research, I wanted to work in a different area. Designing clothes was a natural second career choice because firstly, it’s my passion, my hobby. Secondly, I felt that I had a point of view which could be expressed and thirdly, I would be addressing a void in the market.
Q. Where does your inspiration come from when designing your pieces?
A. Inspiration comes from many sources- travel, walks on the beach, music, films, engaging with nature and the world around me. I am particularly drawn to fabrics places that I love or spent my childhood. I welcome the challenge of using what is available to create a look. After all, designing should solve a problem and a good designer must be able to create something unique from unexpected findings.
Q. What is your process when you design your piece? What are things you incorporate or don’t?
A. I use natural fabrics as much as possible. Handwoven silks, cottons and wools are my favorite mediums. Our cotton prints are hand blocked by skilled artist using non-toxic, environmentally friendly dyes. Our embroideries are also hand executed by skilled workers. Each design begins with a sketch that is worked on until the idea become coherent and the design flows smoothly, from my perspective. I am open to incorporating most ideas EXCEPT anything that would make the garment uncomfortable to wear or would knowingly harm those that lack a voice in our society-environment, child, the poor or animals.
Q. What were your first design pieces that you created? And how has your brand evolved over the years?
A. My very first piece was a dress created from imported blue lace when I was 7 or 8. Professionally, I began with making embroidered silk tunics. Since then, we have incorporated pants dresses, evening gowns, jackets, skirts, night wear, and bridal gowns. I am also pleased to introduce comfortable, multi-functional pants for women who work out of home and need to rush out for quick errands.
Q. Who do you envision wearing your work/designs? Do you think about this when your designing a piece?
A. I think my designs would connect with urban woman who are bohemian at heart. They dress to please themselves. I am attracted to soft and flowing feminine silhouettes as much as more defined constructions. What I design depends on the fabric and materials in front of me. A soft watercolor print would result in a feminine silhouette with gathers and soft ruffles whereas a heavy ikat cotton weave would most probably end up as a pair of shorts. We have also begun designing bridal gowns, menswear and clothing for children. My brand is slowing but surely expanding.
Q. What are some new designs you’re working on? What do you envision for the future?
A. I have been recently given the opportunity to work with a talented and visible Hollywood actress. We will begin creating several looks for her based on events, as well as her style and color preferences. I am also developing my Spring and Summer 2017 collection for Women, Men, and children incorporating some new concepts. I plan to introduce some new ideas in Bridal gowns as well. I would like the brand to grow in all these areas. I strongly feel that designing should be in step with societal and lifestyle changes.
Q. How did you go about creating your business plan and what was your starting investment?
A. I started with an investment of less than $1000 dollars because testing I was testing the waters. The business plan evolved out the reaction from customers and my own desire to address a void in the market for range of stylish but comfortable and well- made clothing that would take you from the moment you begin your day and up until you fall asleep. We don’t want to overproduce and be wasteful.
Q. What’s a typical day in your life at your office?
A. I wake early and begin with discussing updates of work received from my overseas team. We go back and forth exchanging images and messages until it’s time to get my son ready for school. After I drop him off, I get dressed myself and continue my work, whatever that needs to be done. This includes: packing, shipping, inventory updates, managing orders, sketching, planning photoshoots, interviews and writing content for my website or to fulfill requests from other content writers.
To purchase and see more of Lavanya Coodly’s designs check out her website:www.lavanyacoodly.com.
How amazing is Lavanya Coodly, and what a beautiful name too. With her love for fashion at a young age and beginning her own business and fashion line having no formal training is true talent. Her story and passion has definitely inspired me and I hope it inspires and motivates you to create the life you want and to build your dreams and make them a reality.
A true inspiration and Ladyboss. Can’t wait to see Lavanya’s newest collection coming soon!
And to all my fellow lady boss’s — live life with passion and live your best life possible. Have fun, work hard, stay motivated, determined, and good luck! Stay tuned!
Thank you Lavanya Coodly for partnering and collaborating with me on this post. All thoughts outside of Q&A answers are my own.
Ever wanted to pick the brain of a fashion designer and see just where all their inspiration comes from? Ever wanted to learn a designers aesthetic and see how they create their designs from start to finish?
Continue reading and learn more about Fashion accessories designer: Maria Cardelli.
Q. Give us a little background of yourself, how did you get started in design?
A. I have been designing my entire life. I started very young, and used to draw all over my school books even during school lessons. I began painting at around age 10, and spent all my pocket money on new pencils, watercolours and paints. I still remember when I found my first set of watercolour pencils in the shop. I was so excited! As a teenager, I used to spend evenings and late nights working on oil paintings. Since at the time we didn’t have the internet, I had to teach myself and just figure things out. An artist friend of my dad lent him a book on basic painting techniques, how to prepare your own mix of gesso, how to stretch a canvas, etc., which I learned from, as well as from my own mistakes. At that time, my works were mostly figurative, and sometimes a friend would pose for me.
Q. What lead you into the direction of designing Clothing?
A. At a certain point I had to make a decision whether to go into fine art, architecture or fashion design. Since I really enjoyed designing my own clothing, which my aunt Matilde was making for me, I opted for fashion design and joined the Accademia di Moda e Costume in Rome. After a couple of years, eager to get some hands on experience, I began looking for freelance work with companies all over Italy. A friend of mine mentioned someone she knew in NYC who was designing children shoes, and recommended that I stop there on my way to California, where I was headed. I did. I ended up working at BBC international for 7 years, designing children’s shoes for very diverse clients.
Q. Where does your inspiration come from when designing your pieces?
A. I’m mostly inspired by my own past designs. I dig into my pile of sketches and things that I drew but hadn’t had a chance to produce and I rework them, often for hours or even days, until I come up with something that I am happy with. I may take a piece from one of my bags and make it into a strap for a shoe, or sometimes get an idea while at night when I am trying to sleep. I always keep a sketch pad near the bed for those moments of inspiration. Other times I get inspired from a new leather treatment I find, or a fun fabric I see, and I may design a bag or a shoe just to use them.
Q. What is your design process? What types of things do you or don’t you incorporate?
A. I plan the categories I want to cover in the handbags, or the heel heights I want represented if I am working on the footwear, and then I start drawing ideas. I may draw numerous rough sketches in a little book I keep around, then I choose the ideas I like the most and develop only these. Since my brand is a small company, I cannot make a very large collection, so I do a preselection at an early stage. I then carry ideas from the footwear into the hand bags or vice versa, so that they can complement each other. Once I am happy with my designs I start with the prototyping process.
Q. Do you envision the wearer when you’re designing your pieces? Who do you envision?
A. I mostly design things that I would like to wear myself. I don’t have many opportunities to wear glamorous shoes myself, so when designing footwear I imagine the wearer at a special event, all evening, and I try to make them beautiful and functional. (For example, I can sometimes add platforms in the front of the shoe so that the heel does not feel as high as it looks.) When designing the bags, I like making them beautiful and practical as well, with useful inside pockets, removable shoulder straps or even bags that can be used 3 ways, like a handbag, shoulder bag and also backpack (like my Back-Up bag). All of my bags have the modern working woman in mind, and are large enough to fit a laptop and other gadgets, so that she can always travel and work in great style.
Q. What are some new designs you’re working on? What do you envision for the future?
A. I am currently working on the spring-summer collection for 2017. Lots of gorgeous colours, simple, sophisticated and clean lines, and some fun prints.
Q. How did you come to realize your talents? Did youhave any formal training for jewelry design and or clothing design?
A. My true love is to create more luxurious products, ones allowing for more creativity. And, I always wanted to go back and produce things in Italy, and to one day be able to create something more special and unique as a tribute of sorts to Italian craftsmanship. I took part in numerous art exhibitions around Europe for a few years. Many people commented on my colourful paintings in a way that made me think that I could probably have them printed on silk and make scarves, or ‘wearable art.” So, in 2013 I started doing that. After that I added a collection of handbags and now a small collection of women’s footwear for winter 2016-17. Everything I design is made in Italy.
Q. What were your first designs that you created? And how has your brand evolved over the years?
A. To be honest, I’ve been doing this for so long I can’t remember my first design. But come to think of it, it might have been some kind of clothing. And as far as how my designs have evolved, I think they probably evolved with what i’ve included in my designs and I attribute that to what I have learned through the years. When I started, for example, I used to design only very elegant footwear with leather soles and artsy heels. However, after working with factories in many parts of the world and designing many different types of footwear, from wooden clogs to athletics and dress, I incorporate that knowledge into my designs and I can mix and match styles as I please, for example incorporating some typically athletic feature into the more elegant styles, and I can have more fun in the process.
Q. How did you go about creating your business plan and what was your starting investment?
A. I had gained some experience already while working for others, but did additional research before creating my own company, especially since I didn’t know the rules in The Netherlands. (Where my husband and I relocated.) My husband has been my main supporter of course. And, he had been telling me for years that I should do my own collection. So he helped me by financing most of it. The rest came from cashing out my pension plan.
Q. What is a typical day in your life and at your office?
A. In the morning I take care of my 2 children. I get them ready for school and when they are off, I work until I have to pick them up at 3:30. Once they are in bed for the night, I pick up my work again. Fortunately, I work on my own and, without many distractions, I can be as productive as possible. And, with all the communication tools we have these days like Skype and video calls, I can talk to the factories regularly and make many corrections to the products without leaving my desk. Sometimes traveling is still necessary, especially at the prototype stage, but thankfully, Italy is not far from The Netherlands.
A true world class designer Maria is, and her accessories are to DIE FOR!! A fashionista, multi-tasker, designer and fellow lady boss, Maria Cardelli is one woman to watch out for she’s taking the Fashion world by storm. Her designs are ones you’ll want to own and add to your wardrobe. I don’t know about you but I absolutely LOVE her designers. I want one of everything and I know you will too. To shop and learn more visit her website: www.mariacardellifashion.com.
Go and check out her website you WON’T be disappointed!!
Thanks to Maria Cardelli for collaborating with me on this post. All thoughts are my own.
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