Tell us a little about yourself — how did you get to where you are today?
I'm a stylist, personal shopper, fashion expert and Refinery29 contributor. Seems I have my hand in a ton of different things, but I love it that way! Never a dull moment! My career has never really been mapped out, I'd say. Rather, I've concentrated on doing things that inspire me, work hard and stay humble. I don't think you can go wrong with that formula as opportunities have seemed to present themselves that way.
What do you love most about what you do?
Helping the fashion challenged realize what silhouettes, colors, and styles that work for them. It's always thrilling and invigorating to match somebody's outside appearance with their inside beauty. It's like a light goes off and boom! Magic (and giddiness!)
How do you describe your style?
Evolving but at the moment, I'm staying true to my ethnic roots and forever embracing standout prints, colors and textures...the more interesting, the better. I love strong pieces and seem to favor them over neutrals or light hues. I also love a clean, almost sporty look. A minimal, editor-esque style works for me. Fitted sheath dresses, sharp trousers and high heels? I'm in!
Who are your style icons?
I draw inspiration from several icons of the past like Frida Kahlo, Jimi Hendrix and '70s Cher. For modern day I'd say Chloe Sevigny for her originality, Caroline Issa for her impeccable pairings, Giovanna Battaglia for her unique point of view and Natalie Joos for her creativity.
From where do you draw inspiration for your style?
Everywhere! Magazines, pins from Pinterest, street style blogs, friends. I love to be inspired and am constantly keeping my eyes open to be so.
Do you have a favorite pieces of clothing?
Yes. They are all vintage! A classic '70s YSL black blazer my mother gave me, a Bill Tice maxi dress from the '70s and my entire Haori Kimono collection.
Where do you like to shop?
Online: Asos, Zara, Ebay, Etsy, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom.
I also like to treasure hunt at antique shops, thrift shops and flea markets. Seriously, it's an addiction.
The Shoptiques motto is Be Yourself, Be Different. What’s one thing that truly makes you unique?
I'm me! It's taken me a while to get to where I am at but I feel my style, aesthetic and tastes are completely catered to what moves me. I've been able to view so many angles in the fashion industry and take what I like out of it so I think (and hope) it's an original mix solely based on my eye.
What challenges have you faced so far in your business and how have you overcome them?
Criticism or cattiness from other people. I usually ignore it and move towards people with positive and uplifting attitudes. You live life once and like they say, "birds of a feather flock together," so choose wisely who you surround yourself with.
What advice would you give to someone who has a dream or talent they want to pursue?
Humble yourself, aim to learn daily and execute a work ethic that stands out. Pay attention to the details and go above and beyond, always.
What’s one thing people don’t know about you that they’d be surprised to find out?
I've played soccer my whole life. I went to college on a full ride scholarship and played for the Olympic Development Program. Go figure, my husband is a soccer player, too. :) We understand each other!
60 Second Spotlight
Ten years from now, where would you like to be?
I want to have another child and have a wildly successful marriage. God and family are first for me. I've found with those two in place, life unfolds just the way it should and it's a journey that has been amazing so far so I'll just have to wait and see what's to come!
What’s the one item that's always in your bag?
My phone. It's my lifeline.
Dark chocolate or milk chocolate?
Dark, fo shizzle.
Favorite day of the week?
Plaid, polka dots or floral prints?
Digital or Painterly Florals, please.
Are you a handbag girl or shoe girl?
What? I thought the two coexisted perfectly? They do in my world!
If you could meet one person, who would it be?
I'm going grandiose on this question. GOD. I like being surrounded by love. :)
Who are the most important people in your life right now?
My entire family! The extended family is too large to list but they're my peeps and I'd do anything for them!