I’m a small-town girl with a big city attitude.  I’m a rare breed who gets to claim being a native Austinite, having been born here; but grew up in a small, rural community in northeast Texas – 4th generation.  I learned early on the value of relationships. In a town of just under 6,000, you could not afford to make enemies; and the friends you had were friends for life.  I believe this laid the groundwork for any success I have seen in my career – whether at the State Capitol, or in the nonprofit world, and now in launching this blog and my own consulting firm.  At the root, it was always about people.  And it still is.  My childhood dream was to move to New York and work for a fashion magazine.  From the get-go, I saw fashion as beauty to be appreciated, curated, and convey a message.  I studied communications in college and tripped and fell into politics.  I woke up 15 years later and found myself a new mom and in search of a new career.  Enter the arts and my love for servant leadership in the nonprofit world.  Community service and civic engagement is hard-wired in my DNA, modeled by parents who were community minded and civically engaged.  Now, as head of my own nonprofit and association management firm, I get to combine issues and projects that feed my soul, with my communications and marketing experience, and expertise in fundraising, events, and development.  I’m excited to work alongside one of my best friends and smartest people I know, to launch this passion project and share our love and lives with you in a fashionating way.  We hope you are inspired!

Coffee or tea?
Green tea – first thing every morning… but I’ve developed a wicked mid-morning latte habit too

Dog or cat?
Cat.  No question

Morning person or night person?

Book or movie?
Movie.  I fall asleep when I sit down to read. I really want to be a book person though!  Thankfully I’ve discovered Audible, so I listen while I walk now.  However, my shelves are well-stocked with real books because I have high hopes.

Heel or flat?
Heels – they put everything in the right place.  And when not in heels, gold Birkenstocks or Adidas thanks to my plantar fasciitis from too many years of heels

Spring or fall?
Fall. But we don’t really get one in Texas

Beach or mountains?
Mountains, though I love the rocky beaches of nor-Cal

Favorite city?
New York hands down.

Favorite wine/favorite cocktail

Favorite travel destination
Carmel, CA; Taos, NM; Hudson River Valley, NY – these are my happy places

Favorite gift
Coffee table books – art, décor, design, fashion.  Or fresh flowers

Favorite fashion book or movie
Funny Face; Pretty in Pink; The Thomas Crowne Affair (Renee Russo’s wardrobe was to die for); and I know it’s trite but both SATC films – the fashion was the main character.

Fashion icon(s)
DVF, Katharine Hepburn, Diana Ross, Talitha Getty, SJP, Lauren Hutton

Favorite flower

Favorite comfort food
Anything with cheese

Favorite fragrance
Geranium, fresh cut grass, good food

Favorite indulgence
Eyelash extensions – They changed my life. Killer shoes.  Car washes.  Travel.

Favorite feel good song
A little less conversation by Elvis

Trend I wish would disappear forever
Velour jogging suits

I collect…..
Rocks and minerals; purses and shoes.  Art books.  Art – I try to buy a piece on every trip. Experiences – carpe diem. I want to collect Hermes scarves #lifegoals

On weekends I……
Cook, go adventuring with my son and spend time with my love just being still

Describe your home/interior style
Maximalist… eclectic mix of collected things from life travels.  Lots of layers, texture and colors.

Why I buy on the secondary market
Trite, but one man’s trash is another’s treasure…. There’s still a lot of life left to love in a quality designer item. Many of these items are icons and never go out of style.

Dream find/What I am lusting after
Birken bag; anything by Lanvin

The one that got away:
YSL green wool felt suit I tried on during my first trip to Paris in 1999…. I couldn’t pull the trigger on it new.  I’ve just recently found the jacket on ebay and it’s now hanging in my closet!

Favorite designers, brands, stores:
High end – Lanvin, Helmut Lang, Gucci, Etro
High street – JCrew, Banana Republic, Nordstrom, Zara, Loft
In between – Tibi, Tori Burch, Vince, DVF

Closet staples
White jeans, lots of blazers, leopard print shoes, gold accessories, statement jewelry, white button up shirts, striped tees and hats.

Please describe your style/write a personal style statement
My look is bold but classic, with a whimsical touch – whether through pattern on pattern or statement accessories.  I love big sunglasses, big handbags, and big jewelry – they make your butt look smaller!  Clean, classic, tailored lines in fun fabrics make up my wardrobe; but I also love monochromatic neutrals and my go-to is “bright” beige.  I’ve lost count of how many oatmeal colored sweaters I have – I buy one every fall.  And I have a surplus of leopard shoes – they go with everything.

Describe Ellen’s style:
Edgy with a feminine flair. Ellen rocks ruffles and florals and pairs them with a moto boot and denim jacket.  She has a distinct point of view and doesn’t shy away from it, putting trends in place and pairing them with vintage treasures and killer shoes.  Ellen wears the clothes – they don’t wear her.