Boss Ladies: Kaylyn Minix & Michelle Trincia

Boss Lady is a series that shares personal insights from creative women in business. This week we chat with Kaylyn Minix and Michelle Trincia, co-founders of bloom daily planners, a Newark, Delaware based company with chic planners for women of all ages. Kaylyn and Michelle share with us what it means to empower women to live positive and organized lifestyles along with advice for future #bossladies.

bloom planners | social stylate

1.Tell us a bit about yourself and the company.
We were both born and raised in Delaware and have been planner lovers and list makers our whole lives. We both attended the University of Delaware where we met, interning at our future company! bloom creates daily planners and a variety of other organizational that inspire and empower women to live a positive, organized lifestyle. Our goal is to help our customers lead a more healthy, fulfilling life and be the best versions of themselves! We are so grateful for the platform that we have created, our amazing team and useful products but most importantly our bloom girls who inspire us every day!

More from Kaylyn: My fiancé and I are new home owners and love working on and decorating our home. We are currently planning our dream wedding in Mexico and Honeymoon in Europe! I love spending time with my loved ones most. Traveling, fashion, shopping, my exercise classes, cheat meals, crossing things off my to do lists and filling up my planner with all of these wonderful activities!

More from Michelle: I am recently married and live with my husband and a giant golden retriever. I love traveling (we just got back from our honeymoon to Paris/Amsterdam/Italy!), new music, new food, new experiences! I am a busy body who is, in addition to bloom, have too many side projects including three Etsy shops and a dogsitting business! I am always on the go and thinking of new things to do/try/create. I love listening to interesting podcasts, reading books by inspiring business owners, and I also try and relax sometimes with family and friends.

2.Where did the name “bloom” come from?
We felt bloom was the perfect metaphor for our brand! Our products are designed to inspire and empower women Dzbloomdz into the best version of themselves. Blooming is a continual process and a lifelong journey. Our logo is a daisy which is a symbol of purity and new beginnings. We believe each year, each day, each moment is an opportunity to start fresh and strive to be better. The name bloom also captures the brightness and colorfulness of our brand and patterns, and it makes for a lot of fun flower metaphors. Wins all around!

3.What does a typical day at the office look like?
Every day is different! There is always something fun and exciting going on! A new deadline, a product upload, a new shipment or event to cover. We are always working on new designs and product ideas, attending trade shows, and making new relationships to help bloom continually ‘branch out’! Our office is very collaborative and open concept, so we’re constantly generating new ideas (designs, products, social media campaigns, etc.) Something really unique about our company is we are able to take an idea from conception to delivery to the public. We’re always brainstorming new product ideas, new designs, and new layouts then working together to bring them into existence. We always say it’s like Christmas when we get our new samples. To then see our customers be helped by these products we created is the most rewarding thing in the world. Our products are truly our babies!

4.What is your best source of inspiration for your designs?
Following the trends that we see in the fashion world, stationery market, Pinterest, travel, really anything that inspires us! We also pull most of our inspiration for new patterns and products from our #bloomgirl community. We take their requests and feedback very seriously and are always tweaking current products and even making new ones to fit their needs! We recently started a cover contest where we literally let our users design their own covers and then let the community vote. The winner gets their design printed, a cash prize, and planners for life! We love incorporating our users into our day to day decisions because we wouldn’t exist without them!

5.What would you consider your best tool for marketing?
Social Media! Twitter has been an amazing tool to create more personal conversations with our bloom girls. We try to connect with girls who love to be organized or need a little inspiration in their lives. It makes our day to brighten someone else’s. We also rely on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest! The best part of our day is interacting with our bloom girls!

6.If you could do a collaboration for a line of planners with anyone, who would it be and why?
Kaylyn: I would have to say Mary Kay! I am actually a Mary Kay rep and see how closely bloom and Mary Kay’s values align. We both focus on inspiring women to be organized, follow their dreams and achieve their goals. I think we could have a great line together to empower women across the world tobe their own girl bosses!

Michelle: I would love to work with TheSkimm or Sophia Amoroso on a custom #GIRLBOSS planner! We love that book and it would be so great to incorporate those concepts into a yearly planner!

7.What is one of the biggest challenges you face as a business owner and how do you overcome that?
Juggling everything in our personal and professional lives is certainly a challenge. It inspires us that bloom creates products to help make a hectic, (but exciting!) life more manageable. Everyone wants to appear that they have it all together but that is not always the case. We have some pretty intense work, travel and social schedules but we ultimately thrive off of this. We know what to expect, we make the most of it, remain grateful for these opportunities and get it done! The environment we have created at bloom has helped us keep a positive and grateful mindset to accomplish this and live a more fulfilling life. This is our goal for women around the world.

8.Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years?
bloom is growing so quickly. The sky is limit! We are adding more products and employees by the day so we see major growth in all of our current sales channels, new sales channels, new distribution relationships, nationally and internationally, and a much larger team to help us accomplish this!

9.What is some advice that you could give to someone trying to start their own business?
Follow your dreams and never give up! We love the quote “Don’t stop until you’re proud.” Remain focused, proactive, and organized and it will happen.

Set goals, stay accountable, read books, listen to podcasts, always try to expand upon your knowledge. Find a creative outlet to inspire you and help relieve any stress. Keep a healthy professional and personal balance so you don’t get burnt out.

Trust the process. We have had many ups and downs but things always seem to happen for a reason, and for the best!

10. Who is a #BossLady that you look up to and why?
We love Sophia Amoruso and the founders of the The Skimm, Danielle Weisberg and Carly Zakin. They have all paved their way from the ground up and we can really appreciate their stories. With passion and determination anyone can be a #GirlBoss!

Kaylyn’s Moodboard

Kaylyn Minix & Michelle Trincia Boss Lady | social stylate

Michelle’s moodboard

Kaylyn Minix & Michelle Trincia boss lady | social stylate

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Boss Lady: Natalie Holst

Boss Lady is a series that shares personal insights from creative women in business. This week we chat with Natalie Holst, founder and creative director for the New York based jewelry line Holst + Lee. Natalie shares with us the uniqueness of her latest collection, her inspiration for creativity and her advice for those wanting to thrive as an entrepreneur.  

natalie profile

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your career.
Well, I’m originally from the South and moved to NY 14 years ago. I worked in Fashion for many years (Marc Jacobs and Proenza Schouler to name a few) and I was a maitre’d at some of NY’s trendiest restaurants. I used to have to get dressed up every night for work and I started making statement jewelry to accent my outfits. People responded and would try to buy things right off my neck and HOLST + LEE was born.

2. What prompted you to start your own jewelry line?
The response from people was what really got the ball rolling but Mara Hoffman gave me my first shot on the runway, styled with her collection. That’s when I went full steam ahead with the line and started selling in stores.

3. Tell us about your latest collection. Is there a story behind it?
Yes! I’m obsessed with my current collection because it really speaks to my soul. I wanted to hark back to the defining things that make HOLST + LEE what it really is. The current collection is called Color World and it is a celebration of vibrancy and strength. I was pregnant when I was designing it and I think it has a strong sense of optimism and passion. Something maybe we all need in these tumultuous times.

4. Describe a typical work day.
Well, I am a new Mom with a 6 month old so days have certainly changed in the recent months! I recently moved my studio into the bottom floor of my Brooklyn home. It’s such a great thing to be able to work out of my house. My day starts around 9 AM and the first part of the day is logistics (emails, bills, organizing…you know the fun stuff :)) Then my assistants get in around 11 and we go from there. They work on making orders and I work on designing or doing more business related things. My son hangs in the office and plays while we work and takes naps in between. Thank God for naps :).

5. What is the best part about being your own boss? The worst part?
I think the best part of being your own boss is to know that you get to do the thing that you love. It’s such a treat to be able to be creative everyday. I think if I didn’t have that I would go a little crazy. I’ve been making things since as far back as I can remember. It really fills my soul. I also love that I can have a flexible schedule.
I think probably the worst part is the stress of staying on top of everything. There are a lot of nights where I wake up in the middle of the night and I’m making lists in my head about what has to be accomplished and by when. I mean I think all women do that actually but it’s different when you’re itemizing your taxes in your sleep.

Natalie Holst

6. What is your brand’s most successful form of marketing?
I would definitely say Social Media and word of mouth. Social Media has really changed the whole game. It’s a great thing to be able to communicate to the world through an app and to tell visual stories.

7. Who would you love to see wearing your jewelry?
I’ve had the privilege of seeing some really amazing women wear my jewelry. Some highlights were Solange Knowles, Vanessa Hudgens, and Mary J. Blige to name a few. I would love to see anyone who is confident and feels amazing in my jewelry, but while I’m dreaming I’ll go with Iris Apfel!!!

8. What inspires you and fuels your creativity?
Oh wow, so many things. I draw inspiration from art, fashion, travel, and popular culture to name a few. I’ve always got my eyes open looking for inspiration.I studied Art and Art History in College and I’m still a painter (when I have the time) and I feel like my jewelry speaks to the painter in me with the use of color and unexpected materials.

9. Who is a Boss Lady that you admire and why?
I think I admire any woman who is out there being a Boss. Women are so important. I became a mom this year like I said and that experience really made me realize that awesome power women have. You definitely don’t have to have a child to obtain that, but it was very empowering to see exactly what a woman is capable of. I think women who are able to “give birth” to their dreams and seek out a way to run a business speaks to that awe inspiring power. If we’re talking about specifics though I’m gonna throw it back to my girl Iris Apfel. She has lived such an amazing life and was able to curate such a cool and confident existence. And to be hitting her stride in her 90’s is just unbelievable.

10. What advice do you have for anyone wanted to go from employee to entrepreneur?​
I think the best advice I ever got was, “get as much advice as possible from everywhere.”  It’s then up to you to take what you’ve learned and apply it or don’t apply it. I ask questions constantly when I know someone has information to offer. Also, I would say to anyone starting a business, never give up. It’s going to be hard, it’s going to take everything you have. Sometimes it will be tough, sometimes it will be great. it is not linear. It is a struggle. But if you want it enough, you have to work hard to achieve it.

Natalie Holst

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Boss Lady: Samantha Hahn

Boss Lady is a series that shares personal insights from creative women in business. This week we chat with Samantha Hahn, a New York-based illustrator, author and the creative director for an amazing new book box subscription company called quarterlane. Samantha takes us through the daily hustle of playing many roles in this industry and shares with us her passion for success. 

Samantha Hahn
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your career. 
I’m a Brooklyn based creative director, illustrator and author. I work with a range of clients such as: quarterlane, the Paris Review, Vogue Japan, Lela Rose, Marie Claire, Chronicle Books and Apartment Therapy.

2. What is a typical work day like for you?
It really varies. I often have a couple of illustration projects going at once and I’m creative director at quarterlane so I’m often sending off interview questions to authors, planning lifestyle photoshoots or having plotting and planning sessions with founder Elizabeth Lane about our upcoming season.

3.  Can you explain your involvement with quarterlane books and how you got involved? 
I came on shortly before the launch to do some illustrations. I wound up really connecting with Elizabeth the founder, who is the amazing book curator as well. I wound up advising on the site and brand visuals and staying on as creative director along with Courtney Peterson. I spearheaded the launch of an editorial sister site called The Edit where we conduct author interviews, lifestyle features, book reviews and where we simply celebrate our love of reading and reading culture. It’s honestly the most fun project I’ve had in a long time. I really love collaborating with Elizabeth and being part of such a brilliant brand as it rapidly grows. My role has become nebulous. It’s not just simply visuals. If I have an idea I pitch it. We have a really natural, humanistic and organic way of working together which I love.

Samantha Hahn- quarterlanebooks
4. Out of all of the hats you wear, whether it be illustrating, publishing, writing, etc. what is your favorite role? 
That’s a hard question and it varies from day to day depending on what I’m working on. Sometimes at the start of fashion week I’m so excited to illustrate shows but by the end I want to use a different part of my brain, so working on quarterlane feels like heaven. Then a publisher will reach out with an amazing project to create a set of notecards for The Smithsonian of famous gems and I’m all excited to put my brush to the paper again. I love coming up with concepts for lookbooks and have recently had the pleasure of creative directing some for people whose work I’ve long admired. My main passion is collaborating with people and companies I admire. At the end of the day, that’s what I thrive on.

5.  What social media platform has been your biggest form of success for marketing yourself and quarterlane books? 
For myself I would say Instagram. I don’t have a ton of followers but my quality of followers is good. A lot of editors and art directors and brands I work with follow me there so it’s a nice way to showcase what I’m working on or what’s come to fruition. I run quarterlane’s Pinterest which is still pretty new but is growing all the time.  I love curating images that speak to the visual mood and tone of quarterlane. The Edit is my main focus though. There’s an endlessly fascinating stream of people and books to showcase and it’s just thrilling.

6. When it comes to building a brand, what is an important lesson that you have learned? 
I think having a clear vision of who you are speaking to is essential. It can be a group of people but picture the brand as a lecture that you are sending a flyer out about and see who would file into the auditorium to listen. That’s your audience.

Samantha Hahn

7. Your illustrations are beautiful and full of variety, is there a specific subject that you enjoy drawing the most?
I love painting the female form. I do this mainly through fashion illustration. It’s just an opportunity to celebrate movement, gesture, texture and color.

8. Are you currently working on any of your own books at the moment to publish? 
Gosh no! I did 2 and that’s enough for me at least for the foreseeable future. Doing a book takes tremendous bandwidth and emotional, intellectual and creative energy. As aforementioned I thrive on collaborating and doing a variety of projects and I feel being the sole author of a book just sucks too much out of me and isn’t the platform I’m most excited about. I’m happy to do other people’s book covers though and who knows, maybe someday I will get an idea that I just can’t imagine not publishing. It could happen but not for a couple of years at at least. I’m still recovering from my last book.

9. Who is a Boss Lady that inspires you?
Christene Barberich, global EIC of Refinery 29.

Behind the Boss Lady: Samantha Hahn’s Mood Board
Samantha Hahn

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A Day In The Life Of Our Graphic Designer: Julia Johnson

Here is my typical day working as an artist and freelance graphic designer in Philadelphia!

7:30AM:
Wake up! I’m not much of a night owl and I love the feeling of being up early. I try for 7am most of the time but getting out of bed is pretty tough. If it’s a workout day then I’m usually doing that first thing in the morning as well.

8:00-8:30am:
First thing’s first: coffee! Off to La Colombe for coffee or a draft latte (and maybe a scone). I’m not too great at making coffee myself, so I’m really happy to live just a few blocks from their Fishtown location! I’ll pick that up and bring it home to have with breakfast.

A Day In The Life As A Graphic Designer | Social Stylate

9:30am:
After the coffee’s kicked in I’ll crack open my laptop to check e-mails and line up projects that I’ll be working on today. As a freelancer, my schedule fluctuates depending on the number of live projects I have. After that I’ll run through my morning routine and get ready to run errands.

A Day In The Life As A Graphic Designer | Social Stylate

10:00am-1:00pm-ish:
Time to head out! I like to get out of the house early in the day. My main stops are Blick in Center City Philly, or Artist & Craftsman Supply shop in Old City where I’ll pick up paper to use for sculpture. I’m also always on the hunt for cool frames or odds and ends as well. Resource Exchange is my favorite place for that. If I’m in need of inspiration I’ll take a walk around the neighborhoods around Fishtown, Northern Liberties, and Old City on my way into Center City. I love long walks and there are super cool facades and murals and even sculptures in unexpected places.

A Day In The Life As A Graphic Designer | Social Stylate

1:00pm-2:00pm-ish:
Lunchtime! After the day’s errands, I’ll be either making something at home or I’ll venture out to a spot like Good Spoon for some awesome soup and a sandwich.

A Day In The Life As A Graphic Designer | Social Stylate

2:00pm-6:00pm:
After I’ve been out and about I’m ready to settle down and work on the day’s projects, whether it’s graphic design or paper flowers. I have a little ritual of lighting a candle when I hunker down to get work done, though there will probably be a break for a snack or teatime. I’m currently working on a big paper flower piece so that means a lot of cutting and folding. I’ll alternate between that and computer-based graphics to give my hands a break.

A Day In The Life As A Graphic Designer | Social Stylate

6:00pm-7:00pm:
Either making dinner at home or heading out for dinner! My boyfriend and I like to cook together and it’s a good time to connect and chat about our days with a beer or glass of wine (or two) in hand.

7:00pm-11:00pm:
After dinner I’ll pick back up with any work that needs to be done for the day. By now I’ll realize that I’ve put off doing any chores around the house and will scramble around getting those done. Bedtime typically falls around 11pm-midnight.

A Day In The Life As A Graphic Designer | Social Stylate

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