all images via lauren's instagram, @passingwhimsies.
Just a little series on being elegant, from tips my mother taught me and beyond. Click here to read more from the archives...
As I was thinking of new topics to include in this series (a favorite around here!), I wanted to take it to the next level. I've talked about some of my style icons, past and present, and I thought, why not sit down and chat style and elegance with a contemporary?
As I was perusing the list of blogs I frequent, it wasn't hard to pick Lauren from the bunch. Uniquely approachable in her honesty about insecurities, her blog has been something I've read quite regularly for a couple years now. There are some blogs that you love for their polish and professional photographs, but some blogs you just soak up, because they feel like an old friend. Lauren's is one of those blogs - no matter how her audience has grown over the years, she still writes like it's just you and her chatting over some really great coffee: and that's a rare, lovely thing in this increasingly cutthroat blogging world.
Since I couldn't fly out to NYC and have an actual cup of coffee with her, we emailed instead! I loved getting a little more insight into who she is and what inspires her. I hope you enjoy getting to know this elegant woman as well- and be sure to give her blog some love once you've read!
A 22 year old recent NYC transplant and the blogger behind Someone Like You, where she writes out her soul, bares her heart, and welcomes you to do the same.
What was the hardest part for you about visiting NYC? What is the hardest part about living there?
When I lived in NYC last year, it was an entirely different experience then where I live now in Brooklyn. In NYC you’re kind of in this idyllic world and Brooklyn feels much more real. It was so foreign to me at first. I had no idea where anything was or how to get where I needed to be. Brooklyn and NYC are definitely not synonymous! Both have a very different feel to get used to. After being here 3 months though, I can honestly say that I prefer Brooklyn to NYC. I never want to move back to the island!
There’s so much mystery around the fashion industry, that most people have no clue what actually goes on behind the scenes, and the wide diversity of jobs that build up the business! What does your current job look like?
It can be frustrating sometimes, even as someone who’s on the inside of things! It’s like, what are you trying to hide? Why does it need to be so exclusive like this? Luckily technology has done wonders for opening up the fashion world to people who don’t work in it. Apps like Instagram and Snapchat allow for sneak peeks of everything from fashion week to photo shoots. It’s awesome that the world is opening up and I think that’s why I love working in social media so much: being a part of that change.
Right now I’m a social media marketing strategist for a sleepwear manufacturer that makes many of the pajamas you see in Target, Walmart, JCP, and more retailers across the US! My job title is somewhat of a jack of all trades. I run all the media accounts for the company, plus their blog and newsletter. Aside from that I also handle all of their photoshoots, PR, and marketing!
What would a Day In the Life of Lauren typically look like?
Well, first it always starts by rolling out of bed late, ha. It’s a habit I’ve had since high school! But I usually get ready really quick, grab my lunch from the fridge and make a cup of coffee to go in my little French press. My morning commute from Bed-Stuy to Madison Avenue is usually around 40 minutes and then I work from 9-5. After work I sometimes explore the city a bit: usually the parks around my work so I can do a little bit of introspection on the day. Heading home I always read on the train and give my nearly toothless cat Tito a big kiss when I walk in! The rest of my evening is usually relaxing. Taking outfit photos, reading, watching TV (Girls anyone?) and making dinner on the side…nothin’ fancy: probably Mac & Cheese!
Is it difficult living with roommates?
I’ve had one too many bad roommates over the years that actually inspired me to live alone my last year of college. I found as an introvert though I actually hated living alone because I never got out. I stayed in my comfortable bubble. I knew I wanted (and pretty much had to) get roommates when I moved to NYC, and was very nervous to get into all that again. But I currently live with two great guys, a writer and an architect, and we all get along great. Living with guys is a dream! They are so care and drama free. Why didn’t I think of this before…?
How do you deal with anxiety and introversion in a hub like New York City?
It is HARD...Anxiety isn’t always in-your-face apparent. It’s all the little things that add up to throw off your balance and calm. Never having dealt with it before and then suddenly having to deal with it in the busiest city in the world was an overwhelming thought in itself. But I think once I realized what I was feeling was justified (and I wasn’t crazy) then I could begin to figure out how to cope when I would panic. I always make sure to take time for me. It is a necessity. I know it’s tempting to always say yes to all of those invitations and opportunities, but no one is going to hate you if you sit some things out. Take care of yourself so you can enjoy those fun things and not push yourself over the edge. Read. Write. Bike Ride. Take Naps. Make Tea. Go on Walks. Read blogs. Take a hot shower. Call your mom. Do things for you that make you happy. Be in touch with yourself. You are the most important person in your life.
Do you see yourself as a full-time blogger and/or would you like to be at some point?
Gosh, that would be a dream! Honestly, I’m jealous of full time bloggers. They seem to have the life. Since I blog I know that they work for everything they’re given, but still. It must be so nice to avoid that morning commute and make your own hours! Despite my admiration and slight jealousy, I don’t think I could do what they do. I want to create when I feel inspired and passionate about something. I want to run my own content and choose the words I feel express me. Sometimes with full time blogging, you can’t always stay 100% true to yourself and transparent. That rent money has to come in somewhere! I love just doing my own thing at my own pace. That’s always been very important for me in my blogging journey.
What are your long-term goals, career-wise?
Really just to be doing a job where I feel fulfilled. I don’t care what it is. As long as I feel fulfilled creatively making/doing something I’m proud of, then I could never ask for more.
You were in NYC while Fashion Week was happening - can you share a little bit about what that was like?
I was working my job during a lot of it so I didn’t get to see a ton, but it’s very interesting to see. Everything is very elevated. I would see these bloggers on the streets taking outfit photos, but there would be a professional photographer literally rolling around on the ground trying to get all these shots! Plus, there was always a team of help it seemed. Someone holding coats, someone touching up hair, ect…It was very contrived. Bloggers make it look so effortless but really there’s so much effort that goes on that the viewers don’t realize.
Where is your favorite place to thrift in the city?
I’m loving L Train Vintage at the moment! It’s a chain of stores across Manhattan and Brooklyn of wonderfully priced goods. Very comparable to prices I pay back home in Ohio! They have the best curated goods and unique finds. I go to the one in Bushwick-- I just got the best rust and black plaid vintage cape there for $8!
Vintage or designer?
Can I say vintage designer? Stumbling upon vintage designer goods is like Christmas x’s 10 for me. They are just so well made and timeless. I’ve found Ferragamo heels, a Celine blouse, a Dior Scarf, and an original DVF 70’s wrap dress: I don’t plan on ever getting rid of any of it.
Finally (and most importantly), where’s your favorite coffee spot in your neighborhood, and how do you like your coffee?
This may be the most important question you’ve asked me so far! Okay, so anyone who follows me on Instagram (@passingwhimsies) knows I’m at Stone Fruit Espresso + Kitchen literally every Saturday and Sunday [pictured above]. I can’t get enough of it! Its right here in my neighborhood of Bed-Stuy and they make good everything. Last week I got a lavender latte and it was some of the best coffee I’ve ever, ever had. I love a good latte or flat white, but sometimes a nice medium roast with a splash of cream is the perfect companion to a good book and a long morning.
Thanks to Lauren for contributing her time, and thanks as always to you, dear readers, for reading! What do you think of the new series? Would you like to see more?