How did you get started as a Blogger and at what point did you decide to become one?
I actually started my first blog (called Style By MJ when I was in college), mostly because everyone kept telling me I should. Blogging was starting to become big, and I had friends and family members who thought it would be a good platform for sharing my fashion thoughts and expertise. I liked the idea of blogging as a creative outlet, and started my first blog with that in mind.
How did you come up with the Editorialist LA?
After I graduated college, I had a lot of time to think while I figured out what I wanted to do next. I had just moved back to LA (I went to college in St. Louis), and was re-discovering the city. I considered re-vamping Style By MJ, but decided to start from scratch with a blog that had more of the feel of a lifestyle website and documented some of my new finds while exploring the city that I grew up in. I realized that what our city was lacking was a highly curated website about LA, focusing on food, fashion, and lifestyle, and that had a personal feel. We have plenty of personal food blogs, plenty of personal fashion blogs, and plenty of websites handing out tips for the “100 Things To Do This Weekend.” But there wasn’t really a website to visit to check out the one cool bar that everyone right now is going to. Or the best local brands that LA fashionistas are wearing. When I did a google search on local LA brands, there was very little information I could find! I wanted a better resource that could give me that information in a digestible package.
Some people think that being a blogger is just going to the hippest places, taking pictures of yourself, and writing about your experiences. Can you tell us what you think is the most challenging part of your job / and what people tend to overlook when thinking about bloggers?
People definitely think that being a blogger is all very glamorous. And sometimes it is! I’ve met some incredible people, worked with cool designers, and have been invited to fantastic events. But people tend to overlook that most blogs are start-ups; we don’t have large budgets, it takes awhile to start making money, and we really have to hustle. To make it profitable and take it beyond just a hobby, you have to have a strategy and know what you’re doing. A lot of bloggers make everything seem so effortless— they like people to think that they just do this. That pictures just happen and it’s all so easy. But there’s a lot of planning that goes into taking even just a few outfit photos or flat lays, and keeping up with the hottest places and going alone to subtly take photos can be awkward and exhausting. It’s actually a job, and social media doesn’t always portray that honestly.
What is your normal day to day like?
Typically, I get up, make myself coffee (I can’t get through the morning otherwise), and will settle down with my laptop to respond/send out some e-mails and just get myself organized for the day. The rest of the day varies; sometimes, I’m visiting designers or showrooms, or I’m checking out a coffee shop or boutique so I’m more on-the-go. Sometimes, I have photoshoots which take up a good part of the day. And sometimes, I’m just working from a coffee shop, doing some administrative work or writing up upcoming posts.
What’s been your biggest inspiration for the blog?
Aesthetically, Instagram and Pinterest are big for inspiration. I really love the clean and minimal looks, so I try to stick with that the best I can. Otherwise, I’m very inspired by the city. There are so many new bars and restaurants that are so amazing, and I swear that I hear of a new, cool, local brand popping up every week. I think this is an amazing time to live in LA; it’s become quite a haven for creative types, and that’s my biggest inspiration.
What does style mean to you?
When it comes to my own style, I sometimes feel that I’m not interesting or trendy enough. And then I have to remind myself that style is personal. To me, style means dressing in a way that is unique to you: your taste, your interests, your lifestyle. Style is wearing what makes you feel confident, and like the best version of yourself. One of the great accomplishments of fashion blogs is that they’ve brought the personal aspect to the forefront of what style means; people love to read blogs that feature people with a distinct personal style, even if it doesn’t match up with the trends in the magazines. My style has become so much more minimal over the last year or so, and I’m fine with that. I need clothes that are high quality, that I can wear while I’m on-the-go, and that I can easily dress up and down. I like wearing what makes me feel good. Fashion can be a great tool for becoming someone else, but it’s an even better tool for becoming the best version of yourself and expressing that to the world.
One thing in your closet you don’t think you will ever give up? / favorite thing in your closet right now?
My mom bought me a pair of classic Dior black pointed-toe pumps for my 23rd birthday. They were really the first classic pair of designer heels I’ve ever had, and I cherish them. Unfortunately, I wear my shoes really hard (always have), and they’ve become a bit messed up at the toe. I need to take them to a shoe repair and wear them less frequently, but I don’t think I’ll ever give them up.
Your idea of a perfect Saturday in LA?
That’s a great question. Brunch with friends, maybe going to El Matador Beach in Malibu, shopping at the outlets in Camarillo (technically, this is Ventura County, but it’s my favorite place to shop), dinner at some new, great spot and drinks at a rooftop bar with friends. My favorite places to eat changes weekly, so where we get brunch/dinner/drinks depends. I also realize that geographically, this would be impossible in one day (due to traffic), so let’s assume we can just take a helicopter to all these places!
What person past or present would you love to have dinner with? (cliché, but I love this question!)
Another great question! I always feel like I have to answer this question with someone really impressive, like Eleanor Roosevelt, so I never really have a good answer to this. I think for past people, it would be Coco Chanel. In terms of fashion, it’s hard to find someone more iconic, and she really was a total feminist. I’ve heard she was a bit…prickly, so it might not be the most fun dinner ever, but I would love to pick her brain about how she envisioned the relationship between clothing and women. Her designs really liberated women from the constraints of clothing at the time, and she changed women’s fashion forever. For present people, I would love to have dinner with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. That would just be so fun, and they’re both incredibly smart and interesting.