Saturday, September 12, 2015

Support Local Designers

Shop small! Buy local!

You have to give small business owners credit for taking the risk and putting in long hours all the while keeping a day job so they can launch their own business, be their own boss and make a dream come true. Trust me, I'm STILL in it.

Before DW, it was more on the smaller scale with minimal investment. I started as an Independent Event Planner & Coordinator back in 2007, became a Notary Public thanks to my former employer who took care of all of the fees since 2008, I attempted to be a Wellness International Network rep in 2010 but that was NOT a small investment, and then I started as a Stella & Dot Stylist in 2011. DW has been the biggest and most important investment I have made because I invested in myself in a big way. It was my way out of being in a position with no room for growth. I was not learning anything. I was not being challenged. And I wasn't passionate about the work. Since December 2013, I have spent countless hours and dollars on opening this restaurant and bar. With so much invested, failure is not acceptable to me.

I am happy to see Sherry Koyama, Owner and Founder of Harumi K, doing well. Sherry is a long-time friend of my sister, Melyssa Green, Owner of On-Point Machining. Who would have thought that we would be helping out with each other's businesses over a decade later? Besides the fact that her line is one-of-a-kind, I am all for supporting someone that has been nothing but kind to me, but more importantly, has always been there for my sister. There are some people in the world that you do not want to do business with. Sherry does not fall into that category. Business is built on relationships. This relationship goes waaaay back.

Sherry had a Studio Sale today out of her home in Oakland, CA. This is the second time I have been to one of her events and Melyssa and I went to the Make It Reign fashion show last year. It was a lot of fun and there were so many great pieces. Check out my post from that evening HERE. I believe one of my photos were used in an online pub. Sharing is caring! I still love that green cape she made. One day. Sherry will be going to Japan shortly and will be coming back with new fabric. Stay tuned for her Fall line.


Jeaja Design Studio and Margarette Laizure was there as well and boy, did I do a bit of damage. I took about eight different pieces with me to try on. I was encouraged to come out of the smaller, darker room with a mirror and move into the well-lit living room to show the designers how it looked on me. It definitely does help to get feedback. SOLD! I purchased two black skirts, one by Harumi K, the other by Margarette. I bought a green and black top that is versatile depending on how you tie the pieces in the front or back, and a blue and grey draping sleeveless striped top from Jeaja. Jeaja was also at the Make It Reign fashion show and started the Oakland Fashion Network with Sherry. Afterwards, I went to White House Black Market.  Yes, I know they're not small or local. But I love their store and they gave me $10 for my birthday. I shopped the sale rack, thank you! I usually spend $300 every time I go in that store. I left spending under $40. Shocker. It counts that I spent more supporting designers, right?


Please stay tuned for pics of me wearing my new, locally designed and made fashion pieces. I don't know exactly what I am going to pair them with but I will find out soon! You know I have a ton of S&D jewelry to choose from. Accessorizing will not be an issue.

Do you have any pieces by Harumi K, Jeaja or Margarette?
Which local designers do you support?
Are you a local designer? Comment below with your link. Let's take a look!

***Update***

This is how to chose to wear Harumi K's skirt. My good friend, Nikki B., came to have brunch with me. I paired the skirt with a draping top from Express I have had for years, my BCBG pumps and jewelry by Stella & Dot of course. The rose gold Pave Spear Necklace ($59), earrings ($49) and Pave Triangle Cuff ($34) went well with the shapes on the skirt.








This song always makes me think of fashion ever since Taylor Swift sang this at the Victoria's Secret fashion show.

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