#Life, Biz

Pinegate Road Podcast Guest!

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Last week I took a step outside of my comfort zone. I am always pushing people I know to get uncomfortable and try new things- and this was one of those for me! I don’t talk much about biz on my blog, which is really hilarious- because marketing and business is my life and career. I actually love marketing SO much.. but when I started blogging, I just felt that every single blog I went to was a “ten tips to grow your Instagram following in 4 minutes”.. I actually wrote a little bit about it here.  I definitely think I have some valuable tips and little nuggets of knowledge I can share about marketing and social media after my 4+ years working in the biz- I just felt that I wanted this blog to be more about my likes and hobbies, and definitely not a “tip” blog. But alas, I also think I have enough marketing street cred to share some of my opinions on different tactics- and you might even find them valuable!

Anyways! Last week I was a guest on a podcast for the first time! This was a new one for me. I think I am probably not alone when I say that I do not ever want to “sound dumb”.. It’s a lot easier to craft your thoughts in written form because you have time to be thoughtful, you can work on something and come back to it. Answering questions on the spot can be a bit intimidating. Also, the topic of the podcast was basically about my career, and how I got where I am today.. which, is a very long, and sort of awkward story.

But.. I decided to take a little sip of my own juice and just go for it. I’ve worked with Kelsey for years now. It’s actually a pretty funny story how we met. In short- I reached out to Kelsey on a whim to help me build a website.. and from there we worked together on several clients where I would manage marketing, and Kelsey would help me with web design and branding. (Sisters in Shape, Gorgo Magazine, The Hello Yellow Blog, Eve Cork.. my own blog, to name a few!) Kelsey is an amazing chickie and I absolutely love tag-teaming brands with her. She is so organized and her ideas are so thoughtful!  When she asked me to be a guest on the podcast I was initially unsure. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to share my story or to talk about how I got to where I am today- because in every sense- it is very non-traditional.

I dropped out of college, moved to the big city with literally nothing but a stack of resumes and no back up plan. I started out bussing tables and shipping inventory and somehow- almost five years later- I find myself working in a dream position doing what I love, working with incredible people, learning and growing daily. In Kelsey’s podcast- I share it all! What a typical day looks like. My biggest tips and advice for businesses wanting to leverage social media today. (Hint, it’s called User Generated Content, and if content is king, UGC is GOLD.) How I got to where I am today and some of the obstacles I had to overcome. I even share my top favourite books that I think really helped shape my career.

You can listen to the podcast right over here– and I’ve pasted some of Kelsey’s shownotes below. Thank you so much for having me on the show Kelsey- it was a pleasure- and nice to do something outside of my own comfort zone!

 

Cultivate Your Brand’s Core
Leon’s Furniture
Hello Yellow
Episode 12, Following Your Authentic Path by Running Your Own Business with Caroline Winegeart
Day Designer ** I got the PALM day designer. It’s seriously, magic.
Crush It by Gary Vaynerchuk
“Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This”: A Guide to Creating Great Ads by Luke Sullivan
Better and Faster by Jeremy Gutsche
Made to Stick by Chip Heath and Dan Heath  + Contagious Why things Catch On by Jonah Berger
Rework by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson
The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson

Connect with Kelsey from Pinegate Road:

Instagram: I’ve been LOVING sharing some daily happenings with the new stories feature — hope you’ll follow along there!
Pinterest
Facebook
Twitter
— Are you interested in becoming a client? Get in touch about working with Pinegate Road to build your brand foundation!

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#Life, Art + Creativity, Biz, Home + Design

Hello Holiday!

Hello HOLIDAY!

What is that quote.. the shoemaker always has the worst shoes?? I’ve finally carved some time out of my busy schedule to write my own post about Hello Holiday. (WOO HOO!)

About a month ago Leon’s launched it’s second edition of Hello Holiday, and oh but what a launch it was!  These past few weeks have been jam packed with exciting launch related activities and I am so excited to share the down low.

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For those of you who may not know, Hello Holiday is a giiiiiant project that I work on with the Hello Yellow blog team & our super awesome creative director Melissa. This round we also got the chance to work with Donna Griffith– a very talented photographer who has has worked with some big names in the past like Style at Home, Covet Garden, House and Home.. to name a few. Essentially, Hello Holiday a 100+ page digital magazine that’s filled to the BRIM with super-simple DIY projects, room decorating tips, life-hacks, and just good old fashioned good advice. While these magazines are a lot of work. Let me say that again, a lot of work– they are definitely my favourite part of my job and I am so thankful to get to work alongside such bright, creative and talented people! What was also REALLY incredibly amazing about this year’s Hello Holiday- is that we actually polybagged it with the December issue of Style at Home. (RIGHT?!!)

Big awesome moment alert! ⚡️✨💛 Just over a year ago we launched the Hello Yellow blog at @leonsfurniture. Fast forward a year and a half and we’ve now launched three incredible digital magazines full of fantastic storytelling, simple DIY projects, life hacks, tips, and thoughtful makeovers. This round of #LeonsHelloHoliday- we also published a special print edition that was distributed with the December issue of @styleathome magazine!! Woo! I just got my copy and I am so proud/happy/excited -congratulations to everyone involved making this thang! @mscraftberrybush @kassandradekoning @thelearnerobserver @ellivenstudio @lazymoms @sweetescapecreative Lol tag is off a little bit but i know you love me!!! Its @bethanythislittleestate #LeonsHelloHoliday

A video posted by ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ AUTUMN HACHEY (@autumnhachey) on

But let me start there. The Hello Yellow team is so brilliant it hurts my eyes. Seriously haha. These women blow my mind on the daily, and seeing them in their element, doing what they love, living their real lives with their furniture from Leon’s- it’s incredible. The way they make the furniture their own, meld it in with their unique styles, come up with the most bomb-tastic DIY projects- goals goals goals. Shoot days are definitely my favourite days ever because I get to actually have some one-on-one time with these gals.. and their hubbies.. and their pets and… their twin babies :D. Check out  few of my fav highlights from the magazine:

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I love love loveeee this nursery by Thalita from the Learner Observer. Her twin baby boys are probably the cutest babies I’ve ever seen.. And that mountain wall mural? Yep, you can learn how to make your own here. (Featuring the Finley Convertible Crib)

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Joanna’s sofa is dreams. Literal dreams. It’s called the Nubia sofa and is seriously rivals tufted sofas you would see at Restoration Hardware.  And the quality is amazing. I spent a good portion of the day lounging around on this sofa and it’s dreamy. So comfy, so beautiful- the best combo. PSS: That “Baby it’s cold outside” is a free printable- get it here.

And can we take a second and talk about DISS RUG!?

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It’s from a Montreal shop called Baba Souk.. And if you like this rug you’ll love all the other amazing rugs they have too. And their art. And their poufs. Yes yes yes yes yes.

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I love this shot of Bethany’s kitties at the dining table. I am insanely allergic to cats but for some reason, I was able to snuggle with these guys all day. And if you’re wondering whether or not you should set up a DIY hot-chocolate bar in your dining room, the answer is yes.. and you should leave it up all year. (Featuring the Klein Chair + Claira Table) Let me also mention, for this shoot Bethany had some shots prepping food with her kiddies.. and then, we ate her INSANELY DELICIOUS home cooked meal for our lunch and it was incredible. Shoot days are usually pizza days.. I tend to come back a couple lbs heavier when we launch a mag ;).. But at Bethany’s- this girl cooked us the most insanely delicious meal. I would do questionable things for more of that sweet potato soup let me tell you.

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When we showed up to Julie’s place, I kid you not, this amazing lady had an absolute SPREAD- kraft truck style spread of snacks and treats for us. Julie, you are way too sweet! I love this shot so much. SO cozy. (Featuring the Klein Chair + Ottoman). Julie shares 3 different ways you can use your Ottoman here. 

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I was super lucky that Jack and Max’s hair salon was open while we were shooting because the braids they gave me were on fleeeeek. haha. Cutest little kiddies ever. (Featuring Capella sofa and Natura Table) Read more about Kassandra’s Urban Country Living Room here. 

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A special treat during Lucy’s shoot was seeing her daughter sing and play her ukulele— I think you guys would cringe at how I tried to spell ukulele just now. (cry laughs)

(Featuring the Amber Canopy + Amber Side Table)

With the launch of each new magazine, the promo plan to support it continues to grow. This time around we’ve got a pretty comprehensive media plan spanning Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, HOUZZ, our first ever Hello EVENT and dum da da dum.. I hosted a 6 minute segment on Breakfast Television! (What’s that about jumping out of your comfort zone, JUST  DO IT.)

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When Dina said I had one minute left to crank out those DIY bath bombs I thought I was going to have a heart attack. But alas, thankfully the DIY projects in Hello Holiday are SO SIMPLE YOU CAN DO THEM IN LITERALLY ONE MIN.. I was fine haha. What a fun opportunity! I definitely have to thank our PR agency Praxis for letting me practice the segment with them, and honorable mention to Bo who made a pretty convincing Dina at home when I practiced in our kitchen. I learned a lot about being on live TV from this segment.. like here’s a fun little trick- we labelled everything with little clear labels on the bottom of the counter, so when I was pointing to ingredients there was no way I would fumble and mistakenly say this is uhhh… that arm and hammer stuff? .. hahaha. It was very clearly labelled Baking Soda.

Tricky Tricky.

BTW, I might have said the word totally once or twice and I am totally having a funeral for totally, if anyone wants to come. Not again on my watch. 

So after the excitement of live television, I was approached by Strategy Magazine to do an interview. (!!!) Here’s the catch.. From the time I heard about them being interested, the interview was half-an-hour later. Talk about needing to be ready when the opportunity comes-a-knockin. I think overall it went pretty well and I was really excited to finally chat about all the fantastic success Leon’s has seen since launching all things Hello related. Check out the interview here.

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And last but not least.. we finally brought the Hello magazines into a real live event! We hosted a Crafternoon at the Gladstone Hotel (one of my favs!).. with a few of our bloggers. Event attendees were able to come, learn 4 DIY projects (20 minutes per session!).. And enjoy some mingling, hot chocolate, and good cheer! Read more about the event here.

Here I am pretending to be a stand up comedian:

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Over all a pretty incredible/fun/busy/exciting launch! If you haven’t had a chance to check out Hello Holiday, please do! Happy Holidays everyone!

 

 

 

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Home + Design

The Wing in NYC

 

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Can we please talk about the Interior Design at The Wing?

Guys..

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I was scrolling Facebook and I saw an article on NYC’s newest female focused space that is part social club, part co-working studio and part blow-dry bar. (And all parts AMAZING). At first glance to me, it totally feels like a female centric version of The Ace Hotel.  Everything about this place sounds like a dream and their marketing is so on point that it hurts. The concept behind The Wing is that there are so many busy entrepreneurial women running from meeting to meeting without a “home base” to really recharge, change, collab with other likeminded girl bosses and get prepared for the rest of their day.

“The Wing was inspired by a particularly low moment in our founder’s life; she found herself in a dimly lit coffee shop bathroom, frantically hopping around on one foot trying to change into heels without touching the floor. Her phone was at 2% and she was twenty minutes late for her next meeting.”

The Wing is a home base for women on their way. It’s an offline destination for women to build essential relationships, hatch plans and you know… run the world, together.

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As I was searching through the website trying to find out who designed this absolutely stunning space, I landed on their “Partners” list- which includes some well known favourites like Tappan Collective and Glossier.  After some digging I found out the space was designed by Leong Leong- with some rooms by Chiara Derege- but unfortunately both of these sites didn’t have much additional information. (Like, who else would love to see a full buying guide for this place?!)

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Powder pink mid century sofas paired with minty greens, brass, navy and mustard- this place was designed for me, I know it. I also really love how incredibly CUSTOM this space is.. even down to the custom toile wallpaper by Flat Vernacular showing scenes of working women throughout the city.

This wallpaper is my happy place.

A photo posted by Lauren Kassan (@lololevine) on

And another custom wallpaper illustrated by Joana Avillez in the “Freakout Room”

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To match the stunning interiors, of COURSE the graphic design by Pentagram is incredible too. I just love when a brand is able to really infuse every touchpoint with thoughtfulness and creativity.

welcome boxes headed your way 🚴🏽‍♀️💨

A photo posted by The Wing (@the.wing) on

Coming for ya, ladies.

A photo posted by Lauren Kassan (@lololevine) on

Details matter people!

Want to get in on the action? Well first off.. you’ve gotta live in NYC. Annnnd, there’s a 1300 person waiting list because it is members only.  Secondly, it’s not cheap. At $185 a month it’s a bit of an investment, but in my personal opinion- relationships trump EVERYTHING in business. If you can use your membership as an opportunity to rub elbows with other Wing chickies like- Sophia Amoruso from Nasty Gal.. it’s worth its weight in gold. For any freelancers, I feel like this space would just really give you some purpose- a reason to put on a cute outfit, get out of the house, collab with brilliant ladies and be creative in an inspiring space. I freelance on the side, and I can tell you that The Wing is definitely much more inspiring than my home office ;)!

Images via: Quartz, The Wing, Curbed.

 

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