So excited & honored to be featured as the first in a series Hallelu Boutique
recently launched called MOVERS & SHAKERS
highlighting “girl boss” entrepreneurs.
I interviewed Catherine 10 years ago for my Style Girl column in the Star-News shortly after I moved here and she opened her amazing boutique at Wrightsville Beach. We became fast friends and it’s been such a fun journey growing together. Now, the tables are turned.
Since our interview and photo shoot in October, Catherine has also featured Hannah Milojevich, owner & head stylist at Beauty Bar Boutique (and little known fact, one of my former interns!)
Stay tuned for more Movers + Shakers at www.ShopHallelu.com
under “What’s Happening.”
Article by: Catherine Yearwood
(owner of Hallelu Boutique):
We are so excited to be doing a series of interviews with the Movers & Shakers in our community and beyond. I was inspired to do this series while at an event with women & friends who are all on a journey to pursue building great businesses while having a positive impact. Once we let our guard down, we realized that each one of us was secretly intimidated yet inspired by each other’s strengths and talents.
At the event, I had a chance to catch up with Jess James and exchange stories about all that we have going on. Rewind 10 years to when I first met Jess. She was a columnist for the Star News. I had just opened Hallelu one month earlier and she requested an interview. Jess came through the doors of Hallelu looking so elegant and put together. Like a modern Lauren Bacall with that 1940’s silver screen glow to follow. I was instantly intimidated by her. But Jess has a gracious way that makes you feel right at home and so comfortable. We have been friends and partnering together in all sorts of projects and events ever since.
I asked Jess to come to Hallelu for an interview so that I could turn the tables, and of course do a little shopping together.
L: My Hallelu dressing room – so cute!
R: One of two looks I styled from Hallelu
For our interview session, I wore vintage striped pants from Second Skin Vintage,
my Nashville tee from Imogene + Willie and vintage hat from La Bruja Vintage
We know that you have your finger on the pulse of all things fashion. Can you tell us a little more about what you do?
“Sure! I am a Fashion Editor, Personal Stylist, Vintage Huntress (Style Girl Vintage) and I produce style-based parties & events.”
How/when did you get into fashion?
“It all started by exploring in my Nana’s seven closets. Before moving South, I worked in PR / Special Events coordinating fashion shows and most memorably, pulling dresses for the Oprah Winfrey Show. As Director of Fashion & Beauty for a Manhattan-based agency, I connected clients with trendsetters and brand ambassadors, coordinated media tours with indie artists, styled photo shoots, and developed hot lists for industry insiders. While scouring the streets for trendsetters and buzz-worthy boutiques for a trend forecasting company after my move to Wilmington, I launched my “Style Girl” column (in the Star-News) and began developing my brand.”
What brought you to Wilmington?
“This is kind of embarrassing – but two words: The Notebook. Shortly after the book came out, I was on a family vacation traveling up the coast. Since my sister was a huge Dawson’s Creek fan and my mom and I were on a Nicholas Sparks kick, we insisted we stop in Wilmington. We spent the day walking around downtown and something just clicked. I knew I’d live here one day. When my job in NYC became a little too ‘Devil Wears Prada,’ we made the leap and randomly showed up in Wilmington with all our belongings and no jobs. Lucky thing this is an entrepreneurial town.”
What is your style aesthetic?
“As a stylist, I love playing with a variety of looks so I can be a bit of a style chameleon. I may wear something modern one day and bohemian the next, but my one constant is that I’m almost always wearing something vintage.”
Abby shot this on Water Street when it was
completely submerged from the flooding.
What draws you to vintage?
“I love the history, story-telling and the thrill of the hunt associated with vintage. I also love knowing that no one will show up wearing the exact same thing.”
Do you have any advice on how to integrate vintage into your wardrobe
(for someone who is not used to wearing vintage)?
“The trick to wearing vintage is to pair it with something modern so your look won’t look dated. An easy place to start testing the waters is with vintage costume jewelry. I’m always on the hunt for deco jewelry on Etsy. Do a search and see what style you connect with – mid-century, deco, 70’s, etc.”
What are you craving for fall?
“Fall always makes me crave texture. My husband teases me about being a cashmere junkie. I confess! As for cravings, I’d say suede skirts, breaking out my favorite pair of vintage mod boots and hot chocolate at Blue Surf Cafe. Yum!!!”
Outfit change + Style Girl Vintage showroom visit
Loved this sexy suede dress with lace-up back and double slits – Shop It Here
Paired with my own leather jacket and accessories
What drives you and keeps you inspired?
“I recently had the privilege of having a dream trip to San Fran curated by the CEO of Airbnb (Brian Chesky). Brian said, ‘You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.’ I took this advice to heart. I think it’s vital to surround yourself with people that encourage and inspire you. Anytime you do the same thing for a prolonged period of time, you start feeling pressure to reinvent yourself. Instead of always focusing on the new and now, I try to remember to celebrate the journey.”
What is your favorite aspect about what you do?
“Knowing when I have positively affected someone else’s life. It brings me so much pleasure to hear from a client that not only did they receive multiple compliments, but that they actually enjoyed getting up and dressing for the day (after we had a styling session in their closet).”
Make an appointment to shop Style Girl Vintage
this weekend: 910.538.5657
Pat Kusek files for run for New Hanover County Commissioner
Not only has Pat Kusek supported my Great Gatsby Gala the past three years and become our trusted financial adviser via Kusek Financial Group, but she is a dear, treasured friend. As a woman entrepreneur, Pat has showed me how to stand my ground with dignity and grace (all while looking your very best!) and has ultimately paved the path and pushed gender boundaries for many women throughout her career. I am excited and proud of her as she enters a new territory in her career as she runs for New Hanover County Commissioner. Cheers to a beautiful, professional woman who is always a class act.
Patricia Kusek addresses her supporters and media Dec 1st at the New Hanover County Board of Elections after filing to run for a seat on the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners. (Photo: Lumina News)
Kusek climbed up on the planter boxes lining the sidewalk outside the elections office to speak to her supporters, where she said her focus would be to keep taxes low, be fiscally responsible with county finances and draw new businesses to the region. She said her campaign would be about “ILM: integrity, leadership and management.”
To read the full story in Lumina News, Click Here.
Photo: Bella Rose Photography
Win a Free Custom Shopping Tour
with Wilmington High Street
Check out @stylegirljj on Instagram to Enter to Win.
In celebration of the launch of Wilmington High Street’s new website
(by the amazingly talented Lindsey Pruitt),
I am giving away one Custom Shopping Tour ($375 value)
to you & 3 lucky friends!
Winner will be drawn Monday Dec 7th and announced
via @stylegirljj + @wilmingtonhighstreet Instagram accounts.
WILMINGTON HIGH STREET
The website – WilmingtonHighStreet.com – was built and designed by the amazingly talented Lindsey Edwards Pruitt (who always developed my new Style Girl Vintage logo & branding) and all photography by Lisa Brown of Bella Rose Photography (you already know how much I adore her and her work – Hello, Gatsby!)
A self-proclaimed Anglophile, I was immediately drawn to my Brit friend Dan Burke’s British Taxi business when he launched over five years ago. I spent my last semester of college in London and still see my study abroad experience as one of the best decisions I ever made. Just being inside one of Dan’s cabs makes me nostalgic for a spot of tea with my host mum Brenda, people watching in Hyde Park, treasure hunting at Portobello and Camden markets, and of course, shopping the high street.
The British Taxi, based in Wilmington, now owns the largest fleet of London cabs in the U.S. David Beckham arrived in style at the launch of his H&M collection in Times Square last year in one of the British Taxi’s very own cabs. And, now you & your friends can do the same. Cheers to that!
If you ever thought of hiring me to help curate your wardrobe or shop for a special occasion, now you have the opportunity to share that cost with your best friends while enjoying butler service and a memorable experience with your favorite people. Each tour is customized to your interests and includes a complimentary bottle of champagne to get the party started!
As for booking a tour, your options are: The WHS Classic Tour which is pretty much a “Best of Wilmington” overview tour, the Vintage Lover’s Tour (my specialty!) for treasure hunting in Wilmington’s best vintage, consignment and thrift shops, the Let’s Hear It for the Boys Tour where we’ll switch out the champagne for bourbon and cigars. I will shop with the guys for their own sartorial needs or for their ladies. This is a sure-fire way to get the best Christmas/birthday/ Valentine’s Day gifts you’ve ever had, my friends! Wink, wink. Lastly, you can completely customize your own tour (doesn’t even HAVE to be shopping) via The Custom Tour.
Each tour is $375 (and can be booked directly from the website) and accommodates 4 people (price is the same for 1 or up to 4 people). If you have a larger party, message me directly about the availability of Big Ben, the largest British Taxi in the world (seats 8). Beyond that, we may even have access to a Double Decker London bus!
These tours are not only for tourists – they are just as much for locals! Think Wilmington High Street for a gathering of friends to celebrate a birthday, curate season essentials, holiday shopping, etc. We’re making shopping fun again TOGETHER – and supporting all LOCAL businesses in the process. Stores are starting to approach me with offerings of special discounts and shopping hours just for Wilmington High Street tours. I’m getting excited. Hope you are too!
Thank you so much for your support, as always. I’m trying to spread the word so if you can please “Like” the Wilmington High Street Facebook page, that would be greatly appreciated.
Friends & Models:
Nnenne Terzian, Cindy Vach, Pat Kusek – love these ladies!
“I Love Vintage” Social Club
featuring Jess James
@ Second Skin Vintage
Had the BEST time as the featured host at the December Holiday edition of the “I Love Vintage Club” at Second Skin Vintage Tuesday night. Upon arrival, I styled our models in fashionably festive looks from both Second Skin Vintage and Style Girl Vintage. We discussed the best way to take it up a notch for your holiday parties, vintage-inspired holiday portraits styled by James + Dunne and the launch of Wilmington High Street. After the presentation, we all indulged in some holiday cheer, wine, snacks and of course, SHOPPING! Big thanks to Karyn at SSV for inviting me to take part.
to see more photos from the
“I Love Vintage” Club Holiday edition
VIDEO PREMIERE: Solving the Mystery – Who is Jess James & What does she do?
It must have been about 2 years ago when my friends at Blueberry Creative came to me with a proposition – help us throw an amazing re-branding party (it ended up being Studio 54-inspired, remember? So. Much. Fun!) and we will help explain (via video) what it is you exactly do. Since the career I have created for myself is multi-tiered and with many layers, it can be a tad confusing and difficult for folks to understand what exactly my services for hire are (styling, imagine consulting, marketing/branding, event planning, writing, and the list goes on). It took Blueberry almost a year to film and create this video since they wanted to have their own footage from several of my events. And then I sat on it for another year waiting to finally re-brand and relaunch my website. My personal brand website (www.stylegirljessjames.com) is STILL awaiting her new look but I’ve finally – officially – made this video public to share it on my new website: www.wilmingtonhighstreet.com (check out the ABOUT WHS page).
Hope it gives a little better idea of what it is “I do!” Thank you so much to Patricia Kusek, Joel Finsel, Steven Wayne Ward for taking part and Adam & Austin for doing such an incredible job, as always.
And, without further ado, Click HERE. xo
(Click above image to RSVP)
Vintage Holiday Soiree
featuring vintage shopping,
portraits, chair massages,
adult mulled cider cocktails by Astral Cocktails,
Bakla-Vavoom by Kathy Rayle +
With any purchase from Style Girl Vintage or Harry Taylor Portraits,
you will receive a raffle ticket to win a FREE massage from Wholesome Journey 🙂
More giveaways to come!
Friday December 11th
21 Market Street
SHOP New Style Girl Vintage
Holiday Listings on Etsy!
Photography: Harry Taylor
BOOK IT: CREATIVE HOLIDAY PORTRAITS
It’s that time of year again!
James + Dunne Styling are once again offering creative holiday portraits
styled by Jess James + Shannon Ricks Dunne and captured by Ethan Gaskill Photography.
The difference between regular holiday portraits and ours is that ours are fully styled and are typically vintage inspired (love to include family heirlooms with sentimental value – crests, a vintage handbag or hat from your grandmother, etc). We strive to capture the spirit & personality of your kiddos/family with genuine emotion, a dose of quirkiness, whimsy and an overall editorial feeling.
BOOK IT: HOLIDAY CRAFT COCKTAILS
Want to have Playboy’s Top 10 Mixologist
slinging drinks at your holiday party?
Mixologist Joel Finsel of Astral Cocktails is
booking holiday parties now!
* Mention seeing this in the FASHION FIX,
and receive 10% off!
Photo: Leslie Koehn
Save lasting memories from Wilmington’s 1st Gatsby Lawn Party by purchasing beautiful, high quality photographs (just like they did in the Jazz Age!) from the incredibly talented Lisa Brown of Bella Rose Photography. Photos will only be on sale for a limited time only so don’t delay!
All photos from the Gatsby Lawn Party
presented by Kusek Financial Group and hosted by Jess James
held October 17th can be found here:
+ Pound Fit (only available with Karson in Wilmington!)
Tuesday 6:35pm and Saturday 10:15am at BFAB Studio
Click above for more details.