Photos by Hillary Ehlen
There are many ways to tell a story. From words exchanged over a cup of coffee to text messages to the girlfriends to even a Shakespearian sonnet, we’ve always used words to express something about ourselves to the world around us and to anyone who will listen. But clothing can often speak a world of stories and experiences without uttering a word. A little black dress dress can tell of a dreamy first-date, a pair of dingy sneakers can tell of a cross-country adventure, and a blazer can bookmark the first day of a new career. We entered the closet’s of some of Fargo’s most stylish and let them give their clothes a platform to share their own unique stories.
Digital Marketing Manager at West Acres
“I feel that fashion is an extension of one’s personality – it’s really your first impression to the world.”
For starters, tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?
I was born in raised in Maple Grove, MN but moved to Fargo seven years ago for college at NDSU. With parents in the fashion industry (in wholesale sales), you could say fashion has always been ingrained in me, but it wasn’t always something I loved. It wasn’t until my later high school years where I really grew to love fashion and the industries behind it. After a Fashion PR internship at Mall of America the summer after my freshman year of college, I knew I wanted to make fashion a part of my future career in some way. When I came back to Fargo for my second year of school, I reached out to West Acres to see if I could get my foot in the door there. Fate definitely stepped in and within a few weeks a position was created and I became the Marketing Intern, something they had never done before. I was fortunate enough to have an experience there where I got to grow and manage our social platforms, became a stylist, run photoshoots, and be the spokesperson for our style segments with local media. I was living my big city fashion dreams right here in Fargo.
Five years have gone by and I haven’t looked back. I am now the West Acres Digital Marketing Manager and I continue to evolve and grow my role into many parts of the marketing and fashion fields of the shopping center industry. I have had the honor of meeting and working with so many amazing people in our community – styling them for photoshoots and creating campaigns that our customers are inspired by and continue to talk about.
What is a piece you cannot live without?
That’s such a tough question because I tend to refresh my closet a lot. Do you blame me? I work in a mall! I’d have to say a good-fitting denim or leather jacket. It seems so simple, but it has been a constant staple in my closet for every season.
Do you have any pieces that have a special story behind them?
It’s funny because I feel like every piece in my closet could tell a story. The pieces that stand out are the ones that have been part of significant moments in my life –the dress I wore when I graduated college, my favorite pair of jeans that have gotten me through long photoshoot days, the jacket I was wearing when I met my style idol, the skirt I wore for my first on-air interview… The list really goes on and on!
How would you describe your personal style philosophy?
I would describe my style as classically chic, with a trendy and feminine influence. I love mixing simple with statement pieces to create effortless, yet fashion-forward outfits. My daily fashion choices are altered slightly based on my mood and how I want to represent myself that day. I feel that fashion is an extension of one’s personality – it’s really your first impression to the world. I can usually pick up on someone’s style and preferences by simply looking at a photo of them, so I try to always think of that when I’m choosing what to wear.
Is there anything you’re embarrassed to be hanging onto?
I have a few sweaters that have been, let’s call it… “well worn,” but I just can’t get rid of them because they’re go-tos for me when I’m in that “I have nothing to wear” rut.
So you have something exciting to go to coming up and you MUST have something new to wear. What are your go-to stops?
I am a frequent shopper of Loft, Gap, Express, Dry Goods, Old Navy, Evereve, and Apricot Lane. If I’m in a rut and need to go online, I typically shop on lulus.com.
Do you have a fashion icon or style you love to emulate?
Lauren Conrad, hands down. I’ve been a fan of her ever since her TV days, but what really draws me to her as a style icon and role model is how she stays true to herself and her style. Her classic meets trendy style is similar to my own, and I think her fashion choices reflect her character perfectly.