1. Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a California girl at heart. Two of the best things in life are laughing and sunshine. That being said, I love to try new things and see new places. The best way to do that is travel and live in different places. No matter where I go, I know where home is and that keeps me centered. With supportive roots and a positive attitude, change is not scary – it’s exciting and fun. I don’t know what’s next and I’m totally okay with that.
2. What is the name of your blog and what is your focus? When did you start blogging and why?
My blog, ThirtyFloorsUp, is all about my life in the Windy City. I started the blog when I first moved to Chicago and thought it would be a fun way to capture the new things I did, saw, ate, and made. It’s a creative outlet for me to document this new chapter in my life, share with family and friends, and reflect on the things that inspire me. http://thirtyfloorsup.blogspot.com/
3. Describe your style in one sentence.
This is a tough one … casual, fun, a little bohemian, a little preppy.
4. As a new transplant to Chicago, has the city influenced your style? If so, in what way?
The weather is the most influential factor for dressing in Chicago. During the winter, you have to get creative and not throw in the towel. Managing to look stylish under layers of down, wool, and fleece can be a challenge. I stick to more classic, simple, looks during the colder months – wearing a lot of black, grays, navy, and camel. By the time spring and summer rolls around all I want to do is wear color and patterns. Everyone in the city is so appreciative of the longer, warmer days, there is a lot of positive energy in the air. I plan to wear a lot of flowy dresses, vibrant colors, and fun sunnies.
5. Where are some of your favorite places to shop here in the city?
For clothes: Zara, H&M, thrift stores and a little boutique by my house called Handle with Care. I don’t believe in spending a lot of money on clothes. I’d much rather spend money on experiences than things. That being said, I don’t think spending less means you have to sacrifice style.
For home décor: Homegoods, Anthropology, Etsy, and flea markets.
6. I perused your blog and you have some great DIYs! Who or what inspires your DIY posts?
I have always had a strong desire to make things. There is something very rewarding about the process; staring with an idea and ending with a tangible thing. I also like the concept of repurposing or “up-cycling”. Taking something you already have or finding an old piece at a thrift store and giving it a second life –making it yours – something fun and stylish. I get a lot of my ideas from Pinterest. It’s hard to imagine what life was like in the B.P. era. J
(B.P. = before Pinterest)
7. Some DIYs require patience and persistence, how do you deal with projects that don’t come out how you had hoped?
The reality of DIY is there not all going to turn out looking great. Expectations?
It took a few failed attempts to realize you have to know your limits. Stay realistic with your project ideas. Think it through before jumping in and buying all the materials. It’s always easier to add on to something than start from scratch. If your just starting off, try embellishing or re-painting.
8. To date, which DIY project has become your favorite?
I really enjoy making pillows. A pillow provides a punch of color and pattern that’s not too much of a commitment but can change the whole feel of a space. I love mixing and matching textiles. I am no seamstress but a square I can manage.
9. I am a novice when it comes to DIY projects but I like to stick with projects that will be put to use. I saw the headboard you created, which is very impressive. Would you say most of your projects are led by practicality or out of the need to be creative?
The headboard was definitely birthed from a place of practicality. Our bedroom felt very unfinished and I knew a headboard would help resolve that. I had been playing with the idea of making one when I came across some beautiful copper hammered upholstery tacks. They sealed the deal. I think with all my projects, practicality is the initiator but the desire for creativity leads me to make things, not just buy them (photo courtesy of Jessica Phillips).
10. Any current trends you are looking forward to trying?
Neon colors and gold accents are two trends that I’m looking forward to trying out in my home and wardrobe. Two trend that aren’t new but I’m not ready to let go of are black and white stripes and polk-a-dots.
11. As you know, the name of my blog is Living Simplistically. What piece of simple advice can you leave with the readers that has helped you to be where you are today?
As for keeping things simple…
Perspective. I’m a big believer in stepping back and taking a look at the big picture. The little annoyances or upsets in our day-to-day lives are just that - little. If you live your life with the big picture in mind, you’ll be more appreciative for the life you have and more open to new things that come your way.
If you are interested in seeing what office friendly DIY projects I caught Jessica working on, you can follow-up on her blog page!
Where to find Jessica:
Photo credit: Christie R. Edwards