While not a native Pittsburgher, Julie O'Boyle has become an integral part of the local landscape.
Her impeccable fashion sense paired with her stunning beauty (that hair!) makes it near impossible not to fall in love at first site. Which is why we just had to have her as one of our presenters at the Style Summit.
We hope you enjoy learning more about Julie. We certainly have!
Introduce yourself as if you were speaking from the cockpit.
I hate flying so...everybody off, we're taking the train! Hi there, this is your captain...er, conductor speaking, blogger and fashion writer, Julie O'Boyle. I'm speaking to you from a desk in my apartment, where I am simultaneously writing witty product descriptions for my job as a blog & fashion writer at ModCloth.com, and planning content for my personal style blog, Orchid Grey, all while petting a cat. Be aware folks, that this sojourn will not be a leisurely meander through the countryside. No, we've been up since 6am, and won't stop moving until midnight. Now, who needs coffee?
How do you show your personality through your style?
I wear what I love and what makes me happy. I love prints, textures, and (almost) anything vintage. I think it's pretty impossible to not show my personality through what I'm wearing, I love having fun with my style and trying new combinations. I'm lucky enough to work for a fashion-focused company that values and encourages it's employees individualism and creativity, and doesn't bat an eye at five inch high, cat-print wedge boots (yes, these exist and I own them). My job is fashion-focused, so I have a lot of freedom to express myself on a daily basis, and I'm thankful for that.
If you could name a nail polish color after yourself, what would it be?
"Cat lady". Just kidding (or am I?).
Actually, as an infrequent wearer of nail polish, I found myself thinking of this question more in terms of scent — I love the transformative power of a good smell. If there were a scent named after me, it would be called Rogue Wave (after the terrifying natural phenomenon, not the band). It would smell a little masculine, like the beach, good bourbon, and campfires.
I think the ocean is a good metaphor for living your life. It's important to never take it for granted, to not turn your back on it, because you could be swept away at any moment. Are you rolling your eyes yet? I know that was cheesy, but it's true. I grew up by the ocean, and it's safe to say I'm obsessed. Especially now that I live nowhere near it!
Not all flights are smooth. Tell us about how you handle turbulence in your work and life. At this point in my life, I've handled my fair share of turbulence. Life isn't easy, but it's those particularly difficult situations — and how you choose to handle them — that build character and help make you who you are.
Whether I'm experiencing turbulence in my personal or professional life, I remind myself that eventually the situation will be resolved in some way down the road. Whether the resolution is positive (hopefully) or negative, the storm will eventually subside.
Who is the wind beneath your wings?
I feel incredibly lucky to have a group of incredibly talented, creative friends back home in New England. They have always been there with unconditional support, free from judgement. After I left my first professional job, and was trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life, they were there with words of encouragement and made no mention of it when I'd switch from one plan to the next on a weekly basis.
I should mention that I count my husband, Chris, among this amazing group of people. When faced with the possibility of moving to Pennsylvania for my job, he didn't blink an eye.
Advice to other women as they navigate the professional world?
Be kind to those around you, you never know who might pop up in a future interview or who you may be working for down the line. Being a jerk takes too much energy, anyway.
If the job or opportunity you want is not readily available to you, create your own. Get creative, get friends involved, lift each other up, collaborate, volunteer, surprise yourself. Get your hands dirty. Grab life by the...er, "horns" and take charge.
I spent a long time thinking I wasn't good enough or smart enough to be successful. Now that I've crawled out from beneath my own self pity, I'm never turning back, life is too damn short to feel sorry for yourself.
Also, ditch your ego and express gratitude.