Today I interviewed one of my favorite bloggers– the stunning Jaclyn Bethany of Jackson, Mississippi. Not only is she a phenomenal blogger– regularly reporting on Finnish fashion (my favorite!) and relevant designers (such as Louis Vuitton’s stunning Spring collection)– she is also the owner/buyer of one of the most charming and whimsical boutiques I have had the pleasure of seeing! While she is currently located in Jackson, she plans on expanding to New York City. If you don’t have the chance to make it down South or to New York City, Audrey Grace Boutique also features a lovely Etsy Shop that is certainly worth checking out…
I know that you are a huge fan of both Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn (hence the name), who would you list as your other style icons?
I feel like the last is never ending. Lately, I’ve loved the style of Alexa Chung, Kirsten Dunst, Michelle Williams, Karen Elson, Emma Watson, Rooney Mara (my new amazing style crush), Felicity Jones, Clemence Poesy, Lily Cole, Sarah Sophie Flicker, Zooey Deschanel and Tennessee Thomas. My favorite decade is the 1960s so I’m obsessed with all the ladies from that era- Anna Karina, Jane Birkin, Mia Farrow, Penelope Tree, Jean Shrimpton, Jean Seberg, etc. I wish I had the courage to cut my hair in a pixie cut..
Did you have any style icons you knew personally (such as your mother, grandmother) that influenced your aesthetic?
Well both my mom and grandmother.. My grandmother is among a group of ladies in our town that dresses incredibly well.. Think Chanel, St. John, Escada, Miu Miu, etc. She also has an extensive collection of amazing shoes. I like to think I’ll inherit her wardrobe.
When did you first become interested in fashion? How was your style evolved?
I’ve always been interested in fashion. I have always been a really big girly girl. Over the past couple of years I think I have really discovered what works for me. I look at pictures from a few years ago and have no idea what I was wearing. Today, I am really feminine but I don’t wear anything tight or low cut. I love flowy, romantic pieces, glitter, etc.
Why do you think style is important for the modern woman?
It’s a great way to express oneself. I always feel that way in acting, too. A character is not fully embodied until you put on the costume.
Which designer’s aesthetics would you say are most embodied in your boutique?
I’m not really sure if this question means which designers that are in the boutique now or that I’d like to stock so I will answer both ways. In the shop now- Erin Fetherston, Jill Stuart, Lucy in Disguise, Wayward Daughter, and Orla Kiely. Also all of the pieces I had a hand in designing because they were custom made for the shop.
What are your five favorite upcoming trends for Spring 2012? Which SS12 Collection was your favorite?
I don’t really follow trends. But I’m obsessed with spring and I would say pastels. And if I don’t get something from the Louis Vuitton SS12 collection I might die. So that was my favorite. I loved Jill Stuart and Mulberry as well.
Which are your favorite blogs?
Favorite blogs: This is long. Yours, Hannah & Landon, Wish Wish Wish, The Cherry Blossom Girl, Rosaspina Vintage, Mademoiselle Robot, Bleubird Vintage, Miss Pandora, Eleonore Bridge, Nadinoo’s blog, NYLON’s blog, Kris Atomic, Fancy Fine vintage, Ringo Have A Banana, The Cat’s Pyjamas, Alexandra Grecco’s blog, Shiny Thoughts, It Girl/Rag Doll, Foxtail and Fern, The World Looks Red, English Muse, Strawberry Koi, The Drifter and The Gypsy, Marie Zucker’s blog, Jessica Silversaga’s blog, Blooming Leopold, Leibermarlene, Alice in Wonderland (Linda Portman), Honey Kennedy, Kelsey Genna’s blog, Helloannali (tumblr), Deer Lolita, Fashion is Endless (tumblr), Shop Lawrence (tumblr), Lady Petrova (tumblr) etc.
What 5 words would you use to describe the typical client who shops at Audrey Grace?
I really don’t know because so many different ladies have come into the shop. But if I had to say- whimsical, independent, classic, retro, stylish..
What is your beauty philosophy/can’t-live-without products?
I’m obsessed with taking care of my skin. I am super fair.. I don’t really use anything daily except sunscreen… I know that’s bad.. I love the Chanel skincare line.. feels like heaven on your skin. And their makeup.. I wear alot of Paul & Joe makeup as it’s ideal for my coloring. And I love their packaging and how the lipstick looks like cats.
What is your style philosophy?
Don’t be afraid. Take chances- fashion is a great way to do so..
If I didn’t own a boutique, I would be….
The thing is, owning this boutique is one of many things I am doing at the moment (crazy, right)? First and foremost I am graduating from college in May with a BA in acting working on my acting career- auditioning for grad schools, auditioning, etc. I’m also trying to figure out my summer plans. Which involves being in London for some time doing some acting and hopefully styling a few shoots.. and going to the Olympics..
How did your dream of owning your own boutique come into fruition? How long have you wanted to own a boutique?
I think I have always had an “entrepreneur” streak in me. My dad and grandfather both started businesses so they really inspired me. I have always wanted to set up some sort of fashion related business. I’ve been working on the boutique for six months. I just skyped with my dad and told him I really wanted to do this and came up with a tentative business plan that totally changed and expanded over six months. I am so so grateful to my mom & dad for their support. None of this would have happened without them!
Do you have any advice for girls who aspire to be boutique owners/buyers?
I don’t know.. I think if you are a determined person go for it. I think the fashion world is hard, as is any job really, but it’s competitive and you must have a unique, strong vision that people don’t see every day.
I love the eclectic mix of artwork on the walls of your boutique– are you an artist or do you collect art in your home?
No. I guess I just have a good eye for it! I commissioned most of the art on the walls. I found artists I loved and worked with them. My family collects antiques, that’s it really. But I could see myself being in the art world one day. It’s new to me- and I love it. I’d love to learn more about the collecting side.
After you expand to New York, would you like to expand anywhere else? (crossing my fingers for Los Angeles!)
Hmmmm I can’t really say right now! I am working on an online shop and the permanent shop is planning to be here in Jackson until August. I have lots of ideas and L.A. is def. one of them! I also want to start my own fashion magazine one day.
Do you have any future aspirations within the fashion industry? Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I think I just said that I wanted to start a fashion magazine! Something incredibly unique and whimsical..
In five years I have no idea.. Ideally I’d like to be graduated from grad school and be a working actress.. and also do fashion styling/buying on the side.. Or editing my own magazine? We will see.. I am totally open to many possibilities.
♠ ♠ ♠
Favorite movie: Recently, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and My Week With Marilyn
Favorite book: Again, Steig Larsson’s the Millenium Trilogy, can’t put it down
Favorite city: London/New York
Modern celebrity style icon: Alexa Chung
Fragrance: Prada Candy
Nail polish color of choice: Essie Ballet Slippers
Flats or heels: Flats, I am 5 ft 9
Most prized possession: My new Yorkie puppy, Romeo De Vere Bethany