You know that when it's instant love with an Instagram account it's because everything resonates, the "media" attached to "social" in perfect harmony, imagery and words meet in heaven.
Holl and Lane was like that to me: there was something behind those gorgeous images, there was a woman, a strong, determined, loving, powerful, romantic, passionate one, definitely a talented and equally tunes team and a message. And the word was loud and clear H O N E S T
It may be because I am Italian, or because I have reached a time in my life when BS smells bad and I find pleasure in ignoring it, saying it as it is, accepting that life is never perfectand being OK with it, is the best choice.
Sarah Hartley, the founder of Holl and Lane, is there, happy or sad, tired or excited, she represents many of us women, yet she has an extra shift, like we say in Italian, like a rare motorvehicle at a vintage car show. She has a plan, a mission, a passion and she doesn't stop.
I have had the honor of interviewing her, because she is a perfect example of style + substance, women inspiring other women, entrepreneurs supporting each other, mothers, wives, daughters who bring life to life.
Vixens , Dynamic, Powerful, Bold , Fearless, Outrageous, Unique these are some of the connotations I have started determining of this style + substance tribe we are forming. Please pitch in, say which one is really one, add yours if it’s missing.
SH : Powerful. Holl & Lane is based on the idea that your story is powerful. Each time you open up and share a part of yourself, you help someone else to feel less alone. And that is an incredibly powerful thing. I would also add Honesty because that is a key foundation in both the magazine and my personal life.
When did you realize you needed to do something different?
SH : I have been a personal blogger for over 5 years now. When I started writing about my pregnancy and how difficult it was (so NOT like what media led me to believe), I noticed that people began to really open up to me with their own stories, and that they really appreciated someone being honest. That sparked the idea that our media was sorely missing HONEST stories from real women talking about their trials and their triumphs.
Did you ever make a decision based on your guts and vs. the rest of the world?
SH : Nearly every decision I make is based on my gut. I base decisions on how something makes me feel - sometimes at the peril of reality.
When you have the odds against you what do you do?
SH : Just keep pushing. In starting your own business, it feels as if the entire world is against you just waiting with stumbling blocks. But you just have to put your head down and do the work. Research, talk with others in the same industry, ask for help when you need it. In general, the people in your life will want to see you succeed and will be glad to help.
“There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women” - Madeleine Albright
SH : In the world of female entrepreneurs, it’s important to help out where you can. This doesn’t mean giving away all of your best secrets, but just being around to bounce ideas off of, letting them know you support them, being a cheerleader and accountability partner when they need it.
“You are the average of the 5 people around you” has been said and you have created a honest media gleeful movement with a beautiful magazine. You are an inspiration, especially in these critical times when the voice of women has suffered a setback. How do you keep being inspiring?
SH : Thank you!
The women who contribute to the magazine keep me inspired - as cliche as that may sound. I find such strength reading through their stories and am humbled that they’re allowing me to tell them. Each time I’m able to bring a story to life, knowing that it has the chance to help someone, it’s so inspiring. As far as creativity and designing goes - I’m inspired by other magazines and photography. They stir my soul to want to create something beautiful.
What would you tell the next generation, other fellow entrepreneurs to look for to keep striving?
SH : It’s going to be hard and you’re going to want to quit. But if you find something that you’re passionate about - something that even on your hardest days you cannot imagine giving up - it will make all the difference in the world. When it’s something that you fully believe in, you will do whatever it takes to see it succeed.
What’s your take with “taking risks and facing adversities”? Do you retreat, do you dive in?
SH : The magazine is one big risk for me and along with it I’ve faced plenty of adversities. I tend to be a bit on the cautious side but I’m learning that sometimes I just need to follow where my gut leads because on the other side there is often something magical waiting for me.
What’s that thing that fires you, that makes you go ahead?
SH : Doing something that hasn’t yet been done. We’re starting this movement to give people a voice and I take great pride in that. I want to continue to be the place that people know they can come to and they’ll be allowed to be vulnerable and honest. I want to change the face of media and to remind people that their lives are perfect just as they are.
Read, follow, contribute, buy, share, download, participate, be a player in Holl and Lane, everything you should know is HERE.
P.S. Watch for the gift that comes with the calendar and when you get it, come back here to toast for a sparkly and successful 2017.