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Meet Lace Richards of LooksByLace in Mid City

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lace Richards.

Lace, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
My interest in fashion started out while I was young. I remember always wanted to play dress up and dress my friends. It continued into high school where my interest shifted towards reconstructing the clothes I found in my older sister’s hand- me- downs or the clothes I thrifted. I always wanted my look to be different, but timeless-something I could wear forever.

It was hard to dress differently from the rest of my peers because we all shopped at one local mall in my hometown. I knew to look different I would have to cut/sew or wear the clothing styled differently. I went to college in Chicago and chose to receive a scholarship to play soccer versus my other passion-fashion school.

So throughout college when I wasn’t studying or playing soccer I would go out with a friend and take pictures around the city of the outfits I would style. I loved wearing pieces together that normally would not be worn together. There was something about making two different patterns look stylish together that excited me!

After college, I promised myself I would move to Los Angeles to now really pursue my dream in fashion. I had zero clues on how to become a stylist. Initially, when I moved, I was working for Nordstrom x Nike and enjoyed the influence I had on the culture, but I knew I moved here to do more than be stable at a storefront.

I met my mentor working at Nordstrom who guided me into assisting top stylists in New York and Los Angeles. A year into assistant styling and I have helped some of the industries biggest celebrities and on major projects. This year-2019 I have stepped out of my comfort zone and pushed my own styling onto platforms for my audience to see.

Has it been a smooth road?
As a whole moving to LA to pursue my dreams in fashion have been a challenge. The job I had lined up before I moved here I ended up losing eight months in. I just started fully investing in styling and interning for free with stylists that my mentor referred me to.

When I lost my job I had to make a decision for myself-was I going to try and find another “corporate” job to ensure I made rent each month or was I going to take a chance on myself and fully indulge in the freelance world? I most definitely invested in myself and manifested that I would have work through the year that would support me living in LA.

It was definitely tough in the beginning months because I was still so fresh and new and did not know too many stylists. There were months where I would only work two-three jobs but then as time moved forward there were also months that I worked ten jobs!

So, as you know, we’re impressed with LooksByLace – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
LooksByLace is my fashion styling branding. I am newly beginning to acquire an aesthetic that people can pick apart from other stylists. My aesthetic to me is timeless and pays homage to when I was young and didn’t have money to buy new clothes so would reconstruct or style the clothes I had differently to look new.

“My style is influenced by people and environments of different cultures. Outfits are made by recycling existing pieces. I use fashion to create art. Not the art of design but the art of creativity and aesthetic. I push the boundaries of what’s ‘right’ and create something timeless and aesthetically pleasing.

The way I look at a contemporary art piece is the way I look at my fits. I like to rework existing pieces that I own to show how inexpensive style can be. I am redefining existing vintage and recreating it to suit modern day. My style exemplifies how to combine patterns/prints/textures that would not be worn together but when executed well, become [Art}.”

I believe what sets me apart from others is my confidence shown through whatever I am wearing. I tell people this every day when they say, “Oh I can’t pull that off,” I say you can wear anything and make it look stylish as long as you wear it with confidence.

Style-wise what sets me apart from other stylists is my ability to wear male influenced outfits that don’t give off masculine views. Majority of my style is influenced from men but then spiced up to highlight a female and her body.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and the least?
Oh boy, there are so many things to like but also dislike about Los Angeles. Obviously, the weather in LA is likable when you are coming from a place like the Midwest, but in all seriousness, the reason for keeping me in LA is because of the endless opportunities here.

I have visited and lived in other major U.S cities and never have I ever felt so much opportunity from one. I have experienced more bucket list experiences in the last year and a half that I’ve been living in LA than I have in all of my life elsewhere.

What I like least about Los Angeles I want to say would be the traffic, but more important to me is the Hollywood persona. The itch people get when they move here to try and become who they think their peers would like.

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