Angela Haddad left her day job to turn her passion for VR, fashion illustrations, and watercolor paintings into a company. Virtual reality is a technology that’s changing a number of different industries. As an artistic medium, VR has enabled Angela to create immersive experiences for Al-Jazeera, Marie Claire, Lionsgate, LiveNation, and more.
Aniyia Williams was fed up with digging for headphones out of her purse, and as a fashion lover, she didn’t like them ruining her cute outfits. Her solution was to create earbuds that looked like a fashionable necklace. To start a hardware company is a difficult task. To do so as a new mom, a non-technical founder, and a woman of color can be especially challenging.
As a busy mother and entrepreneur, Aniyia has quite a full plate. To accommodate her schedule, I sat down with her over Google Hangouts during a 30-minute time slot that was scheduled weeks in advanced. During this chat, she shared her story of founding Tinsel and of Black and Brown Founders, her fashion must-haves, building a brand with social media, motherhood, and rethinking happiness and life.
Lisette Titre-Montgomery has a gamer’s dream job. She’s an art director and a game developer for some of the industry’s highest profile games, including Tiger Woods Golf, The Simpsons, and South Park: The Fractured But Whole, to name a few. Not only that, Lisette has been a huge advocate for inspiring more young women, especially underprivileged min
Michelle Glauser is inspiring low-income women and non-binary adults to become software engineers by getting them the right training. She is the founder and CEO of Techtonica, and has helped spearhead the #ILookLikeAnEngineer ad campaigns. We meet at The Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center in San Francisco, CA where she shared me her story.
To kick off the celebration of International Women’s Day (March 8), I spent last Saturday with 300+ of the most talented and passionate women in tech.
I arrived at the Googleplex on Saturday morning, and was greeted with the iconic green Android statue and rows of primary colored bikes. The outdoor registration area was quite inviting and reminded me of Anthropologie, with its wooden tables and abundance of succulents.
From the speakers to the panelists and the attendees, each and every person I met was amazing in their own unique way — accomplished, passionate, gracious, and all very willing to share their knowledge. In true Google fashion, it had all the glitz and glam of a tech event — we were all well fed and provided great swag.
Here are my 5 takeaways from the event
- Adversity makes you stronger
“It doesn’t matter where you’re from or what your background is, if I can do it, so can you”, from Diana Trujillo who arrived to the U.S. from Colombia alone at 17 with only $300 and minimal understanding of English. She now leads the Mars Rover project for NASA, and was the first Latina engineer on her team.
- Be somewhere that allows you to be human
“Don’t ever work for a company that makes you choose between career and family”, from Marian Croak who is the VP of Access for the Next Billion Users at Google.
- Prototype quickly and cheaply
A testament to the Google Cardboard VR viewer, which allows anyone with a smartphone to experience virtual reality.
- The dialogue of equality continues to grow
“Supporting all underrepresented people in technology is a global movement” and “We need to use that power, privilege, and access to amplify the stories of people all over the world”, from Natalie Villalobos who is the Head of Global Programs for Women Techmakers at Google.
- Adventure and new experiences can help you solve big problems
“When you put some adventure and challenge in your life, you get a radically different perspective on how to change the world”, from Julia Tizard who is the Sr Director Operations for Virgin Galactic. The adventures in her life, range from running her first marathon ever on Antarctica to having her first child.A big problem she’s solving right now for Virgin Galactic is getting their customer into space. They’re not likely to be NASA trained astronauts, and they tend to skew older and less fit — basically the affluent demographic (with a number of outliers, of course).
It was an awesome day relating to other women’s passions and stories, and I am thankful to have been part of such an inspiring and empowering event.
— Life at Google (@lifeatgoogle) March 4, 2017
The Oscars red carpet represents the biggest fashion event in Hollywood. There were a number of unforgettable fashion moments with A-listers bringing on their fashion A-game.
Here are 4 trends we predicted from Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week that landed on the red carpet:
1. Textured Fabric
Janelle Monáe arrived in an ornate Elie Saab Haute Couture fairytale gown. As an Academy Award first timer, she didn’t hold back. It was a big night for her as she represented two of the year’s best picture nominees, Hidden Figures and Moonlight. Congrats to Moonlight on the win!
2. (Sorta) Sheer Maxi
3. Statement Belts
If one where not to belong in this group, it would be Olivia Culpa in Marchesa. Her dainty black ribbon isn’t quite a statement belt, yet it still stands out on the delicate silver.
4. Jackie O
If Jackie O were alive today, it’s likely that she’d wear one of these gowns inspired by fashion in the 1950s and 1960s.
Candice Nguyen shares a very candid story of the growth and struggles it took to follow her childhood dream of becoming a TV reporter. We met in an alley adjacent to the historic Paramount Theater in Oakland, Ca.
We are in love with Christian Siriano’s commitment to diversity and making social statements. The 31-year-old designer is known for his beautiful designs and as the fourth season winner of Project Runway. During Autumn/Winter 2017 NYFW, Siriano used models of color and models that ranged in sizes from 2 to 10. This is the second season that he broke the mold from using rail thin models. Last year he sent 5 plus size models down the runway.
The runway isn’t the only time Siriano has openly represented diversity for his brand — he collaborated with Lane Bryant for their plus size line and dressed women of all shapes and ages for the 2016 Emmys, including Niecy Nash to Kathy Bates and Leslie Jones, who openly tweeted that no designer wanted to dress her. For many female celebrities who aren’t a sample size, finding designers who’d like to dress them is challenging — it’s most often when she reaches super stardom are designers eager to collaborate.
With Siriano’s diversity and social commitments, we can’t wait to see where this continues to take us as an industry.
Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week is one of the most anticipated global fashion events of the year. Designs are striking, art and fashion are blurred, and designers are able to push boundaries and explore new concepts. All these not only influence ready-to-wear collections, but also mass consumer brands, such as, Gap, Zara, and Forever 21.
Here are 5 looks we think will trickle-down to your own wardrobe in nuanced ways in the next seasons to come: