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.
Dress To Empower
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.
While most of us don’t even think about how the Facebook ‘like’ button came about or why we swipe left as a gesture for ‘no, that person is not my type’, Andrea Conway is surrounded with those creative discussions every day. As a UX designer, Andrea explores the many facets of what makes an amazing user experience and how to make beautiful designs for apps and websites.
We met at a bustling food court in Embarcadero to talk about her journey of becoming a UX designer, her effortlessly chic style, and the inspirations that have shaped her style today.
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
Terri Burns is a product manager at Twitter, a freelance writer, international speaker, and an advisor for CodeAcademy. Terri is unstoppable! We chowed down a falafel salad and avocado toast while talking about her unique role as PM, her fears, and her greatest forms of self expression which include fashion and writing.
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.
Caroline Liu is a true role model for women in software engineering, a profession that continues to have an imbalance male:female gender ratio, but is slowly paving its way to include more women in tech. She shares her story about how she became enamored by the world of computers, her struggles being legally blind and her awesome and admiring tricks to combat her limited eye sight, and her favorite clothing items, shoes, and accessories during the winter time.
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.
Anya Zuyeva is a Vancouver based fashion designer and entrepreneur. She is the founder of MermaidsLand, an online fashion retail store that showcases designs that accentuates the cute and sexy in every woman. One snowy afternoon, we ate tofu soup and discussed her clothing line, what it’s like to start a business in Vancouver, and her winter fashion must-haves.
What inspired you to create MermaidsLand?
“There were so many rules to creating clothes and when I was a fashion designer [at a large brand], only 5% of the job was related to design since most of the design choices were coming from sales and marketing. I didn’t want to feel restricted and I just wanted to go all out! MermaidsLand is inspired by fairytales and not a collection inspired by seasons or a sales pitch. I create clothes that speak to me and I listen closely to what my customers want.”
Reflecting on being a fashion designer and starting her Fashion retail company in Vancouver
As a former local in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, Anya has been exposed to the ins and outs of the fashion centers of the world. Vancouver may not be the first place people think about when it comes to expanding a fashion business, but Anya is taking it on as a positive challenge. “There are less resources here, like there are only 2 fabric stores in all of Canada, but there is also less competition here than in places like Los Angeles.”
What are you currently reading?
Million Dollar Women
What are your winter fashion must-haves?
Black winter coat, fur coat, and winter boots