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At StyleBlueprint we pride ourselves on being a publication that focuses on the positive aspects of our cities and highlights the incredible women who are out there hustling and making a difference. Since we launched our Charlotte market earlier this year, we’ve had the opportunity to talk to several inspiring women in the Queen City, and with the new year quickly approaching it only seems right to take a look back at their best pieces of advice.

We’ve also included some words for wisdom from our ‘Southern Edition’ side of StyleBlueprint as we do have several editions that publish daily throughout the South, including Charlotte. Enjoy!

Mona Gibson|

Executive Director of The Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte, Mona Johnson-Gibson
“Be kind to everyone and believe in everyone and yourself. Know that people generally want to do the right thing.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Shannon Vandiver|

President of the Junior League of Charlotte, Shannon Vandiver
“More wisdom than advice, but, ‘Your mission field is wherever in the world your two feet are.’ I heard that at an event from NASCAR driver Michael McDowell, and it has resonated with me ever since. Mission work does not have to be in a hut somewhere in a foreign country. My mission work is wherever I am — whether I am favored for a mission with friends, family or loved ones; at a community service event; or through volunteer work. So much of loving and serving others is showing up, and realizing that I have the opportunity to show up for someone in a loving and serving way every single day, wherever I am and whatever I’m doing, that’s the best reminder I’ve ever gotten.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Alexa Long FACES|

Legion Brewing‘s Head Brewer, Alexa Long
“Do what you love. I’m thankful to have a job that I love where I work with awesome people, have a lot of flexibility, express creativity through brewing and create a product that makes people happy. If you’re not happy with your job, find one where you are. The pay cut is priceless, if that even makes sense.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Pink Social|

Carrie Barker of Pink Social
“Be authentic and true to yourself. There is a lot of noise that surrounds us everyday and it’s easy to get caught up in it all. But if you stay true to yourself and check in why you are really doing XYZ, you’re sure to figure out your place in this life.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

FACES of Atlanta Monica Kaufman Pearson

Monica Kaufman Pearson, journalist
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” — Eleanor Roosevelt

FACES of Charlotte, Vicki Graf

WSOC-TV meteorologist, Vicki Graf
“Don’t be afraid to ask questions. I never asked questions when I was growing up at school and even at college. I was afraid of what people thought of me. You’ll learn so much more if you ask questions.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography


Laura Mills of Brandshop 
“Don’t sweat the small stuff — this applies in both life and career, but I think this is especially important for an entrepreneur. You weather a lot of ups and downs when starting a business, and I’ve found that being able to take an analytical rather than emotional view of any sort of setback has really helped me push forward.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Pink Social|

Sarah Baucom of Pink Social
“Go your own way.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

advice for the new year

Alice Randall: “My biggest accomplishment, I hope, is that I have been a very good mother … “

advice for the new year

Caroline Randall Williams: On her biggest accomplishment: “At this point in my life, I have taught over 500 students … I have helped further the education of 500 kids.”

Laura Vinroot Poole

Laura Vinroot Poole, owner of Capitol Charlotte
“Esse Quam Videri, or ‘To Be Rather Than To Seem,’ North Carolina’s state motto, has always been close to my heart. I try to remember it in every aspect of my life. My father always said that if everyone likes you, then you’re probably doing something wrong and not being honest about who you are. As painful as that may be, accepting the fact that you can’t be everything to everyone has served me well and allowed me to do what I do best.”
Image: Chris Edwards

Erin McDermott Jewelry|

Erin McDermott White of Erin McDermott Jewelry 
“Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning, the Devil says, ‘Oh crap, she’s up!'”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Alyssa Gorelick, today's FACE of Charlotte

Alyssa Gorelick of Chef Alyssa’s Kitchen 
“Nothing worth having comes easy — I understand the growth that happens when you push yourself. I don’t want to be outworked by anyone and everything I do is with great effort. I’m not sure exactly who coined the phrase but it’s something I have told myself for a long time.”
Image: Justin Driscoll


Hillary Crittendon of Brandshop
 “I’ve always found it is better to work together and collaborate than compete, especially in a world like retail, which can sometimes feel crowded. Many of the designers and creatives I greatly respect have taught me the validity of this suggestion through their example.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Jeanne Robertson, today's FACE of the South ©2016 Piper Warlick Photography

Humorist and public speaker, Jeanne Robertson.
“Take advantage of opportunities. I am the example of taking an opportunity that was given to me and putting it to good use.”
Image: Piper Warlick Photography

Andrea Taylor, CEO of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

Andrea Taylor, CEO of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
“The best advice that I’ve been given was from my mother. She’s no longer alive but we celebrate her memory and her spirit every year at an event in Massachusetts and the theme is “Savor the Moment,” which was her advice to people. Life is very precious. None of us know how long we will be here, so while you are here, you need to fully embrace life in all its richness. Make sure you don’t have regrets. If there are things you want to do, you need to get started. Do them!”
Image: Eric and Jamie Gay of Eric & Jamie Photography

Thank you to all the amazing Charlotte women (and women from around the South that we’ve been so honored to feature here!) who have taken the time to sit down with us to share their successes and advice. We look forward to working with even more in 2017!


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