May 26 2017

Starting a New Company: The Excitement and the Scary Stuff

Sorry about my inconsistency in posting. I’ve been working on this new fashion line I’m going to launch in a few months. Though I’m super excited about it, it’s also giving me a good amount of stress. My dream has always been to be a successful entrepreneur, running a company, inspiring a team. Can I make it happen? Do dreams really come true?

I’ve been reading about companies like S’well, Stella & Dot, and Outdoor Voices who are all created by female entrepreneurs. For some reason, I’m drawn to their stories. These brave women followed their dream, they were relentless, and they pursued their passion.

I look back at the success of the art blog I founded, My Modern Met, and I realize that sometimes you have to look back to feel confident about your future. My Modern Met gets an astounding 37 million visitors a year (or around 3 million a month). We helped launch the careers of countless artists, designers and photographers by making their work go viral. (How cool was that job?) In my seven years of working there, as the editor-in-chief, I wrote over 7,000 blog posts about today’s creative art. (Here’s one of my all time favorite posts. It went super viral.) Though at first, when I started the blog, I was nervous about my writing and my taste (or curation), after a while everything became second nature.

Though I can’t tell you what kind of products I’m going to launch first, under the brand name Skylar Yoo, I can tell you that I’m back working with artists. I have so much respect for creatives, I truly think they’re going to be the leaders of tomorrow.

This blog has changed from being a personal one to a photography based one to a fashion one. Now, I think I’m going to go back to making it personal, sort of like a diary. I hope you don’t mind the change. I’ll post about how Skylar Yoo is coming along, I’ll tell you about my family and I’ll share with you what’s inspiring me these days. Fun Links of the Week (on Fridays) will no longer exist but I’ll post in real time what I think is really cool.

I’ve been juggling between five books these days. One of them that I’m really enjoying right now is called Making Ideas Happen. It’s by Scott Belsky, founder of the art site Behance. (In 2012, he sold the company to Adobe for an estimated $150 million.) On a side note, when I was back at the Met, we actually emailed back and forth a few times. I felt like I was this teeny bopper fan of this big celebrity.

Belsky spent six years studying the habits of hundreds of successful creative people and he developed some really interesting insights. One of them was that everyone should organize their life as a series of projects and that we should manage those projects with a bias towards action. We have to always be moving forward in order to execute on an idea. Another takeaway from the book is this: Making Ideas Happen = (Ideas) + Organization & Execution + Communal Forces + Leadership Capability. A key to getting sh*t done is being organized! After reading that I got my Excel and Word sheets going. I need to organize my thoughts! Instead of having all of my ideas and goals swirling around in my head, I type them into neat spreadsheets. It has helped tremendously!

On another note, there’s this cool Kickstarter that’s going on now that’s about a desk organizer. You’re like, really Alice, a desk organizer?! Before you click away, watch the frickin’ video! His goal was $18,000 and he’s now almost at $213,000! I supported it on the spot. Christopher Jobson, the head of the art blog Colossal, tipped me off to the creator’s t-shirts and I ended up buying a few. I think I like the men’s t-shirts more than the women’s. The designer’s name is Jeff Sheldon and his company is called Ugmonk. The clothes are suppose to be super soft. (I got this red ampersand sweatshirt. Can’t wait to live in it.)

One last thing. Here are the four things I bought on the Colossal Shop this week. I’d been eyeing them for quite some time. Love my miniature spring forest, galaxy lollipops, color wheel pendant, and Colossal mugs (these are nice and big, perfect for your morning coffee). The mugs are half price right now.

Ok, that’s all for now. Be back again soon! Have a super duper awesome weekend.

Art by Christopher David Ryan.

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