behind the genius: sydney bright
Sydney is so Bright! Her name is a perfect description of her bubbly, fun, kind personality. She literally lights up rooms with her unapologetically enthusiastic demeanor and princess-esque figure. You almost want to envy her unique combination of zeal and grace, but you can’t because you’ll love her right away. Sydney is her own perfect muse and model for her online vintage shop, Recollect LA. So now, please meet and see inside the mind of my former boss—the well-read style icon behind LA’s coolest little vintage shop.
Tell us about you!
I'm 23, grew up in Michigan, moved to LA at the ripe age of 18, and have worked in the fashion industry now for four and a half years. I'm a hopeless romantic. I write very amateur poetry. I constantly fantasize about living somewhere in the rural countryside, eating, frolicking, and being in love. I’m pretty playful (I looked up "goofy" in the thesaurus and playful sounds nicer, don't ya think?).
What are your career goals / dreams for the future?
Dreams... well, ideally I would like to own a small Recollect shop down the road. Curate it with items from brands I believe in, vintage, art, books and decorate it as I please. I've found as I get older that I love to create spaces. So I'd want to make this shop an environment for people to feel inspired, comfortable, excited, and maybe have small events there. I could go on and on, I just have so many ideas in my head. The concept keeps changing with time :)
What are you excited about lately? (What are you listening to / watching / working on / daydreaming about?)
I've been watching Mad Men (I know i'm late to the game) and Bardot films, like "And God Created Woman." The late 50s and early 60s has intrigued me as of late. Women really played such a specific household role in the early 50s, but come the 60s—this role was questioned. Brigitte Bardot really broke the boundaries of how a "lady" should act. She was unapologetically scantily clad and I love that. Also, the French fashion of this era is a huge source of inspiration for Recollect.
Who do you admire?
Gertrude Stein. To me, she was a force of a woman who brought modern art to the world. She was respected by an entourage of talented men who came to her for advice and accreditation. I fantasize about hanging out in Stein’s parlor with Hemingway, Picasso, Matisse, Fitzgerald…
What does style mean to you?
Style is a way to express an internal feeling outwardly. What's cool is there are infinite ways of doing this. One day you could feel empowered—maybe you wear a pantsuit or blazer. The next you could feel dainty and playful and put on a prairie dress. We're lucky to live in a time where we can wear whatever look we please.
What’s your go-to look lately?
Honestly, I have a bit of an identity crisis in the cold because I LOVE skirts/dresses. I opt for high-waisted denim paired with a sweater (usually one from my Recollect inventory) and I've really enjoyed playing around with hair accessories lately.
What does self care mean to you?
I've found that it is really important to try and stray away from speaking ill words about myself. I read lately that you should try and treat yourself as you would your dearest friend. This really stuck with me as I feel it is SO easy for me to be self-deprecating. Even in a humorous way. I think it’s important to try and be kinder to myself with my thinking and words. I know when I do this, the rest of the obvious self-care stuff will follow (you know.. the working out, masking, eating healthier, drinking more water type stuff).
What does sustainability mean to you?
Sustainability is very important to me. Ironically, I work in an industry that adds to a lot of the worlds waste. But, I feel since I am so close to it, it's my responsibility to understand more about it and make an impact where I can. A big part of starting Recollect LA was due to my daily thoughts on garment waste. Buying and wearing vintage is a great way to reduce. There's already SO much out there. You really can have a large impact by reusing, re-wearing, and "recollecting" clothes from the past. Yeah, that’s my shameless plug. ;)