We had the good fortune of connecting with Briana Lewis and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Briana, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
When I began to realize that working a 9-5 was not fulfilling me. Even though I work in the fashion/retail industry as a visual stylist, which was what I initially wanted when I entered the workforce after graduating college, I began to notice that I was just looking for something more. I was looking for more freedom and more control over my time and my freedom to create what I wanted and how I wanted to. I knew to achieve this I would have to begin the process of building my own brand and business and figuring out what route I would take. I combined my passions and interests and hobbies and realized that I wanted to create my own business as a fashion and content creative and create a fashion and lifestyle blog and begin to enhance my social media content.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I created bristhetic.com as a way to share my personal style and passion for fashion with others and to inspire others. I also share on lifestyle and beauty topics as well. I believe I’m different in that I try not to keep pushing the same 3 fast fashion brands I’m always looking for new online boutiques or small fashion brands and designers and minority designers with cool items to share.
If you’re wondering what my blog name “Bristhetic” came about it’s a merge of my name and the word aesthetic. Bristhetic means “All things concerned with Bri’s appreciation for fashion, beauty, lifestyle and art”. I’ve just always resonated with the word aesthetic. I’m just always seeking things that are aesthetically pleasing to the eye. And as a fashion blogger and content creator, having a certain aesthetic and common theme guiding your work makes it easier for people to recognize you, your work and style.
As a new blogger and content creator I know that there is still room for growth and more work ahead of me to reach my brand goals but at the same time that’s what I’m most excited about.
Me being a 27 year old African American women its not often that I see many mainstream content creators and fashion bloggers that look like me and I would hope to be a part of making a difference in that and that excites me. I already like to find new, small and black owned fashion brands and designers to support and I often share in my blog when I do so I am working on creating a page on my blog to highlight and share any new and upcoming black owned fashion, beauty or lifestyle brands that I find and I can’t wait to launch it. Hopefully by the end of the year. Being able to do things like that and hopefully make a difference for someone else like me trying to make a name in the fashion world excites me.
Right now what makes me most proud was just having the courage to start. I’ve talked about starting my own blog for a while but sometimes doubt, procrastination, self criticism and fear of judgement kicks in. But I got passed it and believed in my abilities and the feedback I have been getting from friends, strangers and different brands has been great! My launch date was better than I expected and I know if I stay consistent and keep growing a genuine following will continue to grow .
I believe that there isn’t much of anything in this life that is worth doing if it is easy. All the speed bumps and challenges we face a long our paths only build character and help us to grow and learn. With that being said things have not been easy for me along my journey especially when it comes to my business path yet I try to embrace the challenges even when it is uncomfortable. Me being a spiritual person and focusing on faith helps to just always focus on finding the solution and finding the light at the end of the tunnel knowing ill come out stronger and victorious in the end. Working a 9-5 in retail as a visual merchandiser and trying to balance getting my brand kicked off, creating content and affording clothing and bills and a social life all on my own is not easy but I keep pushing. Once I realized I wanted to be my own boss and create my own business/brand I knew there would be challenges but I was ready to face them knowing my passion and knowing it would be worth in the end.
The main thing I’ve learned so far is that consistency and discipline is key in life and especially when you’re up against the forever changing social media algorithms. Yes I love to create content for social media outlets but I like my main focus to be on my blog because I learned that it is my own and I have control and if social media comes crashing down one day I will still have that space filled with all my content to call my own. At the end of the day no matter what consistency is key when trying to gain and keep a hold of a genuine audience.
My main goal is not to be just another fashion blogger pushing the same fast fashion brands all the time or designer items but to expose my audience to the many different outlets there are to creating your own style that makes them look and feel fashionable and beautiful. I hope to inspire others with my story and create a lifestyle that is also an inspiration. I believe that bloggers and content creators I have really changed the game on how brands advertise and market and this has truly become a career option that is freeing, creative and not a regular 9-5 and I want to just show this to others.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I love this question because my good friend I have kind of curated a Miami bucket list for ourselves filled with restaurants to try and places to see. Its kind of funny because we have both lived here all of our lives but there is always new things and places popping up in Miami to try,
Whenever my friends from college come in to town my go to spot to take them for good food, drinks and events is Wynwood. I feel like every time I go (which is pretty often) There is always some new restaurant or entertainment to try out. Its hard to pick my favorite place to eat in Wynwood but some of my favorites are Dukunoo Jamaican Kitchen, 1-800-Lucky and Salty Donut. The nightlife in Wynwood is always a good time as well and I love taking my friends to Wood Tavern or Brick, the music is always really good in both places,
Another place I like to take visitors is the Miami Design District. The great Art and Architecture of the area is always great for sight seeing and photo opp and the designer shops are beautiful. There are also a lot of nice ice cream shops in the area. My favorite is Aubi Ramsa for the simple fact that they have combined my two favorite things, alcohol and ice cream!
Everyone that visits always wants to soak up some of the Miami sun and we either end up hitting up the beach at South Pointe or going out on a boat.
I would also suggest some of the variety of nice restaurants here for dinner. Here are some of my favorites
-Dolores but You Can Call Me Lolita
-Red Rooster Overtown
-Crazy About You
-Kiki on the River
-Amara at Paraiso
I would also take them to places like the Wharf and Brickell City Centre
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would have to say my mother. As an only child to a single mother I have watched her work so hard to make sure I have everything I needed and wanted. She is a huge part of what motivates me to keep trying and going everyday. My mother is also a huge part of where my love for fashion and styling comes from. She was a fashionista herself in her day and it rubbed off on me. I just always remember when I was smaller that for any event or outing or place I was going I just always had to get a new outfit. And she always made sure I looked good before I left the house and taught me how to dress and be stylish and we would shop for clothes she always encouraged me to choose something that was different. And to this day every time I’m going out I always find a reason to buy a new outfit!