We had the good fortune of connecting with Kat Of LA and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kat Of LA, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
Hi my name is Katia Valencia aka Kat of LA. I am from a small border town in Yuma, AZ. I am proud to be Mexican American living in South Florida. My upbringing was not perfect but simply amazing. As being first generation Latina, the oldest out of 3 kids and the prettiest and the only girl. Since day one I always had responsibilities like translating to my parents and grandparents from English to Spanish, babysitting, learning to cook for my cousins, booking vacations and car rentals since I was 9 years old and learning to work with a budget. I am so thankful for all those lessons now. Let’s just say that being from a small town there was very little to do. I had a lot of time to play with makeup and hair. Hard work, integrity, respecting others, being punctual, being strong in my choices, we’re also being taught at an early age. They also taught me that people are different and have different beliefs, to be kind to others was one of the greatest things they taught me.. My upbringing has made who I am today and part of me being successful is growing up with an open mind and hard work ethic. Thank you to Nacho and Betty for all the tough love.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My journey hasn’t been easy but it’s been amazing. My secret to success is simple, first it’s knowing your dreams, knowing your why, putting all the hard work and never giving up. Also knowing your purpose in life always leads you in the right direction. Being from a border town I always dreamed of living in the city. I knew as an 18 year old when I left home that it won’t be easy but it would be worth it. See, if you want something you go for it, you dream it, visualize it and think of how bad you want it. I always wanted to bring the best side of everyone and show them the best version of themselves. Through living in multiple cities like Phoenix, Las Vegas, LA and Miami has made me grow so much in my career. It has made my work very diverse, like getting to know and understand different cultures I have developed a way in which I can provide my services of hair/makeup and build a connection. I love to bring the best out of everyone. Feeling great and confident in your own skin is priceless. I been so fortunate to work with CEO’s, entrepreneurs, top models , celebrities and everyday people. Through time I have created a way not to only provide a service but an unforgettable experience. Living and working in the hustle and bustle city of LA really taught me about delivering an unforgettable experience. When I work with clients, production companies or events I take pride in delivering professional, and customized services. I listen to the needs of the project, to be punctual and be open to others opinions. Moving to South Florida, starting all over, and couple months later going to a global pandemic has been one of my toughest years, but it hasn’t stopped me. I been so fortunate to be freelancing in the city of Miami after only being here for over a year. A lot of my jobs, projects and referrals have come from other artists, clients and production staff. Kat of LA just got started and can’t wait to see what 2021 has in store for me! I can’t wait to glam you and best is yet to come!

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
A chill fun weekend in Miami would begin by starting out my Friday night with a visit to iconic Calle Ocho for Cuban food and night out Ball & Chain. This is a perfect place to experience the Cuban culture and eat delicious food. Saturday morning I would start my morning with some Cuban coffee, I would plan a day out in the beach or would lay out by the pool. Florida is known to be the Sunshine State. Later in the night I would make dinner reservations at the Versace Mansion for dinner and drinks. Don’t forget to dress to impress. This place is a great place for Instagram photos. Sunday brunch is my favorite activity and day out of the week. I would highly recommend making reservations at R House Wynwood ! You’re in for a show of a lifetime. The food and entertainment at R House Wynwood are unforgettable. After brunch I would take the time to explore the Wynwood Walls. The art murals are out of this world. I would also recommend to stop at Miami Mojito Company for a classic mojito! Well I hope this helps and have the best time in the 305!!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Shout out goes to my parents for being the best they can be. Teaching me life lessons that has made me who I am today . And a shout out also goes to my husband and best friend. My husband Bryan Connolly has always believed in me and my dreams. He’s my number one supporter. Even in my low moments in life he has been there on my side. Through the pandemic and the move to South Florida this past year, he’s been the biggest supporter. Starting and building a clientele in a new city hasn’t been easy but Bryan has made it better for me! We are also in business with each other, we run a successful Airbnb Casa De Connolly in South Florida in addition to our careers. Having a solid relationship, connection and both of us being ambitious entrepreneurs inspires me everyday to keep going.

Website: www.katofla.com

Instagram: lakatofla

Image Credits
Lindsay Carlisle Boudoir

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutMiami is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.