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The Carolinas Most Stylish 2015

BRIDGETTE E. WRIGHT Editor in Chief Creative Director ERIN L. HUBBS Design Director BETH BOUKNIGHT Triangle Market Editor TOMRIS MCDANIEL Charleston Market Editor BRITTANY LAPIN Special Events Coordinator / Editorial Assistant BRINKLEY NICOLE MOORE

Published by STYLE Media, LLC 15105 John J. Delaney Drive Suite 177 Charlotte, NC 28277 704. 313. 8102








is t Styl s o M as a ro l i n C e h T

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Welcome to The Most Stylish Book From the Editor Masthead Fashion Editorials: Charleston, Charlotte, Raleigh Travel: The Great Escape Carolinas 75 Most Stylish


“Style is bravery, hard work, determination, ingenuity, creativity, innovation and daring to be true to yourself.� ~Bridgette Wright

From the Editor



When we let the public know we were looking for the Carolinas 75 Most Stylish, we received a flood of submissions from people who thought themselves or their friends should be selected based on their appearance. While style most certainly has a great deal to do with outward appearances, this isn’t that type of list. Well, not entirely. For the purpose of this Carolinas 75 Most Stylish list, style is more than mere appearances. Style is bravery, hard work, determination, ingenuity, creativity, innovation and daring to be true to yourself. When you flip through the pages of this book I know there will be at least one story that captivates you, a story of inspiration and courage. Though all 75 are stylish in their own right, there is one common thread throughout: our Most Stylish have worked very hard to achieve the level of success they have accomplished to date. In one way or another they faced obstacles in their path and overcame them with great victory. They didn’t let what they didn’t have, stop them for what they wanted. In fact, it may have even been the inspiration for creating their admirable path. Our parent company, STYLE Media, has celebrated the Most Stylish since 2008 and each year, I have to omit a few well deserving people because of their association to the magazine. For example, our Creative Director Erin Hubbs is brilliant, a passionate artist and one of the most dedicated people I know. Tomris McDaniel, our Triangle Market Editor is a stylish new mom with a one-of-a-kind personality and a work ethic that is hard to find in this business. Beth Bouknight is our Design Director and without her talent, commitment and enthusiasm, the pretty pages of this book would not be possible. What is your style? What is it about you that makes you unique? Whether it’s fashionable, beautiful, marketable, parental, or just simply dependable always be true to your personal style. Thank you for reading this book. May you always draw a tidbit of inspiration each time you read it. Cheers, Bridgette Wright Editor-in-Chief


Photography, Catherine Ann Photography Hair/Makeup, Pink Dot Beauty Bar Styling, Brittany Lapin

1175 Folly Road, Suite B Charleston, SC 29412 t ` 843.974.4383

1739 MAYBANK HWY, SUITE E, CHARLESTON, SC | (843) 414 - 7061 |



Featuring Southern Protocol Boutique, Maddison Row, Gown Boutique of Charleston, Fabulous Frocks, Gwynn’s of Mt. Pleasant, Peyton William, Moon & Lola and Croghan’s Jewel Box

Photographer: Clay Austin Stylists: Brittany Lapin & Alden deHart Hair/Makeup: Ashley Fisher of Ash & Co Bridal Hair Hair/Makeup Assistant: Holly Pesterfield Floral Design: WildFlowers Inc. Location: Charles Towne Landing

GOWN& GLORY This summer, go long with a glorious gown at your next formal. From a beaded bodice to i on per e t or t e dan e oor t ese o ns ill ake you eel like t e li e o t e party Photographer - Erin L. Hubbs eatured esi ner ika or als

Jewelry - Jewelology Makeup Artist elly oulter Model eta ru Hair Stylist - Michelle Dianne

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COLOR CODE Stylist/Creative Director: Tomris McDaniel Photography: Ernesto Sue

Floral dress, MSK Jewelry, Moon & Lola

Hairologist, Demetra Angelis Makeup Artist, Amani Asad Model, Mara Wuliger Photography Assistant, James Thomas Jewelry, Moon & Lola

Jacket, Jones New York Dress, French Connection Jewelry, Moon & Lola

Fringe top, Michael Kors Skirt, French Connection Sunglasses & Jewelry, Moon & Lola

Shorts, Trina Turk Top, Vince Camuto Jewelry, Moon & Lola

Floral romper, Trina Turk

Green Dress, DVF Jewelry, Moon & Lola



For our travel story this season, we selected a destination that has transformed their resort to ensure you have one of the most remarkable experiences you will never forget. by: Bridgette Wright

Ocean Links Golf Course

A great destination for helping workaholics relax the 1,350-acre Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort is nestled at the tip of a barrier island off the Northeast Florida coast surrounded with sparkling Atlantic waters and lush salt marshlands. Still basking in the glow of an $85 million re- imagination project, your eye is immediately drawn to the infinity-edged pool with stunning ocean views once you step inside the hotel lobby. With 404 oceanfront rooms in the new Oceanside wing and the rejuvenated Sunrise wing, the resort offers a total of 600 beds and 27 suites, including the new End Suites that feature wrap-around porches and offer endless views of the Atlantic coastline. Presidential Suites, Executive Suites and Corner Suites are offered for a large lodging experience. Each room blends beach blues and greens with natural elements to create a “beachy not kitschy” feel. The guest rooms feature unparalleled views of sunrise and sunset, from the ocean to the marsh. Looking over the resort from Oceanside and Sunrise, the islandʼs lush green tree canopy blankets the island, hiding the villas, neighborhoods and activities below.

Walling wrote on a cocktail napkin has since evolved into an experience that offers diverse flavors and a rich history as vacationers sip and dip enjoying the beautiful ambiance of Florida’s unspoiled Atlantic coastline. MARSH VIEW BAR & GRILL The Marsh View Bar and Grill is the place where you can grab a quick breakfast before tee-off or sit down for a low-country boil on the large deck overlooking the ninth hole of the Oak Marsh course. A naturally inviting space, showcasing views of brilliant sunsets over the lush marshlands, the southern-inspired casual fare welcomes long conversations into the evening. The new 5,000 square-foot deck offers a fire pit to share an unforgettable experience under a stunning canopy of live oaks.

SUNRISE CAFÉ A morning favorite, the Sunrise Café features local fruits, fresh baked pastries, organic cereals, made to order cage-free egg omelets, maple- blueberry organic sausage and the “Honey Hive” featuring organic Florida honey dripping from combs harvest from the resortʼs on-property apiary. Overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and the 6th green of the Ocean Links golf course, Sunrise challenges the traditional breakfast THE SPROUTING PROJECT What was once just a seedling of an idea has now fare and features the “Art of Breakfast” with indoor blossomed into the resort’s newest offering. “The and terrace dining available. Sprouting Project” consists of a state-of-the-art OCEAN LINKS aquaponic greenhouse, an expansive organic garden, The greens and fairways are carefully placed between a large collection of beehives. Omni Amelia Island Spanish moss-covered oaks, bordering the ocean, Plantationʼs Executive Chef, Daven Wardynski heralds marshes and wooded interior of the island. Winding the conception of the greenhouse as his legacy to the along lagoons and sand dunes and featuring views of resort. In his desire to bring the freshest foods possible the Atlantic, the 6,300-yard Ocean Links course boasts he has managed to create a chefʼs playground while five seaside golf holes. Narrow fairways and prevailing remaining true to his Michigan farm boy roots. Just a seawinds provide exhilarating views while increasing year old The Sprouting Project is quickly becoming a difficulty. At par 70, the 18-hole oceanfront course guest favorite; providing ingredients to the resortʼs ten challenges golfers at all levels. Ocean Links was ranked restaurants and lounges including Florida palmetto as Golf Digestʼs No. 1 Florida course for women golfers. honey dripping from the comb and organic Satsuma jam at the “Art of Breakfast” and fresh basil for pesto at THE SPA An alluring hideaway tucked beneath the grand Natural Slice. Florida oaks, you are instantly transformed into a state RUM + TEQUILA EXPERIENCE of relaxation upon entering the full- service luxury Possibly one of the most educational and entertaining spa, housing 16 treatment rooms. As soothing music experiences you will have on the island, this unique floats through the air, visitors sip herbal teas in the poolside journey, the Rum + Tequila Experience tranquil lounge. Offering floor-to-ceiling windows, is guided by the resort’s knowledgeable staff. the spa lounge overlooks the private gardens and Taste handcrafted flights created from more than glassy lake surrounding the nature-inspired spa. 100 selections of premium rum and tequila. After After rejuvenating treatments cross a wooden bridge, traveling to Mexico and the Caribbean, previous to the Spa Treehouse, built with inspiration from its Food & Beverage Director Chris Walling became a natural setting. For an idyllic yoga retreat, breathe connoisseur of rum and tequila curating his favorite easy while practicing deep yoga poses and tree top spirits including Blancos, Reposados, Anejos and meditation. Yogis preferring to embrace the island Platinum tequila. What began as an effortless concept enjoy oceanfront classes on the resortʼs private beach. Plan your visit at

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The largest pooldeck in Northeast Florida

Spa Meditation Garden

TODD ALBAUM Thanks to this local pioneer, full figured women are no longer left out of the fashion scene. Todd Albaum is the owner of Scarlett Plus Boutique in the South Park area of Charlotte. egarded as an expert in plus si e fashion, Albaum designs custom, made to measure clothing for his clients. e helps women understand their body type and the fit that works best for their figure. Albaum believes teaching women that when proportion and proper fit come together, it changes the way you feel about yourself. e subscribes to the mantra no matter what si e you are, you deserve to feel beautiful . As a result, he was included in a Full Figured Fashion series published in SA Today which featured Academy Award Winner o Nique on the cover and other leaders in the full figured fashion movement. Now women of all shapes and si es can have another reason to fall in love with themselves just the way they are.

Written by Bridgette Wright Photo by Erin . ubbs

GREGORY ALBERT Whether you want a small custom piece or Rihanna’s 2015 Met Gala gown, look no further than furrier Gregory Albert, owner of the highly esteemed, family owned business, Douglas ert berg ontaldo s Furs. As a fifth-generation furrier, Albert’s roots are connected to the tailor and furrier to the Czar of Russia. At an early age, Albert was destined to continue the legacy, starting off by cleaning the family s store in ichmond, A, doing deliveries at age 1 , then finally beginning a furrier apprenticeship shortly after. Today Albert has locations in Charlotte and Raleigh and services more than 35 satellite locations in the Southeast, including the Charleston, SC area. The Charlotte store, Douglas & Montaldo’s Furs, has the only certified fur cold storage vault in the greater Charlotte area. D Furs also boasts the largest new and used fur inventory in the Carolinas.

Written by: Jessica Smith Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs



Heather Allen is the author of Let Your Creativity Work for You: How to Turn Artwork into Opportunity and founder of Art Business Strategy + Access, a program designed to empower artists with business and digital marketing savvy to cultivate collectors worldwide. She speaks to artists, business professionals and students about marketing, branding, the creative process and creativity in entrepreneurship. She offers consulting, strategy, tools and resources to artists who want to prosper in their careers. She has collaborated with a number of organizations including a media-sponsored Summer Artist Speaker Series, and co-facilitates a monthly art salon and roundtable.

Written by: Lawrence Spivey

DEMETRA D-SPOT ANGELIS Demetra Angelis wanted to offer an alternative to people searching for a professional and innovative stylist who could provide head to toe, beginning to end services for any event. In the Spring of 2014 The D-Spot was born, a concept that offers image enhancement and reinvention. Angelis has provided on site styling for music videos, maga ines and other major projects creating sultry oaring Twenties flapper looks to 1950’s wholesome imaging. Her mission is to listen and create, giving each client the individual attention he or she deserves to achieve that special look, a look and an attitude that speaks from the mind and pulsates from the heart. Angelis has participated in projects in the USA, England, Cyprus, Sweden and Greece. She prides herself on positive, stress-free professionalism and is also the recipient of two NCA Awards and one OMC Award. Written by: Tomris McDaniel Photo by Tina Pfaeffle

ANNA ELISE BOWMAN She trains, performs, and teaches a variety of movement art forms including pole, aerial hoop, hand balancing, weight lifting and flexibility enhancement. Trained at Gymstrada, alongside former teammate and Olympic Gold Medalist Gabrielle Douglas, gymnastics has shown to remain a constant foundation throughout Anna Elise Bowman s career as a movement artist. She started gymnastics at age three and has competed most of her life. She has won numerous awards in the Pole Championship Series, an elite competition for professional pole athletes. n addition to competing and personal training at Pole Play Fitness, Bowman is also training for NBC’s American Ninja Warrior television show, where competitors tackle the world s most difficult obstacle course.

Written by Tomris


TARA BELLE Our Instagram feed became a bit more stylish once we clicked her follow button. Originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Tara Belle moved to Charleston and landed her dream job as buyer and stylist for a local boutique in Mt. Pleasant. After being in the business for over ten years, Belle chose the admirable stay-at-home mom career following the birth of her first son. But, after having her second son, she was ready to jump back into the fashion business creating her personal style blog, Northern Lights-Southern Belles. Blogging has been the perfect creative outlet for Belle, allowing her to combine her two loves of styling and storytelling, while continuing her stay-at-home mom journey. Northern Lights-Southern Belles has become one of Charleston’s most recognizable and successful fashion blogs. She has worked with countless local boutiques as well as bigger brands such as Belk and S’Well Bottles. Belle recently welcomed a third son and will continue blogging and sharing her love of style with her readers.

Written by: Elizabeth Hendricks Photo by: Marie Rodriguez

SEAN BROCK Chef Sean Brock doesn’t just cook meals - he creates a one of a kind dining experience that foodies simply can’t resist. The thought and preparation of his meals happen long before they hit the table, or the kitchen for that matter. He grows a number of heirloom crops ( including James Island Red Corn aka “Jimmy Red”, from which he makes grits) and cares deeply about the way animals are treated before they become food. He’s a partner at three restaurant concepts in Charleston, one of which can also be found in Nashville, the other in Atlanta. Brock cooks food in the dining room fireplaces at cCrady s, which represents the best of new Southern fine dining. usk is just down the street from cCrady s, only serving food that is indigenous to the South, where Brock boasts “If it ain’t Southern, it ain’t walkin’ in the door.” n October 01 , Brock opened a third restaurant, inero, inspired by the flavors and culture of exico. Brock s abilities have resulted in a number of awards and accolades, being featured in Bon Appétit, GQ and Esquire magazines, appearing on Iron Chef America, Anthony Bourdain’s The Mind of a Chef on PBS and hosting the prestigious Cook It Raw event in Charleston. is first cookbook, eritage Artisan Books), was released in October 2014 and is a New York Times bestseller.

Written by: Bridgette Wright Photo by: Christin Olive Photography

SAMANTHA BUSCH Maintaining a healthy lifestyle while living life on the road as a NASCAR wife can be difficult, but with her experience in fitness and healthy eating, Samantha Busch inspires us all. er lavish 010 wedding to NASCA driver yle Busch was captured by the Style Network cameras and aired in arch 011. A former model Busch is now an integral part of yle Busch otorsports and the yle Busch Foundation, which supports children s homes in the Charlotte metro area. As we watch her stay committed to a healthy lifestyle, run multiple businesses and be a devoted wife and new om, we are also in awe that she still has time to devote to her self-titled blog.

Written by Brianna Ba emore Photo courtesy of Samantha Busch

ELLIOT CARLYLE One peek at his Instagram account and you’ll see this man of style is one of many talents. Elliot Carlyle is President of Elliot Carlyle Unlimited, a name that says it all. He is an event planner, speaker, publicist, brand manager, writer, and fashion show producer. During Elliott’s tenure in the public relations & entertainment industry, he has worked with a number of A-list entertainment clients and multimillionaire business executives. In complement to producing his own shows, Elliot has worked with renowned fashion weeks in New York, Atlanta and the Carolinas including Baker Motor Company Charleston Fashion Week. He is often chosen as a keynote speaker, and panelist most recently including the Fashion 360 Conference© produced by District Fete and PR RelatedTM for which Elliot serves as a national instructor teaching e-courses on Fashion PR & Marketing. In June of 2015, Elliot launched The Kingdom Technology Institutes, which is the faith-based division of Elliot Carlyle Unlimited.

Written by: Bridgette Wright Photo by: Leigh Moose & Ozzy Ojito

EMILY CLARK Interior Decorator and Blogger Emily A. Clark is not your typical designer. Self admittedly reluctant to pick up a power tool or re-upholster a chair, Clark’s take on interior design is effortlessly chic. The mother of five is the perfect hybrid of an interior design professional and a practical business woman. Sharing easy and attainable ideas on her blog,, Clark has garnered serious attention from popular print and online publications. Both her previous and current homes have been featured in Better Homes & Gardens and Better Homes & Gardens Refresh. Since the creation of her blog in 00 , Clark has served as a design expert for and has been featured by Conde Nast Traveler,, Style Me Pretty Living and e Hu fin ton Post Earning collaborations with companies such as Pottery Barn ids and ome Goods, Clark has become the epitome of success and style.

Written by essica Smith


CONGLETON Michelle has always had an eye on the fashion industry. Born in North Carolina and raised in the Triangle she returned to her Raleigh roots after completing her Master’s Degree in Counseling at East Carolina University and eventually earning her law degree at North Carolina Central University. She established Congleton Law in Downtown Raleigh in 2007. In December 2009 she founded Models for Charity, an organization of professional men and women in the Triangle who raise money for other local charities. Her model team consists of local business owners and entrepreneurs who share a common goal of using their talents (and good looks) to benefit Triangle charities through fashion show fundraisers and service projects.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel

CRAIG CONOVER Whether it s in the office or out in a new city, Craig Conover has a reputation of being the person you want to be with. After graduating law school from the Charleston School of aw in 01 , he has taken some time off to study for his Bar Exam while enjoying. Charleston s nightlife. Whether it s modeling, taking the boat out, or enjoying his status in the city, Conover s biggest priority in life is still to become a gladiator in the courtroom. e grew up on the eastern shore of Delaware and comes from an incredibly athletic family. owever, Conover s athletic career was shattered after a sport s ending elbow injury. So after winning a National Championship in a high school business competition, he set his sights on one day owning law firms across the country. Conover also believes in the importance of giving back and does so through the Special Olympics Organi ation and by doing pro bono work for struggling children and their families through the Guardian ad item program.

Photo by Stan Foxworthy

KEITH CRADLE This six-time award winning community leader, White Plains, NY native, and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. member is no stranger to service and aiding the youth. Keith E. Cradle is the Adolescent Program Manager for the Mecklenburg County Sheriff s Office, serves on the Board of Directors for The Bechtler useum, Carolina Voices, Inspire the Fire, and the Juvenile Crime Prevention Council. He’s been blazing the path of community service for years as Cradle previously sat on the Board of Directors for ands on Charlotte, the Charlotte Advisory Committee for the Knight Foundation and the Ada Jenkins Center. Can you say man about his mission? His involvement in these organizations and his outstanding niche for community service has enabled him to create his own philanthropic endeavor, the The Journey Arts Foundation which sponsors visits to cultural arts events for low income and at-risk youth in the Charlotte community. But it s not all work for Cradle. You can spot him vacationing abroad or yachting locally and he is always dressed for the occasion.

Written by Brianna Ba emore Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs

CASEY CRESPO She’s worked on the wildly creative costumes in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland and the sleek designer suits in Iron Man 3, both projects essential to her development as a designer. Casey Crespo is the third generation in her family to work in the garment industry. Her grandmother owned a bridal boutique where she made dresses and her dad oversaw production for the Catalina swimsuit company. As a child, a bag of scraps of swimsuit fabric was her favorite toy. Crespo got her first sewing machine at age 11 and was self-taught until learning more advanced technical skills while attending UNCG. Since launching her clothing line in 2012 she’s won notable recognition including being named Raw: Raleigh’s Fashion Designer of the Year in 2013, Wilmington Fashion Week’s Designer of the Year in 2014, and showing a collection at Charleston Fashion Week in 2015. Her design genres include high end custom clothing and her largest selling item, high waisted leggings, available in her line, Crespo Yoga. Written by: Tomris McDaniel Photo by: Victor Giarrusso

DANIEL DAVIS What does Barack Obama, Kanye West and Oprah Winfrey have in common? When they sought a violinist for their celebratory events, they called Carolina-based contemporary violinist Daniel Davis. A renowned musician, Davis first drew a bow across the strings of a violin at 12 years old. After graduating from the Charleston School of the Arts he immediately went on tour to pursue his passion further. Over the years Davis has produced four noteworthy albums and had a single land on the Indie Charts. Sought to celebrate many worthy occasions with dignitaries, icons, and celebrities he has amassed a growing international fan base, captivating audiences with both original songs and his rendition of popular radio hits. In Charleston he is an annual featured artist at the MOJA Festival and travels across the country performing solo, with his D.J., or with his band on televisions shows and sold out venues.

Written by: Bridgette Wright Photo by: CS Nelson Photography

ZASS DESIGNS Zulay & Steph the mother-daughter duo of Zass Designs are happy to call Raleigh, North Carolina home, where they have spent the last 17 years teaching themselves how to make jewelry & perfecting their craft. Their focus is redefining the overlooked and typically recycled objects into classic upcycled accessories. Zass Designs breathes new life into all the pieces that the duo creates. They not only want to educate the public on becoming environmentally savvy, but to also create products that will live on. As purveyors of handmade jewelry from up-cycled materials, they knew there had to be a way to continue the life of such unique + overlooked material without just throwing them in the recycling bin with yesterday’s newspaper. They paired some outside the box thinking with the Graphic Design degrees earned in their professional careers and started making earrings, necklaces, and bracelets with the vibrant prints that were once magazine pages. Their philosophy in every creation is to respect the environment and the fundamental principles of eco-design: reduce, reuse, recycle. Every piece has a history, a starting point. Each piece is individual with a unique past, present and a future story of its own.

Photo by: Zaire Kacz Written by: Brittany Maiava

BETHANY DIFFEY Bethany Diffey is a personal style blogger and creator of B Soup. The New Jersey native started her blog as a creative outlet and has since been featured on numerous other fashion blogs and media outlets including Lucky Magazine. As fate would have it this fashionista had no idea what fashion blogging was until she started her own in March 2011, but she has since gone on to build a great foundation of supporters admiring her witty humor, D tutorials and of course her abundance of outfit posts you will see everything from neon to stripes to florals to A-line skirts . There is nothing this blonde bombshell can’t pull off.

Written by: Brianna Bazemore

TJ DUNN TJ Dunn is an image consultant and the visionary behind Wilmington Fashion Week. He works with local boutique owners and fellow creatives to cultivate the fashion scene in the coastal city. After studying business management in Atlanta, he moved to Wilmington with his wife (and college sweetheart) to enjoy life at the beach. Noticing an opportunity to help bolster the fashion scene in Wilmington he quickly got to work to pair his business experience with his love of fashion. In addition to launching Wilmington Fashion Week, Dunn is the Co-Founder and Chief Fashion Officer of Wilmington Fashion; and Vice Chair Shop Committee of Wilmington Downtown, Inc. In addition to contributing fashion content to various publications, Dunn is also a guest speaker for Dress for Success.

Written by: Lawrence Spivey, Sr. Photo by: Indigosilver Studio

JESS EKSTROM “Every purchase helps.” This is the motto at Headbands of Hope, a fashion forward brand that proves giving is always in style. Jess Ekstrom is the founder and CEO of this college start up which boasts a beautiful collection of headbands created to raise funds for childhood cancer research. During a summer internship at a nonprofit Ekstrom discovered girls loved to wear headbands after losing their hair to chemotherapy. She created a collection of various designs from stylish chiffon floral patterns to couture pieces and active wear. When customers purchase a headband, Ekstrom gives one dollar to a cancer research partner and one fun floral headband to a girl with cancer. Headbands of Hope has donated over 25,000 headbands and has been featured on the Today Show, Vanity Fair and Seventeen Magazine. Ekstrom is also the author of The Freshman Fabulous: The Girl’s Guide to College and spends her free time speaking on college campuses and to companies.

Written by: Brittany Maiava

CRAIG EVANS Home is where the heart is and this could not be any truer for entrepreneur Craig Evans. Born in Atlanta, raised in the Carolinas, Evans had an extensive career in advertising working with big names such as ESPN, Volkswagen, and MasterCard. Longing for a way to merge his advertising acumen with his southern roots, Evans became the mastermind behind Y’allsome, the ultimate lifestyle brand offering Southern- inspired products such as hats, prints, and shirts that also give back in a big way. Working with Southern suppliers, Y’allsome donates their net proceeds to help Southern foster kids find permanent homes. Evans proves fashion and philanthropy go hand in hand.

Written by: Kourtney Pope Photo by: Andrea Behrends

CHASSITY EVANS She’s a blogger, Charleston dweller, wife, and mother.She’s Chassity Evans of the lifestyle blog Look Linger Love. She rarely cooks, sometimes works out, always surfs the web and we couldn’t be more obsessed with her. A visit to her daily lifestyle blog is as entertaining as it is informative, reading about Evans’ exploration of her passion for style, interiors, entertaining, french fries and her love/hate relationship with Spanx. Since launching her blog in 2010 Evans’ well-crafted blog and personable writing have earned her the opportunity to work with InStyle, AOL StyleList, Nordstrom, HGTV, Southern Living, Keep, Kate Spade, The Land of Nod, Glitter Guide, Shopbop, and many more.

Written by: Bridgette Wright

CATHERINE FAIN Catherine Fain is an ardent lover of fashion and design, and is a passionate supporter of the creative south. A native of Raleigh, Fain headed to Clemson, South Carolina for college and then on to the University of South Carolina in Columbia for a Masters of Retail degree. She spent several years in the retail industry around the South before returning to aleigh. Now, planted firmly back in her hometown, she s quickly on the rise as a fashion designer and owner of her women s clothing line Ramey Rhodes. Fain is also the editor of the style blog, Southern Arrondissement, and a freelance public relations consultant.

Written by: Bridgette Wright

DERWIN FRIDAY As a man of style, Derwin Friday believes that art can be found in every aspect of life. The musician, producer, composer, entrepreneur and health care professional has made great strides in both the artistic and health care realms. A man of the millennium, Friday is proof that creative potential can never be contained. In 2014 Friday founded a publishing company named Baby Brothers Entertainment and has since released several singles, one of which reached the national Smooth Jazz charts and spent several weeks at the top 40. Outside of his artistic work, Friday is passionate about physical and mental health. A graduate of Eastern Carolina University, he has been active in therapeutic recreation and has been recognized for his work in social services related to mentally disturbed youth. Whether music or healthcare Friday’s work is sure to be soothing the soul.

Written by: Jessica Smith Photo by: Julie Friday

HAPPY &HALE Life is complicated enough. Finding delicious, healthy food shouldn’t be a challenging endeavor. That’s why Matt Whitley and Tyler Helikson created Happy+Hale — to provide fresh, healthy and delicious fuel so you can be the best version of yourself. When we feel healthy, we re confident, we re happy, and we re capable of accomplishing the extraordinary. Matt Whitley and Tyler Helikson met at NC State University. They lost touch after school, but following a few random, yet serendipitous meetings, they reconnected — and saw an opportunity to improve the world, starting on a corner in downtown Raleigh.With a tricycle, an electric golf cart, and a website made overnight, they set out to provide a fast, healthy dining option — and appy ale was born. Today, they re the proud proprietors of a flagship retail shop in the heart of Raleigh, where it all began. Eat to fuel. Eat to live. Eat to be extraordinary. Eat your veggies!

Written by: Tomris McDaniel

Hair and Makeup by: Deme Fourtounis

WHITLEY ADKINS HAMLIN Whitley Adkins Hamlin is a writer, stylist, and the creator of the popular blog the Queen City Style. Growing up in a family that was immersed in the fashion world Hamlin believes that her lineage and her early exposure to fashion are what led her to want to pursue a career in the field. A graduate of The niversity of North Carolina at Chapel ill, amlin formerly served as an assistant to several of the world s top supermodels, stylists and fashion executives after she moved to New ork upon graduating from college. She later returned to the South and became a wife, mother of two and sought after wardrobe stylist with regular appearances as a fashion expert on television. n arch 011 she submitted a story to Lucky Magazine which published and became the catalyst for her blog. A strong believer in giving back to the community, amlin is a co-founder of Warm Charlotte, a charity that provides cold weather items to local shelters and families in need. She is also the regional spokesperson for Goodwill ndustries, nternational. An avid runner, amlin recently completed the Boston arathon, one of her proudest accomplishments.

Written by: Brianna Bazemore Photo by: Zach Alston

EMILY HELM Emily Helm started her life & style blog in 2001 during her sophomore year of college as a creative outlet to share her daily stories and wardrobe selections. She is a graduate of Appalachian State University and works as an Operations Director by day and fashion blogger by night. The Life with Emily blog showcases a collection of fashion, photography, life, and a little bit about Emily herself. She is a lover of fashion, traveling, good books, social media, vanilla lattes, organization, and photography. She always tries to celebrate the little pleasures in life, and is a firm believer that it’s all in the details.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel

MARISSA HEYL It began in a small village in India. Heyl had an ‘aha’ moment while researching her anthropology thesis project assessing the impact of fair trade on artisan women. She visited many women in slums and villages who touched her heart–not by how different their lives were from hers, but how much they shared in common as women. She met Gita, a young mother of three who was able to pay for her children to go to college through the money she made with her fair trade artisan group. As Marissa watched her embroider a mirrorwork tablecloth, she envisioned it as a beautiful dress. Hence the seed was planted for Symbology, an ethical fashion label that fuses artisan textiles with fashion forward designs to bring authentic apparel to the boutique market or as she puts it, fair trade made sexy. Symbology is a way for Heyl to combine her lifelong passion for fashion design and women’s rights.

Written by: Brittany Maiava Photo by: Nicole Santoni of MosaHouse Photography

MITCHELL HILL Downtown Charleston can be so fun and entertaining especially now that the Mitchell Hill Gallery is on King Street. The window alone draws your eye inward, the vast array of colors splashed across the canvas, spilling into an abstract painting is all perfectly curated by design. Mitchell started a pop up shop idea that grew into the permanent space. Being a native of Charleston Mitchell realized that he found a niche that needed to be filled after hosting a month-long charity event which quickly made a name for the Gallery. He later formed Mitchell Hill, a full service interior design firm with his husband, Tyler ill. ill s Texas influence has molded the gallery and design firm in a way that brings western-chic style in unison with city-meets-thesouth. The gallery is a great space to meet and greet with local artists, designers, fellow art collectors and creatives alike.

Written by: Jeanne Everett Photo by: Sarah Miller

LAUREN HOOD Stylish moms have stylish kids and Lauren Hood is the proof in the pudding. After the birth of her daughter ila and more than a decade in nonprofit fundraising, she took a leap of faith and opened P OGEN in 01 , a brick and mortar showroom in the historic Five Points neighborhood of aleigh, Growing up in the south, traditional smocked clothing is the norm for children’s boutiques and big box stores are the goto for play clothes, with little in between. Armed with a list of her favorite brands and a dream to create something different, she opened P OGEN , bringing together an assortment of global children’s brands into one curated collection. The brick and mortar showroom, in the historic Five Points neighborhood of aleigh, NC. The beautiful, light-filled store and an ever-growing website quickly gained loyal customers and has been featured on popular lifestyle blogs.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel Photo by: Gary Meyer

STEWART HOUGH Stewart Hough believes that you can never stop learning, creating, and testing the boundaries in beauty and fashion, and you should also be able to have fun while doing so. Hough is a hair stylist, skin therapist, and makeup artist. As the Director of Hair and Makeup for RR Donnelley & Sons (the company that creates advertisements for the Belk,Inc) Hough has been in the fashion and beauty industry for over 0 years he must have started at age five . ough s work has been featured in multiple publications and campaigns for Rack Room and Off Broadway Shoes. Stewart loves the beauty industry and continues to work, build, and learn more about the industry that has been his home for so many years. A day in the life of a hair and makeup guru may not always be glamorous but Hough makes it beautiful.

Written by: Brianna Bazemore Photo by: Alexander Barrymore

MICHAEL HOY A musician, world traveler, company trader, and all around entrepreneur, Michael Hoy is the Co-founder and CEO of BoomboxFM, a platform where independent and undiscovered musicians can showcase their music directly to fans. In a market where true and unique talent often times goes unheard, BoomboxFM, bridges the gap between these talented artists and the fans that could launch them straight out of obscurity. After subscribing to the services and choosing your music genre, Hoy’s expert curators sends new music through a weekly e-subscription thus connecting new talent with music lovers. Describing his personal style as a convenient convergence of “Euro Warped Tour, 80’s Prom, and Southern Charm,” Hoy combs through about two hundred song submissions a week, a process he describes as incredibly enjoyable.

Written by: Brittany Maiava Photo by: Jessica Berkowitz

REBEKAH JACOB mpeccably curated contemporary fine art and photography is what you ll find at ebekah acob Art Gallery. er self-titled gallery, located in a beautiful historic building on Broad Street in Charleston, features pieces from illustrious southern artists and estates. Never wanting to distract from the art in her gallery, ebekah keeps her style streamlined and chic, often sporting a head-to-toe black ensemble. She adds vintage jewelry and dawns a leopard print shoe when wanting to add stylish elements to an outfit. Other impressive accolades include being a founding board member of the Gibbes useum of Art s Society 1858 and a certified member of the Appraisers Association of America. Some of her favorite designers include elmut ang, Stella cCartney, ason Wu and alph auren. ebekah s sleek personal style and expertise of admirable southern artistry, as well as her passion and dedication to bettering the Charleston art community, makes her one of Charleston s most stylish and respected gallery owners.

Written by essica Bricker Photo by onathan Balliet


MASON JAR The duo at Ole Mason Jar has built a clothing brand that is as stylish as it is functional. Bradley hyne brings his expertise in finance and accounting as co-founder and Chief Executive Officer to Ole ason ar. e is also chief editor for all site content and social media, which also plays to his creative side. Felipe o, Co-Founder, Chief Operating Officer, and Creative Director was born in ong ong and raised in North Carolina. o has traveled the world and studied the art of appearance through studying fashion and trends. Among their many awards and accolades, the best is their mission to give back, donating proceeds from every shirt sold towards feeding an underprivileged family.

Written by: Brianna Bazemore Photo by: Matt Vivanco

SEAN KERNICK Sean brings a mix of social consciousness, inspiration and creative connection to his life as a family man, artist, social organizer, producer, creative director and cofounder of Oak City Hustle. “Family, friendship, and artwork are the pillars that keep my foundation secure. I am always looking to expand and explore all forms of artistic expression.�

Written by: Tomris McDaniel

TIE -MYKNOT Bringing unique expertise in men’s fashion, Tie-My-Knot is a start up that combines current trends, community awareness, and events to create a one of a kind e-commerce experience. Though in existence for just two years Lerone Langston’s networking paired with Kim Nguyen’s design technique has earned the company the opportunity to design bow ties for the Carolina Panthers and Charlotte Hornets organizations. The company allows consumers to rent bow ties weekly as well as purchase previously owned bow ties. Besides their one-of-a-kind bow tie customization process, Tie-My-Knot also offers valet service to help you tie your tie on site. The company is also committed to philanthropy giving 200 customized handmade purple and teal bow ties to the non-profit organi ation The Sandbox and other charities. Tie- y- not has definitely added a new twist to the rental industry, literally speaking.

Written by: Kourtney Pope Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs

SAMI L’AMIR Everybody wants to be a DJ, but not everyone embodies what a truly skilled DJ can do. If you are Sami Automatic you don’t just know how to seamlessly blend all of the right songs together to make the whole crowd shake the floor, you can also put your technical skills against other great D s and come up impressive, soulfully expressive and looking pretty damn good while doing so. Originally from os Angeles, Sami has been a Raleigh native for over a decade. In that time he has destroyed dance floors at every club in aleigh, a few across the country, and a couple across the world. e is an entity in aleigh who people come out specifically to witness and experience a night of his musical magic, fresh flavor and air of coolness. A whole encounter during an “Automatic” session can’t go unnoticing of Sami’s effortless style, his funky hair and ridiculous shoe game.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel Photo by: Chris Nieto

LADIES OF LINEAGE Searching for your bridal gown should be a moment you’ll cherish forever. At adies of ineage you ll find two women redefining the bridal gown shopping experience. Natasha Duff-Cole found her passion for formal wear after studying and establishing a career in textiles and trending. Duff-Cole saw an opportunity to provide an online listing site for women to buy and sell gently-worn wedding dresses. With her business sense and new-found passion, Duff-Cole launched in 00 . With the help of trusted business partner odene Pooler, in April 011, Duff-Cole and Pooler combined forces to open their first retail store front, ineage Bridal. The success of the initial boutique resulted in expansion and the launching of adies of ineage. n 01 , adies of ineage Bridal Boutique s doors were opened in the heart of Charlotte s Dilworth neighborhood and an exquisite bridal experience was born.

Written by: Brianna Bazemore Photo by Old South Studios


MACKENZIE Shauna Mackenzie is a great motivator in helping women feel, look and live their best kept self - in fact, it’s her business. She is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Best Kept Self, an online resource that helps entrepreneurial women be the person they’ve always wanted to be. On her inspirational website, you can sign up for onday morning pep talks or click the stop the madness tab for a confidence boost. Mackenzie also offers a quarterly subscription box service curated by herself and experts in fashion, beauty, career counseling and wellness. Her expertise in communication, personal branding and entrepreneurship has been featured in Hu fin ton Post Ma a ine Mint o areer uilder o and other media outlets. Aside from managing her own businesses, Makenzie also works closely with the South Carolina Women’s Business Center as the program consultant to help advance female entrepreneurs across the state. She is also a regular volunteer for YESCarolina, serving as a business plan competition judge and mentoring students who are preparing for state and national pitch competitions.

Written by: Bridgette Wright


MANAGEMENT Patrick Whalen, Ayman Kamel and Alejandro Torio are well on their way to turning their restaurants, Nan and Byrons and 5Church into national brands. The restaurants boasts an environment where diners can enjoy the combined elements of sophisticated dÊcor, unique food, and a hip staff all in one place. Whalen went from being a busboy in a local establishment to now being a successful restaurateur and businessman. He and Kamel, who was his former boss and mentor, connected with Torio to create one of the tastiest concepts in the south. The trio, who operates as MAP Management, is expanding their brand on social media, posting mouthwatering dishes on Instagram and responding accolades shared by recent diners. They’re also expanding regionally to the Lowcountry, opening 5Church Charleston in 2015.

Written by: Brianna Bazemore Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs

SASHA MANLEY We don’t know if it’s her hair, beautiful skin or picture perfect Instagram page, but we do know we are obsessed with her. Lifestyle and beauty blogger Sasha Manley created her blog Natural HIGH to include an eclectic mix of beauty, DIY guides and personal style inspiration. In fall of 2014, she launched Tea With Sasha, an online video series highlighting area businesses, artists and entrepreneurs. When she’s not busy blogging, anley is on the hunt for one of a kind vintage finds. The literacy advocate also devotes her time with a local non profit organi ations that provide reading and math education to adults and students who have dropped out of high school. A featured guest at various natural hair events, Manley plans to pursue her future plans of acting, traveling and writing her first novel.

Written by: Bridgette Wright Photo by: Almond Leaf Studios

LINDA MARTINEZ er style story begins with the influence of her father s native Cuba; exotic beauties with painted red lips, vintage Chevrolets, gold charm bracelets and the right purse for every occasion. Fast-forward to present day, owner of the wardrobe styling company StyledNOW inda artine credits her broad fashion knowledge to years of experience in high-end department stores. er time as a jewelry buyer developed her expert knowledge in building and cultivating an accessory wardrobe and most significantly fueling her love for Native-American jewelry. er signature style respects the past with vintage and heirloom items while bursting with eyecatching colors.When she is not on a styling project with maga ines, newspapers and corporate clients, artine is giving fashion tips as the go-to fashion expert on WCNC s Charlotte Today.

Written by Bridgette Wright Photo by Erin . ubbs

PATRICIA MCBRIDE Credit to the rise in popularity of ballet in Charlotte is owed to Patricia McBride and her team at Charlotte Ballet, including husband and fellow ballet star, JeanPierre Bonnefoux. She has been celebrated as the outstanding American ballerina of our day and a star of international stature. Her remarkable virtuosity and artistic range have been demonstrated in more than 100 ballets during three decades with the New York City Ballet. McBride has performed all over the world, danced for five American presidents and received numerous awards for her contribution to dance. She joined Charlotte Ballet in 1996 as associate artistic director and is a master teacher with the Charlotte Ballet Academy. In December 2014, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts presented McBride with a 2014 Kennedy Center Honor.

Written by: Kourtney Pope Photo by: Jeff Cravotta

KATHERINE MCDONALD Katherine McDonald knows how to mix southern with chic. As a little girl, she loved the art of fashion design and sewing, spending time at fabric stores with her mother. Moving from Charlotte to Charleston in 2002, she launched her ready-to- wear label LulaKate (which includes her great-great grandmother’s namesake) in 2003. Since then, her collection has expanded from flirty skirts and tops, to bridesmaid dresses and most recently bridal gowns, launching Kate McDonald Bridal in 2014. McDonald has been in her flagship store on ing Street since 007 which also serves as her show room, atelier, and headquarters. She is inspired by the classic and graceful surroundings of her southern home and we are inspired by her. McDonald’s personal style is as fun, timeless, and unique as her garments.

Written by: Alden deHart Haviland Photo by: Lucy Cuneo


MCDONNELL When it comes to turning a passion into a paycheck, Heather McDonnell takes the cake. A lifetime lover of the kitchen, McDonnell managed to transform her stress-relieving pastime of baking into a full blown business she named Cupcrazed Cakery. Every item is freshly made, from scratch, with no synthetic additives or box mixes. Creatively inspired by everything from pop culture to adult beverages, McDonnell’s pastries are as sweet as her spirit. Cupcrazed has been featured in national publications as well as Food Network’s Cupcake Wars and ReWrapped, reigning victorious on both shows. Consistently garnering media attention and support from their customers, Cupcrazed’s recent pro-marriage equality cupcake went viral due in part to their large social media following, which McDonnell proudly operates.

Written by: Jessica Smith Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs


MCDOWELL When busy professionals are looking for the perfect gift for a friend or colleague they call the woman known for providing hip and stylish gift ideas. Gifting expert Simone cDowell is a public relations and marketing pro who knows how to find the perfect gift, for the perfect budget. A visit to her blog, will give you inspiration and insight on ideas for any occasion. Based in Charlotte, she is a regular contributor to a handful of local and national publications in the Carolinas and beyond. A native of Baltimore, McDowell earned her Bachelor of Arts from Bowie State University and her Master’s Degree from College of Notre Dame of Maryland. She has also taught the art of public speaking at University of North Carolina at Charlotte and is a valued public speaker herself, delivering keynotes and presentations for the the Charlotte Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, Charlotte City Club and the Carolina Panthers. When she is not blogging or finding the perfect gift, you can find her enjoying the arts, good food, and working with community nonprofits.

Written by: Bridgette Wright Photo by: Andi Perullo


This ycra clad duo is leading the women s fitness pack one pose at a time. The mother- daughter pair co-own illiard Studio ethod, with a flagship location in Charlotte s yers Park neighborhood. The brainchild of mother i illiard, the illiard method came to life in 007 when her daughter Clary asked for help transforming her body for her upcoming wedding. This became the foundation for their method which many have described as, Pilates on steroids. So inspired by the transformative power of their new workout, Clary decided to trade in her business suits for ycra, and join her mom in teaching and creating illiard Studio ethod in 008. The ladies have since expanded their brand offering a series of downloadable workout videos and over 0 classes weekly. The duo has also developed a signature smoothie and a line of illiard Studio ethod apparel.

Written by

ourtney Pope

ASHLEY NEMIRO t was October 00 that Ashley Nemiro first traveled to Africa,volunteering at a medical clinic in Ghana while getting my masters in Counseling Psychology. She was instantly drawn to the sense of community that existed, watching people dance and smile even amongst poverty stricken villages. pon returning she volunteered an African Community Center. Grateful to help the women of the community center she wondered about the women who did not have that same opportunity to come to the nited States. t was in that moment that she set her sites on wanda and Democratic epublic of Congo D C to work with women who were not able to resettle in the nited States. There, Nemiro created Mamafrica, a grassroots organi ation based in the city of Bukavu, D C that provides healing arts programs, education and economic opportunity for women to foster self-empowerment, community and sustainability. Through the program women work as artisans crafting amafrica s products, available for sale at select locations worldwide, creating a source of longterm, viable, and sustainable employment.

Written by

awrence Spivey

MARY NORTON She is most well known for creating whimsical and stunning accessories, which have won the hearts of loyal fans and the most discriminating fashion critics. Charlestonbased designer and entrepreneur ary Norton has spent more than fifteen years in fashion design. Prior to launching three highly successful accessory brands – Moo Roo, Mary Norton, Inc. and Frosting by Mary Norton - Norton created chic accessories worn by some of Hollywood’s biggest celebrities. Her pieces have been featured in some of the world’s top fashion magazines, well known television shows, and worn by celebrities at many red carpet events. Norton has received many accolades for her artful craftsmanship and savvy business practices including Top Female Entrepreneur by the National Small Business Administration and by Ernst & Young. Using her love for design and masterful entrepreneurial skills, Norton launched Moo Roo Renew in 2014 which helps people view overlooked or damaged vintage items in a new light by repairing and adding unique designs to make a one of a kind Moo Roo masterpiece.

Written by: Jessica Bricker Photo by: Jonathan Balliet

ROXY OWENS ailing from humble beginnings in a nostalgic small town in the South Pacific and transplanted to the South at the age of five, this designer and tastemaker made her start in her family’s furniture factory learning the business of the trade and strengthening her skills in creating well-crafted pieces with old school flair. The genius and founder of the lifestyle brand Society Social, oxy Owens has been spotted on the pages of Southern iving, GT maga ine, and Better omes & Gardens with her line of handcrafted and colorful home accessories, including her uniquely designed bar carts. She started her company after receiving numerous comments on her bar cart during one of her many cocktail parties in 010. Talk about a full circle moment, Owens manufactured her first pieces in the same facility where her family has been making furniture for decades. iving by the belief that life is a party, oxy Owens makes sure you are well equipped to celebrate. Cheers

Written by: Kourtney Pope

RICHARD PETTY NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty has created the blueprint for life off the track after his retirement in 1992. Simply known as “The King,� Petty has gone on to make a name for himself through multiple business endeavors such as Petty Enterprises and the award winning Richard Petty Motorsports. Aside from winning a record number 20 career races and seven NASCAR Cup championships during his career, Petty is also a leader in philanthropical efforts. He developed the Victory Junction Gang Camp and donated 84 acres of his own land on which the camp sits today. Whether spotted in his signature cowboy hat and sunglasses signing autographs or continuing to lead his Motorsports team, Petty continues to make monumental strides on and off the race track with his philanthropic efforts still leading in the fast lane.

Written by: Kourtney Pope Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs

LAURA VINROOT POOLE A Charlotte native, Laura Vinroot Poole has been featured in notable publications including Vogue, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Travel + Leisure, just to name a few. A number of great accolades have been written about Poole’s boutiques, Capitol and Poole Shop, and raves are pouring in for the mobile app she recently developed with a longtime friend, House Account. Unapologetically feminine with a heavy dose of prep-school boy, you can find her at the store every day, styling clients, when she’s not at market. Poole believes having strong character, serious work ethic and a personal sense of style are the three most important qualities of someone who works in fashion. Her advice to those who wish to get into the industry is “Fashion from the outside seems like a very glamorous career and the reality of it is very far from glamorous. You have to be a warrior to survive.”

Written by: Bridgette Wright


PROTOCOL Glitter floors and champagne. Need we say more Southern Protocol Boutique is owned by i Akerman and ichelle iller, two women who are just as chic as the shop they created. Akerman has been designing and planning perfectly southern soirees since 00 , however, she always knew she wanted to take her business further. n 01 she partnered with friend, ichelle iller, combining their knowledge of the bridal industry, savvy business skills and killer style to create a unique bridal boutique in the heart of downtown Charleston. One visit to their showroom and you ll find out why they were featured in Glamour maga ine breathtaking designer gowns, couture accessories and gifts for any lady in your life. The Southern Protocol Boutique flawlessly captures traditional southern styles, while also incorporating fashion forward trends, which is also very representative of their personal style. ou can always expect to see Akerman or iller looking fabulous, and of course, offering you a glass of champs at the door.

Written by aura Bennett Photo by Amore Photography

RAW RALEIGH Sherif Fouad and Leslie Woods, have a similar approach to both style and business - it’s all in the details. The duo are the owners of Raleigh Raw a raw food company specializing in cold pressed organic juices distributed through innovative, temperature controlled vending machines throughout the city. They are on a mission to create a product that is both real and raw while supporting local agriculture, distributing superfoods in their juices that fuel the body. Fouad uses his skills as a former nutrition and health coach and evening mixologist to create custom, healthy recipes for the beverage line. Shortly after launch Woods came on as partner, utilizing her experience in global innovation management to build the Raw Raleigh vision to scale. The duo is committed to helping people live their optimal life by providing the highest quality organic food available without any of the fuss, making real food that is simple and accessible.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel

K. COOPER RAY Known for the reversible bow tie and a cheeky spin on prepster chic he calls “Prep Neck you can find avid bow tie wearer and menswear designer . Cooper ay around Charleston sporting his latest collection and old favorites. Before launching his own menswear company Social Primer, ay served as the vice president of the talian luxury goods house, Bottega eneta and an ambassador of Dom Perignon. e began his fashion career as an intern at CFDA for New ork Fashion Week visionary Fern allis, eventually working for saac i rahi, Dries an Noten, Gianni ersace and Giorgio Armani. is esteemed bow tie collaboration with Brooks Brothers sold out across the country and he is continually featured in publications such as, Vanity Fair and The Wall Street Journal to name a few. What s next for the man of many accomplishments A Social Primer storefront of course A grand opening sure to bring Charleston s socialites and an A-list crowd.

Written by Brianna Ba emore Photo by ike Allen

LAVA SALON Fun. Unique. Stylish. That’s the experience you’ll have after sitting in the chairs at Lava Salon. Noel and Geoff Richardson never guessed they would both be living in Charleston, married and owners of a well-known salon. After eight years of being in business, Lava Salon has grown to be a popular beauty destination by the locals, even being featured as one of Elle Magazine’s Top 100 Salons. Geoff, originally from Charleston, moved to Atlanta to work in advertising. He later returned to the Holy City to work for his family’s company. In 2001 he met Noel, whom he credits for helping him reali e his purpose and fulfilling his entrepreneurial dreams. A 000 graduate of the Aveda Share Institute in Mandeville, Louisiana Noel literally closed her eyes and picked a spot on the map, letting fate choose her next move - Charleston. Together they opened Lava Salon in 2006, a unique and upbeat salon in the West Ashley area of Charleston.

Written by: Jeanne Everett

Photo by: Abigail Marie with Non’Pa*Reil Photography

ANDREA SERRANO One of the most sought after bloggers in Charleston, Andrea Serrano began her fashion career in Miami during the early 90’s where she was an intern at MTV Latino in the wardrobe department. Before long, Serrano decided to move to New York interning at Harper’s Bazaar. She eventually developed her own clientele including Maybelline, L’oreal, Nautica, Getty Images, Playboy, Sony, Elektra, and J Records, just to name a few. After living in New York for eight years, Serrano moved to Charleston with her husband Gustavo and became the costume shopper for Army Wives (Season 4 and 5). Later, she launched her style-inspiring blog, Charleston Shop Curator, in March 2013. Serrano, like her blog, has become a style staple in the Lowcountry. If it’s stylish, it’s spotted by Serrano.

Written by: Elizabeth Hendricks Photo by: Jonathan Balliet

KELLY SHATAT Shopping at Moon & Lola is like going to accessories heaven. Pharmacist-turnedjewelry designer and Raleigh native, Kelly Shatat launched this stylish lifestyle brand best known for its monogrammed accessories in 2003. It was Shatat’s creative spirit, coupled with her passion and love for all things Southern and traditional, that drove her to begin designing and handcrafting jewelry best defined as being polished, lady-like and classic with a modern twist. The name Moon and Lola originated from the nicknames Shatat and her college friend used while attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The names captures the lightheartedness and joy that the company represents. Since her first design hand-tied pearl necklaces with interchangeable ribbons in a variety of colors) the Moon and Lola line quickly flourished and designs grew to include lightweight filigree earrings, vintage-inspired necklaces and bracelets, and specialty personalized pieces, including the company’s highly successful collection of metal and colorful acrylic monograms and initial offerings, which are handcrafted and assembled by the company’s skilled jewelry artisans in its Apex, North Carolina production studio.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel

MARSHALL SIMON Marshall Simon, the man behind Charleston’s most luxurious, locally owned department store, has been the proprietor of Gwynn’s of Mount Pleasant for more than a quarter of a century. Born and raised in the retail industry, Simon is not only well versed but also an expert at giving the season’s most popular trends a little southern charm. It is his progressive industry knowledge and keen eye for the southern aesthetic that keeps Gwynn’s of Mount Pleasant a destination department store for southern men and women as well as au courant vacationers. With a team of well-seasoned buyers, Simon travels to New York City more than 15 times per year to personally hand select pieces for the 20,000 square foot department store. It is, however, his classic European style, warm smile and southern hospitality that make him one of Charleston’s Most Stylish.

Written by: Jessica Bricker

Styled by: Darrion Gross Hair styled by: Shassity Stevenson Makeup by: Jami Svay Clothing provided by: Saks Off 5th

THE RUCKER SISTERS Sisters Ruby Rucker Cooper, Ellen Rucker Carter, and Ione Rucker Jamison are conquering the Carolinas, one accomplishment at a time. Between the three of them, The Rucker Sisters have a scholarship fund, two private practices, a TV show and a hair care line to boot, proving the Rucker Sisters of Lancaster, South Carolina are more than just beautiful faces. The family hair care line features all natural, sulfate and paraben free products crafted from their family garden produced in small batches to maintain their integrity. Such diligence is innate to these sisters and can be seen in several facets of their careers. Their WEtv television show, Love Thy Sister, shows how their dedication to their work pales in comparison to the sisterhood they share. An undeniable force, The Rucker Sisters exude style, philanthropy and business success.

Written by: Jessica Smith Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs

MOLLY STILLMAN Life and style blogger Molly Stillman has been sharing her mind for nearly a decade. On her blog, Still Being Molly, she writes daily about fashion, beauty, DIY, decor and life as a wife and mother, Her passion is entertaining and inspiring others through empowering women to look and feel confident in the skin God gave them. As a style blogger Molly spent years learning to take trends and styles and apply them on different body types. She has collaborated with and styled clothing for companies such as Belk, Andrew arc, Stitch Fix, ent the unway, ack oom Shoes, and Target. A 007 graduate of Christopher Newport niversity in Newport News, Virginia, she currently resides in Durham with her husband John, their daughter Lilly, and their two dogs Audrey epburn and Tater.

Written by

awrence Spivey

JAMI SVAY Her personality is as colorful as her makeup bag. Jami Svay is an internationally renowned makeup artist, author, blogger and beauty personality. Having touched the faces of such clientele including NBA All-Star Michael Jordan and pop sensation eghan Trainor, Svay is known for creating a flawless visage, enhancing a client s best feature. With a portfolio ranging from a simple fresh face to extreme high fashion, her work can be found anywhere from the pages of Essence Magazine to the runways of Oscar de la enta. The wife and mother of two first found her passion for makeup artistry when she realized it would allow her to combine her love of color with fine art. SSvay s vast expertise and love of makeup led to the creation of Tastee Cosmetics, a national line of all natural lip products. An artist, entrepreneur and world traveler, Svay is beautiful inside and out.

Written by: Jessica Smith Photo by: Michael Church

QUENTIN TALLEY Quentin Talley proves the theatre is an experience not to be missed. A man of many talents, Talley is acclaimed for his various accomplishments on and off stage. As the Founder and Artistic Director of OnQ Performing Arts, he has received recognition and numerous accolades as a poet, actor, director, and producer. Talley has shared the stage with legends Amiri Baraka, Sonia Sanchez, MC Lyte, Nikki Giovanni, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Tavis Smiley. Likewise, he has directed renown stage plays including Duchman, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf, Day of Absence, Rhyme Deferred, and Rise For Freedom to name a few. Through OnQ, Talley aims to produce classic contemporary and original performance works which reflect the Black Experience.

Written by: Jessica Smith Photo by: Mitchell Kearney

MICHELLE TARLETON Michelle Hoover Tarleton, the woman behind Trés Carmen boutique, is among Charleston s finest on the fashion scene. The Cheraw, SC native now resides on ames sland with her two children and her husband. When she s not at her daughter s cheerleading competitions or her son’s baseball games, she’s managing Trés Carmen on Folly oad. Along with being the owner, she is also the buyer and stylist for the boutique. Tr s Carmen features many local brands such as Three ittle Beads and Taylor Diggs Designs as well as popular brands like Show e our umu and Citi ens of umanity. Tarleton adds “my goal is to style an individual so that they feel great and look fab.” Michelle loves mixing trendy pieces with classic staples to produce the perfectly curated outfit. She says, “my closet contains a few designer pieces but I’m not afraid to look beyond names and focus on what makes me feel good about myself.” Having a chic boutique combined with having a impeccable personal style, makes ichelle Tarleton one of Charleston s ost Stylish.

Written by Taylor Brobisky Photo by Catherine Ann Photography

ELISE TESTONE Modern-day funk and soul singer Elise Testone lights up the Charleston music scene with her cool-girl attitude and bohemian style. Her expressive stage presence and mature vocals impress audiences from New York City to Charleston and beyond. Inspired by artists such as James Brown and Janis Joplin, Testone pours her heart and soul into the music she makes. Finishing as one of American Idol’s top ten finalists in 01 , Testone found it to be an important and inspirational stepping-stone that directed her down an opportunistic career path. She has also been an opening performer for a variety of musical acts such as B.B. King, Snoop Dogg and many more. Although record labels contacted her, she chose to follow her intuition and independently released her first bluesy singer songwriter album In This Life in 01 . It is her expressive individuality and soulful vibes that makes her one of our Most Stylish People of 015.

Written by: Jessica Bricker Photo by: Abigail Maria with Non’Pareil Photography



Inspired by a love of the rustic outdoors, combined with a great appreciation for the casual calm offered by the North Carolina coast, sisters Elizabeth Stafford White and Jacquelyn Stafford Buckner launched Twine & Twig in late 2013. Their line reflects their love for natural, organic beauty, as well as their southern roots and extensive worldly travels. Crafting every piece by hand and most famous for their necklace hand tied with their signature suede strap, the sisters use naturally sourced eco-friendly materials from regions throughout the world.

Written by: Kourtney Pope

THREE HUNTERS VODKA Three Hunters Vodka was created by guys with one common goal yet three different backgrounds. Brian Foushee s passions have always been clear hard work, fitness, and friends; Mike Castellani’s work week was a vicious cycle: the snooze button played on heavy rotation and was echoed with a monotony of endless emails and bureaucracy; and competition has always been the driving force behind Stuart Hirsch’s life choices. The trio describes themselves as a bunch of kettle-bell swingin’, marathon running, adventure race enthusiasts who, at the end of a long hard day, like to enjoy a drink or two. The result is a spirit that is harvested, distilled and bottled in locations less than 15 miles from each other, using only grapes and berries. The vodka has unexpected floral character fit for sipping and mixes to perfection.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel

MIKE WATSON A true man of both style and substance Mike Watson lives by the saying “what you ignore dies, what you avoid remains, and what you pay attention to flourishes. Driven by an overall awareness of humanity, Watson incorporates his views into his style of work, making it one of a kind. Whether as a TEDx Charlotte emcee or reshaping the visual footprint for a national retail company, he relishes the excitement and energy of unconnected acts, for they often result in positive opportunities and encourage individual growth. The Conscious Capitalism enthusiast believes that the individual has the power to change the world. This is why he chooses to work with people whose goals he finds worthy and humane. A featured speaker at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, as well as the Mint Museum of Art, Watson philosophies and wisdom are just some of his most stylish appeal.

Written by: Jessica Smith Photo by Erin . ubbs

JULIE WHEAT It is her knowledge of vintage collectables and her personal style that makes her one of Charleston’s Most Stylish individuals. Julie Wheat is the owner of Cavortress boutique which specializes in new and vintage clothing, accessories, home goods and is filled with handpicked conspicuous classics dating as far back as the 1800 s. She has worked as a wardrobe stylist in television and film, a branding and design consultant, and worked with top modeling agencies such as Elite and IMG coaching models on personal style. Since its inauguration in 01 , Cavortress has been nominated twice as Charleston’s Best Vintage Shop and deemed Charleston’s Best Place to Shop on Instagram. Julie’s knowledge of vintage goods is not only evident in Cavortress, but it is also portrayed through her personal style. She often says, “If you don’t have taste, you don’t stand a chance at having style.”

Written by: Jessica Bricker

JAMEKA WHITTEN She is credited with fierce style, get-it-done tenacity and creative flair. ameka Whitten is leaving her mark on the entertainment industry as the CEO at SW edia Group, a boutique public relations, marketing and brand management firm with clients in the entertainment, fashion and publishing fields. When not juggling the demands of entrepreneurship the Northwestern niversity graduate wears the hat of a seasoned speaker for myriad commercial, event hosting and video assignments. An experienced social media maven, editor, freelance writer and content creator, Whitten is committed to philanthropic causes and esteems the idea of making a difference in the lives of others. er most important philanthropic project to date is serving as a ed Pump Ambassador for The ed Pump Project , a national nonprofit that raises awareness about the impact of A DS on women and girls.

Written by Bridgette Wright Photo by Aurelius Creates

DION “ROCKO” WILLIAMS Dion “Rocko” Williams is one of the most stylish NASCAR personalities of our time. The first African American pit crew member and mechanic at endrick otorsports, Williams, a former NF hopeful began his NASCA career in 2004 as part of an experiment to train athletes in the pit. Over the years he has accumulated numerous Sprint Cup wins and has served on the teams of some of the most respected drivers in the industry. e even appeared on an episode of the CBS show Undercover Boss in 011. When he is not away at a race, training in the gym or meeting fans, the family man is usually spending time with his children or coining catchphrases such as his favorite S AW . n the future, you may find Williams on the small screen as one of your favorite sports commentators. Who knows,with a personality as big as Willliams we would not be surprised to see his S AW-ness on the big screen too.

Written by essica Smith Photo by Erin . ubbs

JESSIE WILLIAMS Jessie Williams is the owner of Edge of Urge, a retail store and creative collective she founded in 2002. Over the years, Williams began to see that her store could be a launch pad for like-minded, risk-taking, passionate, crazy designers and creators. As a direct extension of Williams’ character, Edge of Urge shows an admiration for individuals who creatively use fashion and design as an outlet for personal expression. Since her early days as an emerging designer, Williams has fought to prove herself in an industry not always willing to accept the newcomer. Through diligence, determination and the love and support of a core group of family, friends and designers, she has proven herself as a person worthy of notice in the creative community. As a direct extension of Williams’ character, Edge of Urge shows an admiration for individuals who creatively use fashion and design as an outlet for personal expression.

Written by: Tomris McDaniel Photo by: Luke Tew

MIKE WILLIAMS Mike Williams is a rising media mogul, creating online publications which have proved to be a valuable resource to readers. He brings a high level of excitement to the Triangle, encouraging people to explore the area in which they live. He is the managing editor of, and the creator of, a site operated by The News & Observer in Raleigh, NC, devoted to showcasing the best college tailgating action around the country through photos. Williams is also the curator of ArtsNow, a digital home which plays host to artists, art organizations and events and connects visual and performing artists to local venues and audiences. It is with these platforms that Williams is able to combine both his passion for helping artists on their individual journeys and his enthusiasm for his community and enriching the lives of those in the Triangle Area.

Written by: Brittany Maiava Photo by: Juli Leonard

LISA WRIGHT If you’ve watched So You Think You Can Dance or attended the world tour of Beyonce or Taylor Swift, then you may have watched one of the many dancers that has trained with Charlotte based director, choreographer and dancer Lisa D. Wright.. Known for her creativity and incredible sense of style, she lives by the motto dare to be rare. A New York native, Wright infuses a fresh style of hip hop and street jazz to her work. A graduate of North Carolina A & T State University, she has spent her post-collegiate years traveling from coast to coast as a sought after dancer and choreographer. She has trained at some of the most prestigious dance companies and studios including New York’s Alvin Ailey School and Broadway Dance Center to the Debbie Reynolds studio in Los Angeles. In addition to studying under some of the industry’s most celebrated choreographers, she created her own dance legacy as the founder of EleKtriK Dance Crew. She is currently an executive choreographer signed to The Dance District Agency which gives local dancers their start to a career in professional dance, and teaches a weekly industry style dance class at The Dance District. Written by: Brianna Bazemore

DEIRDRE ZAHL What’s not to love about Candy Shop Vintage? Even the name is as sweet as it is enticing. Owner and Designer Deirdre Zahl was inspired to create a vintage jewelry collection during her 10 years in fashion and design in the Big Apple. Having moved from New York to Charleston, Zahl fell in love with the wit and whimsy culture of the South. Pieces from her rotating collection of vintage jewelry have been featured in magazines, on various national blogs and even on the hit show MAD MEN. Candy Shop Vintage also contributes regularly as a vendor to One Kings Lane’s Vintage & Market Finds. After years of collecting and selling vintage pieces, Zahl also designed and launched The Candy Shop Collection, her own vintage inspired jewelry line. The Collection debuted at trunk shows at Bloomingdale’s and at Henri Bendel in New York. Her latest collection of Charleston Rice Beads are imbued with the spirit of the modern Charleston girl – a creative and independent adventuress, much like Zahl herself.

Written by: Bridgette Wright



Boasting both beauty and brains, CEO of Legacy Talent and Entertainment Melinda Morris Zanoni has her hand in running the talent agency as well as practicing entertainment and sports law with an emphasis on advising and managing the business and legal affairs of celebrities, athletes, actors, musicians, and entertainment companies. Handling celebrity appearances, autograph signings, sponsorships, and corporate events her success includes placing celebrity talent for Coca-Cola endorsements, securing appearances for NASCAR drivers, WWE wrestlers and NFL players, landing multiple state lottery ticket licensing deals, and managing film and television projects including Mall Cop 2, Fargo, Celebrity Wife Swap, Lizard Lick Towing, and Chelsea Lately. This woman of style has successfully navigated an industry typically dominated by men, while maintaining chic offices in Charlotte and alibu, CA. elinda is a force to be reckoned with in the entertainment and sports industry.

Written by: Kourtney Pope Photo by: Erin L. Hubbs

The Carolinas 75 Most Stylish  

Don't mistake them for a bunch of best dressed superlatives. The Carolinas 75 Most Stylish celebrates people in the fashion, beauty, busin...