October 25, 2012

I first met Amy through Pinterest - we have a mutual affinity for all things J.Crew, tailored clothing with a touch of trend, and our boards could easily be mistaken for the other's. Fast forward nearly a year later, and let's just need to know Amy, and she has her hands in a little bit of everything.

Browsed Evernote's app store, The Trunk, recently? Amy.
Downloaded Good Looks on your iPhone to catalog your outfits? Amy.
And I'm willing to bet you've repinned one of her outfits without knowing it.

About two and a half years ago after quitting her job, Amy started Height & Hands, a full service branding, print, and web design shop. Along with her business partner & boyfriend, Amy's work at Height & Hands focused on providing quality design for small businesses and community organizations.

This spring, they merged with two other web development shops to create The Outfit. She serves as Creative Director, managing everything related to the design of their projects and products - whether it's brand strategy, identity or print design, information architecture, interface design, or content strategy.

And somewhere in her spare time, she puts together awesome outfits to create the content for Good Looks Daily, the fashion blog behind the iPhone app she developed, Good Looks.

I personally love this app. I'm not a fashion blogger, but I do love putting together outfits and keeping photos for reference. Remember in Clueless when Cher takes Polaroids of her outfits while planning for a date? For me, Good Looks is like that, but on a more organized level, which suits my Type A personality perfectly.

Are you all suddenly feeling less busy? Me too.

I managed to steal a few moments of Amy's time to interview her about her business, how she stays inspired, and her advice for other creatives.

Why did you decide to start Height & Hands, then The Outfit? 

Both my boyfriend and I knew we had a lot more to offer than we were given reign to handle at our day jobs and we wanted the freedom to work with organizations we were passionate about. Now that we share responsibilities with our business partners, we have more time to work on non-client projects and products. 

What about Good Looks - what was your inspiration for developing this app?

I created the Good Looks app because I wanted a way to catalog and sort through what I was wearing everyday without publishing it to the world – a kind of private outfit blog – as a means of getting the most out of my closet (literally).

I found that, by being able to visualize my outfits, I could see if I was wearing the same things over and over and get inspired to create new and interesting looks or wear things I had only worn once or twice. On the other hand, if I'm in a rush, I can reference something I've worn before and use that as a starting point for putting an outfit together.

How do you balance all of the various work projects with your personal life?

They're so intertwined because my boyfriend is actually one of my business partners, we have our own office, bring our dog to work with us and discuss business over dinner. On the downside – we discuss business over dinner!

How do you stay inspired, creatively?

I love seeing what other people are creating or wearing up to the minute so I'm always on Pinterest and Dribbble looking for fresh inspiration. I also cross-reference fashion and graphic design when I'm working on one or the other – I'll use a fabric pattern as a background for a site design, or I'll try to make a color palette from a design project work as an outfit. 

What do you love most about your job?

I can take my dog to the office, make my own hours and wear whatever I want! What's not to love?

What one piece of advice would you give someone thinking of starting their own business?

I didn't quit my job without having any clients lined up when I started my first business. I freelanced for a long time, taking lots of projects on in my spare time – some free, some paid – so when I was ready to officially open the doors for business, I had a portfolio of work and a handful of people who could vouch for me. 

I also made a serious effort to network with other people in my industry so that when I needed someone to partner with on a project, I'd already have a pool I could pull from.

Thanks for your time, Amy! Visit The Outfit and Good Looks to learn more about Amy's work, and find endless outfit inspiration at Good Looks Daily.


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