NET-A-PORTER Limited

Katie Sands

Founder of the successful lifestyle blog, HonestlyKate, and the name is definitely not a coincidence. She is all about authenticity stating that being honest entails sharing brands that align with her core values that she finds meaning in.

Honestly Inspiring, Honestly Amazing

honestlykate @honestlykate

“I feel more confident in the mission and purpose I am putting out daily, but the bigger the brand grows the more work I am taking on. I am finding the balance between it all while trying my hardest to enjoy the ride.”

Katie Sands’ brand is all about being honest, to be honest about her journey as a young woman navigating the in and out of New York City, staying true to who she is and what she values no matter what kinds of obstacles show up along the way. She is the founder of the successful lifestyle blog, HonestlyKate, and the name is definitely not a coincidence. She is all about authenticity stating that being honest entails sharing brands that align with her core values that she finds meaning in. 

Though Sands has achieved great success, it didn’t happen overnight. She says, “it was and still continues to be an uphill battle with little fires that have to be extinguished along the way. I feel more confident in the mission and purpose I am putting out daily, but the bigger the brand grows the more work I am taking on. I am finding the balance between it all while trying my hardest to enjoy the ride.” We had a chance to chat with Katie about her daily routine and other aspects of her life that make her the person she is.

“As an entrepreneur, I have to constantly remind myself of the core reasons why I started to blog: my love for fashion and my passion for helping people be their truest selves. As long as you’re true to yourself and your ambitions, you will always be authentic”

First off, what is your go-to breakfast?
I am a big foodie and I am that person that wakes up starving. I usually start my day with a packed spinach smoothie and if I’m still hungry, I’ll make either sunny side up eggs or avocado toast. Recently, I’ve been experimenting with Shakshuka and have been having so much fun with it. Head to my What I Eat In A Day Video for more ☺

What is your go-to workout routine? 
My weekly workout routine consists of two to three days of Pilates and one day of either dance cardio or hot yoga. I have been taking private Pilates lessons with Gina de Pool at Flex Studios and it has really changed my life. I feel stronger, leaner, and more grounded mentally. I love to do workouts that not only move you physically but mentally as well. I am starting a series called “Moves For Your Mind” on my IGTV that will really focus on the movements you need to combat stress and anxiety.

Do you use supplements? What supplements and why?
I recently started to take supplements, but I am always on the fence with them. I am currently taking Tula’s new balanced beauty gummy vitamins for strong hair, skin, and nails. Every morning I always add a teaspoon of Spirulina Powder into my smoothie for a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory immune boost. I’m a big fan of CBD oils. It might be a total placebo effect but either way, it works for me to calm my energy and center my focus.

What are some of your favorite hair-care products? What are some hair-care tips for blondes?
I love this question because I recently went through an entire hair evolution. I have always had blonde hair but as I got older, I wanted to continue making it blonder and blonder…you know the drill. In any case, I have spent the last few years bringing my hair back to it’s healthier roots (pun intended) and have found products that work well in keeping my hair healthier, longer, and stronger. I only trust Aveda salons when it comes to any sort of color treatment or gloss. I love their products because they are natural plant based and don’t break my hair. For shampoo & conditioner, I have recently been using the Act+Acre products as I am trying to transition to a cleaner cleansing routine. For blondes, it’s important to use very little shampoo and ONLY ever condition the ends because a little goes a long way, and can way your hair down in a negative way. I also think with blondes it’s important to never stray too far away from your eyebrow color. I have and always will have darker brows, and when I went too blonde it was too big a contrast that it looked crazy. Now that I am closer to my natural color, I don’t worry about the maintenance of keeping up with coloring and I think I look a lot more relaxed and less forced overall.

What are some skincare products you cannot live without?
Where do I even begin? I absolutely love the First Aid Beauty Coconut Primer to put on either as a moisturizer, alone, or to set my makeup. I’ve been lathering my entire face with Sunday Riley’s C.E.O Glow, a vitamin c serum great for brightening the skin in the dead of winter. I have also been getting really into taking baths and I love all the J.R Watkins new line of bath and body washes. They smell incredible and I feel the immediate effects on my muscles.

People say that an outfit can really help boost confidence, what are three outfits in your closet right now that really boost your confidence?
Let’s face it, we all want to look good whether we’re on the subway, at a job interview, or just out for the night with our closest friends because you never know who you’ll run into. From the beginning, it’s been my goal to inspire girls to curate their own futures and let them in on my fashion and beauty secrets along the way. And what better place than New York to do it all?! The three outfits that really help put me help to brighten my mood are a bold colored power suit, I’m currently loving this pink set I have from Alice & Olivia. There is something so empowering about a suit set that makes me want to ring the bell at the NYSE all day long. The second outfit would be a long maxi dress paired with a leather jacket and biker boots. There is something so intriguing about a girl who dresses like a ballerina pop star, don’t you think? And my third and my go-to look is always a white t-shirt and high waisted Levis for anytime I need to feel like Kate Hudson in How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days.

What are some of your favorite restaurants and spas New York City?
Restaurants: JG Melon for the best burger in NYC, Mezzaluna for my all-time favorite Italian, and Raoul’s for a spicy date night. Spas: I love Tracie Martyn’s spa for a great facial, I also love WTHN and ORA for acupuncture, and for a mani/pedi you can always find me at GlossLab’s flatiron location.

What projects are you working on next?
I’m so excited to finally announce that I am moving back into hosting starting with Amazon Live, Amazon’s live streaming show. Hosting has been such an incredible way for me to mend both my love for fashion with my passion for theater. It gives me that outward energy and immediate adrenaline rush I so love and miss in the theater community while also giving me the opportunity to “play” myself and connect with my audience on a more authentic level.


Photos: Aline Velter

Grace Brea

She has worked to Bottega Veneta in both Milan and New York, Andrew Rosen at Theory and Helmut Lang, the Richemont Group, and Chanel.

Fashionable & Proud

“I am not a fan of the clicky mentality where everyone looks the same, dresses the same, has the same things. I love people watching and New York provides plenty of that. I also have a love/hate relationship with the pace here”

Grace

From working in fashion to hospitality, and now design, Grace Brea is an industry veteran with more than experience to go around. Currently serving as the Brand Experience Director for both Artemest, a luxury Italian furniture and handmade decor company, and jewelry brand IPPOLITA, Brea has worked with the like of Bottega Veneta in both Milan and New York, Andrew Rosen at Theory and Helmut Lang, the Richemont Group and Chanel. The Miami native grew up in Latin America, went to school in Boston, and did her last semester in Paris. We had a chance to chat with Grace about how she’s gotten where she is today.

How did you start your career? 
I had a wonderful mentor who really helped open doors early in my career when I wanted to make the jump to client side (I was working for WPP at the time). She was involved with Tom Ford in the creation of the Gucci Group in the 90s. I had lived/worked in three different markets by then and spoke five languages, which I think also helped open some doors.

You have worked with luxury in Fashion, Hospitality and now Design and Jewelry. What are the trends you see for a successful relationship with customers in the next 5 years?
The importance of placing the client experience at the forefront of every interaction can’t be overstated. A decent product, design, and price point will bring someone to your brand once. But it’s the small details from that moment on that keep them coming back. Or not. There will always be a newer, shinier something popping up, but if a client can recall their experience with your brand fondly, it will keep them coming back. A lot of the decline in retail comes from that oversight.

” I spend more time curating the spaces around me than I do on myself, but like I said I love beautiful, well-crafted things which translate into how I dress. I’d say I’m for the most part minimal. Super feminine. Very into accessories, particularly earrings”

Grace

You have lived in different countries working in the fashion industry. Tell us a lesson you have learned from each different type of culture?
From the French, I learned to value and treasure beauty. From Italians, I learned a lot of patience, but most importantly the quality of life. Latin America I learned to multitask (a bit too much maybe). I also get all my heart and soul, my values and priorities from Latin culture. I couldn’t be more proud to be Latin.

What fuels you to live life?
Beautiful things and beautiful moments. Beauty elevates our experience here in the world. It excites the soul. That’s why when we see something beautiful (a baby, a painting, a building, a piece of furniture) we can’t help but smile a little. I also think it’s inevitable to have a deep appreciation for life when you travel throughout so many underdeveloped countries and see firsthand just how good we have it. How lucky we are solely because of where we born.

What do you do to slow down and relax at home?
I light candles and play music around the apartment. I’ll steam or draw a bath every so often while listening to a podcast. But nothing relaxes me like a good puzzle. It’s my ultimate meditation.

You are so stylish. Can you share a little about your personal aesthetic? How was it formed? Who are your influences and icons?
I spend more time curating the spaces around me than I do on myself, but like I said I love beautiful, well-crafted things which translate into how I dress. I’d say I’m for the most part minimal. Super feminine. Very into accessories, particularly earrings. Growing up with a Latin grandmother was definitely a big influence. One could never leave the house in sweats.

What do you love most about NYC?
It’s the least homogenous place in the world. I’m not a fan of the clicky mentality where everyone looks the same, dresses the same, has the same things. I love people watching and New York provides plenty of that. I also have a love/hate relationship with the pace here. The energy is electrifying and exciting, but can also wear you down if you’re not hyper conscious of it. I refuse to fall into the rat race.

What are your top 5 restaurants, cafes?
We’re major foodies. It’s hard to narrow down to 5 restaurants overall when I have at least 5 favorites within each cuisine type! New York provides that expansive, ever growing variety of choices it can be hard to remember where you ate last week. That being said, while we venture out to try new restaurants all the time, there’s a few we continue to return to because of the mix of food, ambiance, and friends. Here are some of my favorites right now: Verõnika – the new Stephen Starr is great. The space is stunning (the walls, the plates, the lighting) and the food is excellent. Sushia Yasuda—no need to reinvent the wheel. Estela – It’s in my neighborhood and I definitely don’t go as much as I’d like to. It never disappoints. For Italian, I love Via Carota. I was living on Grove Street when it opened. It’s such a quaint, charming space and the food always delivers. Bistrot Leo is a small gem in Soho by a Daniel Boulud alum. It’s consistent, delicious, comforting French cuisine and has a perfect wine list. It’s also one of my favorites in terms of design downtown.

What are some of your “best-kept secret” in New York City?
For entertaining friends, The Magician at the Nomad is top. I’ve been over five times and keep going back. Its small, intimate, sexy, super well produced. I love working with a recent Italian import (chef Pier Sando) for any event or dinner I host at home. He’s wildly creative and makes beautiful and delicious Italian menus. Hudson River Flowers makes stunning bouquets and their price point is not insulting. They make you want to gift flowers for any occasion. But my ultimate New York secret is getting away often enough in order to decompress and appreciate it more.


Photos: Aline Velter