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Check Out Ilana Wexler’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ilana Wexler.

Hi Ilana, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I have always been inspired by fashion. From a young age, I would play dress-up and express myself through my ever-evolving personal style. I have special memories dancing around in my grandmothers’ silk scarves and high heels when I was five. I’ve worked in fashion for over a decade and have experience as a wardrobe stylist and personal shopper at a large department store and a locally owned boutique in the Bay Area, where I’m originally from. I deeply enjoy working one-on-one with my clients; helping them explore their personal style, organize their closets, and go shopping for pieces that are missing from their wardrobe. While styling is one of my great passions, I’ve always wanted to express myself creatively. It has been a dream of mine to work for myself, and my love for fashion inspired me to create wearable art. This is where the Style by Ilana denim jacket journey begins. In January 2021, I decided to pursue Style by Ilana full-time. Here we are almost a year later and I couldn’t be more proud of how far we’ve come.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
One of the biggest, and most personal, challenges I face as a small business owner is time management. It feels as if I am constantly working, even when I’m not. I have to set some serious boundaries and make sure I am prioritizing my relationships, self-care, and mental health first and foremost. I know this will get easier over time but in the first year of owning a business, this has been a challenge. I feel so fortunate to be working alongside my partner full time, but it comes with its challenges. We encourage each other to set and achieve goals and make sure we hold each other accountable. I’m excited to see how we, and the business, grow this coming year.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
Style by Ilana re-works everyone’s favorite denim wardrobe staples by making them into one-of-a-kind wearable art. From denim jackets, shorts, to overalls, you name it! It is my mission to keep timeless denim in circulation and bring new life to each piece with exclusive textiles. I am committed to preserving the integrity of each piece by showcasing its beauty and unique characteristics. The collection constantly evolves with new tapestries and always includes a variety of sizes and styles. I grew up in the Bay Area where wearing layers is a part of life. I’ve come to realize that denim jackets are a wardrobe staple that no one should live without, they are the ultimate layering piece and go with every outfit. Additionally, it’s my pleasure to help people who already have a jacket, fabric, or inspiration make a custom one-of-a-kind jacket just for them. The possibilities are endless.

We’d love to hear about how you think about risk taking?
Risk-taking is quite literally part of my business model. With one-of-a-kind clothing, every item is taking a chance to catch someone’s eye or grab attention. I can’t assume that everything I make will be an instant hit or find its eventual owner immediately. I had to make a lot of good jackets to learn what makes the great jackets I make now. And even now when I know how to express my style through these jackets I always remind myself to take risks and push the boundaries of my style sense to see what connects with my jacket’s eventual owners.

I showcase my collection at markets all around San Diego. I particularly enjoy participating in the Little Italy and Leucadia Markets since those draw a diverse crowd of locals and visitors. Because of these markets, I’m now a part of a community of other makers which is a constant source of inspiration. You can view my upcoming events schedule on my website at www.stylebyilana.com/events. I hope to see you there!

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