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Meet Trailblazer Amanda Thorne

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amanda Thorne.

Amanda, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Before I started my company, Thorne Artistry, I was a radio DJ for over 10 years. Styling was something that’s always been a passion of mine and even something that I did in college to help pay for school. I was so focused on using my degree in Broadcasting that I never considered the possibility that I could actually have a business doing hair and makeup, until my husband pointed out the obvious telling me that I should be doing what I really love on a full time basis. It was like a light went off in my brain and that’s all I could think about.

When we decided to start a family, I knew radio wouldn’t be ideal with the late nights and unpredictable hours, and I also knew that I wasn’t fulfilled with my radio career anymore so I was mentally already planning to make the leap and start my own company and a completely new career, but the problem was I had no idea where to begin. I was forced out of the nest when I was laid off from my radio job with several other co-workers, and panic set in. I had a good cry and then realized that I needed to get it together and get down to business! Now I really had to do it and it was a sink or swim situation.

My portfolio was outdated at this point so I was literally doing everything from step one, and I remember it was a lot of free work and volunteering and learning from everyone in the beginning! Persistence, support from an amazing creative community in San Diego (and at home), and all of the wonderful people who took a chance on me and my company are what made everything happen so quickly and what seemed pretty seamlessly. There were definitely growing pains and a lot of learning curves (still are many learning curves!!), but I still can’t believe that I’m actually doing what I envisioned almost 8 years ago and that I still love it as much I knew that I would.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
When you’re passionate about what you’re doing and willing to put the work in (even some free work and volunteering), my experience is that doors will open and there will be opportunities for you. If you’re expecting to put in minimal work and not pay some dues, you’re probably in for a hard road.

Opportunities are earned by checking your ego at the door and the willingness to be a team player. Even though I have my own business, I still have to be a team player everyday with everyone else involved with a production. An event really is a team effort and your attitude and work ethic really will make or break you.

My advice is to go in without feeling that someone owes you something and instead find someone to shadow and learn from, ask a million questions, and do a lot of research on your own. I had no idea how to run a business and I found women that I admired and asked if I could buy them coffee or lunch and pick their brains on running a business. That information is GOLD and so priceless. Show people that you appreciate their time and willingness to share with you. They don’t have to share that knowledge so make sure they know you are grateful.

I also really found networking events to be helpful and just showing my face and letting people know that I’m interested in what they’re doing too.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Thorne Artistry – what should we know?
My title is Creative Stylist. I’ve done everything from wardrobe and set styling to hair and makeup. I’ve focused more the past few years on the hair and makeup aspect of my business.

I hope I’m known for making people feel like the best versions of themselves, and I hope they see the meticulous care that I put into every single style that I create and I hope they walk away feeling really good about themselves.

I take to heart treating people the way I want to be treated and I want my clients to feel that their needs are being met and that I really do care about them and they’re being heard. I think what sets me apart is the level of customer service that I offer and my attention to detail. I’m most proud of sticking with my goals, even when my own self-doubt seemed to be challenging my resolve. I’m also happy that I’ve started to expand my business and realize a dream of having my own products.

Do you feel like there was something about the experiences you had growing up that played an outsized role in setting you up for success later in life?
I do, and the older I get the more that I see it. When I see grade school friends and they see what I’m doing now they always tell me this is the perfect career for me and they are so happy that I’m fulfilling a passion that’s always been there and something that they’ve always seen in me (even when I didn’t).

My parents worked and my siblings are a lot older than me, so I felt like an only child a lot of times. I remember spending a lot of time playing on my own and making up games that always had to do with styling my dolls or whatever friends who would be my models. I even have vivid memories of taking my grandpa’s comb and doing his hair when he fell asleep in the chair and doing hair and makeup for my ballet class for recitals.

I also feel like I had to rely on my own devices when others weren’t around and that’s given me valuable tools to do things for myself.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:

Ashley Kelemen, The Hearts Haven, Fawn Christiansen Photography, Samerica Studios, Whiskers and Willow Photography, KC Alfred Photography and Michael & Kate Photography

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