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Aug 31st
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Stylist to the Santa Cruzans

stylisttothescWhy local stylist Tina Brown keeps you in tip-top fashion shape

Well-known stylist Rachel Zoe probably has a day that unravels like this: A celebrity calls her up and says, “Hey Rachel, I need you to revolutionize my ‘look.’” Or, “Hey, Rachel, I’ve got an awards show coming up.” Or, “Hey, Rachel, I’m going shopping—please come, STAT.” In Hollywood, that’s likely the life of a stylist to the stars. But in Santa Cruz, it’s not that much different for our fashion guru, Tina Brown. The only thing she might do differently than Zoe is charge a more manageable fee for her services, and help us “normal people” in need of a wardrobe overhaul. Meet Brown, owner of Ilka, a one-woman company that offers shopping and styling services. She’ll uproot your closet, kick out the bad stuff and help you see a brand new ‘you.’ Or, she’ll take you shopping to update things, do your colors, analyze your body and give you a new ‘look’ and a new perspective.

It’s a quirky business to get into, and as far as Brown knows, there’s no tried and true career path for becoming a stylist. For Brown, she sort of fell off the runway and into this industry. This was in her post-college days, following graduation from UC Davis, and a move to San Francisco where she worked in the city’s famed textile store, Britex Fabrics. While there, she crossed paths with someone from Macy’s who told her about a charity event that was in need of assistance. From there, she began to secure freelance work for runway events and photo shoots, working as a stylist—someone who oversees the clothing—on these projects. About eight years ago she relocated to Santa Cruz, was pregnant with her first child and was no longer working the San Francisco stylist jobs.

She took a break from the industry until a year-and-a-half ago when a friend asked her to “take a look at her closet,” Brown says. From there, she decided to go back into part-time work and launched her business, Ilka; the company is named after a Scottish word that means “each and every” as in each and every individual style.

Nowadays, Brown offers her services for $75 an hour for a two-hour closet makeover, and a written profile for $150. The profile includes a binder full of information geared toward that client, to assist that person in choosing flattering clothes, colors and styles. In addition, she offers a 20-minute free consultation to prospective clients.

But does she try to create replicas of herself and press her own style on others? “I really try not to,” Brown says. “I don’t want everyone walking around looking the same. It’s about their personality.”

Yet it’s sometimes also about stepping outside one’s comfort zone. And that’s what Brown is particularly good at helping people do. Whether it’s in the closet or in a store, she’ll help her clients move their wardrobe selection in a forward and new ‘fashion,’ while still maintaining their identity. “Style is always evolving,” Brown says.

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The Meaning of ‘LIFE’

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Seasons of Opportunity

Everything in our world has a specific time (a season) in which to accomplish a specific work—a “season” that begins (opportunity) and ends (time’s up). I can feel the season is changing. The leaves turning colors, the air cooler, sunbeams casting shadows in different places. It feels like a seasonal change has begun in the northern hemisphere. Christmas is in four months, and 2015 is swiftly speeding by. Soon it will be autumn and time for the many Festivals of Light. Each season offers new opportunities. Then the season ends and new seasons take its place. Humanity, too, is given “seasons” of opportunity. We are in one of those opportunities now, to bring something new (Uranus) into our world, especially in the United States. Times of opportunity can be seen in the astrology chart. In the U.S. chart, Uranus (change) joins Chiron (wound/healing). This symbolizes a need to heal the wounds of humanity. Uranus offers new archetypes, new ways of doing things. The Uranus/Chiron (Aries/Pisces) message is, “The people of the U.S. are suffering. New actions are needed to bring healing and well-being to humanity. So the U.S. can fulfill its spiritual task of standing within the light and leading humanity within and toward the light.” Thursday, Aquarius Moon, Mercury enters Libra. The message, “To bring forth the new order in the world, begin with acts of Goodwill.” Goodwill produces right relations with everyone and everything. The result is a world of progressive well-being and peacefulness (which is neither passive nor the opposite of war). Saturday is the full moon, the solar light of Virgo streaming into the Earth. Our waiting now begins, for the birth of new light at winter solstice. The mother (hiding the light of the soul, the holy child), identifying the feminine principle, says, “I am the mother and the child. I, God (Father), I Matter (Mother), We are One.”

 

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