For Madison Church, combining her personal style flair with Louisiana is essential to marketing and developing her fashion brand as a multi-faceted media presence.
The textile, apparel design and merchandising freshman is another fashion blogger on campus. To stand apart from the rest, Church adds business owner to her resume. She regularly updates her fashion and lifestyle blog, “Louisiana Girl in Pearls,” while running her own Etsy shop, “Brunette and Co.,” which features a variety of monogrammed items, including apparel, pillowcases, dishware and decals.
Church keeps her hands tied. While being a business owner she is also involved with LSU Greek Life as a member of Alpha Phi Sorority, while being a full-time student. She said time management is the key to her being able to successfully manage participating in several different outlets. Her approach to withstand procrastination when it comes to her Etsy shop is to immediately begin to gather whatever supplies she will need to complete the newly-received order.
Church has run her blog since July 2015, and her push for more reader exposure keeps her going.
“My motivation is just the end goal: that someday this will be something that people want to read and want to know what I’m doing, what I’m wearing, that sort of thing,” Church said.
Church’s inspiration behind running a full-time blog and business stems from her longtime love of fashion. The freshman said she had multiple reasons behind her blog, including having her own outlet and audience, being able to forecast trends, receiving feedback on her posts, looking for outfit inspiration and fashion industry communication. Church has retail experience as well, having worked at Old Navy and the O Spa Lifestyle Boutique at Franco’s Athletic Club, to build upon her style credibility.
By having her own blog and constantly coming up with new, creative content, Church said she is already preparing herself for her upper-level major-specific courses. She integrates her merchandising and advertising skills when generating ideas and ways to produce appealing material.
Church’s friend and fellow business owner of “Seaux Chic Monograms,” marketing freshman Madeline Dunbar said she’s enjoyed seeing Church grow.
“It’s been really cool to kind of watch her take this process on and grow with it, because it’s something she genuinely cares so much about. She is
completely invested in it and it’s something she really wants to pursue. When her heart is after something, she will absolutely go and get it,” Dunbar said.
The two will collaborate on posts and projects together, and Dunbar has appeared in several posts on Church’s blog.
“It’s been really fun to watch her go all out and take on all these new options and new challenges, because it takes so much to do the blog,” Dunbar said, “It’s something we’ve been able to do together, and that’s been really fun. We’re able to encourage each other and work alongside each other.”
Church describes her personal style as classic with a trendy twist, consisting of a mixture of neutral and basic pieces while incorporating occasional pops of color. Her wardrobe is comprised of an assortment of authentic boutique-styled pieces as well as clothing from more prevalent corporations. She places increased emphasis on her “Outfit of the Day” posts because she said they usually warrant the most readership.
“I think people like to see the clothes actually on you. It’s more personable and they can see how you’re styling it, as opposed to having separate pictures of items in a graphic,” she said.
Some of the blogs that Church gathers inspiration from are “Haute Off the Rack,” “A Pinch of Lovely,” “The College Prepster” and “Southern Curls & Pearls.” Church said she gets ideas for her posts from other blogs, her surroundings, and social media.
“I take ideas from that, put my own spin on it, maybe add my own element,” she said. Church gains most of her following through social media and word-of-mouth, she said.
Currently, the freshman runs her business out of her dorm room, designing products with her own embroidery and vinyl decal machines. Church said she plans on introducing a Greek line to her Etsy store, and adding alternative products that would differentiate her store from other Etsy shops.
“My eventual goal, as of this moment, is probably to own my own boutique. I would like to do monogramming and that sort of thing, as well as sell clothing,” Church said.