MY NAME IS LUCY JOLIS, I LIVE IN AUSTIN, TEXAS AND OWN SUNROOM.
I’m a coastal transplant, so even after being in Austin for years, the land-locked lifestyle feels different for me. (Maybe that’s why I love having so many swim items in the store!) My life in the store is so social and busy, and that makes me appreciate peaceful and quiet moments when I’m away from it. I look forward to taking time to lounge at home and read. Creating that sort of calm environment sparks creative ideas for me. I also spend time with close friends and family, and my dog, Jackson. Honesty and hard work guide me both at work and in my life outside of work. Those are qualities I admire in the people around me too.
TALK TO US ABOUT EMERGING TALENT AND THE AUSTIN MARKET – WHAT HAS BEEN THE BIGGEST EVOLUTION YOU’VE SEEN IN UP AND COMING AUSTIN-BASED DESIGNERS AND WHAT DO YOU WANT SUNROOM TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE CITY’S FASHION SCENE?
Austin has some rich design talent, and that’s just growing more and more as the city expands. It’s an especially exciting time to be based in Austin, and we are so proud to support local designers at Sunroom. Part of my mission with Sunroom has always been to introduce new, emerging designers to Austin. To bring in items and talent that Austin hasn’t been exposed to yet. Seeking out those new designers is one of my favorite parts of the job! Researching them and forging relationships with designers I believe in is so enriching–I love getting to know them and being able to tell our customers all about them. I work to educate our customers on new brands and tell them all of the backstory for designers, so they can appreciate each piece as much as I do.
AS A SMALL BUSINESS OWNER WHAT TOOLS WOULD YOU ADVISE ASPIRING ENTREPRENEURS TO UTILIZE IN THEIR OWN ENDEAVORS?
Pinterest is one of the most amazing tools I use. It’s the perfect way for me to visually organize my brain, both as a prep for market and inspiration for upcoming seasons. I also create boards on the wall of my office for each season’s buy. That way I know exactly what’s coming in, when it’s coming, and what I want it to hang next to in the store. It’s old-fashioned, but it’s the best system for me. Creating a strong team has helped me grow Sunroom, and I would encourage other entrepreneurs to do the same thing. Knowing my strengths and building a team with strengths that are different and complimentary to those has been so important. It means that we can divide and conquer. If we’re all working on tasks that we excel at, we can get so much more done and have fun while we’re doing it. We really like working together and the business moves forward so much more as a result of each team member caring for the project.
WHAT IS ONE QUESTION YOU WISH PEOPLE ASKED YOU MORE OFTEN?
While I do get this question every now and then, it’s still my favorite. “Where does the name SUNROOM come from?” Years before actually opened Sunroom I had a working list of potential shop names. They all included words like Sea, Surf, Salt, Sun, Sand. When I walked into my first potential storefront, I thought to myself, “its cute, it’s like a sunroom”. That was really it. I liked that is was simple and ordinary, not trying to hard to be clever or witty. It just felt true to the space. That’s been a governing principle with the store overall: don’t overthink things; if it feels right, go with it.
HOW DO YOU CELEBRATE PERSONAL STYLE?
I celebrate personal style in that I feel comfortable to dress however I please. It’s not important to me to follow trends or look a certain way to appeal to a certain crowd. Comfort is the centerpiece of my personal style. If I feel good in what I’m wearing, that has a positive impact on everything I do that day. Feeling good is key and if that means I wear the same basic uniform everyday I have no problem with it, I own it.
THE STYLE LINE WAS BUILT ON THE PREMISE OF DISCOVERY, EXPLORATION AND TRANSIT. WITH THIS IN MIND, IF WHAT IS YOUR “THE STYLE LINE” IN YOUR WARDROBE?
This goes right back to comfort in some ways! Austin is a city with dramatic shifts in the weather: you’ve got to be ready for extreme heat, thirty degree changes in the temperature, and even flash floods. So, while this is the opposite of glamorous, the truth is that the weather is the biggest influence on my personal style. I live around the corner from the store so whatever the weather is, I’m in and out of it all day. I more or less have a seasonal uniform, variations of the same look that I tend to stick with. It means that when I get up in the morning, I don’t need to fuss much. I get dressed, and I’m ready to be out and active the rest of the day.
“Regardless of season you will always find these Austin essentials at Sunroom, regardless of the season: great swimsuits, killer sunglasses and beautiful statement jewelry.”