Our guests are our heartbeat and after 50 years, we’ve come to realize that no two are the same. Sure their unique style tells us a little bit more about who they are, but it’s the story that truly shapes the person.
And we figured, what better way to understand our guests than to hit the streets of Chicago.
With a small team of three, we connected with new and loyal guests across the city to share who they are and what they’re loving.
But don’t get it wrong… this is their story. (We’re just happy to be part of it.)
Tell us about yourself.
I grew up in a status-quo neighborhood of Kansas City. I spent most of my time at dance team rehearsals, going to concerts, attending high school dances, and anxiously awaiting the freedom of college. I attended University of Kansas and spent my first year studying design to pursue photography. Ultimately, I graduated with a Degree in Psychology and a minor in Business. Although photography will always be a part of me, I had a deeper calling to tend to people experiencing mental illnesses.
A few short months after graduation, I packed up and headed for Chicago, where I have been studying Clinical Mental Health Counseling at DePaul University. In the future, I hope to become a practicing LCPC for families and adolescents struggling with mental health. In my practice, I hope to use my passions such as music, photography, and yoga to supplement therapy and help clients work towards a more healthy and balanced well-being.
Describe your style in three words. Bohemian, Urban, & FUN!
What does fashion mean to you?
Fashion is a way to express pieces of your personality. I love expanding on a current interest or feeling by expressing it through what I wear. It’s a way for me to be creative and comfortable in my skin each day. Following fashion rules doesn’t make sense to me, I like to wear what feels right!
How does your style align with your lifestyle?
I hold many roles in my life, so my style has to be able to transition into different settings. I am a full-time graduate student; I work in an office, but I also work in a residential care facility for eating, mood, and anxiety disorders. Although I work in professional settings, I still like to include patterns, color, and fun shapes to keep things interesting. On the weekends, anything goes! I love wearing more unique, daring, and fashion-forward pieces and enjoying myself with friends on a night out.
Finish this sentence. Your shoes better be able to… get me around the city and still make a statement.
Personal Hobbies: Photography, yoga, making Spotify playlists, and following yoga/puppy Instagram accounts
Name your spirit animal. Elephant
Identify a time you were challenged and how you overcame it.
When I was a freshman in high school, I was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukemia. For a while, this is something that defined me. Over the course of a year I was in and out of the hospital. I have been blessed in so many ways, one of them being the treatment that saved my life. In just a year I was back in remission and have been managing the illness ever since. I overcame this illness both physically and mentally.
Experiences like this teach us not only to cherish each day, but to remember to live life with intention. Since my remission, I often remind myself to live authentically and to be kind each day. When we really take a look at the big picture, these are the things that are most important.
I’ve always been attracted to the hustle and bustle of a city, but I also love the quaint feeling of a tree-lined suburb. Living in Lakeview has given me the best of both worlds! I feel like the same mid-western girl, but with the added glamour of a big city. There’s so much to do here and so many people to meet! To me, Chicago represents opportunity and adventure, you never know what might be waiting around the corner.
Favorite treat: Caramel & sea salt dark chocolate.
Love Melissa’s style? Shop her favorites.
Make sure to check out our weekly Live Undefined series for more special guests.
I think she is right that fashion is a way to express pieces of your personality. Fashion changes, but style endures. So we don’t need to follow fashion rules, just wear what makes you feel right. That is your own style.