We had the good fortune of connecting with Kaliyah Killens and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kaliyah, do you have some perspective or insight you can share with us on the question of when someone should give up versus when they should keep going?
Good things take time to gain momentum, an audience and a return (on investment). I constantly receive signs from the universe, God, my community and even strangers to keep going. Affirming words, making sales, angel numbers, and even opportunities like this keep me going. It’s time to give up when I stop receiving those confirmations or I lose passion and drive.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
A lot of tears, hard-work and leaps of faith got me to where I am today. Ever since I was 8 years old I knew I wanted to be in fashion and now I’m here!
I work full-time as a personal stylist/shopper for Nordstrom. It’s a newer role for me and it’s a learning curve still. Working with customers in a digital space is interesting but rewarding. The other part of my role, is to record styling videos for Nordstrom.com . It’s a nice break from the work from home space and push outside of my comfort zone. I’m in standing in front of a small team, lights and cameras speaking about beautiful clothing for 8 hours a week. It’s a really cool experience and I’m glad that I decided to give this role a chance. Lessons that I’ve learned so far are to don’t be afraid to ask questions, following up is essential and I truly am shy but confident.
During my lunch, after work and on my off days are mainly dedicated to I.CONIC, my side hustle. I design, create patterns, sew and style all of the pieces. Also, I hand-curate the accessories. It’s a brand for the everyday i.con who wants to look fabulous and loves the 2000s. It’s one of the best eras in fashion and entertainment! A brief history- I.CONIC was created from assignment while studying at FIDM in Downtown LA. The assignment was to posed by my professor to create a hypothetical collection from start to finish. I saw this as an opportunity to lay the groundwork for my future brand. I was brainstorming different brands names and I.CONIC instantly stood out to me. After that assignment, I created an online portfolio and several companies reached out to me to do fashion shows, pop-ups in LA and the Bay Area. Since then, I created an instagram, website and continue to do pop-up’s. Lessons that, I’ve learned from this journey to ask for help, don’t be afraid to put myself out into the world and people who get it (my vision) will.
Balancing both jobs while living my life in LA makes me stand apart.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Ooo! It honestly depends on what vibe we’re going for. These are some of favorite places and things to do (off the top of my head).
Definitely doing a thrift/vintage shopping day. I live near a lot of great vintage stores and my favorite Goodwill isn’t too far either. I always find great gems for the low!
I love a good farmers market and the Hollywood one is great. Fresh plants, juices, produce etc.
We have to do a Melrose/Fairfax day! I love walking down melrose, hitting up the trading post and taking pictures. If you get hungry, Fratelli cafe is great and it’s chill ambiance. On Fairfax, Sweet chick is another great spot!
Brunch is another essential. One of my favorite spots is Eat this cafe. The crowd is always fun and they have great customer service. You’ll leave full and happy from the bottomless mimosas.
Depending on the weather, the beaches are fun! Will Rodgers beach is always a vibe.
A museum day would be fun! CAAM, The broad and Lacma are great options.
On the last day, it would be fun to do a tourist day. Go to the walk of fame,
people watch, take a TMZ tours bus and enjoy all of the cool attractions in Hollywood.
A bar night would be fun! I don’t go out as much anymore but LA has some great bars. I’ve enjoyed Adults only, Te’kila, ock n key (Koreatown).
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I dedicate my shoutout to my family and friends. All of the support that I receive from them is priceless and I’m so grateful.
Instagram: @kaliyahk_ @i.conicthebrand @catalogkaliyah
Other: Shop my favorite looks from Nordstrom or get styled by me! https://www.nordstrom.com/styleboard?p=00u201xnguo47RP5s2p7