Meet Grace Atwood, a Cape Cod native come New York dweller and
founder of The Stripe.com. Discover her love of modern art, her
favourite city haunts and her journey to becoming a full time
THIS YEAR MARKS A DECADE SINCE YOU MOVED TO NEW YORK,
WHAT LIFE LESSONS HAS THIS CITY TAUGHT YOU?
Living in New
York has taught me so many things, but the biggest, broadest lesson
has been to be open to everything. The city is so diverse and rich
with culture. It can feel very small at times (especially amongst
social circles) but I always try to remember how big it is and to
seek out as many new and exciting experiences as I possibly can.
New York isn't my forever home (at least I don't think it is!) so I
want to make the most of it while I'm here.
WHERE DO YOU SEEK CREATIVITY IN THE CITY? DO YOU HAVE A
FAVOURITE GALLERY OR COFFEE SHOP?
creativity everywhere. As I tend to favour modern art, my favourite
museum is the MoMA, but I also love the Cooper-Hewitt, The Met, and
the Whitney Downtown. I also love gallery hopping in Chelsea. For
me, it's impossible to pick a favourite as there are just so many.
Two of my favourite exhibits this year were Tom Wesselmann at the
Mitchell-Innes & Nash Gallery, and Mr. Brainwash at The
Taglialatella Gallery. Out in The Hamptons, my friend Tripoli
Patterson has a really cool space. As for a favourite coffee shop,
What made you set up your blog six years
You know, it
probably sounds a little bit trite but I just really wanted a place
to share the things I loved. I was uninspired at my job and so I
made my own little creative outlet. I never dreamed it would lead
to the opportunities it has today!
Grace atwood photographed in Chelsea, New York
How do you think your approach to blogging has changed
in those six years?
Oh how it has
changed! I've become much more strategic. Lately though, I've been
moving in a slightly different direction, incorporating a lot of
lifestyle content. My readers are responding really well to the
Q&A posts I've been doing so I've been adding a lot of those in
as well as recipes, travel and wellness content.
New York is a very competitive city, how do you make
sure your blog stands out in such a busy market space?
Is it bad to
say that I just don't really think about what everyone else is
doing? At least, I try not to. Since leaving my previous Social
Media Director role, I am not as attuned to what the rest of the
blogger community is doing, and I think that's actually really
helped me. I just try to always feature the products and things
that I truly love and stay as authentic as possible. I also just
work really, really hard. It's a very simple statement, but "work
hard and be nice to people" is actually some of the best career
advice out there. If you do both of those things, it's rare that
How has running social media for a brand helped you as a
helped me. A big part of my previous job was to stay current and
understand what is going on in the market. So I read everything I
could get my hands on, and really studied social media as best I
could. And when I couldn't figure something out on my own, I worked
around all these really young people who could help me. Take
Snapchat, for example. I'm 35. None of my friends were on it. Lucky
for me, I had an army of interns who were dying to tell me how to
use it, and so that brand's Snapchat was born… as well as my own
day-to-day today, I always try to treat The Stripe as a brand and
think about it the way I would a 'day job', taking it seriously,
being strategic and putting thought into what you do as opposed to
just throwing things at a wall and seeing what sticks.
Grace stacks Signature bangles in plain and diamond finishes
Styling the Naida collection in open circle and cocktail
You have previously worked in more traditional marketing
roles for the likes of P&G and Coty. Did you always see
yourself moving into the digital space?
I didn't! My
career has been very fluid. Prior to traditional marketing, I was
an assistant buyer for a department store. I tend to just follow my
gut and my instincts and see what happens. Buying led me to
marketing, and then I started my blog for fun, which led me to a
role in social media, and then that led me to eventually running my
own site full time.
I can be very
strategic and calculating at times, but when it comes to the bigger
picture I tend to just go with the flow and see what life hands me.
So far, it's worked out pretty well and been a very interesting
What do you admire most about New York
and the fact that anything goes. I could decide to wear a tutu with
a military jacket tomorrow and no one would bat an eyelash. You can
mix and match and really experiment. My own taste is pretty
conservative and classic, but I admire the crazy stuff from
Describe your style and its evolution from New England
casual to now.
I describe my
style as a feminine mix of coastal and city. There is a side of me
that gravitates toward all things preppy; striped tees, fruit
motifs and tassel earrings, but then there is my New York side that
wants to wear distressed denim and all black. So my day-to-day
style can be a little all over the place, but it's very girly with
elements of both Manhattan and Cape Cod.
In terms of an
evolution, I think it's really just that I have gotten a bit more
comfortable in my own skin and understand what works on my body. I
wear a lot of fit and flare silhouettes, I rarely wear pants, and
I'm almost always in heels.
Grace captured near her favourite museum, the Whitney Museum of
Your blog name is 'The Stripe' because of your love of
timeless pattern. What jewellery styles best with
In my opinion,
stripes are the perfect backdrop for jewellery. I love stripes with
anything that sparkles, whether it's a chunky statement cuff, or a
great pair of earrings. One of my favourite looks is a navy and
white striped tee with a bold pair of earrings or an armful of
bangles. You can wear that with a skirt, with jeans, with skinny
black pants. It's timeless but also super fun!
If you could engrave anything on a Monica Vinader
pendant or bracelet, what would it be?
Okay, this is
perhaps a bit corny, but as I'm the only person who would see it, I
would write: "Life is sweet." Sometimes life in New York can be
challenging and very lonely, but at the end of the day I feel so
blessed and lucky; life is truly awesome. Having that engraved in a
bracelet would help me to remember.