We had the good fortune of connecting with Gabrielle Elise and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Gabrielle Elise, why did you pursue a creative career?
Since I was young I was always drawn to the creative side of things. Some people go into a store and look at things and put it straight into their cart. I look at things and say “Oh I can totally make that!” and leave it on the shelf. It’s a running joke between my family and I when they see a sweater or something they like and I tell them not to get it because “I can totally make that!”. I learned in school that if you’re left brained you’re more of a logical and methodical thinker, whereas right brained people are more creative. That always stuck with me because I’ve known that I wanted to work with my hands since I was little. Being able to think of something and then go about the process of making it come to life is so amazing to me and just super fun to do! I love seeing my ideas become an actual tangible thing I can wear and use in my day to day life! I truly think that everyone should go about creating something they love, even if it’s just once, really think about it and set your mind and goal to accomplish it. Seeing the things in your head, your thoughts come to life, is one of the most satisfying accomplishments!
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
When I started Lila Rose Studio I didn’t know where it would take me. If you would have told me I’d be answering these questions for an interview 3 years ago I definitely wouldn’t have believed you! I started crocheting when I was 13 and knitting when I was 18. I first picked up a crochet hook with my mom and sister one Fall because we wanted to make our own scarves for the season. I put my hook down for a few years after I had no more room to house my scarves, but I always had the desire to make more. I was a senior in High School when I started Lila Rose Studio. I had no idea what I was doing. I still don’t! Even through all the hardships and failed attempts I still stuck in it and gave it my all. I would say I’m most proud of that. I’ve had to learn to stop comparing myself and my success to other’s. It’s hard at times, really hard, but so worth it! It’s easy to see how far someone has come and how successful they are now, but not really see their struggles in getting there. At one point I was so caught up that I started trying to make things I thought people would want. Thankfully I got over that and now I’m making pieces I want and wear all the time! Everything you see on Lila Rose Studio is something that I would wear or use everyday. I think that’s what sets me apart from others. It can be challenging not to go after what’s popular and create that item. People would purchase it but I wouldn’t be having fun then! It would not be enjoyable anymore, it’d be work. I’ve worked hard to get where I am today. I watched lots of YouTube videos along the way to learn what I do now! I hope I can do that for someone and help them to learn a new craft and skill. I’m so happy to be starting a new series on my blog very soon about learning how to both crochet and knit! There’s something for everyone, beginner or advanced, and I can’t wait to see how people respond to it!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Ponce City Market would definitely be on the list! There is so much to do and see, we’d be there for hours! There is a nice restaurant there that I love, Minero, so I would have to take her there! We’d follow that up with a nice movie night. I love watching multiple movies in a row! We’d also visit the Mall of Georgia to get a bit of shopping in! A friend can’t come to town without going on a shopping spree! After, we’d eat dinner at P.F. Chang’s and stop at the grocery store on the way home to get some cookies and treats for our after party! This would really just consist of eating all the sweets and watching our favorite shows. There’s so much you can do here. If you’re a chill person there’s something for you and if you’re adventurous there’s something for you! I would have to take her to Stone Mountain one morning and then go for brunch in the city after. The other days would probably just be chill. I’m more of a homebody and so is she, so we’d be happy just hanging out at my house for the rest of week, her designing more items for her business, and me doing the same!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I definitely wouldn’t be here with the help of my family and friends! Throughout the years there have been many times where I just wanted to give up and quit. My mom, Danielle, and my oldest sister, Ayanah, have helped me to fight that urge many times! I call them my business managers because they are always cheering me on and giving great advice and ideas for what to do next. I don’t always take their advice though, but looking back I always should have. My father, Dwayne, has always been there with support. There’s been lots of times when I spent hours and hours making things for a show and there was little turn out, but he was still proud. Sometimes I even get little (or big) packages in the mail to help with my business (light box/ring light/etc.) and wow does it help! My older sister, Chelsea, and my best friend, Hunter, have always been there to support me as well. Running your own business can take an emotional toll on you. They are there to calm me down, help me realize that it’s not the end of the world, and get back to work. Hunter also always comes out, rain or shine, no matter how far, to any event I have! It can be a whole day event and there she is, right by my side! It really does take a village! Thank you all for your support and love throughout these years. I know I’m not the easiest to work with sometimes so it really means a lot that everyone is still here by my side rooting me on.
Other: www.Etsy.com/shop/Lilarosestudio https://in.pinterest.com/lilarosestudio/