We had the good fortune of connecting with Amari Barber-Downs and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Amari, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
I believe my biggest challenge to date is finding balance with both my personal life and my work life , my kids , and my fiancé . the clothing line, my friends etc. I recently let go of my 9-5 to peruse my dream job . Which is my clothing line, I’m having to learn a new meaning of balance. I’ve learned my balance will continue to change and be adjusted so long as i continue to grow and take risks. I actually have the perfect life partner. I believe that has a lot to do with finding balance . Balance finacially , emotionally and physically as we have two babies as well So there’s quite a bit to balance . But being open to change allows transitioning and finding balance again a bit easier!

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I was in the finacial industry for around 4 years . While working for the companies I worked for i learned a few things that better prepared me for how to run my business today. I worked tirelessly for multiple banks within corporate America and every single bank ran me to the ground. Leadership was terrible , i dealt with uncomfortable things because of race , gender , beliefs , anything under the sun. But i had a plan. I saved my money, hosted fashionshows, found ways to deal with my 9-5 and to make my brand profitable . Well Covid hit & it hit hard. I Received a pretty nice severance package from my “job” that i poured 40+ hours a week into. Asking me to leave . I took the money and what we call “flipped it” I’ve been investing in MYSELF & my brand & Ive been blessed since . But as soon as i let go of the “i need a 40 hour a week job” mindset , it’s like endless possibilities have happened . COVID helped me make my largest numbers in sales for my clothing to DATE. I made in 2 days what has taken me years!!! So there no longer is work life balance , i followed my dreams and it’s totally a roller coaster worth riding.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
LOL FUNNY! So i am from a city called Sacramento. I am such a simple person its ridiculous. I have friends from all over who know if they come here all we’re doing is eating. I often like to drive a few hours to the Bay Area for fun or fly to LA. I’d love to believe that LA is my second home. But, if i had friends visiting here : We’d definitely go thrifting , find a rainbow umbrella on the street and get some over priced fruit and bacon wrapped hotdogs. We’d go to Land park and have a picnic and do nothing. My friends know my Brain is all over the place so if we’re hangin out. We’re spending lots of money on vintage reworked clothing and FOOD and we’re doing a whole lot of nothing. We mayyyyy make our own at home drinks and watch greys anatomy.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Wow ! How intense ! There are many people i feel a need to thank. My parents of course as they’re entrepreneurs as well. They moved here to create a better life and to allow us children to follow our dreams . My parents have done a fine job of showing me support and letting me know how a business should be ran. Constantly reminding me why it’s important to believe in myself and never ever give up. My phenomenal fiancé . I mean i hit the lottery as far as finding a life partner that goes with my creative flow. He assists with far more then i can name with this brand and just… life. He keeps me on my toes and reminds me to have fun in life . He listens to my million ideas and doesn’t get upset or offended when i don’t allow him to be hands on . Lol! He allows me to baby my business and helps when I’m comfortable. Which is important! My in laws- i have the best in laws ever . A lot of this job is late nights , taking risks finacially , it’s a lot when you take it seriously and my in laws believe in me . They have no issue with assisting with out children . We have created a great foundation for them. Friends – i have friends that i can turn to for anything Teo, Bri, Khamoria , Chaz . I have friends that know me . LIKE KNOW ME. They know when I’m drained , they don’t take offense with me, they understand me. And that’s so important. It’s important to have people that with out explaination just GET YOU. because sometimes , you don’t get yourself . SOCAIL MEDIA- i have so many friends that i can’t even name that model for me , share my products , hype my items once they get it in the mail & all of them are so important to me because they make my brand . They’re the face , they’re the reason! I love all my followers and social media friends and supporters , they make me feel like I’m doing al-damn-right!

Website: Aklosett.com
Instagram: @iLoveAklosett
Twitter: Aklosett
Facebook: Aklosett

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