We had the good fortune of connecting with Bria Van Cooten and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Bria, can you share a quote or affirmation with us?
One thing I have heard my entire life is “everything happens for a reason”, it is a saying that resonates with my entire being. We use this saying when something doesn’t go our way or something we want doesn’t happen. It is a saying that is used to comfort you in a time when you may need comfort because something disappointing has occurred. Out of all the questions, this one resonated with me because having a business and trying to grow it can be difficult at times, it is not for the weak. You go through many disappointments, and I have found myself using this saying when things don’t go how I want them to. After giving myself sometime to be upset or annoyed, “everything happens for a reason” is at the back of my mind.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I started this wardrobe styling/personal shopping journey back in 2013 as a styling assistant. I’ve always had a love for clothes and shopping but during that time I grew a deeper love for the art of fashion and styling, strengthening my knowledge of it all. During this time I was able to be on set of editorial/magazine shoots. I was able to learn the behind the scenes of the business and the ins and outs of styling and putting together a production. I started to attend New York fashion week, which was a dream come true for me. I also started my YouTube channel and bought my domain for my website/blog, which I have been running since 2014.
In 2015 I decided to start my own styling business, I didn’t know where the clients were going to come from but I believed in myself and I knew God wouldn’t put something in me if it wasn’t supposed to manifest. Social media has been a great help in growing my clientele. I always posted my outfits, but then I started to style my friends/family and post them as well, so people saw that I was serious.
This journey has not been easy, there are great moments and there are disappointing moments but I wouldn’t trade my journey for anything. I have learned to keep on going, I know that is a generic answer but it rings true. What if you quit today and tomorrow was the day that everything you wanted came true? You would never know because you stopped going today. You can’t give up on yourself.
The love I have for fashion and styling has helped me to stay focused and overcome any challenge. Looking back I could have not imagined all of the great work I have done over the years and I am excited to do more and take my career and styling to the next level.
Looking back, again I can say I am most proud of my work ethic. Over these past couple of years I have been styling while either in college or had a full-time/part-time job. Always staying focused on the goal of growing my clients and strengthening my fashion eye. I am proud when I look at new videos/content I create, I see growth in my work each time. Something that sets me apart from others is that I want to be better than the previous work I created, other people inspire me but I am not competing with them. I am not following a trend, styling is something that was placed in my spirit and heart and I love it so much. It makes me happy to create new looks for my clients and myself. My style is different than others, I visualize things differently. I can see 10 different ways you can wear something when you only see 1 or 2. I can visually see something when I hear music that others can’t see. That might have something to do with my music background, I have performed for 16 years of my life and I have a music degree. But more on that another time… lol
I want the world to know that I am one of the greatest.
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?
I am your girl when it comes to knowing the best spots to eat and having a good time in the city. I live in NYC, one of the best cities in the world. First things first, we will get some good food, depending on what you want to eat. I love La Esquina, a Mexican spot with great tacos and great margaritas(the passion fruit margarita is my fave). Another spot we can go to is Melbas, if you want some good soul food. Anytime I’m in Harlem I have to stop in, their collard greens and garlic mashed potatoes always hit. I have a whole list of places we can go throughout the week. We can also find a great bar, get some drinks and listen to some good music. Something I want to get back into is going to Broadway. I love getting dressed up and going to watch a good play. Something I want to see again is The Lion King, I first saw it when I was 10 but I would love to see it again. We can also see the Tina Turner musical, “What’s love got to do with it” is a classic.
What’s a trip to NYC without some shopping, people come from all over the world just to shop here. I can say we have some of the best shopping ares in the world. It’s NYC, so we can always find a cool event going on. Whether it be in the art scene or music, an event is bound to pop up. Something simple but always fun is hanging at a friends house, eating some good food, watching something or just talking. Once you’re around good energy and good vibes whatever you do will always be a good time.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Shoutout to my work ethic lol for real though, I have to push myself everyday to get up and do what I have to do to further my career and grow my business. No one understands your work like you do, having a great work ethic is key. To the people around me, my friends and family who I see grinding everyday working on their own goals. They make me excited that we all are on our own individual journey and we will be running empires soon. We’re each others motivation.
To the fashion girls/guys and creators who came before me, who inspire me with the work they have done in the industry. Lastly, shoutout to the inspirational interviews and videos I have watched that has motivated me on my journey.
Other: Styled by me: http://www.briavancooten.com/p/styledbybriavancooten.html