We had the good fortune of connecting with Liliana Brito and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Liliana, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
I believe without risk there is no gain. As exaggerated as the motto goes, to see real change and growth in all aspects of our life we must risk our comfort zone to achieve them. The journey I decided to embark was a risk as a whole by deciding to pursue a creative career versus a more linear one my immigrant Mexican family would have chosen for me. As a child the opportunities were endless and the pressure to better our family was heavy, so my grades never fell short to keep those doors open. Although when I reached high school I knew that being a doctor was never going to fulfill the creative spark in me, so I chose fashion. Being the ambitious teen I was I did my research and realized fashion designers weren’t making nearly close to a pediatrician unless they were the next Alexander Mcqueen, but I believed- and believe in myself so I took the risk.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?

At the moment I’m a 24 year old associate fashion designer in the private label industry with 4 years of experience, an entrepreneur and newly self declared content creator. I find it difficult to write about my story because although I know it wasn’t easy I also knew it wasn’t impossible and that’s the privilege I’m grateful for. I moved to the United States from Mexico at the age of 9 fleeing from the danger we all know well, and the fact that we had recently lost my father’s life. After several months of house crashing with my single mother and 4 other siblings including a newborn, we finally settled down in Avondale Arizona. With grief, trauma and cultural shock, I decided becoming a victim would relinquish power to those who expected me to fail, and yes this was my thought process at nine years old. So I coped as best I could. By the time I reached high school, I realized the power we individually had to create our own destiny, but at the time, I was an undocumented dreamer and I only felt like a bird without its wings. And so when I received my DACA visa it was only fitting to know our talisman was the monarch butterfly. Two months after graduation I moved to Los Angeles to attend the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandise to become a fashion designer. The school that once rejected me and in a way mocked me for not being able to afford it, saying “I would choose a different school”…But what they didn’t know is my determination to become the person I already knew I was. After two years of all nighters attempting to demonstrate my talent by sewing up garments after working double jobs and a full time education, I graduated with an associates degree and decided that was enough for me. I knew my education was for a creative career so I didn’t want to waste more time or money trying to convince myself that I was ready. I finally felt like I could fly, and so I did, to New York the fashion capital. By the grace of God I received an invitation to apply to an assistant designer job on my Linkedin mailbox. The funny thing about invitations by agencies is that they don’t tell you who you’re applying for so you sell yourself, HARD. And that’s how I landed my job with Michael freaking Kors. That entire year of learning the ropes of the industry I felt like I was in a dream, the why me phase, and imposter syndrome was strong to say the least. But I was so happy. It was all finally making sense and worth my wild in some sort of way, and the hard work was paying off. After one year of working through a third party agency, the brand was considering hiring me full time with a salary and benefits. A young immigrant professional’s dream! But right before I could sign any paperwork, our president at the time beat me to it. The Trump administration had decided to stop DACA recipients from renewing their visas, and left more than 800k dreamers in limbo. Understandably- or not, the brand had decided to retract their offer because they “couldn’t afford” to sponsor a starting position. To make the story short once again I decided to not become their victim and moved back to Los Angeles to work my way up to the salary, title and benefits I knew I deserved at 21. If I’ve learned anything along the way is that life can take everything away from you, your comfort, money and freedom but not your character- not your resilience. And trust me it makes the rewards all the sweeter.

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.
My friend and former co-worker is visiting from New York this week and wants to know all about living in LA! To show her some of my favorite places in the city here’s my list:
-Margarita Monday at Toca Madera in West Hollywood
-Touristic Tuesday at the Getty Museum and Wine tasting
-Wednesday’s for exploring the Santee Alley and the fashion district for all the fabrics & trim sourcing
-Thirsty Thursday at the Dodgers game with some micheladas
-TGIF at Perch for some cocktails with a view
-Saturday Brunch at the Huntington Bungalow
-Sunday Funday at the melrose trading post and lunch at the Malibu farms

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Wow so many people deserve this shoutout but a group that definitely has continued to motivate me is the DACA community. They are so resilient and focused, their energy is electric and inspiring.

Website: https://www.lilianabritosalgado.com/

Instagram: @Lilibritosa

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lilianabrito1?trk=people-guest_people_search-card

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQ7bNOPVH2jgDHh5BSQ7qiQ

Other: Curated Home Decor Online Thrift Store @lilantiques owner/founder Eyelash and Hair Beauty Brand @mali__beauty co owner/founder

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.