A Collected Interview:
ACG: What inspired you to create Taste The Style?
CR: I actually launched Taste the Style a few years ago as a way to review downtown NYC restaurants with a girlfriend of mine. Took some time off from it because I started focusing on other projects but I recently wanted to revive it with more of a focus on fashion since it is now the industry I eat, breathe, and sleep. Since then, I’ve made it into a fun destination to speak openly about designers I love, food inspiration, and the random wildcard story that I think my readers would find entertaining. I try to post whatever genuinely makes me happy and that seems to be really resonating with my followers!
ACG: What would say has been your biggest achievement as a blogger?
CR: I’d have to say the amazing response I receive from people regarding my posts and the projects I’ve been able to explore thanks to my blog.
ACG: You’re a native of New York City. Tell us about about growing up there and how it has shaped you into the person you are today?
CR: I am 100% a product of NYC and it’s shaped me in so many ways from my personality to my personal style. Growing up in NYC, you’re immersed in so many different cultures and backgrounds. My friends were either from another country or their parents were. I really think that’s one of the beautiful things about being a New Yorker: you can really learn so much about others’ culture by just exploring the city and the different boroughs. That’s not to say I don’t travel: there’s nothing more beautiful than immersing yourself in someone else’s territory. But New Yorkers are privileged in that sense: we’re exposed to so many nationalities and I’ve really let that inspire me as an individual and with my personal style.
ACG: Tell us about your position at Third Wave Fashion and what we can expect from them in the future.
CR: I’ve been with TWF for over 2 years now and it’s been an incredible experience so far! Right now, I’m focused on creating even better Meetups so that our members get the most they can out of them. In general, we focus on aiding entrepreneurs in the intersection between fashion & technology. However, the industry is growing and it’s not just entrepreneurs that want a piece of the pie. Brands and VCs are becoming aware and are gaining interest. We want to make sure everyone’s learning and staying up to date on the industry as best as they can, so our monthly reports have been a great way for us to parlay the information so you’ll be seeing a lot more focus on our products: the reports and fashion tech database.
ACG: What food spots would you recommend a tourist visiting New York City for the first time?
CR: That’s SUCH a loaded question but one I’m happy to answer in a couple of easy steps:
#1: Don’t revolve your entire visit on what restaurants you HAVE to go to. New York is so much better explored without a set schedule.
#2: Do have at least one food spot a day that you’d like to check out, whether that’s for lunch, dinner or dessert. Don’t worry about breakfast. There’s usually good bagels everywhere— just load up on that.
#3: If you stumble upon a super busy hole-in-a-wall (EXCEPT ANYWHERE IN MIDTOWN), there’s a good chance that place is a must-try.
#4: Brooklyn in my opinion is dominating Manhattan with amazing restaurants. Try to make your way over here (I’m in DUMBO.)
If you must choose a few restaurants, here’s where I would go: Momofoku (Ko, Ssam, Noodle, Milk Bar: they’re all amazing.) Barrio Chino, Dell’Anima, Vinegar Hill House (in DUMBO), Brucie (Carroll Gardens) and Raoul’s is a downtown classic.
ACG: I’m a big fan of your personal style. What’s the process and inspiration behind the outfits you put together for yourself.
CR: Why, thank you! It varies depending on the day. If I’m lounging, I love a good vintage tee and boyfriend jeans, paired with a leather jacket and booties. Then there’s “business” Cyndi. She dresses the part but packs some punch whether it’s by wearing ripped jeans or a maxi dress. I follow trends but in no way do they define my style— I just stay away from the ones that are on the way out. In the Fall/Winter, I mostly choose my outfit based on what jacket I’m wearing; I think that’s probably the most important part of your outfit.
ACG: What’s the most you’ve spent on an article of clothing?
CR: Hmm, well I’m not rolling in the benjamins and even if I was I’m not one to blow a big chunk of change on an article of clothing. However when I was younger, I used to spend upwards of $500 for sunglasses at least 4 times a year until I realized how ridiculous that was. I kept losing them! Never again.
ACG: Being that you’ve been around the fashion industry for awhile, What tips would you have for people wanting to go the same route as you? Talk about the pros and cons you’ve dealt with and how people can overcome them.
CR: The fashion industry can be super tough, especially when you’re not sure where you belong. I’ve dealt with this for over a decade now, up until pretty recently. In retrospect, I wish I would’ve just taken on more internships and worked on freelance (FREE-lance) gigs rather than focusing on getting involved in an industry that I made money in. No one in this industry worth a damn gets anywhere without putting in the free work first. I would say to immerse yourself. Network and be kind to everyone you meet. Once you land an internship or job you love, give it your absolute all, but make sure you build your own network within every job. Also, attend events and socialize with everyone— not just people in your industry. You never know where it’ll take you.
ACG: Who are some of your favorite bloggers?
CR: For food, I love Eye Swoon and Sous Style. For fashion inspiration, The Glamourai and FrouFrouu really get it right. Menswear, you of course, and Tucked Style. I also love StyleLikeU and The Selby to discover incredible people and Facehunter to browse street style.
ACG: What’s a typical day for Cyndi?
CR: Wake up, walk to Brooklyn Roasting for coffee with my boyfriend and dog, work 10am-6pm from the home office, and then most likely hit the city for an event or to catch up with a colleague or friend. Monday-Thursday nights are always related to work for me in some way, shape or form. Even if it involves drinking. ;-)
ACG: Where do you see yourself five years from now?
CR: Rocking out in my company’s sick office and having such awesome partners and employees that I can travel a bit more and actually unplug every now and then while I’m away (something I can never do now.) My dream is to be able to open a brick-and-mortar lifestyle destination in Tulum with my boyfriend and head there once a month.
ACG: What inspires you?
CR: People, whether they’re in my industry or just amazing humanitarians. They are what challenges me every day and what pushes me to be a better person. Also, my boyfriend inspires me to keep kicking ass in everything I do, and my mother challenges me to become more of an adult in every way possible.
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