The Effortless Chic is one of those blogs that have long been on my daily reader. Purveyor of all things food, fashion and design, Miss Jen Pinkston is one of those women who seems to do it all. And do it all well. Captured by the talented Kimberly Genevieve, it’s such a pleasure to take a pretty peek at Jen’s every day life. And in case you want more, you can find it all right here! 

SMP: Some words you live by?
JP: Dream big.

SMP: Any guilty pleasures?
JP: Far too many, if we’re being honest!  A well-mixed cocktail, an over-sized slice of cake, and weekly manicures are at the top of the list.

SMP: What did you think your dream job was before your dream job found you?
JP: Oh my gosh, where to begin? My interests have always been all over the map.  My college entrance essay was about how I was going to be the President of the United States and I was dead serious.  Four years later I moved to LA to be a shoe and accessory buyer, but learned pretty early on that  it wasn’t what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.  That’s when I discovered styling.  I have always enjoyed writing, though, so the dual occupation of stylist and lifestyle blogger checks off a lot of boxes for me.  There is absolutely nothing I would rather be doing.

SMP: What’s your favorite quote that describes your creative process? 
JP: “Inspiration is everywhere.”  I find a lot of inspiration when I am traveling, so I try to do as much of it as I can.  I remember being in Thailand and loving the way the women in the village accessorized with their delicate beaded and braided bracelets.  In Rome, I was enamored with this older couple outside of the coliseum.  All of their garments were so structured and perfectly tailored.  I just love that.  Other times my husband and I will be driving down some street in East LA and see light hitting the side of a building in a certain way and we are both like, “That would be so great for a shoot!”  Inspiration really is everywhere.

SMP: If you had the opportunity to get a message across to a large group of people, what would your message be?
JP: Don’t peak too soon!  I was listening to Zac Posen speak to a group of young women and he warned against the kind of instant trajectory that he had been fortunate enough to have.  That really resonated with me.  Most of the women whom I most respect didn’t get their big breaks until much later in life. Jenna Lyons worked at J.Crew for 18 years before being named creative director.  Ellen DeGeneres was 45 when she got her talk show.  Diane von Furstenberg is 66 and couldn’t be more relevant than she is now.  I think if you always keep learning and building on small successes that over time you will have accomplished something really grand.  I’ll let you know how that theory turns out in a few decades!

SMP: If you could do it all over again, would you change anything?
JP: It’s hard to think about changing anything that got me to where I am right now because I couldn’t be happier.  Although I did just recently learn Photoshop and that would have been really useful two years ago when I launched my blog!

SMP: What is one piece of advice you would give to a blogger just starting out?
JP: Quality over quantity.  It’s more valuable to focus your time and create one really beautiful original content shoot that you can post to your blog than to hammer out 10 posts in the same amount of time that are recycled content.  It gives your audience a chance to see something that is truly your aesthetic that you created.  It’s also the most fulfilling part of the whole blogging process, so it’s a win-win!

SMP: What is your favorite item in your home?
JP: Our dining room table.  It was a wedding gift from our boss when we got married. Three years later, I feel like my whole life revolves around it.  I host dinner parties around it, shoot recipe posts on it, and my assistant Blair, intern Sarah, and I work from it every day.  Aaron and I don’t eat dinner at it every night, but when life has been super hectic this is where we catch up over comfort food and a glass of wine– no cell phones allowed!

SMP: What’s your best tip for balancing work and personal life?
JP: Live in the moment.  If I’m shooting something for the blog or on set styling a job then that is my priority and I try to give that moment all of my thought, creativity and concentration.  Likewise, if I’m out on a date with my husband I do the same.  Any email or crisis can wait until after dessert.

SMP: What was the tipping point in your business that made you feel like your blog was going to thrive?
JP: I don’t know that there has been one tipping point necessarily, but there have been a lot of really exciting moments.  When people first started commenting on posts that was a huge deal for me!  Getting to collaborate with brands that I have loved for years and years is another.  Hopefully there are still more to come!

SMP: What is the hardest lesson in business you’ve ever learned?
JP: Learning to say no.  I’m still not fantastic at it, but have learned that when I say yes to too many things, something is bound to suffer.   I try now to only commit to projects that I am really passionate about.  It goes back to quality over quantity.

SMP: Stranded on a desert island question… what’s the one cocktail you would take with you?
JP: I was styling a shoot in Phoenix a few weeks ago and had a Ginger Plum Margarita at a place called The Arrogant Butcher.  I know it was made with plum bitters, but I need to call them and get the exact recipe.  I could drink that until the end of time.

SMP: What was the tipping point in your business that made you feel like your blog was going to thrive?
JP: I don’t know that there has been one tipping point necessarily, but there have been a lot of really exciting moments.  When people first started commenting on posts that was a huge deal for me!  Getting to collaborate with brands that I have loved for years and years is another.  Hopefully there are still more to come!

SMP: What color do you think will stand the test of trend time?
JP: There is nothing more fresh than crisp white.  It’s makes your face pop on camera and looks so clean in an interior space.  I always make sure when booking a hotel room that the bed has a white duvet.  Does that sound super high maintenance?  I hope not.

SMP: One thing every style savvy homeowner should have?
JP: A bed so comfortable that it makes all of the day’s stresses disappear!

Photography: Kimberly Genevieve | Blog: The Effortless Chic