Staff Spotlight: Lynn
Hi Labels Lovers!
We wanted to create a blog series where we highlight different members of the Labels Family.
Of course we have to start with the queen herself, Lynn!
Lynn Nice, the founder of Labels, grew up on the east coast where she was first exposed to her love of fashion and sewing from her grandmother and godmother. She graduated high school in the late 80's and continued her education in fashion all over the world, including: Manhattan, NY, Los Angelas CA, and Paris, France. After graduation, she moved to Southern California and where she worked for Speedo's Visual Merchandising team. When in Southern California, Lynn discovered the caliber of women's fashion consignment. In 1996, she relocated to the Bay Area and two years later in 1998 she opened up Labels.
Lynn has been married to her husband, Dan Nice for 21 years (together for a total of 31 years) and they have three children together, ranging from 10 to 16. Lynn has always been apart of the community and balancing her time between work, friends, and family.
[more about Lynn's story here]
Now for the Q/A!
Q: Who or what inspired you to get into fashion?
A: I grew up in historic south-east Pennsylvania. It was my grandmother and godmother that first taught me how to sew (Quilts & Barbie doll clothes we made from Simplicity patterns we sized down). All my neighborhood friends were boys, who taught me BMX bike tricks, bug identifying/collecting, and Dungeons & Dragons. So it was the moms of these friends who nurtured the textile and design lover in me. Three of their moms, who all lived on our street, further inspired my love for fashion design. I was getting my girl scout badge for sewing. Ms. Simpkins, one of the moms, had an awe-inspiring sewing loft and she helped me and a few other girl scouts make our first piece of personal apparel. Mine was a red corduroy vest that was reversible to a white and red strawberry pattern on the inside. Another mom, Judy Pfieffer, still a dear friend and inspiration to this day, owned sheep and taught me how to shear them, spin their wool into yarn, and use natural dyes to color the yarn. She had three looms and taught me how to weave textiles on them. It was at least 30 years ago that I created some clothing items on that loom that I still wear. Another mom, Sally Cheyne, collaborated with me on an independent study piece for an apparel design semester I did in Paris. Most of my classmates chose to sew a garment. I made a dress using the macramé technique. It’s a piece I have on display in my home today which reminds me to think outside of the box regarding fashion.
Q: What is your favorite thing about running a designer consignment store?A: Building lifelong relationships is my favorite part of owning Labels. For 23 years, my staff and I have created an atmosphere where we can have honest and candid conversations with one another. I fear that as a society we lean heavily towards convenience, which eliminates opportunities to interact with another human during our daily tasks. Activities like grocery shopping (self check out or delivery), getting gas, banking, and most of our retail shopping as well, due to most large and small businesses being online. I try to find the balance at Labels, between convenience and having some wholesome characteristics, including always being able to reach a live person, 7 days a week.
Q: Who is your favorite designer and why?A: I have numerous favorite designers. I get the opportunity to see creations from all decades from all of the greats. I also get to further research the inspiration behind the relevance of a collection. I find myself in awe of nearly every American, Italian, French, Belgian, Japanese, English, German, and Spanish couture designer. Labels displays all couture apparel in armoires, organized by designers and further categorized by grouping designers from each country together so that it’s easy to find the pieces you covet. I think one of the best things about the consignment shop is the access to really high-end things that some of us never thought we would have the opportunity to try on or could afford. I love the accessibility to such a variety of rare, yet affordable items to adorn ourselves in.
Q: If you could bring back any fashion trend what would it be?A: If I could bring back any fashion trend it would be feminine, flowy soft textiles (silk, polished cotton, wool challis) in bright or bold patterns like floral, gingham, polka dot, or stripe.
Q: What is the best advice you have ever been given? Who was it from?A: The best advice I ever received was from my very first employee, who was with me for 18 years and is still a dear friend. Alma came in for a mid-afternoon shift while I was down on the floor trying to fix the jammed printer and had just been in an unnecessary, heated conversation with a client. I barely looked up to greet her and mumbled a hello. Alma called me out on my lack of kindness towards her and I rattled off the challenges and attempted to use them as an excuse for being grumpy. Alma simply said, “Don’t ever give another person the power to change your disposition.” She added that it’s my responsibility to approach every interaction as best I can. In doing so I will always remain proud of my behavior and be able to let go of negativity when it comes my way, while even possibly turning that negativity around through patience and grace.
Thank you Labels Lovers taking the time to read our staff spotlight!
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