Flip the coin that is Jonathan Jelks and you find on one side a businessman, fiercely committed to improving his city, and on the other a man who loves to talk brand crushes like Ralph Lauren, Moschino, Versace and Gucci. He’s constantly trying to figure out what kind of suit and tie Sean Connery’s James Bond might wear. This comes out in his style: part-street, part-suit, all dashing.
When your day job is to “make people feel and look beautiful” for weddings, commercials, television and theater, your style game has to be strong. With more than 10 years of experience, Erick Gerson Rodriguez has mad professional makeup chops. He’s from Carmen City, Mexico, he owns E.G. Makeup, and he’s making a name for himself in Grand Rapids.
It’s always a good hair day for Aleka C. Thrash. The 33-year-old Grand Rapids native went to Cornerstone University and is a natural hair enthusiast. She hosts hair care workshops and uses the platform to help others overcome insecurities and find confidence.
Alyssa McElheny loves an eclectically, boldly dressed woman. That’s probably because she is one. She started wedding photography six years ago and now outfits the betrothed, because she likes “to push brides outside of that normal idea of what a wedding should be.”
You will never see Kev Couture in ripped jeans. He attended the International Academy of Design and Technology with an emphasis in fashion merchandising and now styles celebrities for events like the Grammys, Oscars, Screen Actors Guild Awards and Golden Globes.
Ashley Triêu is the mastermind behind Iconoclasp, a collection of hand-picked vintage and handmade original clothing and accessories for the rebellious and bold. It’s a one-woman shop “inspired by the spirit of past eras” with a big-city vibe that transcends its small-town origins both in style and reach.
With a successful Shark Tank endorsement, Shefit owner and founder Sara Moylan continues the hustle with new products and a call to action.
“I never had intentions of starting a business. I was trying to solve my own problem,” Moylan said, detailing her from-scratch efforts at creating her sports bra that is now the darling of Entrepreneur, Forbes, Runner’s World, and a little show from ABC called Shark Tank.
Sure, jewelry is fun — but can it tell the world who you are? Pieces of Me thinks so. The jewelry company creates cuff bracelets and earrings that empower people by building their self-confidence. With 30 different icon designs each representing a specific personality trait, “you see the icons and they are a reminder of your strengths. It’s a boost of positivity,” said Elsa Vogel, founder of the company.
Get the scoop on these items and more locally made jewelry.
If you’re looking at the same storefronts and racks and coming up empty, seek style inspiration elsewhere. Forget the familiar and head outside of your comfort zone for some destination shopping off the beaten path.
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