Meet Kandia! She’s one of our all time favorite bees that we were lucky enough to have part of our team a few years ago. Her style and attitude are always such a breath of fresh air! She’s pretty much a dream bee: confident, hard working, always bringing ideas to the table, and has that random unexpected humor that will light you up. (Trust us, give her Insta a follow @kandianzinga) Kandia is currently living in LA with her boyfriend Marcel, the talented photog behind these perfect pics. When she’s not thrifting and exploring everything the city has to offer, you can find her managing the web store and photo studio for Stacey Nishimoto. When we were thinking about how to approach Beehive this Fall, we felt so strongly to represent the working woman that we love so much and see reflected in our own day-to-day lives. Kandia just does that for us. She sees something she wants and she goes out and gets it! It only made sense to let her run with looks that make us want to get up and get dressed in the morning, even if you work from home, we all need an extra pep in our step.
What took you to LA?
My partner’s family relocated to a small town just north of LA. We felt this was our opportunity to be closer to them as well as an opportunity to move to a bigger city with a seemingly infinite amount of collaborators for artistic endeavors.
How did you prepare for such a large move? Any tips for young professionals that are thinking about making the same move themselves?
Save as much money as possible. I recommend saving at least 3 months worth of expenses. In addition become more fiscally responsible get rid of small debt if possible and build a budget (always including fun things of course I even budgeted my shopping/thrifting). Above all else hustle. I worked as a freelance model for many of Austin’s finest. I also assist my boyfriend in video editing and as a production assistant.
How did you land such amazing jobs in the vintage industry? Any tips?
I actually have worked for two well known vintage stores here in LA. Both run by independent women! I think my trick in getting the job is being authentic and go for jobs you think you really would enjoy having. Both of the jobs I cold emailed them and made sure I put my best foot forward. Big tip is editing your resume to only include the most relevant work experience for example: if you’re applying for a job as a secretary they don’t need to know that you were a rodeo clown for 2 years.
You strike me as someone with a good morning routine? How do you like to make sure you get your day started on the right track?
Every morning is different depending on the project I’m working on but…
I always start every morning with a cup of tea I call it my positiv-o-tea (it’s usually Yerba mate or black tea that’s just what I call it lol). Then I eat my first breakfast which is usually sweet. (yes I have two breakfasts if I wake up early enough). Do chores like water plants/clean. Then I eat my second breakfast usually savory tacos or potato hash. Get dressed. Read emails and start work at 11 which is anything from video editing, taking a meeting or running downtown to a photo studio.
Favorite tricks for throwing together a work outfit? Are you a plan the night before kind of girl or throw on whatever fits your mood?
I can be eccentric in the fact that I usually try to envision myself in the place/ doing an activity. A lot of my days I see myself as a young working girl in slacks or a jumpsuit, sneakers for agility and cute top with matching jewelry or hair accessories. I have a capsule of my faves that I wear almost every week and a large collection of wild card items for when I feel like being extra.
Any other tips that can update a professional look? Where do you draw inspiration for your daily outfits and personal style?
Tips for updating you professional look are wearing things you love regardless of whether it’s business or casual. Don’t buy clothes only for work purposes. You can be your authentic self and still be in dress code. For example if you have to wear a blazer why not make it oversized, colorful, or maybe even with funky vintage details.
I draw fashion inspiration from old photographs. I follow a few accounts and tags on insta that feature vintage photographs. One of my favorite old photographers is Beth Lesser. I love seeing people from different sub-cultures in the past and what they wore or how they did their hair and makeup. I’ve always been obsessed with people reclaiming their bodies by wearing something that is not normally deemed attractive or binary. I love that their personality can be seen through their clothing.
You exude confidence. What’s your secret?
I think you have to start by letting go of judgement. No matter what you do, good or bad, people will judge so just embrace who you are.