Crystal Gibson
May 26, 2013 4:00 am

If I am tracking a tag on Tumblr, it means that I am checking said tag multiple times a day; Jenna Lyons is at the top of my tag list (well, it’s the tag I look at first – the list is auto-alphabetized).

I’m not sure what Jenna’s role was in the early 2000’s but I have fond memories of shopping at J Crew with my Mom. The aesthetic of the store hasn’t changed much; instead, it’s the clothing that has transformed. J Crew was the uniform for coastal nouveau preps and has maintained this modus operandi however, appointing Jenna as executive creative director paved way for sparkles, metallics and prints – known, to me, as “magic”. Said Prabal Gurung of Lyons, “Jenna has made J. Crew more than a brand or a company — it’s a philosophy that believes in style.” And style is what she has. From her statement eyewear to her “shiny ponies”, everything Jenna wears instantly becomes a look that I covet.

It isn’t only her style that I admire; Jenna is a successful business woman, mother and overall purveyor of the woman I’d like to be.

Image via Zimbio In my last year of high school, I was torn between applying to study fashion or journalism. Back then I was dating a guy who was horrified that I would entertain the thought of pursuing “fashion” as a career (thanks for the narrow-mindedness) and ultimately chose the j-school path. Jenna, on the other hand, went to Parsons – she knew exactly what she loved and no one stopped her from doing it. After graduating from the design program, she interned for Donna Karan before Emily Woods hired her to join the design team at J Crew. Jenna had the confidence to explain her vision to Mickey Drexler and the two continue to serve as the exemplars in the retail space.

Image via GlamourJenna’s work ethic is admirable but she maintains a life outside of work, which is what so many struggle to do. It’s true, Lyons’ marriage to Vincent Mazeau ended in divorce but she has found herself happily dating jewelry executive, Courtney Crangi. Divorce and a new relationship has not hindered Jenna’s ability to be a loving mother. She spends as much time as she can (before and after work) with her son Beckett; in every interview I read, she gushes about her love for him. The conversation about women executives and the juggle struggle (I just coined that term right now – the struggle to juggle work life and home life) isn’t something Jenna talks about. To me, she sees herself as an equal (to male execs) and doesn’t need to speak to  the workplace as some sort of hinderance. She is doing it all, her way.

Image via Anna’s Choice  With each new piece written about her, I become more inspired and motivated to have the career that I want and balance the rest of my life.

Is there someone that inspires you, I love reading about incredible people doing incredible things!

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