Born in raised in LA (she still has family there!), Nicole got her big break in wardrobe while interning in costume design with a good friend who worked on the set of the OC (yes, of Rachel Bilson fame). She and Rachel would chat it up (girl, I like those shoes! where did you get that scarf?!) about all things fashion every day, and they both found out they worked well together. Rachel needed someone to help her, and Nicole became the magic! "It was a very organic thing that happened, and a learning curve for both of us," Nicole says. "I went cold turkey," she says. " I didn't know what I was doing!"
While styling just came very natural for her, Nicole admits she was doing her very job all along, she just never knew it could be an actual way to make a living! Throughout high school and college, she practiced her love for photography and would style her own clients. And she kept up with lots of books, fashion, art and her creative instincts that would later come into play every time she worked with her female clients. In fact, she gets many of inspirations from people around the city and books.
So Nicole's advice for the fashion slave on surviving this awful economy? Accessorize, accessorize, accessorize (and I couldn't agree more!)! "Update your look with accessories," she says. "[For instance] you can wear jeans and a white tee and throw on a scarf from Urban Outfitters or Target." She also mentions how everyone's doing a Payless line now (come to find out - the two of us were probably neck and elbow at the Alice + Olivia party a couple of weeks ago! loving those Payless slouch boots - yum!!) and how she's obsessed with her riding boots.
Other tips? Incorporate handbags with the color of the moment, wear gladiator sandals and shop for cheap finds to spruce up your duds at H&M and Forever 21. "You don't have to have a lot of money to be stylish," she says. "You just have to be open to trying new things. And you can get a low price point and still be on track."
Of course, when she's not out scouting affordable finds, there are those labels she loves, like: Brian Reyes (he even designed her rehearsal dinner dress...she just got married - congrats, Nicole!), Zac Posen ("fun and experimental"), Jenni Kayne ("classic lines, Cali cool, relaxed and sophisticated") and Marni ("quirky - I love clothes that make me laugh!").
At this point, our cells were cutting in and out, and I had just one last question. Heels or flats, I desperately shouted! Her answer? "I'm 5'3" so I love heels and wear them all the time!" Somehow, I knew we'd get along...