About Suits & Sneaks

                                         Suits and Sneaks - Casual Street Fashion                                                      

                                      Suits and Sneaks - Casual Street Fashion                                                      

The Real You is the Best You

Dedicated to you white collar folks secretly young at heart, to you recent grads desperately trying to fit in, and to the rest of this world trying to figure it out....
You may be technically skilled in one thing, but bubbling with personality in another.  Figure out how that makes you unique in your trade and embrace it.  Do not ever change who you are.  The real you is the best you.
                         Kristin Leigh, Suits & Sneaks Founder

                        Kristin Leigh, Suits & Sneaks Founder

A Look Inside the Creation of Suits & Sneaks

Let's start with this, who are you and what is your background?

Easy enough.  My name is Kristin and I’m your classic corporate millennial.  I’m 10 years into my professional career as a (drumroll) CPA and corporate auditor.  Meh.  So I’ve got a brain for business, but secretly a passion for everything else.  Growing up, I loved to design and create things, from houses to city streets to cartoon characters.  I also wanted to be a plastic surgeon, a paramedic, and/or a dermatologist.  I was all over the place.  Come college, I somehow ended up in business school for accounting.  Random, yes.  But financially, a smart move because the economy crashed just as I graduated.  My friends who all graduated with cool majors had trouble finding jobs.  Not me though, because everyone can always use an accountant, right?  So for 10 years while I had excellent job stability, the creator in me was dying to come out.

So how did you come up with Suits & Sneaks?

A little over a year ago I rolled my ankle wearing wedges on a girls’ trip to Puerto Rico.  I severely damaged a tendon in my foot and could barely walk.  Doctor's orders - all I was allowed to wear was sneakers.  Yes, sneakers.  To my professional job.  Even if I tried to rebel and wear cute flats, it was too painful.  I felt ridiculous.  Like, I’m 31 years old wearing Sauconys to work, you’ve got to be kidding me.  What work clothes do I even pair with that?? 

Then, insert a side story.  At this same time, I had been battling a continuous frustration that so many of my auditor friends and I share, which sounds a little something like this – what the heck are we doing with our lives as auditors when our personalities and passions are totally somewhere else?  I’m an extremely passionate person so it depressed me DEEPLY that I could not find a way to be more gung-ho about comparing invoices and receipts to expense reports. 

Take those two elements and BAM!  It hit me one morning on my drive to work.  Sure, my personality didn't exactly fit what you’d match up to an auditor, but why should I give up 10 years of professional experience, working my butt off through ungodly hours of the night, because I feel like I don’t fit in with the corporate status quo?  Taking that, with my current sneaker situation, I screamed aloud in my car, "HOT-DOG!" (I always say that for some reason)  "I'm going to start a new corporate style!  A polished casual style that basically modernizes, casualizes, and simplifies the historical white collar world.  Suits....and Sneaks!!"  And a blog seemed to be the perfect way to do it.

What was the hardest part for you?

Ok this is going to sound weird, but the hardest part was realizing I truly tapped into a somewhat of an untouched blog niche, acknowledging that I had everything I needed right at my fingertips to make this a success, and that the only thing stopping me would literally be, well, me.  Myself.  It was almost like a mental pressure that was exciting, but oddly scary at the same time.  On the flip side, the easiest part about it was that this entire blog combines every single one of my passions plus my business skills, so at any moment in time, I’m 150% thrilled to be working on it.  It’s like my second baby.  Obviously Jellybean (my dog) is my first.

What spells success for you with this blog?

When Converse calls me with a marketing campaign, I'll know I’ve done something right.  No but seriously, this blog is my passion.  So just the fact that I have this up and running, have at least one fan or follower, and most importantly, have this mechanism to live out my dream, I’ve already reached success.

Finally, spill the beans, what is your love affair with Chuck?

Anyone who knows me knows I wear Chuck Taylors on almost a daily basis.  To work, to shop, to lounge, to play.  I find it so incredibly awesome that a company is rocking 108 years and counting with such a successfully timeless shoe.  Same goes for Vans, their back story is incredible.  Those shoes clearly have a track record of hot success, even our great grandparents have worn them!  So I embrace their legacy and try to find a way to pair all kinds of styles with them.  I've had people at work come up to me and say, "Hey you're the Chuck Taylor girl."  Also, admittedly, when I'm approached at a bar it's usually to be told, "Nice Chucks."  I'd obviously gone out for the night wearing them with a dress.  But seriously, (earmuffs Chuck), I just love casual sneaks in general.  So you can find all sorts of brands in my closet, and you'll definitely see all sorts of them featured on Suits & Sneaks.

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