This Young Entrepreneur's Determination Made Her a Thriving Success—Here's How
Rachel Schwartzmann is the founder, CEO, and creative director of The Style Line, a global platform that, as she puts it, "aims to inspire discovery abroad and also foster an appreciation for what's in our own backyard." We love the emphasis on storytelling on this unique and beautifully designed platform. Schwartzmann originally started the creative space as a blog when she was a senior in high school. Now she's running The Style Line as a business full-time. We jumped at the prospect of asking this thriving female founder for advice. Scroll through to learn how, through all of the ups and downs, Schwartzmann managed to create a thriving business.
MyDomaine: We love the concept behind The Style Line. Was there one event in particular that inspired you to found it?
Rachel Schwartzmann: The Style Line has gone through many iterations. I was a high school senior in the midst of applying for college and looking to add something that demonstrated my love for fashion and writing. I remember street style being at its peak, and Tumblr was very popular, so with this in mind, I started my blog with the intention of showcasing style and storytelling on a platform that fostered a real sense of community.
A more defining event actually happened when I first came up with the name: I was riding the F (subway) line and realized that I wanted to (eventually) explore these themes on a global scale, so why not name a platform after the idea of exploration and transit? Enter, The Style Line.
MD: Can you explain the relaunching process you orchestrated to form The Style Line LLC? Why did you do that? What was the hardest thing about the transition?
RS: Logistically, it involved many conversations, a lot of paperwork, and by the time we got into our groove, a lot of reflection. By the time I reached this point, I was at a crossroads—I knew I wanted to pursue The Style Line as a career, but it became a matter of when. I was about to enter my junior year of college, and with the encouragement of my family, I decided to forgo continuing and instead work on The Style Line full-time. I was 20. That in itself is a major thing to overcome, but throughout the many trials and tribulations, this process proved that with enough determination and an unwavering work ethic, it is totally possible.
Reflecting on this now, I would say that generally, the relaunch process has been ongoing: Between officially forming the company, undergoing three redesigns, continuously improving upon our editorial strategy, and defining our point of view, we’ll always be in a state of wanting to relaunch or refine what’s already in place. While however daunting that may sound, that’s the most exciting part to me.
MD: What advice would you give to a young entrepreneur who is just starting out building their first company/brand?
RS: Stay uncomfortable by seeking out opportunities that are out of your comfort zone or ones that will allow you to grow. Know that when you decide to start a company, you automatically assume a position of leadership, and you have an incredible opportunity to redefine what that looks like. Gone are the days when there was one unified vision of what a CEO or boss looks like or acts like. Embrace and nurture that! Finally, have a plan by being clear about your product and committing to seeing it through to its full potential (no matter how hard it may be). Also recognize the fact that it will change… and that you will change, too.
MD: What is the most important thing about having an online presence?
RS: From my own experiences, and in developing our position on The Style Line, I’ve learned about the sense of responsibility that comes with having a strong presence, online or off. It’s about achieving a balance in sharing and celebrating ideas that are both relevant and responsible. I truly believe there’s so much that can be cultivated from one’s online “influence,” and if you have the opportunity to do (or try to do) something positive through a digital medium, then why not?
MD: What accomplishment are you most proud of?
RS: There have been many amazing moments and milestones it’s hard to choose just one! In retrospect, I’m really just getting started, too. So far, a few highlights include our sustainable design collaboration with Melissa Joy Manning in partnership with CFDA, our nomination as a finalist for the Shorty Awards Best in Fashion category, and launching our subsidiary business CONNECT(ED)ITORIAL, which I look forward to growing in the coming months.
MD: Who do you look up to?
RS: I look up to our amazing interviewees on The Style Line. There’s truly not a shortage of inspiration and innovation to be found in these stories. Additionally, I love following women like Tavi Gevinson and Rowan Blanchard who are providing forums for important conversations, Emily Weiss who continues to redefine the beauty landscape, and Emma Watson, who I believe truly embodies our mission and proves that you can leave an imprint on the world simply by doing what you love.
MD: Words to live by?
RS: The world is full of YES.
Shop a few of our favorite products from The Style Line below.