Its seems like 2020 brought out the crazy but also brought awareness on different issues. This week I chat with the owner & designer of Ains&Elke StyleHaus, Alixis, on how Covid has impacted her business & how she views "vintage style not vintage values" in her life and business.
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About Alixis Lupien
Owner and designer of Ains&Elke StyleHaus
Ains & Elke StyleHaus was created in 2014, out of a love for vintage fashion. Alixis Lupien, the founder and designer, is a self taught dress maker, and knitter. She pursued her passion for vintage and antique clothing, creating the StyleHaus for the modern person. Alixis' main goal is focused on inclusivity, as she designs for all genders, abilities, ages, sizes, and ethnicities. Any person who wants to feel and look like a million bucks should be able to do so.
As a nerdy gal, Alixis tends to create a lot of clothing that satisfies the inner geek in all of us. Whether you're a super fan of wizards and witches, or a follower of a fandom, she's working on a look just for you. We've been waiting for you and welcome you to our community with open arms.
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Hello, and welcome back to the pitch podcast where we talk about modern topics with a vintage flair. I'm your host of Pinup Miami. And if it's your first time listening, I want to give you a big welcome. I hope you stick around. And if you're a returning listener, welcome back. I love you guys. Thank you so much for the support the comment. If you're not following us on Instagram, make sure to follow us on Instagram at the pin podcast official. I also have a hotline that you can send a text with any questions or comments or topics you want to listen to at 183348 pinup. Before we get started with today's episode, I want to talk about our sponsor, which is my pins calendar that I do every year it is my pet project, I like to select 12 girls that apply give them a total makeover and do a calendar. You only have one week to apply. It's at the pen calendar.com you could check out more info there. Also for the calendar, I will be designing all the dresses for the calendar, which leads me to today's guest we have Alexis from ainz and elk style house. She is a designer herself and seamstress. How are you today? I'm doing well. Thank you. How are you? I'm doing well. Tell us a little bit about yourself. Oh, and in case you're watching on YouTube, I am wearing one of her dresses,Alixis:
the dress gown all the way to the floor. So I basically got into sewing about I want to say I started sewing maybe eight or nine years ago. It was funny because my husband and I, before we were married, we actually went to a big band dance. And that was kind of my introduction into the vintage lifestyle. And it was so cool. It was held in an aircraft hangar. And they had you know, the brass band. And it was really neat. So I actually made myself a two piece skirt set for the first thing I sewed. And it was out of satin. So needless to say there were a lot of tears involved. Yeah, this horrible, don't do that ever. Nope. And after that, it was caught sort of just a hobby for me. And then we ended up getting, we ended up moving to California from Texas. And out there I had to find a job. And so what I did was I just sort of started sewing things. And I made an Etsy shop and I kind of wanted to see if I could sell some things online. And I sold my first dress and I use the money from that to buy more fabric, more patterns. And I just kept doing that for for a couple of years, until I finally reached the point where I was actually making money. And I was like, oh, maybe this is my job now. ripple just went from fabric. Do you design all of your styles? Yeah, so most of them I design myself. A lot of them. I do take a lot of inspiration, of course from the vintage, like vintage era, you know, the 30s through the 60s mostly, is what I specialize in just from old patterns, old photos, old movies, anything vintage that I see that I'm like, Oh, I like that. You know, that was the first dress that you sold. I'm curious to know, like the silhouette. I know. I think it was a 40s it was a 1940s style. It was a yellow fabric with grey polka dots. And it was it was a button down dress it button straight down the front. And it had like a yoke here and like some gathered, Miss here and then really pretty pointed collar short sleeves. It was really cute. And the girl who bought it ended up messaging me and saying that she wore it to her like a dress up day at work and she won some sort of contest. Oh, it was like, Okay, were you nervous? I was so nervous. Because like, I don't like confrontation. Generally, or at least I didn't at that time. And I was like, Oh, please don't hate me, you know. So when I got that message from her, I was like, Oh, crap. She hates it. I would be nervous. So I've never made anything for any i will i did make something for someone once and it was so nerve wracking. Because when it's for yourself, you like, don't care about the scene. Yeah, exactly. The first outfit I made was going to California and I was like, Ah, it's not gonna fit her. But it ended up fitting her like a glove.Unknown:
I don't know when I'll do that again, though. That was just, yeah, it's definitely nerve wracking, especially the, you know, the first couple times you do it because you just don't know, you know, along the way, and then it all ironed itself out over time. And then how has COVID affected you? I know that I said, I'm wearing your dress on this. But COVID has affected me by not letting me zip it all the way. Well, I'm definitely gained a few pounds also. So basically, the biggest issue right now for us is shipping. So since COVID happened last year, and then the Postal Service kind of got gutted. So things are moving much slower now some people get things You know, and just a few days, some people will get things in weeks when you go to the post office, because that's who I generally ship through, is when you you know, you can you have the choice to either by first class mail, Priority Mail, or like expedited, the priority is usually like two to three days. But they now they've completely taken out their guarantee. So you won't just because it says two to three days, just because you pay for it doesn't mean it's gonna happen. I had a calendar that I sent out in November, and the girl got it in January. Oh, my word. And I was thinking like I sold out. I don't have any more. I hope you find. That's awful. It's nerve racking. But yeah. And then your other. Yes. And your well. So I'm in Texas. So last week, we had that horrible winter storm roll through here. And so I literally just had to shut down for the whole week, because I there was the post office completely shut down. So there was no shipping, first of all, and then everything's covered in snow. And we get a lot of black ice here in Texas. So under the snow, you're slipping and what is black guys, because I don't know much. So basically, when we get when it's really cold here and it rains we get like that tar slash ice mixture, and it makes your tires like extra slippy slidey. And we don't have nobody here invests in any snow equipment for your car, like, what are they called tire chains, like the North has because we don't get snow. I think the last time we had snow I think I was in high school. So that was probably 15 years ago. Wow. Yeah. And I've never seen snow like it was last week. Last week was the most snow I have ever seen here. And it was Wyoming. Yes, it was falling and just freezing and people's pipes froze. So we didn't have water for a week. Oh, yeah. So we had to melt the snow to flush the toilets, you know. And then the city, the city's pipes even broke. So they basically shut off water to a lot of a lot of the city. And then they started to tell you if you do have water, make sure you boil it before you use it before you brush your teeth before you drink it. So it was it was not a good time. Oh my and then I'm sure resourcing your fabrics was taking forever. Yeah, that's a big part of it, too. Right now, a lot of people like I said, I get my I get my stuff from all over the place. So you know, California, Pennsylvania everywhere. And it just it's it's kind of a crapshoot right now as to when you'll get it, you know, they could ship it the next day. But who's to say when you're actually going to receive stuff, I've had things made and shipped to me. And it's arrived way past the date that it was supposed to arrive so that it kind of messes with your, like projected launch dates. So you want to launch like your February stuff right before Valentine's Day. But if your Valentine's Day stuff doesn't get in until the day after Valentine's Day, what are you gonna do? You have it ready for next? There you go. And I'm sure you come up with better ideas next year. And that's how exactly i where I do social media for manufacturing warehouses here in Miami. There's one that does foam and all their phone companies and like the plants are in California and in Texas. Oh, mine get anything. And they actually today they announced that they're like laying off people not yet for like, a weeks because they can't get any foam anywhere. Right. That's, that's sad that the whole business closes down because that's their main. Yeah. Yeah, unfortunately, that's just, that's that's the nature of things right now. And then you've got COVID on top of that, you know, whether COVID all kinds of things. And how do you balance? Because Do you you do everything yourself? No. Yes, I do. So I so I, you know, I do all the knitting myself. My designs are amazing. Those are my favorite. Thank you. Oh, thank you. Um, so yeah, I do all this stuff myself. I do have somebody who runs my website. And I have a wholesale team of two gals. The gals that run my wholesale team, they're called the Fox and the vamp and you can find them on Instagram. But they're fantastic. If you need some sort of PR for anything, they they can do that for you. And they take a lot of stuff off my shoulders. They helped me out a lot. But yeah, I generally do everything myself. And it's getting to the point where I'm gonna have to start hiring out. That's a good thing. Yeah, it isn't doing COVID Darn it. No. You can't have meetings, and then the zoom meetings always get like all like staticky. Yeah. And I feel like zoom meetings are not like the real thing. I feel like you don't get a lot of done because you're just chilling in your house with your dog or something. Right, right. So along with COVID and being at home and being able to go out, a lot of people have gone online. I've been Talking about different topics about in about everything under the sun. And one of the topics that have come up a lot is about race. And along with the events that have happened last year, do you find how has that affected you in your business? So yeah, so basically, I know, they say that you should separate politics from your business, but I am my business. So there really is no separating for me. And I don't, I don't deal well with people dehumanizing others. And since I run my business, my business also won't stand for that. So I have expressed that in the past on my business page, and I lose tons of followers whenever I do, which is really sad. Yeah. Which is really sad. And also another thing is, I tend to use a lot of models of color on my page. And I do find that when I post models of color, I tend to lose fans as well, which is not going to stop me from doing it. You know what I mean? Like, it's just that goes for everybody. You know, but it's a huge deal right now, do you feel like in being your style is mostly vintage? So most people, I'm sure you've heard him say like, you're probably born in the wrong era, if that's how you want to dress, you know, black people weren't dressing that way they weren't allowed to show off or walk on the streets. Is, have you ever gotten any comments like that? On your? I have, I have been asked why I'm involved with a community that idealizes vintage ideals. Yeah. And while that may be true for some people in our community, which is sad, I would say that there are a lot of people in our community who do not think that way. And like, I saw a hash tag going around a few times. It's vintage, what does it vintage style, not vintage values. And I think that that's pretty much me, like I love you can love the clothes from anybody. But it doesn't mean that you have to take on their outlook on life or other people. Yeah, that's why when somebody says, Oh, you must have been born in the wrong era. I'm like, No, I actually love it right now. I just write. I love the silhouette. I know I'm not historic. And then you get the people that are like, you're not historically accurate. You have yellow hair too many. I'm like, Well, I'm not trying to write time period. Right? You're just comfortable in your skin and doing what you do. Yeah, like your silhouettes on your dresses. They're reminiscent of the 50s 40s 30s. But they are not, like just leading a narrative of like the lifestyle from back then. Right? Like, look at this print, for example, like this has snakes and black hearts. I don't think that they would be wearing this at that time. No, but you could wear it now. Right? Exactly. And it's what you said, I feel like nowadays, even on tik tok, and on social media, you see a lot of people romanticizing, you know, the 1950s, or when you see, like, old photos and be like, Oh, those were the days those are just laid back. And that's just making it seem like it was okay, when it's like, not really, we need to focus on the, you know, not that narrative, but that we're all equal. And it's not the time, you know, just because that picture looks good. You don't know if that person's been suffering, or going through a rough time. Right. And you're right, we all need to treat each other better, and make space for everyone, which is a thing that I do a lot of very vocal within the community. And I've been behind some of like, the little pushes to like, for example, for Viva Las Vegas that one year where the Confederate flag was removed. There were a group of us who push for that, you know, because things like that don't just happen until people raise stink about it. You know, and I'm sorry, but, you know, places like Viva Las Vegas and other things, you know, there's more people of color coming to those things. And we shouldn't have to look at stuff like that. That's just ridiculous. Even on a smaller scale, when you go to a local car shows not in South Florida, but when I travel up north, there seems to be more. A, what's the word I'm looking for? Well, I'm just gonna put it bluntly, like racism, like, girls, I'm Cuban. But Cubans come in all different types of costume. I'll be hanging out and they'll be like, Oh, why are you with? You know, this person? Like, why she dressed like that? Wasn't she like a slave in the 50s? You know, not, you know, they're not even knowledgeable. But you right? Just that I'm coming across. Yeah. And most people aren't knowledgeable about a lot of stuff like that. So I tried to give people the benefit of the doubt. And even though it's not necessarily my job to educate everyone, I didn't I thought it was your job, right? Like nobody's paying me to do that. But I do when I have when I feel like I have the energy and the time. I do try to take take out take the time out of my day to help people get to a better Understanding of, Hey, this is not just because this is the way you do something doesn't make it the way it should be done. You know what I mean? And we should all be able to address how we like, oh, forever. Has anybody ever approached you in person with a dress that you have and said something of that nature to you? Like something negative? Yeah. Um, you know, I know. And I'll say it's probably because I have one of those resting bitchface is like, seriously, when I'm just sitting around and I don't smile. I look really pissed off always. Yeah, but people I have ever heard people saying things to other people. I've seen it, it happens more on like, on social media than it does in person. Because you know, people are super scared to say things to your face, because they don't want to get their butts beat, you know, but on social media, that's gone, because you don't know who they are, you know, and I see a lot of people grow a pair on there, they hide behind their phones. And I have no problem calling people out online or otherwise. Even like I've had, I've heard, I'm the type of person that if you hear if I hear somebody or somebody comes up to me and tells me, Hey, I'm just gonna use fake names. But hey, Jessica told me this about you. I'll be like, Okay, tell me what she said. But whatever you told me, I'm gonna confront her, because I need to get this straight. And then there's their story will change. They'll be like, Well, you know what, I'm not gonna tell you that. If you're gonna tell me like, then I don't need to listen to it. Why would you even say it to me. And that's the type of mentality I think we all need to have is, you know, if you can't say it in front of the person's face, like if they're in the same room, you just lie, even talk this negative talk, and that goes with racism as well. Like, you know, just putting the hate online or supporting the negative side of the negative, like, like the flags, for example, like supporting that the Confederate flag, it just leads to like, not a good, like progression to modern times. And that's, that's why I call my my podcasts, your modern topics with a vintage flair, because topics now is not going to be anything from the 50s. I'm not a housewife, even though right, thank goodness. And I'm not shaming housewives, either. Because there's people that live at home and, and that's still different from the 1950s to now because they're not being well, I can't assume but a lot of abuse at home in the 50s. And now it's like more open and people could talk and hopefully get help easier. And there's more resources. That's true. And there's stuff in different areas that you could romanticize. Like in the 70s, you had, like the music disco. Yeah, I love this go. But then you also had, you know, all the race wars and all these different things happening. So it's about not romanticizing it in a hole, but just, you know, using that style for your own, right, there's a word that I thought of before. But you Yeah, I think people tend to say, Oh, well, there's this whole thing. And I like these pieces. So you can't ever say anything bad about this thing that I like. And I think that the vintage community is just like that. It's like, No, you know, two things can be true at the same time. You know, vintage style could be amazing, because it is, but also people from that era tended to be more racist, because they were like, you know, like, and people still sometimes have that mentality to where it's like, you can't say anything bad about anything I like, because I like it. Well, you know, there are good and bad to everything. And two truths. You know, I mean, there could always be more than one truth at a time. Have you had any other controversial things happen in your business? I want to say with my business not so much, because I tend to nip that shit in the bud real quick. Like, if anybody even mounts off to me, I'm just like, No, you can go. But so and but like I said, People generally don't mouth off to me. But it's more of like, for me, it's more of things that I've seen other people do, or behave. For example, within the vintage community, there is a person who has, well I'm sure there's more than one but I have personally seen a person dress in blackface, which was not cute. And yes, I did call this person out. I see people do things like wear slave jewelry, which is not cute. And yes, I will call that person out. I've also seen, you know, people not or people sort of shy away from allowing more women of color or men of color to enter their spaces, because they think something's going to change in a way that they don't like. So I'll also call that out. Or when things are biased or skewed, you know, in the favor of not everyone, you know what I mean? Like, everyone should be able to participate in a thing that's meant for everyone. It doesn't make any sense to me to be exclusionary. Because really, the more people you can bring to the table, and the more diverse people you can bring to the table, really the better you have it, because then you have all these ideas coming together from different cultures, different backgrounds, different socio economic, you know, spaces, and just the more you because you don't always just want to think in your own little bubble, you know, because you can only come up with so much. You know, what I, I know exactly, we made a in south in South Florida, I run a meetup group called pin South Florida, very creative. And the first year I did the calendar that I was talking about earlier, um, I picked the girls that were involved the most to make it like, you know, like a thank you, like always supporting me. And for January, I had an African American Girl in January. So I would go to car shows and sell the calendar. And anytime a guy, well, not all the guys, of course, but anytime they open up the calendar, the first thing they see is January, and there'll be like, oh, either she's fat, or because she's black, they're not gonna buy the calendar. Like, I'm the one selling it. I'm fat to and she's beautiful. That's why I picked her to kick off the calendar year. And I'm like, I don't want people like you buying the calendar. Yeah, that's gross. They can keep their money. I'm like, I rather not support and I also something you said earlier about? That it's a reflection of you because it's your business. I see that also when people support products, but the brand is terrible. Mm hmm. And yes. And then people are like, oh, but it's different. Because the product is this and but this person is this? And I'm like, no, it's the same thing. Because they're part of it. They benefit from it. Why would you want to put money in the pocket of somebody who's bigoted? I don't understand that. I agree with you. Like, I don't I tried my best because you don't always know right away which brands have a background or history. So it is good to research things. But you don't always know. But if I do find out 100% I'm not going to support people who looked down on me, why would I do that to myself? Or people who Yeah, people who spend their dollars keeping others down, you know what I mean? Keeping outsiders down people of color women, I'm not, I'm not interested in that. Like, if you can't be a normal human being and believe in everybody else's humanity, then we're not going to be we're not going to be on the same wavelength. Exactly. I never understood that when people would say always different, I'm like, no is the same. You're just supporting them, I understand if you already have the product. I mean, you already bought it, but don't support them anymore. Now that you have knowledge of, yeah, and I'm okay too with like, if there's something that you like, try to change it, if it's not doing what you want it to do, for example, with like, you know, the vintage community. And like I said, I'm very vocal, I'm very active with trying to change the things that I don't like. So there's nothing wrong with being vocal and pushing until you get the desired results, you know, and that's the same thing for products and companies, write them letters, tell them what you don't like, get a petition going, if you really want to use that product, do something to make that company better. But then after a while, if they don't change, you might, you know, it might be more beneficial to find a better company, because there's so many companies out there that do every kind of product, you can find something else if you really need to, and you hurt them in their pockets. There you go, you know, and it's part of that canceled culture that everybody's talking about, which I don't. I mean, I don't believe in that canceled culture is an actual thing. It's just, I'm just going to hold you accountable. I'm just not going to give you my money. If I don't like you. I think that's fair. Like I was thinking that yesterday, I was like, canceled culture after that, because another name for just people getting together and saying, Yeah, and it is. And people have been doing that since before this canceled culture was invented, you know, but it's just like, if you don't like something that somebody is doing, don't support them with your money. It's that simple. So what businesses would you say influenced your business in the beginning? Um, so in the beginning, I want to say that, let's see. So I'm sorry, I didn't mention these were a couple of questions that I got on online. Oh, sure. Sure, Graham. So one of the one of the businesses that I really looked up to when I first got started, honestly was pug. But since then, I have stopped following pug because pug has had some very problematic issues. Most people in the vintage community know but there's been a lot of racism, a lot of bullying tactics. It's just really gross. And you can find all that stuff online. If you just want to google it like you'll you'll find it is not hard to find. So I just I don't mess with them anymore. But, but I do like the model that they had. They were great. What I also liked were certain certain people kind of brought me into the fold. Like, I like I love to be Dita Von Teese. I thought she was really cool. I really liked Angelica Noir, you know, and it was man, it was something when I got her to model for me, as I thought I was like, I made it. You know, cuz I really looked up to her. It was like, I was at Viva Las Vegas one year, and she was in the fashion show. And I just remember going, like, when I saw her come out, I'm like, one day, I want her to do that for me, you know, so I was able to do that. But just gorgeous. I know. But people like that really. Sort of, I guess lit a fire under my butt that I didn't know that I had before. You know, and just really the general like, when you do get into an environment with a lot of vintage loving people, and to see the time and the care, they put into everything from their makeup to their hair, to their shoes to their clothes that they they most of the time very thoughtfully source for themselves. You know, it's just, I mean, I've seen some people making chromis I love that about the community. So resourceful. So like, very, I don't know, everybody's like, so aesthetically, like, just gifted. And I love it. It gives me Yeah, I just love it. It's like everyone tells a story. Yes. Yes, I love it. The next question I have is, well that was given is what what does inspire your knitting, like your designs. So well, my knitting. First of all, I grew up crocheting. So my grandmother actually taught me how to crochet when I was a very young little girl, I used to crochet Afghans with her on the couch. And so let's see, when did I learn how to knit I learned how to knit when I was in my early 20s. After a bad breakup, I was like, I need something to do with myself. So I taught myself how to knit. We tried to learn that I couldn't I don't know. It takes a lot of patience with yourself. So I learned how to do that. And then I started seeing those old vintage sweater patterns. Like the first one I ever saw was that lovebirds pattern, which I now sell that sweater in my shop. And that's the first one I actually tried to knit myself. And it took a while. But I figured it out. And then I just started going from there. And then demand for my sweaters got so high that I had to get a knitting machine, not one that you press a button, it still has to be manually manipulated. Because a lot of people think like, Oh, what is that? You know, you still have to manually manipulate it. And it it, it takes time still to make the sweaters but significantly less than hand knitting the sweater. Plus, my hands are starting to get I guess I'm sorry to get arthritis or something. Yeah. So I had to do something besides handling them all the time. trying to come up with them. So some of them I have taken some vintage vintage patterns. And then others I just come up with I'm like, man, I really want to do something with you know, this on it. Okay, let's figure that out. And then I kind of sketch it out. And then I kind of, you know, create a little it's almost like a cross stitch, just how I like to think about it in my head. And then I have to do like a demo to make sure it you know, knits up correctly. Because sometimes the the dimensions are off and you have to add a few stitches here. Take away a few stitches there. Are those are just they come in one size, like in small, medium large, or do you have clay, do a small, medium, large, extra large if you just want to like purchase it on my website. But I also I always, always, always will take custom orders always period. Because I know they're all different kinds of bodies. All my other clothing goes from extra small to six x. Like I said, that doesn't mean it's the end of the line. I will always always always take custom orders for anything in my shop. You just got to send me a message. What is your favorite fandom? Harry Potter? I felt like I knew you were gonna get Harry Potter. Because you've had at least the Harry Potter themed dinner in every design like style. Yes, because I love it. Do you have a favorite character for a movie? What do you do to Harry Potter? So Harry, I just like magic. Like magic. I'm like a child like Oh, they did a thing? No, I really liked the magic. I like the the ambiance. I've read the books first. First of all, for anybody that's listening, like I didn't just go see the movies. I did read the books first. All of them and then I saw the movies. I like the ambience in the movies. I like everything's always low lit and a little dingy candlelight. thing you know, Harmony's little cat is always around. I just like the nerdy stuff. And yes, I have a wand. Yes, I've been to Universal Butterbeer is my favorite. I was gonna say, I don't know anything about Harry Potter. Yeah, I've only seen the first movie. It's not that I wasn't intrigued. I just never got to see it. But I have been to Universal and I love the butter beer. And I love the parks. I love the little store. The one in Orlando. I've been to it. I like the store that you pick the wand and like it's all Yes. So I might not know it. But I love the little part. It's fun. It's rods. Yeah, it's joy. So I like it. So that's why now I know why it's, it's all over your. Yeah, collectibles? How do you come up with the prints on your dresses. Um, so a lot of times, I don't do a ton of original prints. And that's just because, like, if I have an idea, I'm just like, ooh, I had to do that idea. And then I try and perfect it as best as best I can. So I did like a potion bottle print a couple years ago, and that one kind of just came to me. I'm like Harry Potter, duh. And then the next one who was aware that one of the Viva East fashion show. And then my next print was the, the kidney clutter. I don't know if you remember that. One is like the cats on the turquoise background. It was just, it was super fun. It made me happy. I still think that make me happy, I think is what it is I have a bunch of ideas written down and but it just takes so long to sketch out and, you know, do all the graphics graphic work on the computer. And I do all that myself. So I don't do like a bunch of prints all the time. It's usually like one print per year kind of thing. What is your favorite part of designing an outfit? That's my favorite thing would be love designing. Probably when I start doing the stitching, and then I have to fit it. I use a mannequin to fit things initially. Just Just like seeing an idea go from like a paper sketch to an actual human form, in some sort of way is like, I think the most pleasing part of designing for me. And then the next best part would be to see it on a human body. And it's actually fit, you know, like something's actually wearing it as an item and you're just like, Oh my gosh, I did a thing. You know, I think dresser it's like with your wand. Yeah, exactly. You're like the godmother, fairy god, or whatever. Is it equivalent of Harry Potter? Right? What is a fun fact about you? Ooh, fun fact. I think maybe a lot of people don't know, I was in the Navy for six years. Maybe that's not fun. I enjoyed it. It was fine. I got to travel a lot, which was great. I've been to Japan, which I love. Yeah, well, I have a question. Since you since you're in the Navy. Um, how was it being a woman in the Navy lately? I've heard a lot on like, social media of women in the Navy that have gone through a abuse. But yeah, I think it's wrong. Like the whoever that's a man of using them doesn't get in trouble. Is this true? Or? So? I would say largely Yes. I'm not always but but you know, you have your bad cases. And it is a it is a problem. And honestly, I when I joined I meant to retire after 20 years. And I just, that was part of the reason I left myself after six because I just, I just couldn't take it anymore. You know, being a woman working in like, I worked on aircraft, I was an electrician. And so I worked with a lot of other aircraft, electricians as well as mechanics. And so the mental, you know, like, out of the brainwaves of the mechanic field, it just is always isn't the best. And it's always the locker room talk. It's always, you know, people just, I don't know, just calling you names and trying to hook up with you and then getting very upset when you'd say no, even if it's politely you know, so you say no to the wrong person, and it kind of ruins your career. Oh, that's that goes back to why, you know, we're trying to progress in times. And some people just take it back. I know. Right, like, stop. Yeah. It's one of those things that go through my mind. Sometimes when I see things in the news or on social media. I'm like, why are they even doing this? Right? Like, where do you even get this from? I don't know. It's hard for me because I'm just like, I don't understand it. It's just so easy to be like, just be better. like nobody's perfect, but you can sure try to be a decent person. Everybody's gonna mess up and that's okay. But you have to be able to say, Oh, crap, I messed up. I'm really sorry. How can I fix it? You know what I mean? And then just move on. But so many people you know, when you point stuff out, they just get upset and I don't know it's just it's a mess. Just Just do better, be better. What it what a sewing machine do you recommend to beginners? So I would recommend a brother sewing machine. They're super reasonably priced. You can get one from Walmart, you can get one from let's see Joanne's you can get one, I probably shouldn't say Amazon, but you can get it from Amazon. You can get it really cheap. And they have all the basic functions that you need, you know, the buttonhole attachment, all the different stitch types. So that's that's probably what I recommend. And then I think servicing is cheaper for for those as well. What is the hardest thing you've ever sewn? The hardest thing I've ever Okay, so I'm gonna say the hardest guy. I gotta say the hardest thing and then the most irritating thing. Okay, that's the hardest thing is for me, it's like chiffon. I hate sewing on chiffon. I don't do it unless I absolutely have to. It's just a pain in the butt for me. Because it slips ladies everywhere. And I don't like that. The thing that I don't like to sew, and I try to talk people out with it is bofur. I hate hate hate sewing for her. Because it gets in your nostrils. It gets in your hair, it gets in your eyebrows. And that stuff just like you find it months later. It's popped away everywhere. Same thing with glitter, anything with glitter, glitter everywhere, forever. You never get to get all of it off the floor. Yeah, when you saw it when you stole any fabrics with any shimmer, it goes, yes, Jean. Yes. stays there for a while. How does your brand promote body inclusivity? So I try to be conscious of the models I use. I try to always include different body shapes from i don't i really don't care what kind of body you have. You know what I mean? I would just like for you to wear my stuff. You know what I mean? I think everybody is beautiful. I think everybody deserves to look and feel good about themselves. I think, you know, and I think people need to see that. In companies before they buy, you know what I mean? Like, I know, there's a lot of companies that I personally like, and I'm just like, wow, why is nobody like my size on there, you know what I mean? You people want to see themselves reflected in the businesses they're pouring their money into. So I do my best to, you know, find a wide array of body types. tall, small, you know, super skinny, whatever, you know, I don't, I don't care skin tones. So people can see how different skin tones look in different colors and stuff. You know, because some people don't know and makes people feel good about themselves makes me feel good for having different models in a in an industry that I know doesn't generally do that. You know, your clothes is looking great on all body shapes. Yeah, that's fine. If it's not them, what are you doing it before? That's true. You know? Nobody I've seen companies like you said that I see the dress, but then you go on Instagram or wherever you're searching to see other dresses because you can't find somebody that's like in a four x or something and then right and you just want to see how it fits on a body before. Yeah, and it looks bad. And I'm like, Well, I don't have it on the website. Right. So that's why I really liked that you put all that on there because that way you don't have to guess and you could be like well, it looks good on that shape. That shape. Okay, it's gonna work for me. Yeah. Yeah. So last question is from me. Do you have any upcoming projects, any launches, anything you want to share? So I'll be releasing a new dress next month. Well, Valentine's just passed. Right. Like, you know, the funny thing like I was saying earlier is like sometimes you get something after the holidays though. I hadn't that heart cardigan that I launched is supposed to be before Valentine's Day. Well, it ended up not being before Valentine's Day and I just went like this. I forgot where no, but next next month, month, March, I'll be releasing a new a new dress, which I'll actually be shooting this weekend, which will be nice. And then after that, I'll probably be focusing more on my summer items. So be on the lookout for shorts, and some cute little tops and maybe even I was thinking about doing maybe a calf 10 or two. I love cats. captains especially in the times of COVID. You can choose you can eat in a won't look right under there. There you go. Oh, and I have one more. One more thing for you is, I know that this episode is pre recorded and everyone's listening but I wanted to wish you a happy birthday. Today is your birthday and I'm gonna send you happy birthday. Yes. I'm excited. Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday dear Alexis. Hey to you. Thank you. I don't make nada. What do you have anything for your birthday that you're looking forward to? Or? Um, so for me, I've got some lunch today. I had a margarita. So that was that was good for me. I was two bottles of wine. Oh, that was extra good for me. Other than that, I don't have any no big plans. Well, you get to be on the podcast. Yeah, this is a nice birthday treat so they appreciate it so much that you're on the podcast if you make sure everyone that's listening follow her on Instagram at Ames and elk style house. Well you don't have to and they're ainz elk style house and her website. Ancient elk style house comm Make sure to shop Check it out. Check all the photos comment. Go supporter. She is great at making sure everything is size inclusive. She showcases all types of people. She just loves everyone all ladies, so give her some love. And next week I'm going to have Liz desilva She is the Vice President of creative of loungefly which includes stitch shop. She does. I'm sure a lot of people know lounge club lounge. Like backpacks for Disney and dapper day. I see all the girls wear it. And they came up with stitch shop which is mostly Disney and like fun comic prints. You've heard you've heard of them. I've heard of them. Yeah, that's really cool. Yeah, so she's gonna come on here and talk about her history and fashion and about her brand and just fun stuff and I guess Disney so I'm gonna bring out my Disney ears. So that'll be fun and a lot of people because I live in Florida they think that I'm like into the Disney scene I go to Disney but not as much as some people that are like Disney fanatics and, and I love the the Harry Potter people because they go all out and they have amazing looks. And it's like time period, time period, but dapper and like the right. There's this thing called spiffy Saturdays once a month in Universal Studios. Oh my gosh, I would love that so much. It's amazing. But thank you again, Alexis. Thank you for having me. Thank you and I hope to come join in next week. Bye bye.