I went to Tufts University just outside of Boston, which was a long way from where I grew up in Seattle. I majored in English and minored in Italian. At the time, I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but I knew I loved literature and learning the Italian language and culture. I studied abroad in Perugia, Italy for my junior year and moved to Rome after graduation, where I lived for two years.
After my two years in Rome following my college graduation, I moved to Chicago where I worked for a book publisher and began my first blog on the side. Blogging about interior design opened up a whole new world of passion and possibility for me. In 2010 I decided to do something larger scale and launched an online interiors magazine called Rue. I resigned from my job at the book publisher one week after we went live and never looked back.
Oddly enough, I was not. When you’re truly passionate about a project it’s more energizing than scary. I was 27 at the time and knew that whatever happened, I was resourceful and strong enough to land on my feet and that I would always find a way to keep moving forward. As the saying goes, “At the moment of commitment the entire universe conspires to assist you.”
I’ve learned the importance of hiring for character, not just talent. I want people of strong morals and kindness to surround me in all that I do. I also believe in knowing your strengths and weaknesses as a worker and leader. I stay in my lane with what I excel at and hire people who are better than me for the rest. It’s also important to step back often to reflect on your long-term intentions with your business. Sometimes a little silence gives birth to the best answers.
For me, the answer to this question starts with being aligned with your purpose in life. To get to the rewarding parts, I believe we first have to do the work to figure out what makes us feel most alive and then find a way to turn that into a part of our lifelong journey, whether through a career, a hobby, or a side project. For me, waking up sincerely excited about creating beauty and function for my family and clients is endlessly energizing and rewarding for me.
With grace towards myself, help from my extended family, and a strong understanding of my true priorities. On a practical level, I’m highly organized by nature, which definitely helps, and I thrive on having a daily routine to keep it all afloat. When I’m with my husband and son, I don’t look at my phone or laptop. Instead, I reserve that for my allotted work time. It requires a lot of discipline and efficiency to get all my work done in just those designated hours but what it affords me is the peace of mind that comes with knowing that I’m living according to my values as a wife and mom.
That I’m an introvert – not to be mistaken with shy, which people often confuse. For example, I can speak in front of large crowds and give presentations to packed rooms of people without any problems. But as an introvert, I’m most restored by alone time and do my best thinking and work with a lot of quiet, stillness, and reflection.
Yes, through marriage. My husband, Andrew Palecek and his family own and run the large furniture design and manufacturing company. We met in 2011 through the design industry and when Andrew reached out to me to learn more about my magazine, Rue. It was love at first sight and we were married two years later.
Yes, but in a high level way only. As the owner, it’s my responsibility to make sure that the business runs smoothly and that our readers are always delighted by our content. But I rely on my incredible team to run the day to day operations of the magazine, website, and social media. I’m extremely grateful to be at the point where I can step back from all the daily tasks, leaving them in the very capable hands of my team, to focus on my family and other creative goals and aspirations.