Creative Spotlight: Brittiny Terry of Effortless Composition
A few months ago I had the pleasure of coming across a perfectly chic home decor brand, Effortless Composition, created by LA native, Brittiny Terry. I have all but replaced my wardrobe budget with a "new finds for the place" budget for my Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn apartment, and I was pretty much smitten before getting half-way down the Effortless Composition feed.
When I first finished putting the apartment together, I noticed that I had a lot of angular pieces throughout the space. I wanted to balance that energy with a softer lines and a more feminine vibe, so the timing couldn't have been better!
I had been on the hunt for a blanket basket for my living room and there it was. A few dm's later annnd ta-da!
So much love to Brittiny for the collaboration + interview. Below you'll find the story behind how she got started, interior design tips, and few of her favorite places to eat in LA. *I'm heading there next week haha
Thanks for reading! Enjoy!
Interview: Brittiny Terry, Effortless Composition
Tell us a little about yourself please. Where are you from? If you went to school, what did you study, etc.
I am a LA native, and I recently moved back down after living in the bay area for 8 years. While there, I did my undergrad at San Jose State (BA Accounting and Finance) and started my professional career in finance/accounting. I moved back home to be closer and a bit more involved with the family. (So far so good!)
How long have you been running Effortless Composition?
7 months, live for approx. 3 months
How'd you get started?
To start, I guess you could say I haven’t had the typical path of someone in the home decor business, I did not start out as an interior designer or decor buyer. My career background is in finance & accounting, and while I absolutely love the path that I chose, I often struggled with connecting my passions to my profession. Throughout the years I have noticed I am the best version of myself when I am tapping into those passions, which are serving my community and utilizing my creative ‘eye’. During my first go round at addressing those, I launched a blog called *drum roll* Effortless Composition. It was a style and business blog with the sole purpose of providing style inspiration, business casual/casual, and using the platform to provide finance tips that I wish I knew coming from the inner city. I came up with the name to capture how I would classify my approach to style and the idea of doing both a fashion blog and business on the same platform. The process allowed me to connect with some amazing women and learn more about how I wanted to use my gifts to make an impact. What I lacked during this period was the direct contact of the young women that I was trying to reach and even more so, patience. I constantly experienced periods of self-doubt and frustration because I felt like the tools that I wanted to provide weren’t landing in the hands of my target audience.After a period of self-reflection, I decided to stop blogging, accepting the idea that the path I had invested a ton of time in wasn’t going to work for me long term. Not long after I knew that was the right decision, as I didn’t feel any guilt or sadness, which meant there was something greater to come and that period was setting me up for my next venture. Fast forward to last year a good friend of mine motivated me to look more into the field, and here we are.
What inspired you to start the company?
Once this idea came up, I thought of how I could use a home decor store to empower the community. After researching key decor brand and founders it became evident in how my company could do this. I noticed it was difficult to find people of color represented as founders, decor makers, or decor business owners. I also noticed how many brands were really focused on empowering poverty-stricken communities outside of the US, and how it would be so special if I could do the same here, where I grew up. The more I researched the more I found where I could serve a need, be creative, and add value. T his motivated me to move on the store idea, as I felt I had the opportunity to showcase home decor and interiors through a new lens.
How do you decide what to have in your inventory?
When I first started it was pretty random, I just went off of what items pulled on me and could address our brand promises (quality, functionality, uniqueness). In the beginning I was really drawn to the handmade baskets, items I could source from local partners, and general functional decor. Now, I have a full process when deciding what items I want to bring into the store. The decision is driven by the overall collection theme and need, we want the items to not only look good but actually be implemented through the home. If I can't get an item to be showcased various ways for our customers and come out still in pretty good condition it probably won't stay in the store. In addition to meeting the theme specific aesthetics and brand controls, our inventory must be 'ship-friendly' given our small size.
Where do you go for design inspiration?
Pinterest is huge for me, I have a ton of boards that I am constantly working off of. Pinterest really gets my creativity going and then I typically can come up with really good ideas based on what I have seen in passing or wrote down. Instagram is great as well but not my first choice for inspiration since it is so easy lose your own ideas. I also pull inspiration from magazines, television, family, travel, and flea markets.
What are the top three things you'd recommend to anyone looking to breathe a new sense of style into their space?
1. Look Inward- I recommend starting this process by doing an inventory on the space you have and a personal reflection of what you like. This will allow you to ground yourself in what sense of style you would probably like the most and how you can keep some of the items you already have. I think the key to your space is it is your space, it should reflect the things you like the most.
2.Update items that are easily changeable- Think about how you can make quick updates that have a big impact. For example, new curtains, throw pillows/textiles, a coat of paint on one wall, new rug, adding a plant, etc. These items can be eye catching and can transform a room without getting new everything.
3.Create a Budget- Before you do any shopping create a budget for yourself so you don't go broke and then have buyers remorse. A budget will keep you honest with your true needs versus lofty wants.
What are your favorite things about LA style? --I'm a total junkie when it comes to Palm Springs Mid Century Modern design.
I love mid century vibes, the retro-ness feels relaxed, breezy, cozy, and vintage. I am big on vintage vibes so all of that just makes me feel like myself. When I look at my current couch it feels like me, like my space reflects who I am and that makes me happy.
And just because I'm always thinking about food and headed to LA soon what are your top three favorite places to eat? haha
1. Honeys Kettle Fried Kitchen
3. California Fish Grill
What advice would you give to anyone looking to break into this industry?
Be authentic, don't overthink, and tell you story. The decor and furniture industry is not new, but the people and ideas are so it's so important to live by your own style. When I was trying to do what it looked like others were doing to become successful I got nowhere. Any progress I have made up until now had been through focusing on telling my story and sticking to my own voice/ideas. Lastly, remember what your trying to do for your customers to make their lives easier/better.