I vaguely remember my first e-mail to Hugette, Editor in Cheif at DISfunkshion Magazine. I think it went something like, "I love your magazine. I connected with it instantly. You speak my language. Please let me write for you!!" I Crossed my fingers for a reply but honestly was pleasantly surprised when she wrote back to set up a meet and greet. We sat down for coffee soon after and I gushed about how deeply I resonated with the magazine's purpose and that is was exactly the kind of publication I wanted to contribute to. Her response was overwhelmingly positive and I became a contributing writer for both the online and print magazine soon after. Not only did Hugette's belief and encouragement allow me to gain international exposure (it's still crazy to see my byline in print!) but it also connected me with so many independent strong females that continue to have a positive influence on me today.
[some of my favoritess include; ROAM Hawaii, Lady Slider , Paris Gerrard / Charcoal Alley , and Kat Reeder .]
And while I interviewed and wrote about all these extraordinary ladies and their stories to success, Hugette was the quiet dedicated backbone behind DISfunkshion- working a full time job while giving 110% to spreading the message of love and empowerment. There wasn't a detail about the magazine she wasn't involved in and not a photo that didn't have her artistic signature all over it. I can only imagine the amount of e-mails she receives a day, the difficult decisions she has to make for the wellbeing of the magazine and the time and finances she had to devote to building her dream from scratch.
Hugette continues to be one of those women who positively influences me and the reasons are plentiful. Her relentless pursuit to create something beautiful and beneficial for the females of our generation is moving. She works from the heart, endlessly motivating and inspiriting everyone she comes into contact with. And she does it all with a calm conviction, fantastic style and a huge smile.
It seems only fitting that Hugette be featured as a Modern Muse, not only because she IS one, but because through DISfunkshion, I realized my purpose to share fabulous female's stories of prosperity, and for that I am forever grateful. Hugette, thank you for your confidence and support and thank you for Disfunkshion!
When and where did the idea for DISfunkshion begin? With my passion for women, travel, social issues, fashion and art. The idea actually sparked at a Borders bookstore one night as I was browsing through some inspirational magazines such as National Geographic and Oprah Mag.
What is the intention of the magazine? To encourage, exhort and empower women to be all they were created to be with no fear!
Did you have any fears before starting it? If so, how did you get over them? Definitely! The fear of failure was always a big thing! I got over it by trusting God who is my greatest source of strength. Knowing that He had a plan for my life gave me fearlessness. I wasn't concerned with whether or not I would be successful, but rather with my life's purpose. I realized that if my existence changed even ONE person's life, it was worth it.
What was your vision for the magazine at the beginning and how has it changed over time?
The vision has actually not changed at all.
The aesthetic has evolved into who I really am. Boho/gypsy/cowgirl! LOL!
What supplies you with STOKE? :) Every time that I received a random email from someone I don't know letting us know what an inspiration the magazine is to them. =)
What keeps you motivated when you feel overloaded with work and commitments? Feeling like some young woman out there needs the messages provided in our pages, so then my energy and motivation kickstarts all over again!
How do you balance it all? LOTS of organization and discipline! Being organized with my time allows me to do all the things I HAVE to do and WANT to do!
Have you always had an entrepreneurial spirit? Not at all! i've always had a leadership skill, but not so much business oriented. I have more of an artist's mind. I had to slowly develop the business/entrepreneur side.
What are your guiding values? God, integrity, love, patience and compassion.
Did you study publishing/graphic design in school or are you self taught? Haha! Completely self taught! That's so crazy to me!
What is the most exciting aspect of editing DISfunkshion? What is most challenging? Most exciting is seeing the final product after shoots as well as layout design. Layout can also be a bit challenging though because you don't always feel creative so sometimes I have to really push myself.
How do you keep inspired? Having devotional time with Jesus every day! =)
How would you describe your own personal style? Boho/gypsy/cowgirl! LOL!
What are a few of your "go-to" designers//stylists? I actually don't wear designer clothes. i don't believe in spending too much on clothes. Fashion is driven by fads and those vanish quickly. besides, you can't really buy style and I believe everyone has their own district style. I love thawing things on that don't even match! It should be fun! I do love to shop at affordable stores like Forever 21, Charlotte Russe and Love Culture. All the runway looks for less!
If you had one piece of advice for females what would it be? Don't just go with the flow! Find your true voice and follow it. Also, respect yourself and your body. I once heard that a good baseball batter doesn't swing at just any pitch, but rather waits for the best one. I think we often swing at just about any pitch life throws at us, specially in relationships. Perhaps it's time to reevaluate that!
Goals for the future: Personal… to get married to a man who is the best partner to do life with! Someone who challenges and encourages me while we serve God together. For the magazine to translate into Spanish and Japanese.
Words you live by? "Let go of all the baggage, for he who travels lightest, travels furthest." -Anthea Paul
Ways to follow…. :)
And of course print issues are available at issue is NOW available at Barnes & Noble and most bookstores where magazines are sold! :)
(All photos courtesy of Hugette & DISfunkshion)