We’ve been style obsessing over Erin Perez Hagstrom of Calivintage for over a year now. Her refined eye for elegance along with her crisp, SoCal lifestyle adds a breath of fresh air to our daily scrolls. Even more intriguing is that she’s been blogging about fashion for over a decade! We love how she’s honed in on her minimal, laid-back aesthetic to create an authentic, timeless style. Erin’s wardrobe features effortless, feminine basics paired with curated accessories that elevate every outfit she wears. (We’d be remiss not to mention we’re captivated by her kiddos, too!) Without further ado, see below to get to know a little bit more about Erin in this spring edition of #GalsWeDig!
Tell us about the evolution of your blog, calivintage. How did you get started, and has anything shifted to get it to where it is today?
I started my blog way back in 2008, before the age of Instagram! It was primarily a space for me to share my daily outfits because I didn't really know anyone irl who shared the same interest in fashion as me. Fast forward a few years and it launched me into a career in the fashion industry, and later enabled me to quit said day job so I could blog full-time. These days, I've slowed things down a bit to spend time with my kids, but you'll still find me sharing outfits and increasingly sharing our home renovation projects, too. It is-- and always be-- my creative outlet in whatever form it takes!
How do you remain inspired?
I don't! I think with all creative work, there are days when you're feeling it, and days when you aren't. We live in a time where it feels like we need to be working 24/7, so now I actually have to challenge myself to step away. I don't think anyone can remain productive or inspired unless they take some time to step back and see the bigger picture, too!
Coffee or Tea?
Do you have any daily rituals, or are you energized by spontaneity?
Both! I try to set a loose schedule for myself with work tasks that I need to accomplish each day while the kids are in school, then the afternoons are focused on them since I'm also the primary caregiver at home. We usually have set plans during the week, like family dinners with my sister and brother-in-law on Wednesday nights or trips to the Farmer's Market on Thursdays. But otherwise, I like to leave plenty of open time in our schedule for spontaneity. Doing creative work and caring for kids, it's important to have a ton of flexibility because you never know when inspiration will hit, or when a kid will have a total meltdown haha.
What can't you get enough of right now?
Gardening! Since I was apartment dwelling in a big city for so long, this is the first time I've ever lived in a house with a yard of my own. I started off slow, but am now growing a ton of stuff! I've planted two avocado trees, multiple citrus trees, an entire salsa garden (tomatoes, onion, cilantro, jalapenos), strawberries, a million flower varieties... It's just so therapeutic and rewarding. Whenever I'm feeling stressed or overwhelmed, I go check on my "plant babies" and it helps pull me back into the present.
Favorite place you've traveled?
I'm a total sucker for the whole tropical vacation scenario. Laying in a hammock or on the beach with a cocktail in hand? Yes, please!
The best advice you've ever received?
I'm still working on it, but basically that I need to learn how to say NO. I have a tendency to say yes to everything, which can leave me totally over-extended and overwhelmed. So if you remind yourself that every time you're saying yes to one thing, you're simultaneously saying no to something else. I think that's a powerful way to rethink it, and to help me remember what my real priorities are!
Any words of wisdom for working moms?
Don't try to do it all! I've learned the hard way that I need to remember to ask for help! Another thing I'm still working on, of course!
What do you love the most about your corner of California?
After living in the bay area for my entire adult life, we actually moved back to my hometown in southern California. The number one reason we are here is FAMILY. I don't think I could survive raising my kids without them as my support network. It's also a really charming, historic town that's a bit of a hidden gem. We just love our little 1920s storybook cottage that we've been restoring. And most importantly, we chose this spot because, even though we're technically in the suburbs, it's the most walkable neighborhood in the city! We basically live in the Historic Downtown district and are walking distance to multiple grocery stores, coffee shops, a beautiful historic library, vintage shops, everything. And with this southern California weather, we get to spend a lot of time just hanging out in the neighborhood!
What does a conscious consumer look/feel like to you?
I think it's as simple as valuing things like human rights, living wages, environmental responsibility. Making choices like reducing waste, buying local produce, supporting the slow fashion movement are all small ways that we can work towards making a cultural shift. But I also think that as a society, we tend to look at some of the breakdown in these values as personal failures, and we focus so much on individual responsibility when we really need to be pulling back the lens and looking at the larger systems at play. There are industry giants that massively pollute the environment and commit atrocious human rights violations with no repercussions. I think that we need legislation that will hold them accountable!
What changes in the fashion industry do you hope to see within the next decade?
I would love to see more of the fashion industry giants making big changes in their board rooms. I love seeing ad campaigns with more diverse representation for consumers and I want to see more of that, but I also want to see that same representation in the highest ranks within the industry. That's how we'll start to see real change.
Thanks, Erin, for taking some time out to answer our q + a! If you haven’t yet seen Erin’s feed, you’re in for a real treat. Follow her on IG here. Also, be sure to subscribe to her blog, calivintage— She’s constantly introducing the faux fam to covetable clothing from likeminded ethical brands.