Meet Nicole Zabal


MEET NICOLE ZABAL

NICOLE IS THE FOUNDER OF SHOP NICOLE ALEX, A BRAND THAT CREATES EASY TO WEAR PIECES, FEATURING BUILT IN SHELF BRAS FOR THROW-ON-AND-GO. A GRADUATE OF PARSONS SCHOOL OF DESIGN IN NEW YORK, NICOLE’S EPIPHANY CAME AFTER WORKING AT HOME FOR FIVE YEARS, FINDING SHE NEEDED TO CREATE GARMENTS THAT WERE COMFORTABLE, HAD SUPPORT, AND WERE EASY TO WEAR. 

NICOLE TALKS TO US ABOUT HER JOURNEY, INSPIRATION, AND ASPIRATIONS BELOW!

 

TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOURSELF.

I'M ORIGINALLY FROM NEW JERSEY AND I MOVED TO LOS ANGELES ABOUT TEN YEARS AGO, AFTER LIVING IN NYC FOR A FEW YEARS AFTER COLLEGE. I LOVE ALL THINGS ART AND FITNESS. YOU CAN USUALLY FIND ME AT A COOL ART EXHIBIT, REDECORATING MY APARTMENT, OR TAKING A FITNESS CLASS.

 

WHAT DO YOU FOR A LIVING? IS IT WHAT YOU THOUGHT YOU WOULD BE DOING 5-10 YEARS AGO?

I’M A MARKETING DIRECTOR FOR A SOFTWARE COMPANY, BUT MY SIDE HUSTLE / PASSION IS MY WOMEN’S APPAREL LINE THAT I LAUNCHED A YEAR AND A HALF AGO. I ALWAYS WANTED TO START MY OWN COMPANY, BUT IF YOU ASKED ME 5-10 YEARS AGO, I WOULD NEVER HAVE THOUGHT THAT I’D ACTUALLY DO IT!

 

WHAT EVENT OR MOMENT OCCURRED THAT LED YOU TOWARD YOUR PASSION?

MY MOM HAS ALWAYS BEEN VERY FASHION FORWARD AND WHEN I WAS GROWING UP, I WOULD GO INTO HER CLOSET AND TRY ON HER AMAZING CLOTHES AND SHOES JUST WAITING FOR THE DAY THAT THEY WOULD FIT ME. SHE WAS AN ARTIST AND INTERIOR DECORATOR AND NATURALLY, I ENDED UP LOVING ART AND ALL THINGS CREATIVE. MY DAD WAS THE FOUNDER AND CEO OF A SOFTWARE COMPANY, AND I LIKE TO THINK I GOT HIS BUSINESS MINDSET COMBINED WITH MY MOM’S ARTSY SIDE. WHEN I WAS A FRESHMAN IN COLLEGE, I INTERNED AT AN APPAREL COMPANY IN NEW YORK CITY AND IT BECAME CLEAR TO ME THAT MY GOAL WOULD BE TO ONE DAY LAUNCH MY OWN LINE.

 

WHAT DOES SUCCESS LOOK LIKE TO YOU? IS YOUR IDEA OF SUCCESS DIFFERENT FROM A PREVIOUS VERSION?

I THINK MY DEFINITION OF SUCCESS IS DOING SOMETHING I LOVE AND BEING ABLE TO HAVE WORK/LIFE BALANCE SO I CAN TRAVEL THE WORLD AND GO ON FREQUENT ADVENTURES. ALTHOUGH, HAVING RECENTLY LAUNCHED MY COMPANY, I HAVEN’T BEEN ABLE TO TRAVEL AS MUCH AS I’D LIKE TO.

 

DO YOU HAVE ANY FAILURES, WHICH IN RETROSPECT, LED YOU IN A BETTER DIRECTION?

I WOULDN’T NECESSARILY REFER TO THIS AS A FAILURE, BUT I’D SAY THE BIGGEST THING THAT HOLDS ME BACK IS BEING A PERFECTIONIST AND CARING TOO MUCH ABOUT WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK. I’VE ALWAYS KNOWN I HAD IT IN ME TO START MY OWN COMPANY AND BE SUCCESSFUL, BUT I KEPT HOLDING MYSELF BACK FROM FEAR OF FAILURE AND GOING OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE. I FINALLY CAME TO A POINT A FEW YEARS AGO WHERE I WAS GETTING SO MAD AT MYSELF FOR NOT TRYING, THAT SOMETHING FINALLY CLICKED AND I WAS LIKE, OK, LET’S DO THIS!

WHAT IS A QUOTE YOU LIVE BY?

MY GRANDMOTHER USED TO ALWAYS SAY THIS TO ME "PICK YOURSELF UP, DUST YOURSELF OFF, AND START ALL OVER AGAIN." THAT QUOTE IS RELEVANT TO SO MANY DIFFERENT ASPECTS OF MY LIFE. FROM TRANSFERRING TO A DIFFERENT COLLEGE, TO CHANGING CAREER PATHS, MOVING TO A NEW CITY, BREAKING UP WITH A BOYFRIEND — I’VE ALWAYS BEEN THE TYPE OF PERSON THAT JUST GETS UP, GETS OVER IT AND STARTS OVER WITHOUT DWELLING ON THINGS.

IF YOU COULD GIVE ADVICE TO YOUR YOUNGER SELF, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY?

DON’T BE AFRAID TO FAIL. YOU ARE CAPABLE AND EVERYTHING WILL TURN OUT GREAT! 

 

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