At The Home Edit, we know firsthand the power of exposure and social media when building a brand or business. That’s why in 2024 and beyond, we are increasingly committed to sharing our platform and amplifying the voices of creator-led Black owned businesses in our community.
1) Who or what inspired you to pursue your line of work and become a creator?
I really started Color Me Courtney as a creative outlet and a way to get into the fashion world. I studied business in school but was having trouble getting hired into the industry without fashion credentials, so I decided to create my own path with Color Me Courtney to eventually get a job in the industry. As Color Me Courtney grew overnight, I decided to leave what I thought was my dream job in fashion to pursue my new dream… building my own colorful and personal online brand: Color Me Courtney.
2) What is the best piece of career advice you've ever received?
Don’t be afraid to bring your full self to whatever it is that you do.
3) What is your favorite advice to give?
Don’t wait for an invite to a party, throw your own! That’s how I got my job in fashion, that’s how I built a career with Color Me Courtney – instead of waiting for the opportunities to come my way conventionally, I’ve found the most success when I built my own path.
4) Walk us through your daily routine as a creator and business owner. What are some of the ways you keep your personal and professional life organized?
Day to day for a creative is always different so I am always looking for new ways to be organized because wearing all that hats in your business can be so overwhelming. I often will return to my marketing and business roots and try to look at creative projects from both my creative and business brain to make sure they’re running smoothly, sometimes even being creative Courtney one day and business Courtney the next to look over the same project. I have to look at the big picture, big goals and work backwards – breaking things up into smaller pieces. And time blocking for me is really successful, giving myself one day to do all my calls and another to shoot with a third day to edit content always turns me into a more productive version of myself so I can hyper focus!
5) As we're celebrating Black History Month, who are the Black leaders that have inspired you throughout your journey?
There are so many throughout history so I’ll stick to sharing a few (of many) who I look to for daily inspiration in my specific field. Fellow color and positivity queen Tabitha Brown is my auntie in my head and the blue print for so many creators & brand builders! It’s SO fun to see her shine just by bringing her full self to what she does and watch the world rally behind her. Anytime I feel a little lost about the direction I should take for Color Me Courtney, I look at Tabitha, and from there I can not only see myself getting to the next level but also better understand the smaller steps I have to take towards it. I’ve also really enjoy watching Quinta Brunson shine! Seeing how she paved her own way and wrote her own narrative is forever inspiring to me, and I’m a giant fan of her work! I always love watching Black women become the first but not the last (& there’s so many to name). One that was extra special to me as a child was watching Anika Noni Rose become the first (but not the last) Black animated Disney Princess in The Princess & the Frog. Then being able to connect with her again while becoming the first creator to designing a Disney Parks co-brand inspired by the character who she brought to life was a fun full circle moment. Watching how all of these women not only change the narrative for themselves and then door open for others also been so inspiring to me as a creator and as a human.
6) As part of THE’s Fresh Start February campaign, we are highlighting small wins that lead to big impact…are there any small or daily habits you’ve sustained that have made a big impact in your life?
One small thing that has helped me the most is having a tada list instead of, or in addition to, a to-do list. Since the tasks to tackle are never ending, having a “tada, I did it” list helps me celebrate what I’ve done instead of worrying about what I haven’t, and this keeps me positive while I work. Personally, I like to find the positive or the light in any situation. If you’re at a coffee shop small things like giving a compliment, holding the door or just adding positivity to someone’s day always brightens mine too. And wearing color! This is the easiest way to add some positive energy and brightness to your day! You’ll notice it boosts the moods of others around you too.
We also took a deeper dive into Courtney's love of rainbow and how color can brighten your mood. Scroll for more!
7) What was the inspiration behind Color Me Courtney?
Color Me Courtney stemmed from my love of color & life of dressing outside the lines. It started at a time where minimal greyscale aesthetics were all the rage, so I wanted to create a positive & bright place on the internet for anyone not afraid to stand out.
8) Why is color so important to you? How does it relate to the message you’re trying to share with your audience?
I think color is tied to confidence. It’s easy to feel like you don't deserve to be seen and decide that wearing neutrals might be easier than standing out in color. But I know YOU DO deserve to shine & be seen, as you are! Color can help you understand that & own that power all while boosting your mood, improving your confidence & energizing those around you.
9) Can you share a few tips for how you stay positive?
Color helps ! When I’m feeling blue I’ll often wear yellow & it can make me feel a little brighter, worst case scenario it will often make other people smile and that’s always a good thing. I also have been through a lot of darkness, I mean everyone has. For me, I lost my only sibling & the reality of that brought me a lot of pain but also some small comfort - When you’ve been through one of the worst things you find a small power in realizing you can survive anything. I do believe that there is a bright side to almost everything, it’s often not even and you’d still give anything to get back what you lost, but if you can find that bright spot and hold on to it, it can pull you through. Oh and if you’re in the darkness and you can’t find the light, it’s maybe because YOU are that bright spot. I would do anything to have my brother back, but loosing him brought me empathy & understanding. It allowed me to help a lot of other people through their grief & make them feel not alone. It’s taught me to cherish those relationships I still have and realize that my mood & how I treat others is one of the only things I can control, so I choose to be a bright spot when I can.
10) You have great style. What are your tips for building a wardrobe that brings you joy?
Color is obviously a must have in my wardrobe! I think that’s the easiest way to infuse joy into what you wear. If you have a pretty neutral closet, start small by investing in a colorful accessory like a bold bag, belt or colorful lip. I share a similar headband obsession to Joanna and love using them to brighten up any outfit. If you invest in a colorful headband and matching bag or belt in 3 colors, you can turn any neutral outfit into something fun without completely revamping your entire closet! But If you’re willing to amp things up even more: look for comfortable fabrics and silhouettes that you feel confident in, but then push yourself to purchase them in color or pattern!
11) What are 5 things that are bringing you happiness right now?
Designing my house in Palm Springs, training my puppy “bad guy” s'mores, my grandma & mom are living with me right now and so we’ve been spending evenings tell each other stories we haven’t heard before, seeing people wearing the Disney collection I designed always makes me smile & I just made some new friends for the first time in a long time and we’re texting constantly and its bringing me so much joy!
12) We need to know -do you have a favorite color?
This is always hard for me to answer because it changes often! For years (maybe 10) it was that kelly green color, I actually would call it courtney green because I said I loved it more than any kelly! But I would say for the past 5 years or so it’s been yellow. I’ll still go through phases, like I’m really loving hot pink and baby blue right now, but in general I prefer warm colors like oranges, reds, pinks or yellow!
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