Kiran Dodeja Smith, 32, is indisputably qualified for her job as co-publisher/editor of Little Ones Magazine. The mother of two girls, with a third baby on the way, Smith and her business partner Kerrie Boys began the magazine in February 2005. Published quarterly and distributed from Mooresville to Fort Mill, S.C., Little Ones carries articles that range from how to plan a birthday party, to a profile of families struck by chronic disease. Smith, a Cleveland native, moved to Charlotte in 2000 with her then-soon-to-be husband Jared.
Q. Were your parents stylish?Not at all, and I think they would agree with me saying that. My mom is a secondhand shopper and is not with the latest fad at all.
Q. What's the first piece of designer clothing you remember buying?I remember being in fourth grade and I wanted a pair of ice skating pants, very tight shiny pants, and I remember asking my parents, and being lectured by my parents that you don't have to look like everyone else, but I finally got them, and they were very important to me.
Q. How does your sense of style help you do your job?Because I work for myself I get to choose my own style, and I don't have to adhere to corporate restrictions. I can dress a little more funky and fun, and get away with it. It lets my personality come through.
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Q. Who is your favorite designer and why?A: I love BCBG. I think they can be classical yet fun at the same time. They make a lot of pieces that I feel I can hold on to for a while and still be trendy with them.
Q. Do you favor certain colors?About five years ago I was very much into wearing more black or muted colors, and recently I've gotten more into prints and bright colors and opened up my repertoire.
Q. What piece of clothing can't you live without?My True Religion jeans.
Q. Describe your favorite pair of shoesDefinitely wedge shoes. I need some height. I'm only (5 feet 3 inches) and I think it makes your legs look longer and prettier.
Q. Where do you shop for shoes?Across the board, Nordstrom is my favorite store. I have limited time when it comes to shopping, but I can go there and get everything from shoes, to clothing, to accessories and their customer service is top notch.
Q. How does your style change when you are pregnant?It's difficult because you want to try and keep your style but your body doesn't look the same. So I try to keep the fun and funk in my look with pieces that accommodate my growing belly. The amount of maternity wear available is abundant, so you can still look fabulous.
Q. Where do you buy maternity clothes?I do like Beau Belly and Belly Elan.
Q. What's your everyday uniform?It alters. I get more dressed up these days in flowy types of dresses. In the afternoon, when I'm spending time with my kids, I'll throw on comfortable wear.
Q. Do you have any shopping advice?I've definitely learned that if you get a piece, get another piece to match it at the same time. Always get a complete outfit. And it always helps to ask.
Q. What purse do you use?A Louis Vuitton bucket. I'm very basic when it comes to accessories. I like to have one thing that I can use all the time. The same with jewelry. It's not that I don't enjoy the trendier pieces, but I don't have time to go and seek them out and purchase them and change them out as much as I think I would need to.
Q. What jewelry do you typically wear?Every day I wear my wedding and engagement rings. I have my ears double pierced and I wear diamond hoops and diamond studs. I have a silver necklace that has two disks, each with my daughters' names and birthdays on them.
Q. Any celebrities whose style you admire?I love Eva Longoria Parker's fashion sense – or maybe she just has a great stylist!
Q. What was your most ridiculous splurge?A pair of Chanel sunglasses that cost $350, and when I was paying for them I thought that it probably cost them $2 to make them.
Q. What fashion advice can you give to women?Take the time to pick out an outfit that makes you feel good about yourself. When I dropped off my kids at preschool today everyone commented on my outfit, and it felt great. It's sometimes hard to find the time to get yourself prepared, but in the end, it's definitely worth it. It's a great confidence booster.
Q. What wouldn't you be caught dead wearing?Mom jeans. High-waisted with bad pockets that make your butt look … just wrong.
Q. What can't you believe you once wore?We used to peg our pants and pull our socks over them.