Hey there beauties. We hope you're feeling super confident and empowered today! The last few weeks have been quite busy, but none the less amazing for us here at Slick Chicks! We find ourselves rolling into the month of love, as Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. With that in mind, the focus of the blog today is going to shift just a bit. But first meet Alexandra Connell, the Founder of an awesome online boutique called PATTI + RICKY, and one of our stockists! We’re going to talk to her about love; more specifically, the love between a mother and daughter and the inspiration that is born out of such a powerful bond.
Now we all know the mother-daughter relationship is a complicated one, fraught with highs and lows, intense emotions, and words unspoken. There are many ways mothers and daughters deal with the challenges that undoubtedly arise in their relationships. Alexandra Connell’s relationship with her mother, Patti, profoundly exceeded all boundaries; and they were and still are the true definition of best friends. When I spoke with Alex earlier this month she said, “My mom was my everything, my hero”.
Alex, who lives with ADHD and dyslexia, has always viewed the world as her oyster, because of the inspiration she received from her mother and cousin, Ricky. She travels, loves theater, and is an all-around amazing advocate who views life through an inclusive lens.
Alex knows and is driven to change the fact that shopping does not typically include or embrace differences. PATTI + RICKY does so with an inclusive shopping experience. Alex works daily with various designers to curate stylish clothing and accessory options for those of us who live with disabilities. Her hope is that they embrace their individuality and feel empowered to rock their personal style. Alexandra says her mom taught her how to truly love herself and embrace the person she is. And that’s just what Alex hopes each customer feels with their purchase from PATTI + RICKY.
Sadly, Alex’s mother passed away after being diagnosed with a brain tumor, but her very bright personality and loving legacy lives on in Alex and every single customer that makes a purchase from PATTI + RICKY. You can feel the amazing love this one of a kind mother and daughter shared, and that’s just the way this strong fempreneur wants it! This magnificent maven, who is moving fashion forward in a very special way, says that she loves her job so much because she gets to take her mother with her. And at the end of the day, she knows both her mother and cousin would be so proud of her.
At Slick Chicks we are so happy to have this bubbly, empowered babe as our newest ambassador. Alex has her mother’s fire in her soul and a mission in her heart to continue to spread the love and acceptance that both her mother and cousin passed on throughout their lives.
Without further ado, meet Alexandra Connell…
Can you give us an example of when you had to use your own personal advocacy skills?
After being diagnosed in 3rd grade with dyslexia, ADHD, auditory processing disorder and short-term memory issues, my mom (Patti from PATTI + RICKY) taught me how to effectively advocate for the accommodations and assistive technology I needed to be successful in school. During college and graduate school, I utilized the Disability Service Offices to advocate for extra-time on my exams with a private test-taking location. These accommodations allowed me to be on a similar “level playing field” as my peers and demonstrate my knowledge.
What advice would you give to a young girl to navigate society today?
The advice I would give a young girl to navigate society today is to always capitalize on her abilities. Growing up with dyslexia I have always struggled in school with reading and writing. However, I was very good at talking. Unlike being a good reader or a good writer in school, being a good talker was not necessarily associated with “smartness”. Whenever possible, I would choose to do oral reports and presentations. I even became the president of student government in both middle and high school. Whenever possible, I capitalized on my abilities even in an environment that did not embrace them. Today, I have a career where I get to talk and make connections with people all day long! I would advise young girls to always capitalize on their abilities and if possible choose a career where her abilities can shine!Describe yourself in 3 words and tell us why you chose those words?
3 words I would use to describe myself are optimistic, resilient, and fun-loving.
- Optimistic – My glass is always full! Really, to me, I chose optimism because I always see the best parts of everyone; the qualities or abilities that each person has that make them amazing.
- Resilient – My mom was my everything. After she passed away, I knew that she was such an incredible mother that she even raised me to be okay without her. Every day I try to think of how I can be better to honor what my mom would want from me. I know she would want me to be happy, healthy and help others.
- Inclusive– I absolutely love to connect with others! I love making new friends everywhere I go!
What does the word empowerment mean to you?
Empowerment for me is when I capitalize on my abilities, self-advocate, and use accommodations and assistive technologies I need to be successful. This is why it is important to me that when writing about disAbility that I always capitalize the “a” in disAbility.
Can you give us an example of a time when you felt most empowered?
Launching PATTI + RICKY. Blending my favorite things together (disAbility rights, entrepreneurship, fashion) into an idea was step one. Creating the tangible business from the ground up using that dream was step two. Turning that into a full-time job where I do what I love and feel like I am making a difference in people's lives every day when I go to work was the most empowering thing I have ever done.
What is your personal definition of beauty and when do you feel most beautiful?
I feel the most beautiful when I am feeling confident. I believe the most important thing is to feel good about myself on the inside. For me, this is usually when I’m eating healthy, exercising, meditating, and attempting to have a work-life balance. I feel beautiful when my clothing and accessories allow me to express my individuality. One of my biggest motivators for PATTI + RICKY is to help everyone to feel beautiful.
We are so excited to announce that Slick Chicks will be partnering with PATTI + RICKI for a Valentine’s Day Giveaway! Check it out via our Instagram and enter to win! 💕💕💕
GIVEAWAY (below): SLICK CHICKS HIPSTER PANTY & PRIYA HEART FIDGET RING
For more info about PATTI + RICKY please visit pattiandricky.com
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