Artist, graphic designer, fashion lover, new mom and most recently, the curator behind Lone Flag, Kelli Murray is a creative force to be reckoned with. We caught up with the San Diego-based Chictopia Style Icon to get a glimpse at her life and to get to know the inspiration behind her work. Read on to see how her passion for art and fashion got her to where she is today!
Which came first for you -- art or fashion?
Fashion. For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to work in the fashion industry. It wasn't until I was out of college and working at a clothing company that art became such a huge passion. It's something I somewhat fell into and couldn't turn away from.
What are some of your sources of inspiration?
I can find inspiration in almost anything. I am always drawn to fashion, color, and texture. A lot of my work has an innocent, nostalgic feel to it. I draw on memories and favorite places. I love nature and animals and really anything that contains a certain beauty or positive emotion.
You’ve found beauty in simplicity with the concept space Lone Flag. How did you get started with the project and what made you want to venture into curating a boutique?
For years, my husband Sam and I worked for other apparel brands, designed lines, sold at shows, traveled and acted as ambassadors for product and built relationships with other brands, stores and buyers. Throughout that process, we felt truly blessed, but we internally craved a place close to home where we could curate something of our own, something we believed in that supported our community, the local arts, incubated ideas, and worked with other small businesses. We wanted a place where people came in and were inspired and felt they belonged. We saw a niche here in San Diego that was not being filled, and we wanted to change that. And so finally, we took a leap of faith and Lone Flag was born. We opened our doors only one short month ago, and our online store was quick to follow. We specialized in men's american made selvage denim, boots and shirting, but hope to expand on more women's categories in the new year....as well as develop our own vertical line as well. We are really looking forward to the opportunities ahead!
Describe your style in three words:
Classic. Casual. Evolving.
Would you say that your artwork is a reflection your personal style in any way?
In some ways. I'd say my art is a lot more girly than I am, most of the time :) It definitely focuses on the more feminine, imaginative side of me.
If you could meet one artist, designer or fashion icon from the past or present, who would it be?
Such a hard question. It would be great to have a cup of coffee with Kate Lanphear or Kelly Wearstler.
What’s the one thing your wardrobe would be incomplete without?
Probably my Modern Vice boots....I literally wear them almost everyday.
Do you have an advice for aspiring artists or anyone who wants to find a place in the creative/fashion industry?
Work hard and don't give up. It can be a hard industry at times...but if you stay true to yourself and continue to pursue your dreams despite the set backs, you can be as successful as anyone. And by success, I don't mean how many dollars are in your pocket. I am referring to happiness, and living a life of purpose.....because at the end of the day, that is all that really matters anyway.
Any upcoming projects or aspirations in the works?
There is one very hush-hush project I am currently working on that involves a fashion line and little people (children!). Let's just say my daughter has inspired me. That's all I'll spill for now :)
Do you have any questions of your own for Kelli? Comment below and she may get back to you!
All photos courtesy of Kelli Murray.