Elisa Goodkind: During the 80s and 90s, Elisa was a Fashion Stylist and Editor for numerous top fashion magazines, including Vanity Fair, Interview, In Style, Glamour, and Self. After taking a break from her passion for the art of fashion to raise her children and to teach yoga, Elisa returned to the industry. She discovered that the nucleus of accepting and extraordinary people had been flattened by corporations, favoritism, and a formulaic belief system that revolved around big-brand profit.
What is StyleLikeU?
Founded in 2009 by a mother, Elisa, and her daughter, Lily, StyleLikeU is a multimedia platform that honors individuals with authentic personal style. Disheartened by the increasingly soulless fashion world of unattainable imagery and big brand homogeneity, Elisa and Lily decided to combat fashion’s top-down ideology that you need to be “on trend” in order to be “in fashion” and that you need to change yourself physically in order to be beautiful. Elisa and Lily are reconstructing fashion by binding it to supreme and genuine individuals who, as a collective, embody a culture where people are honored for their differences and connected through personal, universal truths. With each post, Elisa and Lily want to be inspirational and inclusive, proving that fashion isn’t a product of money or indiscriminate consumption, but rather a symbol of consciousness and confidence. Elisa and Lily want to change people’s perception of fashion by showing the world that true fashion can’t be reduced to a trend, price tag, or air-brushed photograph. True fashion is the foundation for one’s identity.
Describe a time when you walked through the doors of passage?
I have been trying to figure out which passage I should pick. There have been so many. I think I shall choose starting StyleLikeU…
Beyond motherhood, starting Style Like U has been the ultimate passage or life defining move for me.
The reason I didn’t choose motherhood is I feel in many ways motherhood led me to StyleLikeU. StyleLikeU encompasses all of the rights of passages I have been through including motherhood, marriage, yoga, career, spirituality. I needed to go through all these passages before I could do something like this. I now see looking back that StyleLikeU is the reason why I pushed through falling on my face so many times. Those falls were what motivated me to do this important work. I had to feel the frustration of not being able to share the beauty that I wanted too. Not being able to express myself the way I desired. It seemed I couldn’t do many of the things which I most loved and lived for. The fashion industry wasn’t soulful, spiritual or artistic like it once was when I first entered it and found my tribe. This was a rejection of sorts.
I had to then become a mother, find my spiritual side through yoga and enter into lots of therapy to gain self awareness.
It was a culminating time for me. It was an adversity for me to drop all of my contacts and what I thought would be my trajectory,
to dive into something that was completely unknown and yet something I had a very strong visceral feeling was my future. No one else my age or in the industry that I knew of was doing something like this. Everyone looked at me like I was a crazy person. It took a lot of faith as well as facing every fear in me. Ultimately my instinct was that fashion should be about the individual.
It is about telling your story. Style was becoming something new, no longer about the outside but about bringing the interior out.
It is becoming about seeing the beauty IN people. The old mode was over. It was time from a new one. Gigantic passage through my fears, into my power and calling. StyleLikeU has been a full circle passage.
How has being female affected your journey through life?
Being female has affected me in every way. Giving birth. Motherhood… 1,000 percent Motherhood!
My two children are my greatest teachers. Without them I would not be close to the woman I am. Through raising them I have learned about strength, insight, reflection, support, love. Everything I value most in life, I have learned through raising my children and being their mother.
Who are you becoming?
I am becoming someone who is learning to surrender.
Understanding that choices in life are about listening within to what we as individuals are supposed to be doing.
It’s not about ego. It’s not about a label. It’s not about something external.
It’s about going within for the answers.
I am becoming someone connected to her deepest purpose. A connection to the totality from which we are all born from.
What is pulling you forward? What is your motivation?
Whats motivating me most right now is my body. I have been struggling this past year with my health. I am extremely sensitive emotionally and physically and this can lead to imbalance. I feel A LOT… I am extremely passionate which can lean towards manic passionate! It was this way for the first five years of StyleLikeU. My body was screaming at me to stop. Asking me to slow down and listen to what will bring me balance. Balance is pulling me forward in terms of how I am being.
What does being BRAVE look like these days? What does it feel like?
Being brave is moving forward everyday…
Being brave is not being afraid of how I feel. It is all a lesson… everything.
My body is teaching me to believe in its desires to heal. It wants to be well. It will tell me what I need to do.
I have to be brave and believe in the inherent wisdom of my body. Through it; I am learning that nothing outside of myself can tell me what I need to know any better than my own body can.
What are you saying a big Holy YES to these days?
Saying yes to being at peace with whether I am taking a step forward or a step backward.
When have you felt whole?
I feel whole in the presence of water, beach and sun.
I feel whole after having left the Russians Baths.
I feel like I am absolutely exploding in a really good way.
How will you honor the ordinary moments today?
I meditate twice a day. As well as exercise everyday. They are sort of, rituals. They are extremely important especially to my productivity.
I respect them. I Honor them. Everyday.
This intertwines with the earlier answer about listening to my bodies teachings about balance. I meditate and exercise because I need to.
What would you like everyone to know?
“That people need to take their power back.
Reclaim the media… Reclaim their brains and their minds…
Understand that they don’t need to be anyone else.
Or live anyone else’s lives. Buy anything else. Or do anything else. To be beautiful.”
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild precious life?
Change the world for the better.
Make it a more loving, accepting, expressive, joyful, soulful, artful and connected place.