Tara Martin is the fashion entrepreneur behind DTLAcustom, My Other Bag, Bag Junkies, and previously, Luxury Designer Resale. An industry expert with an eye for design and sharp business insight, Martin began her ﬁrst company—Luxury Designer Resale—out of her apartment in Los Angeles, seven years ago, and has since been credited with reselling thousands of luxury accessories and apparel for an elite clientele worldwide. After ﬁve years managing sales, deﬁning brands, and launching new products for some of fashion’s top womenswear lines, Tara decided to break out on her own to create My Other Bag—a line of eco-friendly, re-usable tote bags, born out of her own need for a line of practical totes with style. Celebrity fans of the brand include Jessica Alba, Kelly Rutherford, Jessica Biel, Vanessa Lachey, Emily Van Camp and more. Today her style empire has grown to include totes & tees sold in over 60 countries, and her latest venture: DTLAcustom, the premier arthouse for luxury leather customization.
Name: Tara Martin
Occupation: Serial entrepreneur. Currently CEO of two fashion brands, My Other Bag & DTLAcustom
Website: www.DTLAcustom.com, www.myotherbag.com
Twitter: @dtlacustom, @myotherbag
Instagram: @dtlacustom, @myotherbag
1. What are three words that best describe you?
Passionate, resilient, witty.
2. Tell us why you’re awesome in two sentences or less.
I have a vision for things that don’t exist yet and a relentless drive to make them come to life. I’ve always had the courage to listen to my intuition – even when the “facts” don’t agree. And above all else, I am in daily dedication to living and playing- bigger, bolder, hotter, smarter, easier, with more spaciousness, more efficiency, appreciation, playfulness, energy, passion, and absolute love of wherever my time and energy are going.
3. What are your three biggest indulgences?
McConnell’s chocolate covered strawberry ice cream, Uber black and designer shoes.
4. What’s currently your favorite…
Restaurant: Tower Bar, thanks to one fabulous woman you may have heard of, named Liz Dennery ☺
Food: Mexican or Thai
Cocktail: Skinny, spicy margs or a grey goose martini, dirty, olives, extra cold
Shopping destination/store: CURVE, INTERMIX, Barneys
Fashion item: Designer bags, shoes and jewelry. I’m an accessory girl to the core.
Place to hangout: The art’s district in DTLA
City: So, so tough – LA, New York, Beirut, Milan. I can’t choose, don’t make me!
Travel item: Books and everything else I need. Being a “heavy” packer is the understatement on the year…
Beauty product: Rodin Body Oil – in love
Skincare product: Everything Skinceuticals
Hostess gift: My Other Bag of course, and a bottle of champs
Home décor item: Coffee table books and blankets- major addiction issues
Book: Women Who Run With The Wolves
5. What’s the ONE thing you absolutely can’t live without?
6. What is your biggest pet peeve?
Poor customer service.
7. If you could have dinner with anyone (living or not) who would it be?
8. What does it mean to you to have a strong, engaging brand and how has having one helped you?
If you are the founder of a brand, then the brand is just an extension of yourself. It is so “of you” that it becomes indistinguishable. I’ve found that the more “of you” it is, the stronger and more engaged the pull from the outside in. Founding these brands has taught me more about myself then I ever would have thought. It would take light years and a lot of dirty martinis to retell. But if you are willing to allow your entrepreneurial journey to break your heart open, heal it, break it again and figure out how to enjoy the roller coaster along the way, you will feel a joy that only is recognizable after the burn. In order to create, one must first destroy. And there is a beauty to be seen in the creation, in the destruction, and in between.
9. What is your #1 tip for fellow women entrepreneurs?
Do not give into the fear stories in your head. They are not real. It’s what’s on the other side of that fear, when you have the courage to push past it that makes it all worth it.
10. Women Who Run With the Wolves
This book unfolds the rich intercultural myths and stories to help women reconnect with the fierce, visionary attributes of their instinctual nature.