Meet Brenda

Meet Brenda

 Our social media whizz


Hellooo!!!

How are you keeping? Really well, I hope.

To our new subscribers - welcome!

Thank you to everyone who replied to last week's newsletter, sharing your feedback on our brand as well as your thoughts on vegan “leather” - I received such a wonderful range of insight. Some of you loved our brand name, others not so much. Some love our classic shapes, whilst others amongst you feel them quite plain and boring. I was also gently reminded that the phrase “vegan leather” is perhaps not the best way to describe these materials… and rather a better way to describe them is “next-gen material” or “leather alternative”. Fair point!

I also realise that some of you didn't know how to share your feedback - my bad. As with all LUXTRA newsletters, you can simply hit “reply” and your email will land in my personal inbox.

Today however, the star of the show is Brenda.

Brenda (left) and Chloé on Friday - during a mini photo shoot.

Brenda and I first connected via LinkedIn, when she reached out to see if there were any roles available at LUXTRA. I liked her forwardness and had some specific tasks on my mind that I needed help with, so we met for a coffee…

I'll let Brenda continue the story…

Hi Brenda. Please introduce yourself

Hello there! My name is Brenda and I'm the newest member at LUXTRA :) I was born in Peru but grew up mostly in Houston, Texas, and I am a graduate student studying in London. Fun fact about me is that I studied biomedical engineering which is a completely different world to business and fashion so it's been nice to see things from a totally different perspective!

Tell us a bit about your work at Luxtra

My focus is mostly on content creation and strategy. So, I select pictures, create videos and stories, plan the feed and get them all edited and approved by Jessica, LUXTRA's founder, before posting. I also help in other activities, such as support for retail partnerships and brainstorming with the team for the overall direction of the brand. What I've liked most about my work is that besides my main responsibilities, every week looks different and as the newest member, I get to see each piece of the pie which has been fascinating.

Brenda is working on growing our social media presence.
LUXTRA is now on TikTok - with some fun new videos coming this week.

What would surprise people about your work?

Hmmm…I think the most surprising thing is the amount of planning that goes into social media content. Because when it comes to posting continuously you have to make sure you give people what they really want to see, which isn't just a nice feed but something they can relate to or be inspired by. And the funniest part of this, is that it can sometimes be done in ways that you least expect. I actually created a Tik Tok video of my sister and I travelling to the UK that got nearly 900k views. We were dancing while telling the story of our trip and people loved it apparently hahaha. And it's been times like those where I've created for fun and wasn't afraid to post that idea, that I've been able to get the reactions from a post that I would've never thought people would care to see, much less engage with.

What does sustainability mean to you?

I recently came across a definition in my research that I feel really embodied the meaning for me which defined sustainability as “[meeting] the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (United Nations, 1987, p.15). I feel that sustainability can come about in many different ways, not just one because there are so many factors that play into it. So it can look like recycling, using better materials, cleaning up, repurposing, etc. all for the betterment of the planet and people alike.

One of Brenda's photos taken in Lima, Peru

What's your biggest challenge at the moment?

I think my biggest challenge is getting a bit more into the habit of online shopping if I truly want to support sustainable brands. The reason I say this is because there are a lot of wonderful brands out there with sustainable products but many of them don't necessarily have shops of their own and they aren't in huge department stores (yet!), since these are generally dominated by brands that are a lot more behind on the sustainability wagon. And I've never been a huge online shopper -my mom taught me to try on things, feel and touch them before buying them to make sure it's something I will use for a long time. So this is a bit of my dilemma.

What's your favourite part of your work?

I don't have a background in content creation, but I've always enjoyed taking pictures of my own, using Canva, making videos, etc., and I think the most beautiful part of content creation is getting people to engage and feel a sense of connection to your content.

And the most difficult part?

The hardest part I'd say is being patient with your results. I feel like you have to wait a certain amount of time to get results in before pivoting to the next idea or next segment of ideas in case something isn't working. And I like things to start working right off the bat but it takes a while to get into the groove and find what works and what doesn't and pivot accordingly.

Biggest life lesson?

Ouuuffff… big question here haha…ok let me see, there are so many life lessons, I don't know if there's a 'biggest' one for me but I guess one that really is a theme I keep seeing over and over again is the importance of having balance and duality in your life. For instance, striving to keep a passionate heart yet logical mindset, a diet that has healthy sweet and savoury foods, being good to others while keeping boundaries to yourself, etc. And you see this with almost everything, so I would say this is the biggest lesson.

1,2,3 totes?

Which is your favourite LUXTRA product?

My favourite product is the tote bag. Because it fits literally everything, it goes with all my outfits AND it has a zipper. I know many open tote bags from the super high end brands are in style but my mom (yet again 😊) taught me that it was better to purchase items with zips so nothing falls out and it's harder for items to get stolen.

What are your top 3 things to eat / see / do in Houston?

    1. I absolutely love the museum of natural science! I have so many memories of going there as a kid and my senior prom was also held there. They have a butterfly garden, planetarium, IMAX, dinosaur bones, just so many interesting things to see. And the area is near the Centennial Gardens and Buffalo Bayou which are pretty green areas to walk around as well.
    2. I also love grabbing a bite at Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co. during sunset to see an amazon view of the city.
    3. Finally, I love going to Axelrad. You can go with friends, family or even your dog and hang out at night for a nice outdoor evening (they have live. music, pizza and hammocks!). And just cause I couldn't leave this one out, if you like cozy coffee shops like me, (even though I'm not much of a coffee drinker), my favourite place to go to is Agora (so incredibly cozy!)

Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co - one of Brenda's favourite spots in Houston

_____________________________________________________________________
.
I really enjoyed learning more about Brenda and her background - I hope you did too. She's been making such beautiful content for us - so please do take a look at our Instagram or TikTok if you don't follow along already.

From my side - we've been working away in the background on lots of exciting things. Can't wait to share more very soon.

Ciao for now, but stay tuned!
Jessica 
Founder | Team Weaver | Proud B-Corper

Reading next

Vegan Leather & Soul Searching
Web3