We’ve shared our love for this multi-hyphenate Los Angeleno before, so we were so excited to have the chance to finally sit down with her to talk about all things style, motherhood and everything in between. Melissa Sonico does it all: a writer, professor, jewelry designer, fashion and lifestyle blogger, wife, mother, and a constant source of style inspiration. She’s just as supportive of indie boutiques and emerging designers as we are, so you’ll often find her (and her son) wearing labels of a ton of mutual friends. Here, she shares her best style advice, her new go-to outfits, and the best things about being a new mom.
TELL US ABOUT YOU. My name is Melissa and I just turned 34. I live in Southern California with my husband Johnny and son Harrison who is turning one on the 16th. I am a fiction writer (I write short fiction), writing professor, fashion and lifestyle blogger, and jewelry designer, all of which takes up a lot of time. I also love to read, go for walks with my boys, and watch everything from Silicon Valley to Stranger Things– lately it’s been Elmo or Beatles videos though because of Harrison! Music is a big thing in our house too. We’re trying to pass that love on to Harrison for sure. Harry Nilsson, Belle & Sebastian, some hip hop– everything.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE? My personal style revolves mostly around things I can get away with wearing while still giving easy nursing access to Harrison, which isn’t as difficult as I thought. I wear mostly classic pieces like a tee and jeans or a loose linen blouse that Harrison can fit under comfortably. Comfort and style is easy when your pieces are versatile like that. Minimal, neutral tones with a pop of color here and there.
WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE DESIGNER? Oh gosh, that’s a tough one. I’m a huge fan of Lauren Winter. Everything she makes fits so well and is super flattering while still being comfortable. Black Crane, of course. Objects Without Meaning. For shoes, St. Agni.
WHAT’S YOUR DAY-TO-DAY GO-TO OUTFIT? Right now it’s my logo tee from Older Brother, high-waisted jeans, and my Caron Callahan jacket or some variation of that, with some mules or clogs. Simple and classic.
WHAT’S THE BEST STYLE ADVICE YOU’VE EVER RECEIVED? Best advice: comfort above everything else. Not just the feel of the clothing but whether I feel comfortable going out in them.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR HARRISON. He is a doll. Every day, I still can’t get over the fact that Johnny and I made this little tiny being, and he’s perfect. He’s frustrating and demanding, and he’s got a temper but he’s also goofy, smart, and charming– and so sweet. His favorite things to do are watch Feist and Usher on Sesame Street, and alternate between growling and purring. Oh and bath time is a fave. I could go on and on.
HOW DO YOU APPROACH GETTING DRESSED WITH HIM? The same way I do for myself really. Living in California, we miss out a bit on layering and cute winter clothing, so it’s all about comfort for him. I also like neutral colors for him (just like my own color palette) but with a lot more color and fun prints. He’s a stylish boy, but he can still play and get dirty in his clothes– nothing stuffy.
BEST THING ABOUT BEING A MOM? That immediate love for someone. It’s instantaneous and just keeps growing. I laugh so much with him too. Everything he does is hilarious. I think Johnny and I need to learn not to laugh at everything he does, especially if it’s something he shouldn’t be doing!
HOW DO YOU BALANCE WORK AND FAMILY? It’s rough, and I’m still learning!
HAS BEING A MOM CHANGED YOUR OWN SENSE OF STYLE OR APPROACH TO FASHION? Oh yeah! I have much less time to get ready, and sometimes I dictate what I’m wearing on a certain day based on whether or not he can have easy access to breastfeeding. But the overall aesthetic is still the same.
WHAT STYLE ADVICE WILL YOU GIVE HARRISON AS HE GROWS UP? Less is more, especially for a guy, in my opinion. Basics are perfect– they’re comfortable, durable, and always in style. A tee, jeans, high-top chucks. That’s kind of universal advice actually!
Photographer: Abigail Halstead