Witty Conversation with Irene Yuan of Cuyana

I’m so excited for this next chapter in Witty Conversation With because it’s featuring someone from one of my favorite brands, Cuyana.

Meet Irene Yuan, Head of Marketing for clothing and accessory brand Cuyana and someone I’ve had the pleasure of meeting on several occasions. This is a woman who does it all but makes it looks easy and she’s done an incredible job of growing a brand with a beautiful mission (not to mention gorgeous products.)

Get to know Irene in today’s Witty Conversation With…

Witty Conversation with Cuyana I wit & whimsyYou do marketing for one of my favorite brands, Cuyana. What does a typical day look like for you?

It’s varied but exciting. Sometimes I’m traveling for work: going to NY or LA to meet with editors or partners, helping with photo shoots, the occasional conference. When I’m in the office, it’s a lot of meetings – with our merchandise, product, design teams but also with partners or press, interviews with candidates, etc – and always countless to-do’s to execute each marketing campaign. With so much going on, I try to set aside time each day to take a step back and think high-level about what’s going on, to make sure all our campaigns are thoughtful and cohesive!

What are your 3 favorite pieces from Cuyana?

I love my overnight bag (always travel with it), my long-sleeve tee (I live in it), and an oversized turtleneck sweater we did for Holiday 2013.

What are your top 3 favorite places to eat/drink in San Francisco?

My favorite restaurant is Nopa: everything there is amazing. For bars, I love Palmers in Pac Heights and Press Club, a wine lounge, in Union Square / SoMa.

You have the day off…how are you spending it?

The “real” version is relatively unexciting: I’m going to SoulCycle, running errands, meeting friends. Most of my weekdays are pretty packed so simple things like this are super enjoyable for me. The “idealistic” version is probably going to the beach and reading a great book. Reading for pleasure is such a luxury these days and I love it.

Irene Yuan Feature I wit & whimsy

What’s a piece of advice you’d give your younger self?

Things have a way of working themselves out. Even in the most challenging situations, which, when you are younger feels like the world is falling apart, things somehow end up getting resolved and, even if it’s for the worse, which happen sometimes, I’ve always come out wiser and more equipped for life ahead.

What are 3 of your favorite apps and why?

I love VSCO – it turns pretty much any photo into a work of art. I love my Starbucks app: I pay using it always and never have to bring my wallet when I make a coffee run. Lastly, the Rent the Runway app is surprisingly easy to use. I’m a big fan of RTR for the many special occasion events I have, and I’m now super comfortable using the app to place orders.

Who (or what) inspires you?

My mom does because she’s the strongest person I know and loves unconditionally.

What is a piece of advice you’d give to someone trying to break into the world of fashion?

There are creative ways to get into fashion! When I was younger, I sometimes felt discouraged because I thought you had to go to design school or have a specific fashion network to work in the industry. But it turns out there are creative ways — through business, through tech — to enter the fashion world. For ex: interning in venture capital for a firm that invests in e-commerce or fashion start-ups, leveraging analytical skills to enter through merchandising, starting in marketing/advertising and entering that way, etc.

Witty Conversation with Irene Yuan of Cuyana I wit & whimsy

Finish this sentence “I have a dream…”

I have a dream that fashion can become an agent of change: whether on an individual-basis as a tool for confidence and self-empowerment, or on a larger scale as a vehicle for intentional living and thoughtful consumption.


Thanks so much to Irene for partaking in this! You can see past Witty Conversation With features here. And my styling of some of my favorite Cuyana pieces here, here and here.

[Photos courtesy of Irene Yuan]

Wednesday Wish List

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There’s something so striking about neutrals in the Winter. You know I love wearing my white denim and my cream coat, but they also signal the sign of Spring to come I think. Ever since moving to New York I feel like I am more drawn to dark colors (black always seem to work, doesn’t it?) but right now I’ve got my eye on pretty pieces in ivory, taupe & beige.

Silk Dress // Ivory Blazer (the cut on this is so flattering) // Legging Jeans (love the wash)

iPhone case // Handbag // Midi Ring Set // Ankle Strap Sandals

a peek at my apartment & coffee table styling with amazon



I’ve gotten far more into interior design since moving into my “new” place this past April. While it was a bit of a nightmare melding the collections of 3 grown women into one pad, it really came together. It’s not 100% done (is a home really ever considered done?!) but today I’m sharing a peek into my living room. Amazon asked if I’d style some of the year’s bestselling coffee table books (off their list of the best 2014 books) in my own living room and I jumped at the chance. Not only am I a huge Amazon shopper (about half of my gifts this year were ordered through them) but I also adore coffee table books.

Now the trick in our living room is that we don’t technically have a coffee table but rather these beautiful gilded nesting tables we scored on Joss & Main back in the Spring. They double as our coffee table, side tables and places to eat on occasion. Rather genius when dealing with tight quarters, if you ask me. It also makes for fun changing up the styling. (See great options for styles similar to ours below)!




I placed the three Amazon books I was sent (they are all fashion related, but of course- see titles below) as a base and from there topped it with a candle from Jonathan Adler (I’m slightly obsessed with candles.) To add height to the set up, nothing short of a dozen white roses would do. To give them added appeal, I laid river stones in the bottom of the vase and nearby included gilded agate coasters (also love these more affordable ones) since we always have people over with drinks floating about.


Hope you enjoyed taking a look inside my home & many thanks to Amazon for this fun little project!

Disclosure: This post is not sponsored by Amazon (I’m truly a huge fan- who isn’t really?) however they did send me the three books I styled here.