This week’s blog features Debra Jean, childhood friend of (IN)LARKIN’s creator, Mary Beth Larkin, and long-time (IN)LARKIN customer. Mary Beth and Debra Jean both grew up together, but a lot of their experiences with style can be traced back to the days where Mary Beth was letting Debra Jean borrow the latest fashion pieces out of her locker. “Mary Beth and I always had huge aspirations for ourselves, and it started with her having the latest styles in her locker. I would always beg her to let me borrow pieces and it would make my week or my month when she would say yes. I always got praise when I wore those pieces in school,” explains Debra Jean. Debra Jean and Mary Beth’s early style inspiration came from fashion magazines such as Vogue, W Magazine, and Elle. This early interest in fashion and the latest styles is something Mary Beth incorporates into designing pieces for her own brand — pieces that are functional, comfortable, and on the cutting-edge of fashion.

As their time in school came to a close, Debra Jean and Mary Beth maintained their friendship and support for each other. “As we grew in our careers and in our lives, I realized that we couldn’t stop fighting for our dreams. Mary Beth and I made a pact to do so. We always tell each other ‘You’re the best. You can do anything you want in life,’” said Debra Jean. Debra Jean travelled around the world for a few years before landing a career in finance, but left to pursue writing. Mary Beth has consistently pursued a career in the fashion industry, but made a transition in creating her own brand. Mary Beth’s experience working at Armani gave her a solid foundation to create pieces that have a tailored fit on every woman regardless of their shape or size. Another aspect of styling that Mary Beth picked up at Armani is layering. The light jackets and free-flowing tops that are included in (IN)LARKIN’s most recent collection can be used to create beautiful layered looks that are just in time for spring.

Though Mary Beth and Debra Jean lead different lives, they both have a love for fashion, classic styles, and an eye for detail. These things, along with art, her world travels, and the occurrences in the world around her have significantly influenced how Mary Beth goes about creating pieces in her collections. Debra Jean describes the (IN)LARKIN brand and its clothing pieces as suitable for “the modern woman who wants to be empowered, inspired, and comfortable, while being able to move, create, and stand out” in every facet of her life. (IN)LARKIN’s spring collection introduces pieces that are optimistic, bright, and create movement in a time where we are all feeling stuck and restricted in our daily lives. Two of Debra Jean’s favorite pieces from the spring collection are the Aliferous Shirt Dress and the Flight Shirt. They’re soft, versatile, and timeless.

The friendship between Mary Beth and Debra Jean is one that has stood the test of time. When it comes to you following your dreams, there’s nothing like your best friend cheering you on. Mary Beth hopes to inspire and empower women to do anything and everything they want in life by creating stylish, chic, and timeless clothing that will help them do just that.