In October 2009, Jessica Moore took $500, an idea and the help of her boyfriend, Bill Atkins, to create Stylebook, a closet management app that lets you photograph your clothing and accessories, and try new outfit combinations by dragging and moving different items together. The app includes a calendar to help users keep track of what they’ve worn and plan outfits for future dates.
Four months later, Moore and Atkins started making money from the app, which is now internationally recognized, with nods from Vogue Australia, Harper’s Bazaar UK and the New York Times. The app is available on iPhones and the iPod Touch for $3.99.
“We built Stylebook for people who are serious about building and maintaining a great wardrobe, Moore said in a press release about the app. “It isn’t meant to be a gimmick app that you download and then forget about. … We want Stylebook to be a staple in our users’ sartorial lives — something our customers use every day.”
Jessica Moore is making history … catapulting herself from an art assistant at Lucky Magazine and former _Vogue_and Modern Bride intern to the co-founder of Left Brain/Right Brain LLC, the company under which Stylebook was created. The Stylebook app was named in AdWeek’s Fashion Power’s 25 list, a list of the most important people and platforms in the style world, alongside singer Lady Gaga and designer Diane von Furstenberg.
What’s next for Jess?
Moore and her boyfriend continue to add new features to Stylebook, taking user feedback to make the app even easier to use. They also hope to expand Stylebook to other devices, including the iPad.
Jess Moore in her own words …
Moore’s advice on starting a business is simple. “People should really just sit down and do it,” she told theGrio. “What we decided to do was to do it with our jobs, which at the time was very hard because you don’t get a lot of free time, but it really paid off. If you start your own business nowadays, it’s really not about the money that you put into it, it’s the amount of time you put into it.”
A little-known fact about Stylebook …
Stylebook has become so popular that Moore and Atkins now work on developing and publicizing the app on a full-time basis.
For more information click THEGRIO’S”>here Q & A WITH JESS MORE
Q: What’s next in this chapter of your life?
A: I want to keep improving Stylebook. I keep a long list of features that my co-founder Bill and I want to add, so there’s a lot of work ahead of us. Every time we release a new update, I’m already thinking about what’s coming up next – it seems there’s always room for improvement. Keep your eyes peeled for the next few updates!
Q: What’s a fact about you that many people don’t know?
A: I love plants! I’m a very enthusiastic gardener, although I’ve been only moderately successful so far. I’m looking forward to spring – I planted bulbs for the first time last year, so I’ll get to see how they turn out in a few months. I also have elaborate plans to make moss topiaries.
Q: What’s your favorite quote?
A: “Building a well-balanced wardrobe takes time and thought. It isn’t a sprint — it’s a marathon.” – Nina Garcia, Marie Claire Fashion Director and Project Runway judge.
Said Moore: “I try to remind myself of this every time I’m out shopping. It’s part of the inspiration behind Stylebook: you can use the app to gradually build up a great wardrobe over time.”
Q: Where do you get your inspiration?
A: I get my organizational inspiration from my own experiences. I’m constantly looking for ways to make my life more efficient so I can have more time to do something fun!
Q: Who are/were your mentors?
A: Both of my parents have had a huge impact on my life. My mom is an amazing artist. When I was growing up, she taught me a lot about art and as a result I’m able to create all of our ads, promotional materials and displays myself. My dad is also a successful entrepreneur, so I can always go to him for advice on how to run the business side of things.
Q: What advice would you give to anyone who wants to achieve their dreams?
A: Believe in yourself and go for it – but do your research! Before my co-founder Bill and I decided to work on Stylebook full-time, we took our time and made a smooth transition from our corporate jobs. When we were ready, we put together a solid financial plan and a list of short-term and long-term goals for the app. We also looked around and found a great accountant and lawyer – I can’t stress how important finding the right advisers was to our business, especially when we were just starting out.
You don’t need a lot of money to start a tech business. Bill and I started Stylebook as a fun weekend project, so we only put in a few hundred dollars. Our first website was a free blog and we promoted the app for free using Facebook and Twitter. Developing the app itself didn’t cost us anything besides our time because we did everything ourselves. We dedicated an enormous amount of time to the project but not a lot of cash.