My name is Kelly and I’m the gal behind Lipstick & Ink®. I’m based in the beautiful city of Chicago and have been an Illinois girl all of my life. I grew up in the Chicago suburbs and then made the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (I-L-L anyone?!) my treasured home for four wonderful years. I received a bachelor’s degree in Advertising and started my professional career at a Chicago ad agency. These days, I work full-time in the advertising tech industry at Salesforce and currently live on Chicago’s north side with my husband, Adam.
I’m fueled by black coffee, sunshine, candles, fresh flowers, a bold lip, and a really good ink pen. I’m a collector of handwritten notes and cards. I am honest to my core and always stand up for what I believe in. The fall season gives me life with the crisp leaves, warm apple cider and football Sundays. Anything that glitters catches my eye and I believe gold is never out of style.
On an average day, you’ll find me…
— writing for L&I and my upcoming book
— career advising my personal clients
— strategizing at work and helping my clients unlock value from their product investment
— jotting down my random thoughts or daily to-do’s
— with at least three lipsticks in my purse
— staying on top of the weather forecast
— at home or running errands in athleisure
— researching and planning out an itinerary for my next travel destination
— drinking coffee, wine, or water
I decided to start Lipstick & Ink in January 2018. It was a time where I was fresh off my honeymoon and the crazy holiday season and no longer had wedding planning to occupy all of my time. There was no better time to dig deep and figure out what I wanted to do – it was the start of a new year after all! I felt like something was missing in my life – and as I really thought about it, I realized it was writing.
I’ve always known that I was destined to be a writer. Ever since I’ve been able to pick up a pen, I’ve been writing. As a kid, I’d lock myself up in my room and write short stories and poems that I dreamed up in my head. I started writing in journals at the ripe age of seven. I secretly got excited any time I got a writing assignment at school. I followed my passion in high school when I wrote for the school newspaper. In college, I jotted down my thoughts on various blogs that I had started.
But for the better half of my 20s, I pushed my passion for writing to the side. I let judgment, ridicule, and self-doubt over my writing get to me, so I buried it for years. I got so caught up in my life that any time I felt the inspiration to write, I made an excuse not to. Something changed though on that snowy Saturday in January. I resurrected my writing and I was determined to do everything in my power to do something impactful with it.
Since then, my mission has been to help women own their power and make their mark so they can advance and drive impact in the workplace and beyond. I ultimately want women to become their own best advocates, all while staying authentic to who they are. You can learn more about L&I here.