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This Entrepreneur And Author Took Her Passion For Fashion And Built A Thriving Career

Meet entrepreneur, author and fashion historian Nancy Flaherty. Using her knowledge for fashion couture she recently debuted her book French Flair:10 Essential Pieces for Style And The History That Makes Them So Iconic. Flaherty presents ten key items that women should have in their closet from the little black dress to the ideal scarf to the fitted blazer. Nancy Flaherty Courtesy RRR Creative As the founder and CEO of Hidden Gems with Grace , Flaherty curates shopping and fashion experiences in Paris and other cities that offer Parisian panache. Also, just last month, Flaherty was appointed the Atlanta regional director of Fashion Group International (FGI). With a mission to support women in the fashion industry, FGI offers timely information on national and global fashion trends.

Flaherty had been fixated on fashion and style her entire life. When she was in middle school she learned to sew and make clothes. “One of the first pieces of clothing I made was a denim wrap skirt with red and white rick rack trim. I wore it forever,” she recalls. At drama class in high school she always assisted with the costumes for school plays and musicals. Early on one of her style icons was Princess Diana. “I wore ruffled shirts, suits with matching tights and hats. If I couldn’t find them in the store or it was out of my budget, I made it.”

As much as she loved fashion, she didn’t embrace it as a career until later on when she started working with a French luxury lifestyle magazine after her youngest child started college. “I had a completely different path in my educational years. I studied math and science,” she shares. “But I always shopped for that perfect ensemble I saw on someone else, and worked at a retail store while in college.”

Her parents were keen on her getting a reliable well paying job. "But I wish someone had suggested the fashion industry to me when I was planning for my future,” says Flaherty. “Luckily I’ve had an opportunity to recreate myself during this second chapter of my life. I like to call it the next chapter or new beginning.”

Jeryl Brunner: How did you get into the Fashion industry?

Nancy Flaherty: My first job was writing and editing for, [the French publication], Captendance magazine. I covered things in the United States that my French publisher thought would be interesting. I wrote in English, and they translated for our print magazine. We also had an online English version of the publication. I always enjoyed covering Paris fashion week, especially Couture week in January or July.

Brunner: What inspired you to launch your own company.

Flaherty: My Paris editor at Captendance and I really loved following and writing about the small businesses in the fashion industry that needed to be promoted. We wanted to start an online magazine that wrote about shopping in Paris from an insider’s perspective and spotlight the lovely shops and shop owners that are not on the […]

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