Walking down the streets of Manhattan, I encounter fashionistas on a daily basis. I recently had the chance to bump into this fabulous girl, whom I had to stop and find out more about. I was just looking to talk fashion and instead got an inspirational story which truly inspired me beyond belief!

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WBM: How did your background lead you to where you are today?

REIKO: I have loved fashion since the very beginning. I love the beautiful art behind fashion. It amazes me everyday. [I] love being surprised by it all.

WBM: Tell me a bit about where you were raised and how you got to NYC?

REIKO: I was born in Eugene, Oregon and then moved to Connecticut at 15, until I finally realized I needed to be in New York City where fashion never sleeps. Currently going to fashion school to enhance my knowledge and pursue my dreams.

WBM: What led you to your interest in fashion?

REIKO: As I said before, I have always loved fashion, but it is really near and dear to my heart even more now. In December, I was in a bad car accident and suffered a brain injury. This led me to having to get my long, very long hair completely shaved off. For a 20 year-old girl this was a hard pill to swallow. I know hair grows back, but it was shocking. Now, how did this lead me to loving fashion even more? Because when I felt so vulnerable, so bare, I found beautiful clothes to lift my spirits. I loved putting together colorful outfits in hopes it would be more distracting than my bald head, and it worked! I felt like a bare canvas and the clothes were the paint to make it unique.

WBM: What is a key lesson you’ve learned along the way?

REIKO: I learned, that when you really learn the details, behind the scenes and the fundamentals of fashion it is so, so much more than just clothes.

WBM: Think of these four characteristics of entrepreneurs: heart, smart, buts, luck. Which one were you?

REIKO: I would like to think I’m the heart of the characteristics of entrepreneurs. I think you have to love everything about this industry to be in it, forever. It is not easy and I have only just begun, but my heart is fully in it. I hope to be in this industry for the rest of my life.

WBM: What has been your highest moment in fashion and your lowest?

REIKO: My highest moment in fashion, I would say “moments”, because ever since I moved to NYC this fashion city has never let me down. My lowest moment, oh gosh, those awkward teen years.

WBM: Where do you see yourself in five years?

REIKO: In five years, I hope to be a stylist for a fashion magazine or film/tv wardrobe stylist.

WBM: Who currently is your style icon?

REIKO: My style icon is constantly changing, currently I really am into the boho chic look. I always look at vintage photographs which inspire my wardrobe.

WBM: Fashion item you can’t live without?

REIKO: For the fall, Boots! I love Boots!