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Trendsetters at Work: Emi-Jay

Emi-Jay Trendsetters Christina Mack

Emily Matson and Julianne Goldmark are typical college students with a very atypical job: running a wildly successful accessories company.

Emily and Julianne are co-founders of Emi-Jay, the chic hair ties that you've likely spotted everywhere from at the mall to on your favorite celeb. If you've ever wondered what it's like to start a company when you're only 14-years-old, then keep reading for our behind-the-scenes scoop on the Emi-Jay girls...

What was your very first job?
J: Emi-Jay! We started it when we were 14 years old, so it was definitely the first "job" we had!

Who are some of your career heroes?
The Olsen twins.
J: I've always looked up to Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. They built a whole empire at such a young age, and I love their style/aesthetic.

What's a typical workday like for you?
: Right now I am attending college in New York, so most of what I do on a daily basis takes place through communicating with everyone at our headquarters in LA. I Skype in during meetings and email back and forth with everyone on a daily basis. Occasionally, we'll do fun things like press meetings, interviews and trunk shows in NY, as well. However, this summer I'll be at our headquarters full-time.
It totally depends on what we have going on! I take frequent trips to NYC where we'll be doing press-related stuff. When I'm at the office in LA we work on upcoming collaborations and products for future seasons. It's cool because we get to work on everything from designing, to marketing and press aspects of the company.

NEWS: Trendsetters at Work: InStyle

Emi-Jay Trendsetters Christina Mack

Describe your office décor. What was your inspiration?
Our office is really fun, bright and airy. Color is everywhere, and our walls are adorned with photos from shoots we've done and various magazine press. Right now, Julianne is putting together a really cool "inspiration wall" with a giant neon sign that says "Emi-Jay" surrounded by gorgeous pictures, which we're really excited about. We're very much inspired by things we see on Pinterest and Instagram. Having an aesthetically pleasing, beautiful work environment is crucial for us!
A lot of white with pops of color. We have a huge hot pink neon sign with our logo that I'm obsessed with! There's a lot of hot pink going on and great photos all over the place. Oh, and a lot of fresh flowers and candles!

List five things that are on your desk right now.
: My favorite candle, a Moleskine notebook, pens, a bottle of water and my phone.
Emi-Jay stationary, our lookbook for Fall and Holiday 2014, some candles, my iPhone and iced tea.

What do you typically wear to work?
Our office is very relaxed, which is a luxury when it comes to figuring out what to wear every day. Sometimes I'll show up in workout clothes, but if we have a special event or a meeting, we'll dress up a bit more.
If we have a big meeting or are going to some sort of event I'll dress up with a pair of jeans or shorts and a fun jacket, but as far as everyday I usually just wear Lululemons and a sweater or tee! It's a very chill work environment, everyone just dresses very casually.

NEWS: Trendsetters at Work: Teen Vogue

Emi-Jay Trendsetters Christina Mack

What are your favorite stores to shop for work clothes?
I love basics from Rag & Bone and Vince—super comfy, simple and perfect for every day.
J: My work clothes are also my everyday clothes! I rarely have to dress formally, so I love Reformation, Zara, Topshop and Barneys. It depends what I'm looking for but those are definitely some of my top favorites.

What's the best piece of career advice you've ever received?
Dream big, the sky is the limit.
I really think the best thing anyone's told me is to surround yourself with positive people. If I didn't have such supportive friends and people on my team, I wouldn't love working so much, so I think it's most important!

NEWS: Trendsetters at Work: Aerie

Emi-Jay Trendsetters Christina Mack

Finish the sentence…with Emily!

Today for lunch I had… a veggie chopped salad.

The first website I log onto every day is… Instagram (not technically a website, but the first thing I check when I wake up!)

The beauty product you can always find in my purse is… Dior lip gloss.

My must-have work gadget is… my iPhone (can't do anything without it).

My usual Starbucks order is… an iced sugar-free vanilla soy latte.

If I need a quick break during work, I usually…check my phone and catch up on what's going on in the world.

If I wasn't doing this job, I would be… focusing on being a full-time college student and probably interning or working on the side.

The best part of my job is… all of the amazing opportunities we've had and the incredible people we've met, especially at such a young age.


Finish the sentence…with Julianne!

Today for lunch I had…an arugula salad with grilled chicken.

The first website I log onto every day is…I'm obsessed with BuzzFeed right now, so probably that or Refinery29!

The beauty product you can always find in my purse is…Smith's Rosebud lip balm. It's the best!

My must-have work gadget is…my iPhone, mini iPad and laptop. I always have all three with me at the office!

My usual Starbucks order is…either an unsweetened iced green tea or a non-fat iced chai with a shot of espresso.

If I need a quick break during work, I usually…grab a quick lunch with a friend or go to Starbucks.

If I wasn't doing this job, I would be…focusing on just being a college student. Or maybe I'd be interning at a magazine or for a party planner, I've always been interested in those types of things.

The best part of my job is…Getting to see random people on the street wearing our products! I love when people say how much they love Emi-Jay, it's great!

PHOTOS: All the stars at the 2014 CFDA Awards