Sebastian Interview 001: Sarah Tolzmann

This summer, I thought I would profile some bloggers as an alternative to Follow Friday. My semester has been busy, but I’m excited to finally introduce my first guest, Sarah Tolzmann of Note to Self!

Check out the interview after the cut.


Sarah Tolzmann (Savannah, GA)

Savannah College of Art & Design, MFA Design Management, expected 2012 
Union College (NY), BA Art History & Visual Arts, 2007

Associate Designer, Matchbook Magazine
freelancer and consultant

1. Describe your morning routine.

Sarah Tolzmann: I usually hit the snooze button once or twice before grabbing the essential cup of coffee. I often watch SportsCenter (yes, I’m a sports nut) while I get ready for the day, spending a half hour or so responding to emails, tweets, and uploading posts for my daily blog. After that, it’s off to a day of classes and meetings. (Tumblr-ing is a strategic procrastination method applied somewhere in between all of these things.)

2. I never leave the house without my _________.

Cell phone. I’m completely paranoid that the one time I don’t have it, my car will end up in a ditch.

3. What is your dream job?

Service and brand development for a design strategy firm (IDEO, Frog, RGA, etc.) or the same type of job in-house with a retailer or magazine. That, or a professional champagne taster.

4. What are three non-tumblr websites you check daily?

(Besides Twitter and Pinterest) New York Magazine, Under Consideration, Designspriration

5. You have lost your entire wardrobe and must start over from scratch. Underwear aside, what are the first three things you buy?

A black or navy shirtdress
Brightly-colored blazer
Gold ballet flats (they match absolutely everything)

6. How do you define fashion and style? Are these two different things to you? 

Fashion is what’s “out there.” It’s decided by someone else. I consider style to be something that is personally developed over time.

7. What about fashion most interests you? Why?

Like anything creative, it’s a communication method… I just love the way fashion can set a mood, turn heads, start conversations and keep us comfortable in our own skin.

8. Describe your personal style, then describe your personal style in a haiku.

I like the basics, but with a lot of color: cigarette pants, skinny jeans, flats, button downs, camisoles, cardigans and blazers. Anyone who knows me can tell you J.Crew is my overwhelming favorite (I accumulated most of my wardrobe from when I was a JC merchandizing manager.) Even sans employee discount, I remain a loyalist!

Cardigan hoarder
J.Crew addict, admitted
Content with classics

9. Suppose you are restricted to one color palette (of no more than five colors) for the rest of your life. What is your palette?

Navy blue, white, gold, orange, brown (you might question the choice of orange, but it’s my favorite color)

10. If you could live in any city in any era, where/when would you live?

Now that I’m living in Savannah, I think it would be really fun to have seen it in the 1800s, back when there were pirates (seriously), horse buggies, parasols and big, poofy dresses. You can walk around downtown and still find carriage blocks and horse posts in the sidewalks. There’s a definite air of nostalgia in this city thanks to the beautiful architecture and low-hanging Spanish moss. Although, the summers must have been absolutely disgusting without air conditioning! So, maybe not… Perhaps 19th-century Paris instead. ;)

11. Which character from a movie or book has the best style in your opinion? Feel free to be specific and name a particular scene.

Is it cliché to say Audrey Hepburn? I’m going with it anyway because Funny Face has such a wide range of fashion. Her character’s style evolves beautifully through the movie: In the bookstore, she’s mousy and wearing tweeds and penny loafers. In the fashion shoots she looks so glammed up, chic and radiant (wearing that red dress, running down the steps in front of Nike of Samothrace? Gorgeous!) And of course we can’t forget the iconic turtle neck, black pant/white sock combo when she’s dancing in a night club in Paris. Oh, Audrey…

Thanks, Sarah!

—Chris Sebastian

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