Today’s interview is with the beautiful and talented Marlien Rentmeester, the West Coast editor of Lucky Magazine. I’ve read Lucky ever since it started in 2000 – it was one of the first magazines I ever subscribed to (Highlights doesn’t count) and I still receive it today. I have to admit that it’s one of the only fashion magazines that I actually can read entirely – the fashion is aspirational but still relevant to me, aka not just filled with $8,000 neon “must have” vests for fall.
Marlien was also a part of one of my favorite shopping/closet books of all time The Lucky Shopping Manual, and I’m so glad to have here here today. Enjoy meeting Marlien!
Who are you? What do you do, and where do you live?
I’m Marlien Rentmeester, Lucky Magazine’s West Coast Bureau Chief and founder of LE CATCH. I live in LA.
You have an amazing career, and I’m sure your job is a dream job for many out there. How did you end up here?
I started interning at People Magazine’s West Coast Bureau when I was at Occidental College in LA. When I graduated I was offered a job, and I worked there for about two years. Then I moved to New York to work at Seventeen Magazine, which was a great learning experience. I was still low on the totem pole but because I was close in age to the readership, I had a real voice not only in meetings but in the magazine, itself. I wrote features on various subjects ranging from my most embarrassing moments to celebrity profiles.
Four years later, I landed a job at Conde Nast Sports for Women, editing the fitness and beauty content. When that magazine folded several years later, Lucky was just launching. I had seen a prototype of the magazine, which was circulating around the Conde Nast building, and knew I had to work there. Through human resources, I scheduled a meeting with Lucky’s editor in chief and asked her if she needed a West Coast Editor, because I wanted to move back to LA. She said she wasn’t really sure yet because the magazine was barely up and running but she offered me a trial run. It ended up working out and here I am eleven years in!
Can you share some career advice that you’ve learned over the years?
Do what’s asked of you and then some. You will get noticed and rewarded. And it’s so cliche, but if you can do what you love, you will succeed. I thoroughly enjoy what I do and am excited to work at it everyday.
What are some of your most worn items of clothing?
My green army jacket, a vintage lace top, Christian Louboutin black stilettos, and a Helmut Lang black cashmere crewneck.
How about any favorite, treasured items in your closet – that you may or may not wear that much – but that you just love and will hold onto forever?
A black Chanel quilted bag, which my husband gave me. My Hermes “H” watch, which I wear everyday and a diamond-encrusted Cartier watch that my husband gave me as an anniversary gift.
You are the West Coast fashion editor for Lucky. What are some items or looks that you think really exemplify West Coast style?
Relaxed, languid dresses, unstructured tops, and of course, t-shirts and jeans!
What items/categories in your closet do you splurge on – vs. save on?
I tend to splurge on bags, shoes, jackets, good-fitting jeans, and one or two really nice dresses every year. But that being said, I still save on all those items at stores like Zara, H&M and Topshop.
Can you share a piece of advice about shopping/style/budget that you personally have learned (maybe the hard way!) over the years?
A lot of people in fashion preach quality over quantity i.e. you must spend a lot if you want a nice piece. I disagree. We are living in the Golden Age of shopping: there are so many amazing pieces out there today that look fantastic and are also very affordable – you just need to be on the lookout for them. Don’t get me wrong…I love designer clothing and there is no substitute for the real thing. But, given how great some of the fast-fashion quality and design is today, I am quite happy buying 10 pieces of beautiful clothing rather than just one high-price item. Full disclosure: I am a total shopaholic and prone to impulse buying, but I have to say I don’t regret much!
Finally – please share something surprising about yourself!
I have an identical twin sister, who is six minutes younger than me.
I wear two engagement rings on my ring finger–both given to me by my husband. One ring was a family heirloom and the other we designed together.
Marlien is so beautiful! I love her Palisades home, I could stare at photos of it (and her in it) all day long. I also thought her piece of advice about buying 10 pieces of affordable clothing versus one splurge item particularly intriguing. Like Marlien mentions, I’ve been inundated with advice to just “save for that one special piece.” But I’ve often struggled with this guidance, as I try and build a complete and affordable wardrobe. I’m glad she offered another viewpoint.
Thank you Marlien for being with us here today. For more of Marlien, check out her blog, Le Catch, here.