International jurist, Television host and Founder of the “JOURNEY TO LOVELY” online platform and Podcast.
After moving to Paris to pursue her international law studies, interning at the UNESCO and working at a leading French law firm, Claudrine decided to step out of her comfort zone and pursue her passion for writing, luxury lifestyles and etiquette.
Using her legal background, gift of styling and commitment to empowering women, she launched her blog which grew into one of the leading Parisian lifestyle and fashion websites.
Through her impactful work, she has collaborated with Harry Winston, Paris Vogue, MTV, BET France, Fashion TV, 7 Entertainment Television, Fashion Night Couture, Refinery 29, Unleashed World, DeMode Magazine, and countless other beauty and fashion brands.
Today, the Journey To Lovely has grown into international empowerment and educational portal, which aims to guide women through a wide range of topics to fully embrace their femininity and live the life of their dreams.
Claudrine’s vision is to give women access to practical tools to learn their immeasurable worth, reach their full potential and embark on their own personal “Journey To Lovely”.
Hi please share a bit about you. Please share your story with us
I’m Claudrine Arnell founder and editor-in-chief of the Journey To Lovely digital platform and podcast.
I moved to Paris to study international law and ended up falling in love with fashion! Although I love the law field and my degrees have opened many doors for me such as working at the UNESCO, the United Nations and even interning at the US Capitol (House of Representatives), fashion has always been apart of my inner fabric and background.
In fact, I grew up with fashion in my veins, my mother owned an Haute Couture store, named after me “Claudrine boutique” and my grandmother was a semstress in New York for over 25 years.
Living in Paris the fashion capital of the world, my passion grew into a drive to transition into the fashion world and launch my blog and social media platforms.
As I grew into the blogging world, I was able to build a brand, collaborate with companies and evolve into different fields such fashion design, TV hosting and become the Head of Marketing of 7TV, a French Television channel.
What were the challenges (both personal & professional) that you faced when you started your business and most importantly how did you overcome those challenges?
One of the challenges I faced when I started my online platform was procrastination which I later understood was extreme perfectionism which can be toxic and fear-based.
I would literally have anxiety just planning my blogging schedule and organising myself to go to work-related or networking events.
I had to learn to surrender and take the time to ground myself. Being a Christian, I was drawn to incorporate more prayer time, Bible study and listening to gospel songs. I also realised that eating a more plant based diet and taking walks helped me to feel more balanced and at peace.
The influencer and fashion world is obviously very image-based, which is normal due to the nature of the field but it can be a bit draining if you don’t take the time to unplug. I was literally running from events, to shows, to photoshoots, to designing fabric stores, traveling from Paris to New York and I ended up experiencing a burnout.
So although I overcame the anxiety, I ended up falling into a workaholic cycle that was just as toxic. What stopped it all was a tragic event- which turned out to be a blessing in disguise: my instagram was hacked. So I took 2 weeks from my work at my firm and decided to regroup, recenter and rebrand.
What has been an accomplishment you would like to highlight as an inspirational experience
As the Founder of the Journey To Lovely, after just two years of taking my leap into the fashion and lifestyle world, I accomplished a long time dream. On Thanksgiving day, I released my first capsule collection with a Parisian brand called MOK Paris. It is a feminine line of fashion essentials with a festive flair. The classic fabrics I used for my designs: the tweed, lace and satin- all pay hommage to the iconic ‘Parisienne’ style. They were 100% organic and made according to ethical labor standards. The line was not only stylish but affordable and eco-friendly! This was truly a dream come true, to see something that I designed come to life and be worn on others worldwide.
It also pushed me out of my comfort zone and was one of the most enlightening experiences I’ve had in a professional setting. The challenges of doing business with individuals from a different corporate culture but also different language and ethical codes, is very enriching and inspiring.
I look forward to more collaboration with ethical fashion and luxury brands in the future.
What keeps you going. Please share with us what inspires you to do, what you do.
I had to really ponder that question last year when I experienced some difficult losses. I was robbed in the Paris metro. Lost my wallet and important documents and it was all very traumatic dealing with the effect of that. Then the final straw happened exactly a year ago, my Instagram account, that I built from the ground up since 2016, was hacked.
I really did feel like giving up. I really felt violated as I was stripped of years of hard work in just a matter of hours. All those experiences, all the quality content, years of traveling, networking, brand collaborations and campaigns- forever whipped out. In about 24 hrs, my platform had disappeared.
I ended up being in disbelief and it’s kind of going through the different stages of grief. I had to pull myself together. I remember thinking, “yes I’ve lost a lot in a short amount of time but I’m still here.” I’m still alive and although the hackers kept blackmailing me and stole my account, they couldn’t steal my dream. They could never stop me from dreaming bigger and being inspired to uplift and empower women worldwide.
What should keep us going is our inner light, our vision for our life, that inner dream that you know you want and was put on this earth to fulfill. Your true passion, heart desire and life’s purpose. No hacker, circumstance or anything can steal that or stop as long it as you still have breath in you.
Why did you make the choice of creating “Journey to Lovely”?
I’ve always wanted to inspire and empower women worldwide and realised that media as an effective tool to raise awareness about women empowerment, sustainable lifestyles and entrepreneurship.
Via themes such as fashion, beauty, career, lifestyle, health & wellness, I wanted to create a global online medium to share the message that life is an exciting adventure on which we all evolve and should seek daily to grow into our best selves. No matter what we go through, its not about the destination is about the Journey, the ups the downs and in between Finding the beauty in our brokenness and turning our scars into beautiful art. Seeing the silver lining amongst those cloudy experiences. Life is about finding your Lovely, what lights you up and drives you to be your most authentic self. That is why I called my brand “Journey To Lovely”: It’s a platform that encourages women to take the necessary steps to live their lives to the fullest, by embracing their “Journey To Lovely”.
What is the one thing, the one great thing that you think, you absolutely must do or achieve, in this life of yours?
I would love to create a rehabilitation center for homeless people and women who have experienced any form of abuse. It will be a healing and safe safe to help them recover and begin new and empowered lives. Basically taking the Journey To Lovely from digital to practical.
Please share with us, the products and services you offer on The Journey To Lovely?
I’m so looking forward to what’s to come! Right now my fashion capsule collection is sold out. My “Laws of Lovely” digital files are selling like “croissants” like the French say! Many of my followers love the instant download aspect and the positive affirmations are conveniently a click away once downloaded! Concerning my online course, I’m very excited about my etiquette and “style awakening” classes which are launching in December, just in time for the holidays! Prices are according to the package you choose. Sign-up launches on November 31st!
Lastly, I have a few individual spots left for my 1-1 coaching sessions.
Stay tuned for updates, surprises and more information by following my pages.
Can you share what you believe to be your life’s purpose ?
I believe that we all have a purpose and it’s a life long journey. I believe that my main purpose is to help women grow and evolve into their best selves. Wether through courses, inspiration, sharing uplifting ressources and having encouraging exchanges. I also feel called to work with the healing of the divine feminine and that is why I’m drawn to helping women know their worth and cultivate their beauty from the inside out. I also believe that my purpose is to help others, to bring a sense of hope to my surroundings. I’m a very intuitive person and due to that nature I tend to pick up easily on what people are feeling, whether they express it or not. It’s a gift and allows me to counsel many people from different walks of life. I also believe that being in France away from my family and country has given me a resilience and compassion for people who may be marginalized. That is why I help a lot with charities that cater to the homeless. And to one day open a center for homeless people to help them be rehabilitated into society.
What is the legacy that you would like to leave behind and how would you like to be remembered?
I would like to be remembered as someone who loved God and wanted to be share my light in this world. Someone who wanted to make her surroundings more beautiful, loving and compassionate. Someone who faced her challenges head on and never gave up.
If I could choose one word to describe my Legacy is would be Endurance.
A lot of dreams are not accomplished because of discouragement or fear. I choose to leave a message that no matter how things may look or feel, if you are still alive, you can still change your life for the better.
Change starts with you. And I would like to be remembered as someone who lived in her Truth, honouring her authentic self, and being fully present in the Now. The present moment is all we have. As a child, I grew up learning about Jesus in Sunday School and it still impacts me to this today. My faith has grown and I love His parables about never worrying about tomorrow. To simply focus on today. How timely of a message in these uncertain times that we’re in. That we will always be cared for. Just as the lilies in the valley are clothed majestically, we will be covered divinely as we trust in Him. Owing to these circumstances, I would like to be remembered as a “Woman of Faith.”
How can our readers connect with you to know more about you and your service offerings?
You can connect with me on my Instagram as I’m the most active there. I also love Pinterest and post a lot on there as well.
I’m currently private on Twitter but plan on going public this month, so stay tuned!
For brand collaborations, podcast interviews, coaching sessions, signing up for our courses, promotional campaigns or any other inquiry, please feel free to reach out!
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