Posts Tagged ‘nasty gal’

This book has been on my To-Read list for quite sometime. Finally, I got the e-book and started reading it on my trusty iPad. I was looking for an easy read to take me a step closer to my reading target for 2015. This book was the perfect match.


Author: Sophia Amrouso (@sophia_amoruso) is the founder and owner of Nasty Gal, which sells clothing, shoes and accessories for young women.

My Observations: The very first introduction to Sophia is through the book’s cover page as she’s on it 🙂 As a model, she has some unique features and exudes a strong personality. This is proven true as you read the book which contains her life’s story. Choosing a book name with # in its title is an intelligent choice. Whenever the book’s name is mentioned, it becomes a hashtag!

The book combines Sophia’s story with the story of Nasty Gal Vintage as both are intertwined. There are 11 chapters and an intro section which contains the chronology of Sophia’s life to-date. The intro gives a quick background of the overall story which prepares the reader for the intricate details contained in the following chapters. The chapters are:

  1. So you want to be a #GIRLBOSS
  2. How I became a #GIRLBOSS
  3. Shitty jobs saved my life
  4. Shoplifting (and hitchhiking) saved my life
  5. Money looks better on the bank than on your feet
  6. Hocus-pocus: The power of magical thinking
  7. I am the antifashion
  8. On hiring, staying employed, and firing
  9. Taking care of (your) business
  10. Creativity in everything
  11. The chances

So who is a #GIRLBOSS? According to Sophia, “A #GIRLBOSS is someone who’s in charge of her own life. She gets what she wants because she works for it. As a #GIRLBOSS, you can take control and accept responsibility.” And why is Sophia telling her story? In her own words, “to remind you that the straight and narrow is not the only path to success.

Every chapter of this book starts with an interesting sketch and a quotation highlighting the key message from that chapter. I especially loved the sketches. The narrative is honest – to the point of being shockingly honest at times. Through the initial few chapters, I felt as if Sophia would turn out to be a nuisance and a self-projecting person. I was wrong. She is straightforward and open, with a no-nonsense attitude. This may, sometimes, come out as being full of oneself but it isn’t that at all. It’s just her being who she is. She doesn’t hide anything. From her lack of interest in the routine jobs to her shoplifting and hitchhiking, she shares her experiences not to boast but just to give a true picture of her life and how these experiences have shaped her and her business. She is what you would call ‘street smart’. She also had a natural entrepreneurial streak and used it to her advantage. Her life story and the story of Nasty Gal Vintage are both interesting stories. After the initial shock or discomfort, I started liking Sophia’s candid prose. Her style is conversational (my favorite style). She avoids jargon and shares the lessons she learned as a businessperson (especially as a #GIRLBOSS). She openly shares her missteps and the lessons she learned on the way.

Sophia is an introvert with a strong personality. This personality is reflected not only in her brand but also in her book. By the time you reach the end of the book, you feel as if you’ve been through the whole journey with Sophia. As if she is sitting with you narrating her life story to you over a cup of coffee/tea.

Some of the things that I highlighted are:

  • The message that “you don’t get what you don’t ask for.” As an introvert, I can relate to this. I have taught myself to ask for things whenever there’s an opportunity. The worst case scenario: you will get ‘no’ for an answer without losing much; the best case scenario: you will get ‘yes’ for an answer with lots to gain. Worth giving a try!
  • The concept of sigils: This is something I need to explore more. According to Sophia, Sigils are abstract words or symbols you create and embed with your wishes.
  • Jason Fried‘s book Rework. I always like it when an author references another author for something useful. Sophia refers to Jason’s advice that ‘one of the smartest investments a business can make is in hiring great writers.‘ Ain’t that true! This book is now in my To-Read list.
  • Her discussion about introverts and extroverts, and what motivates them.
  • Her advice that it’s all about the silhouettes! This is great advice for all the women who happen to have a waste, hips and thighs (i.e. everyone except barbie dolls and their lookalikes ;)).

This book is for anyone interested in running their business, especially those who are working on their startup ventures. Female entrepreneurs or bosses will also find some useful tips. In the book, Sophia learns from her experiences, and you learn with her. All in all, a good read!

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.0


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