why i started this blog


A few weeks ago I realized that I haven’t ever clearly explained why I started MakeunderMyLife. People have asked me about it in person, but I’ve never taken the time to share the background here. Which is a pretty sad reality, considering that you might be interested to know.

Planting the Seed

In college, I had a huge realization that my best self was laying dormant beneath a pile of “stuff” (read: clothes, junk, head junk, candy bars, fat from said candy bars, and illusions of perfection). At that moment, I realized that my purpose, my vocation, is to share and inspire others to makeunder their lives.

Charting a Path


At the same time as this epiphany, I had an extraordinary mentor named Mary who completely believed that I could become and do anything that I wanted. So I started to research how other women have shared their personal visions (namely, Martha Stewart and Oprah Winfrey). In Martha’s case, the path to her success was clear. After starting a successful catering business, she wrote a book called Entertaining. This book became extremely popular. In many ways it launched her media empire.

After reading about her success, I decided to do the same. I wrote attempted to write a proposal for a book called Makeunder Your Life. But the process was overwhelming and I was concerned about content and authority. Who was I, as a junior in college, to tell people of all ages what they should do with their stuff? Taking a step back, I realized I was a green banana, unripe without any post-grad experience to share. So I let the project marinate in my head.

1.5 Years Post-Grad Later


As you may know, I moved to Chicago after college and started Jess LC full-time. I envisioned a point in my life where I could juggle the jewelry and writing the book. But starting the business took all my attention the first year and a half. I barely had a moment to consider Makeunder Your Life and put it in the back of my mind.

January 1, 2009

In my new year’s intentions, I decided to revisit the book concept. I had been reading blogs for a month by that point, so the natural step was to start a blog to collect personal content for Makeunder Your Life. This way I could improve my writing, gather new ideas for the book, and start my vocation a bit early.

I never imagined anyone would read it.

But lo and behold, it did find an audience (Jess LC customers clicked the link to the blog and started reading) and here I write today. I have realized that since Martha’s Entertaining was published, things have changed quite a bit. I don’t need to have a book to start helping people all over the world. I just need a small corner of the internet to publish my thoughts and learn from readers as I go along.

Who knows where this blog will take me or Makeunder Your Life. But one thing is for sure: ever since I’ve discovered and pursued my purpose, some amazing opportunities have come my way. And if you are fortunate enough to know your own vocation, I urge you to follow it and see where it leads.

For those who are still finding your calling, it never hurts to makeunder and see what’s beneath your “stuff.” You might even find your life’s work.

And hey, it doesn’t hurt to blog along the way.

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  1. I find this completely inspiring. The idea that your “best self was laying dormant beneath a pile of “stuff”, is a true statement for many of us. I have been wrestling with this and related issues myself. Perhaps a makeunder is exactly what I need.


  2. pve

    Excellent! I met Michelle Adams from Rubie Green – the brains and the beauty behind Lonny and she began her blog the day her dog died and her boyfriend dumped her- we all have our reasons, and I see each blog as sort of a way to find and discover the authentic you. I am so glad you started your blog.
    I like that you have this make under going on and then adding little jewels along the way makes life that much prettier.

  3. Thanks for sharing this! I love reading about how people have gotten to the place they are at, especially in the blogging world. I have dappled in the blogging world for several years, but only now am I totally committed and loving every second. I have only been at it for about a month and a half, but I am so happy with how it is going so far. Thanks for letting us know how it all started for you. I’m glad it’s going so well!

  4. Jill

    I love that you turned your passion for writing a book into a blog and are content with that decision! I have this nagging voice in my head about a book… I think it’s been there since I was about 12 – I’ve just always wanted to do it – but that voice scares me! Scares me to death… maybe I should just start putting those ideas in a blog! (obviously those ideas are separate from my glfl blog).

    You are always such an inspiration Jess~

  5. Eva

    Agree with everyone here! You are a great inspiration!

  6. S.E.Minegar

    I enjoyed your “why I started” story. It looks like you’ve got your chapters outlined in Make Under My Life dot com! I began blogging as a way to think “outside” of graduate school (stress release). But it proved to be a great electronic journal and a way to stay in touch with family too.

    PS. I love the fall collection.

  7. Jennifer

    I just recently found your blog. I’ve really enjoyed it so far, it’s a great inspiration!

  8. Thanks for sharing your reason for starting the blog. I’ve really enjoyed reading it. I haven’t taken any photos to submit to the weekly exfoliations, but I’ve been inspired to remove some of the junk in my life – physically and emotionally. It’s been an incredible experience and is indeed bringing me closer to finding my life’s work. The problem I have is that there are many things that I think could be a vocation, so I’m trying to find a way to pursue them all.

  9. shelley t

    congratulations on finding your voice through your blog, jess. i love stories, i love hearing what inspires people and moves people to do the things they do. thanks for sharing your blogging story. femme de montmartre – melbourne, australia

  10. Jess

    @ ALVN: Hi Amy, if you do a makeunder in some area of your life, please send me a summary and photos and I’ll be honored to post it on MML.

    @ PVE: No way! You met Michelle Adams? Right now I am hugely inspired by her business and Lonny. Incredible. If there is any way you can set up a meeting… I’d love that so much!

    @ Sarah: I’m so excited for you on your blogging journey! I can’t wait to see where your blog leads you :).

    @ Jill: A book!? Go for it! And a side blog is a great idea for collecting your thoughts.

    @ Eva: You are too cute, lady! Thank you for being such a support.

    @ S.E.Minegar: You are right! I wonder what my chapters would be… before I wanted to divide it room by room. After doing the blog for so long though, I don’t know that I would structure a book the same way now.

    @ Jennifer: Thank you for reading! Please keep in touch and send me any suggestions you have (jess@jesslc.com).

    @ Leigh: That’s incredible! Thank you for sharing your story (and snap some photos if you get a chance of your exfoliations!). It’s so awesome to hear how many passions you have. Perhaps following them all will lead you to where you want to eventually be. Congrats!

    @ Shelley T: So glad you liked the story. I can’t believe I never wrote about it earlier!

  11. rebecca

    i too have been inspired by your journey. As an artist myself, i found blogging about the lovely mixture of life and design helps me and helps my readers.
    I love that you mix your life into your love of your passion also, it shows how very ‘real’ you are. That is my goal with my new blog too!

  12. Marelle

    I just happened upon your blog and am I glad I did! I’m at a crossroads career and life’s purpose-wise. And this very post has inspired me to keep pursuing my dreams.

    Thank you for this! I look forward to catching up and keeping up with your blog.

  13. Alexa

    Jess, I’m currently reading through all the blog posts on Makeunder My Life and I just want to thank you. Everything that I’ve read through up until this point resonates with me, makes me think and has helped me to see that I definitely need to try to makeunder my life. Thank you again!

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