Have you ever felt the fear but decided to do it anyway? Trusting your gut, tapping into your intuition, or just following your curiosity to do what you love has traditionally been considered a risky move. But, why? A year in lockdown forced a lot of us to question our trajectory and, in many cases, we chartered a new course, one that prioritized the pursuit of happiness.
For Los Angeles-based jewelry designer, Sophie Monet Okulick quarantine just confirmed this modus operandi. Staying connected to what she loves has always been critical to her success but more importantly, her joy.
Following in the footsteps of her sculptor father, John Okulick, Monet’s pieces are a reflection of her life spent around the material, watching him bring inanimate timber to life through his work. Today, she lovingly hand crafts jewelry and accessories from a single piece of wood incorporating precious stones and metals inspired by the rich landscape that surrounds her at home in Venice Beach.
Recently, the designer and new mom invited us into her stunning home to chat about her a.m. rituals, beauty routine, and recipe for success. Keep reading to be inspired and motivated to heed your instincts, prioritize joy, and let creativity be your guide, too.
What does a typical day look like for you?
Every day is so different, especially now that I have a baby. I try to squeeze in work when I can, phone calls in between, and a stop by the studio to stay connected to what I love.
This newborn stage has been a transition and a lesson in going with the flow, so every day is less structured than it would normally be.
What time is your wake-up call and how much sleep do you usually get?
I usually wake up between 5 to 6 am and try to sleep when the baby goes to sleep in the early evening, but it changes weekly and sometimes daily. I usually average five to seven hours of sleep from about 9pm to 5am. I wake up and immediately have a big glass of water. I love ice water, so I usually fill up a giant mason jar with my reusable jelly straw to have while I feed Theo, then it’s coffee with milk. I like to workout in the morning so after I put Theo down for a nap I’ll go for a run in the neighborhood or take him with me to the beach for stroll.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Feed the baby! My husband JP usually wakes up and brings me coffee and then I take a shower for as long as possible. Nowadays a five minute shower feels like a spa day if I can get that in.
What does your morning, pre-work routine look like?
I love laying in bed as long as I can. I love my bed and working from bed from time to time is such a treat. But I don’t do this often (enough)… maybe on a rainy day.
What do you always have on your nightstand to ensure a smooth, successful morning?
Lots of water, a breast pump, a muslin burp cloth, pacifier, an antique tray and vintage shell that serves as a jewelry dish, Aveeno moisturizer, Labello chapstick, a scented candle or oils that bring me back down to the earth, and the latest book or magazine I’ve picked up.
What rituals set you up for success?
Reaching out when I need help, keeping family and friends close by, staying true to what I want to create no matter what—all of this sets me up for both success and happiness.
What do you eat for breakfast?
When I was pregnant I started craving smoothies. I usually eat breakfast between 10 to 11 am and make a smoothie or have a hardboiled egg.
This is my go-to breakfast smoothie recipe:
- handful of spinach
- tsp. peanut butter
- 1/2 cup of greek yogurt
- handful of oats
- 1 cooked beet
- handful of blueberries
- 3-4 strawberries
- half a banana
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1/2 cup water
- Scoop of ice
Blend everything together and serve. Makes enough for two people.
How has your morning routine changed since quarantine and why?
My morning routine has definitely changed a lot since the pre-pandemic days. Not only did our daily routine change because of quarantine, but I also had a baby and bought a new house, both of which turned our normal day-to-day upside down.
The first thing we did to the house when we bought it was renovate and add an extra bathroom. It’s probably the room I spend the most time in. I wanted a big, walk in shower, something big enough for the whole family. I love to steam and feel like it helps release all my toxins and decompress and rejuvenate my skin and body after a long night or workout.
I like to get on my computer early in the day, when I have the most energy and feel the most productive.
It’s also when Theo sleeps the most so I can get a few hours in. I like to sit at my kitchen table and fill up a giant mason jar with ice water, lemon, and my favorite re-useable jelly straws. I carry it around the house all day. I’ve come to believe that water is the best medicine.
Describe your morning beauty routine from start to finish.
I have a pretty minimalist beauty routine, even more so now that I have a newborn.
I like quality products, but I don’t like to overdo it with too much product. I keep it natural where and when I can.
I’ll usually just splash my face with warm water in the morning and put on the Iris and Romeo Best Skin Days tinted moisturizer with SPF. That evens everything out without too much coverage. Then I’ll add some Sunnies Face Air Blush in Doll to the apples of my cheeks. I’ve started using Merit Clean Lash Lengthening Mascara when I’m leaving the house and I like the natural lift they give my lashes. I always have a tinted lip balm with me. Right now I’m relying on the Ilia Balmy Gloss Tinted Lip Oil for a nice, non-sticky color. I also love Davines hair products. I use the Melu Shampoo and Momo conditioner. They smell amazing and leave my hair super soft and shiny.
What are your morning media rituals?
I usually read the NYT daily briefing email on my phone over breakfast. I’m on the hunt for furniture for our new home, so I check my apps for any newness. I love Offer-up and Facebook Marketplace to find vintage pieces.
What are your favorite books?
At the moment, I’m reading lots of children’s books but mostly picture books right now. I started collecting vintage Casa Vogue for inspiration too.
What’s your favorite getting-ready soundtrack?
We’ve been listening to a lot of jazz lately. It puts me in such a good mood and instantly transports me to a loungey cocktail bar someplace tropical.
Do you work out in the morning?
Yes, I love to workout in the morning. Usually, it’s a run/walk with my son Theo on the beach or I do a ride on the Peloton bike.
What’s your daily uniform and how has that changed since quarantine?
I’ve started to grow a collection of airy, light house dresses so they’re usually in my daily rotation. They’re a combination of pajamas that could also pass for beach coverups. I’m always searching for comfy, loungey dresses.
I like putting on a dress rather than a pair of sweats because it makes me feel like I’m getting ready for something, a little bit feminine, and not constricting.
And of course, the earrings I always wear are my Pine Hoops—they have become a neutral to me—and I’ll throw on a necklace or bracelet if I’m leaving the house.
If you had one extra hour every morning, how would you use it?
To lay in bed, sleep, design new jewelry pieces, or spend time in our backyard that we recently started to cultivate.
What are one or two things you do every day to live a more present/mindful/joyful life?
Growing up, dinner was always the most important meal of the day. We would sit at the dinner table every night as a family and reflect on the day. We’ve made this our daily ritual, too. JP and I love cooking together, and this is such a special time in our lives with Theo that we want to keep the daily ritual a priority.
It’s (dinner) a time to pause and unwind together as a family, enjoy good food, and reflect on everything going on in our crazy lives.
If you could pin your success down to one thing or one moment, what would that be?
It’s really been a handful of little moments that have made me feel successful and fulfilled.
I never leave the house without ____diapers.
If there were more hours in the day, I would____sleep, work, and go to the beach.
My healthiest morning habit is____water.
My worst morning habit is____Instagram.
One thing I want to be known for is ____my ability to create unique and timeless wearable art.
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