Strap in and get ready for this one, because I guarantee I’m about to take you for a ride!

Katherine Harris, a woman with many titles and many blessings, is the epitome of a fearless soul. There’s nothing she’s faced with that she doesn’t tackle with strength and grace. In running her blog, The Refined Woman, with her good friend Em, she touches thousands of lives and hearts - especially that of women. 

When I met Katherine at a photo shoot, there was an instant connection between us. If you know just a little bit about me, you know I rarely (if ever) meet a stranger, so making friends has thankfully never been an issue. But this connection with Kat I speak about was something completely different - at the risk of sounding like a lunatic, we met for the first time a year ago but our souls had known each other for long before then. There, I said it! Ever since that day, Kat and I have been inseparable.

We both want to spread a message of love, acceptance and strength to women and through photography, writing and yoga, we’ve carved a similar path for each of our individual journeys. I decided to feature Katherine because I especially know how draining our work can be and how it’s just as important to turn the camera around every once in a while to truly see how amazing this time in our life is. 

As I mentioned earlier, Kat has many titles - photographer, writer, blogger, dreamer, volunteer - all paths that focus on giving. But for now, I want to allow this space to be for Katherine, for her to be able to receive all the energy, love and attention she constantly gives out. 

In planning Katherine’s shoot, I knew I wanted to use the golden hour of Brooklyn’s spectacular sunset to complement the light and softness that Kat carries with her. If you ever have the pleasure of speaking with or listening to Kat as she talks about her passion for women, I’m 100% sure you’d be blown away. This is one of our favorite topics to discuss (and boys, obviously) because we’re each super okay with going deep into the subject at the risk of sounding like a broken record. But this is where Kat’s biggest blessing shows up - her ability to look inside and verbalize her innermost thoughts and feelings. 

In terms of a sexy lifestyle, Kat admits it’s been an evolutionary concept for the past few years, going from being scared of “being a woman in a man’s world” to seeing womanhood as gift. Moreover, once she accepted and embraced all parts of who Katherine is - feminine, go-getter, athlete, strong, woman, dreamer, soft, vulnerable - is when she started connecting with other women from a grounded place of freedom.


Whenever we compartmentalize part of our lives, we shut down parts of our hearts. 

Giving myself permission to fully be the person I was created to be… it's like it sets this spark - not only in my life but in the lives of those around me. 

Free people free people.


It’s not easy being vulnerable in general, add to that a whole pool of social media followers looking in as dating anecdotes stream in from Kat’s personal life, and you’ve got yourself a juicy story. When I brought this up during our interview (listen above), Kat gave me the smartest answer I’ve ever heard about some of the most common dynamics between men and women (in the dating world). 


As women, we have these questions we bring to the world, and a lot of time we bring to men:

Am I beautiful?

Am I sexy?

Am I valuable?

Do you want me?

Am I worthy?

For a long time, I wanted a man to answer those questions for me, and what I was doing was setting up every guy I dated for failure. No man was created to answers all my questions. 


The lesson?

You have to know your worth before anyone else can affirm it.


My worth, my identity, my value, who I am - I am perfect as I am today - no one’s answers but my own affect who I am right now.


So here’s to all of our female complexities, to our questions, to our dreams and to our desires - and may we all find that our true power as women is born in the very depth of our being.

Thank you, Kat, for challenging us to be fearless in looking in so that we may allow others to find freedom and embrace all parts of them. 

Love always,



Check out the Living Sexy video below featuring this goddess!

// C R E D I T S 

Featured: Katherine Harris from The Refined Woman
Location: East River Ferry + Brooklyn Bridge Park

LIVING SEXY IS... Loving Yourself

I apologize in advance for all the noise and interruptions - but it was our only chance to get this interview done before Jessie’s big trip out west. I hope you enjoy it regardless :)

Sometimes life is unfair. This is one of those cases. Not even a full year has passed since I met this beautiful soul, and she is literally driving across the country as we speak to set up roots in California. 

The power of our minds is an undeniable force. It gives me the ability to write that first paragraph and immediately see the negative spin I gave it. So I’ll try once again.

Life is truly full of blessings. Not even a year ago I met Jessie, a gorgeous woman who has a giving soul, a joyful spirit and an infectious smile - and though it has been short, my life has been blessed by knowing her. 

That’s much better!

Jessie is a successful entrepreneur, with her very own style blog/ brand - Style & Pepper, business coaching services and even a hilarious podcast - which she hosts with her adorable and sweet hubby Gerard, called Marriage is Funny. But what separates her from the rest is her heart. Through her big blue eyes, you can see a heart that loves to give, a heart that loves to share, a heart that is both tender and strong and a heart that loves. 

I have to admit I totally “tricked” Jessie into participating in this feature. Well, maybe the word “tricked” is a bit of a stretch, but let’s just say Jessie and Gerard thought they were only meeting us for goodbye drinks, and then I said, “Guess what!? I brought my camera and microphone! We’re doing a shoot and you’re going to be on my blog. So start thinking of what you think living sexy is.” To which she answered, “Here? Ok, let’s order a drink and then do it."

Done. Simple as that. That’s one of the things I love about Jessie (and a lot of my friends for that matter). They’re always up for my shenanigans. And Jessie is no different.

I suggested we meet at one of Soho’s cutest hidden bars, Freeman’s Restaurant, because it’s tucked into a tiny alley and its decor and facade are a photographer’s dream - tea lights, hues of blue, art murals and soft natural light.

It took us about 10 minutes to take these pictures and shoot this video, and then another five minutes to record the [interrupted] interview. I mention this because it gives you a feel for what “Living Sexy” means. It’s not posed, it’s not staged, it’s a lifestyle. It’s just as much the moments when you're getting ready as they are the moments when you ARE ready - and everything in between.

When I put Jessie on the spot and asked what her idea of living sexy is, she said it’s “loving yourself.” There’s so much to unpack in that statement, because loving yourself also means forgiving yourself, it means giving yourself permission and it means being ok with not having it all together all the time. In day-to-day situations, it would be fantastic if we could all love ourselves fully in order to act from a place of groundedness and love. But boy is that easier said than done. Throw into that the desire to look and feel great and you’ve set yourself up for a doozy of a challenge. 


"We have these parts about us that maybe we don’t like, or maybe don’t match up to what they’re supposed to be, and i think the natural reaction is to not like that part of ourselves - or to want to change it - and i think the change can only come when you can acknowledge it and embrace it. 


Thanks to my interview with Jessie, I think I finally figured one of life’s secrets. Loving yourself is about recognizing the things you love - and doing them. But it’s also about noticing what you need in order to feel loved - and asking for them. 


"Loving yourself is kinda an interesting concept because it could sound selfish or it could sound vain in many cases, and it’s something that I think people are fairly uncomfortable with… but by giving yourself permission to love yourself can really allow you to release so many other parts of your life that are preventing you from feeling a certain way."


This idea of self-care is a practice all of us can and should do. Just like cars can’t run on empty tanks, a person cannot spread pure love without already having it in his/her heart. It all starts with self-love. Take this as an opportunity to love yourself first so you may begin giving, doing and being with love.


It is not how much we do, but how much love we put in the doing. It is not how much we give, but how much love we put in the giving. 

- Mother Teresa - the queen of love and giving


Here are a few more pictures we were able to get of the whole gang! Pictured are Jessie's husband, Gerard, and her brother, Joey. Their smiles suffice in making my day brighter. I'm even throwing in some with yours truly, as this was a special afternoon.

Much love to you three, and THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for sharing this chapter of your lives with me/ us. I love you dearly.



Here's the video!