Meet Rebel Etiquette: Cathy Collette

Rebel Etiquette is the brainchild of friends Cathy Collette, Andrew Ibea, and Julian Sambrano. In this blog series, we take a glimpse into the people behind the brand.

Cathy Collette is a risk taker. The SF native confesses that she applied to Loyola Marymount in southern California on a whim, and only because the university waived the $50 application fee. Since moving to LA for undergrad, she’s never looked back. “I’m really thankful that the young me was adventurous and brave enough to leave the comfort of San Francisco and see what LA had to offer,” she says.

A very fashionable chameleon, Cathy enjoys taking on different style personas, depending on her mood. During the work week, she likes to wear 1960s-inspired looks: form-fitting, A-line dresses in bright colors, accessorized with vintage costume jewelry and high heels. Friday night out, she takes on the role of the edgy rock n’ roll goddess who lives in her leather jacket, distressed shirts, short shorts and tall boots (“tassels are a plus!”). For Sunday brunch with friends, Cathy becomes the fresh faced, bohemian flower child in a flowing maxi dress and chic floppy hat. With all of her imaginative ensembles, Cathy loves a bold lipstick, “to give my outfits a little glamour,” she adds.

Two years ago, Cathy left a director-level position at an ad agency to try her hand in ad sales. And last year, she launched Rebel Etiquette with two of her closest friends. “I wear many hats and I love it,” Cathy says. “You don’t hear people say this often, but I love what I do. I’m excited to see what comes next.”

You’re a woman working on a men’s accessories line. What’s that like?

Julian, Andrew and I have toyed with the idea of starting our own company in the past–it usually involved a few drinks and ridiculous ideas. I love that Rebel Etiquette became a reality. It’s great when you feel comfortable enough around your friends to be silly, and you’re not afraid to share creative and wild ideas.

The three of us each bring something of value to the table, and we complement each other’s work styles. We keep each other in check! We’re honest. We push each other to do our best without killing each other. We have all the benefits of being a family where we can say it how it is, but without the drama.

What’s your favorite piece in the inaugural Rebel Etiquette collection?

It’s hard to choose one. It’s like asking who is your favorite child. If you twisted my arm, I would say the Jordan, because it’s so unique and versatile. You can dress it up or dress it down. It’s got a personality of its own without showing off.

I’ve worn it with one of Andrew’s plaid shirt, frayed jean shorts, black stockings and tall boots. I borrow clothes from Andrew’s closet all the time. It’s a running joke between us whenever he goes shopping. I let him know if something will look good on me so that he can buy it for the both of us.

Besides working on Rebel Etiquette, how do you, Andrew and Julian like to spend your time together?

I always joke around that we can’t live more than 5 miles away from each other. We have our own lives but we still hang out a lot. From last minute Vegas trips to seeing Justice and Atrak do a live DJ set…to going to Disneyland just to eat delicious corn dogs…to sipping on some roadies on Venice beach on a school day…to staying home and watching every single Beyonce music video ever made. We never get tired of each other.

What’s a typical Friday night like for you?

My Friday night is usually split into two personalities. I just got new beddings and am really enjoying losing myself in the mass of pillows. I do so much during the week that it’s nice to retreat into my little cave and recharge before the weekend. Once I’ve had time to unwind I could be seen grabbing dinner and drinks, going to a show, pin trading at Disneyland, or flying to Vegas for 24 hours.

(Profile by Jean Ho follow @jeanho on twitter)

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