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Chic Traveler:  Lara Shriftman

Occupation:  Author, Mother, Partner at Harrison & Shriftman Public Relations, Special Events and Marketing

Hometown:  Los Angeles, New York, Miami

Lifestyle, fashion, luxury and entertaining expert Lara Shriftman co-founded Harrison & Shriftman in 1995.  The agency specializes in public relations, special events, marketing and branding, and has 50 employees spanning three offices in Los Angeles, New York and Miami.  Lara has assisted in building brands that include Juicy Couture, Jimmy Choo, LAMB, William Rast, W Hotels, BlackBerry and Grey Goose, and has over 20 years of experience creating and executing A-list celebrity events.  She is the author of four books on entertaining, Fete Accompli, Fete Accompli Workbook, Party Confidential, and Party Confidential:  New Etiquette for Fabulous Entertaining.

Dream destination?

South Africa

What’s always inside your carry on?

A pair of comfortable socks.

The Stephanie Johnson bag / bags that always make the trip?

The SJ luggage tags and the matching pouches.

Any tips or must-pack items for making your hotel feel more like home?

Neatly unpacking and putting everything away.  I always bring things from home for my son Lucas, like books and toys.  And I bring a blanket for my miniature Shih Tzu, Lulu Flynn.

Is there a particular destination that inspires your creativity?

There are several:  We Care in Palm Springs, the Bahamas (so beautiful), Copperfield Bay – David Copperfield’s new island, Southampton, New York (a summer tradition of seeing old friends always inspires), and anywhere new.  I love to explore new places.

What’s the most stylish city/locale you’ve visited?  Anywhere in particular where the fashion/beauty/women’s personal style really blew you away?

Rome, Italy and then there is always New York City.

If you were introducing a world traveling friend to SJ for the first time, what’s the first piece you’d recommend they buy?

The Jenny Train Case

Next on your Stephanie Johnson wish list?

The Riviera Maya bags

What’s your favorite SJ piece to give as a gift?

The Jenny Train Case or the Beach Mat


Is there a favorite possession you’ve acquired during your travels?  What is it?

Sand dollars that I got on the island of Copperfield Bay.

Favorite travel ritual or souvenir: (Do you always visit a local book shop? Hunt down the best cappuccino? Pick up a tree ornament depicting your destination?)

I always get a patch from where ever I am for Lucas.  And of course photos.

Your happy place / Favorite travel destination?

Cuixmala in Careyes, Mexico.  St Barths in the spring, Southampton in the summer.

Do you have a favorite menu item you indulge in when you’re on the road?  Perhaps a dish or a type of cuisine you can’t get back home?

Berocca.  I always have them sent from London or Australia.

How do you pack for a trip? (Are you a list maker? Do you pack in outfits? Throw caution to the wind and shop when you arrive?)

I pack lightly and as organized as I can.  I never bring too many pairs of shoes.  I pack one bag for me and one bag for my son and I always pack his first.  I think about what I will be doing on the trip and I plan accordingly by the day.  I very rarely pack accessories or jewelry.  I always leave room in my suitcase for something I want to buy.

First drink in the air:  H2O, champagne or OJ?

Water always and only water.

Go-to luggage brand?

Filson or T. Anthony

Checked bag or carry-on?

It used to be carry-on but with a five year old it is always checked.

Favorite Airport?  Why?

Fort Lauderdale, there are never any lines.  It’s a small airport and easy to navigate.


On your reading list?

Magic Treehouse books, or any book I am reading for my child.

Favorite in-flight pastime?

Sleep, if possible.

Plane food or bring your own?

Plane food never.  I like to eat before.  Snacks for my son.

Current favorite getaway?

Yellowstone Club in Montana.

Do you arrive at the airport with plenty of time to spare, or are you the last-minute type always racing to catch your flight?

With plenty of time to spare when traveling with a five year old and sometimes my miniature Shih Tzu.

Any tips for breezing through airport security?

Make sure you don’t have any water bottles.  Pack any liquid items over the 3 oz. limit in your Stephanie Johnson travel case.  And wear shoes that are easy to take on or off.

Window or aisle?


Your flight’s delayed:  best way to kill time at the airport?

Always bring a good book and definitely an iPad.

How often do you fly?

At least once a month.

Go-to flying ‘uniform?’

J Brand jeans and a black sweater.

Any tips that make frequent travel more efficient?

Fly the same airline each time.

Do you work in-flight or use the time to unwind?



Pretty in pink, radiant in red, lovely in lavender . . . what color is your love this Valentine’s Day?  Lucky for you, we have an abundance of gift-able Stephanie Johnson clutches, cases and carryalls in an array of cupid-inspired colors, perfect for the loved ones on your list!  These are some of my favorite objects of desire for a sweet V-Day.




1.) Alex Sparkle Cosmetic:  Who can resist some ruby red sparkle this Valentine’s Day?  This glam, glittery clutch begs to be taken out on the town!  Pictured here in:  Ibiza Berry

2.) Hillary Hanging Bag:  This sleek, tri-fold hanging bag boasts three zipper compartments to separate and organize your essentials.  Not just for makeup, the Hillary is also great for jewelry and (ooh la la!) lingerie.  Pictured here in:  Torino

3.) Katie Folding Cosmetic:  With two interior clear zip pockets, this charming case is the perfect size to hold makeup basics, and its stylish shape and snap closure allows it to double as a clutch.  The Katie is always a favorite, and I’m loving it in this season’s textured, faux python!  Pictured here in:  Everglades Coral

4.) Marlien Round Jewel Case:  Good things do come in small packages!  This adorable jewelry case (a brand new style for Spring 2013!) features a ring roll, two tiny pockets, and a silk drawstring pouch.  Enclose an extra special gem, and oh, the romance!  Pictured here in:  Tucson Desert

5.) Mary Alice Tote:  A perfect carry-all for every day or a weekend getaway, this soft canvas tote will transition into a can’t-live-without beach bag as the weather gets warmer.  Pictured here in:  Tucson Desert


6.) Laura Large Trapezoid:  Svelte, yet spacious, this essential zip top case is destined to become her favorite makeup bag!  There’s tons of space for must-have products, and the wide base allows it to sit upright on a bathroom countertop or vanity.  Pictured here in:  Nassau Pink

7.) Gold Wristlet and 8.) Large Flat Pouch:  She can fill our Large Flat Pouch with essentials – everything from band aids to hair ties to makeup to jewelry – to keep in her handbag, or attach our gold wristlet to the zipper pull to easily transform it into a pretty clutch.  A beautiful basic she’ll love.  Pictured here in:  Malibu Berry

9.) Snap Mirror:  Every lady needs a pretty compact, and our double-sided snap mirror is always a great gift!  In rose petal pink and brushed with soft metallic gold accents, this little looking glass is quintessentially girly.  Pictured here in:  Palm Springs Pink


10.) iPad Case:  Who wouldn’t love a stylish home (with a softly cushioned nylon interior) for their favorite tech toy?  Available in a variety of solid colors and prints, I love this feisty, feminine leopard print for Valentine’s Day!  Pictured here in:  Serengeti

11.) Mini Pouch:  A miniature wallet, a pint-size makeup clutch . . . the possibilities are endless with our Mini Pouch!  No matter who you’re gifting, you can’t go wrong with one of these little cuties, available in a wide range of colors and fabrics.  Pictured here in:  Everglades Purple

12.) Jenny Train Case:  I’m not going to lie:  the Jenny is a personal favorite of mine.  As someone who spends a lot of time on the road, this carryall is the perfect go-to for both long trips, and weekend getaways.  I love the interior elastic that straps products in place, and the bonus clear zip pouch and removable mirror.  If your lady is a frequent traveler, this is definitely the bag for her!  Pictured here in:  Charleston


Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and if you’re still looking for the perfect gift for Mom, look no further!  I’ve compiled some of the greatest hits from our current season to offer ideas for inspired gifting.

Take a peek below and then be sure to check your inboxes (or our Facebook page) tomorrow, May 3rd, as we’ll be launching a special promotion to make shopping for Mom even sweeter.

Happy browsing and as always, travel chic!

1.)  Turks & Caicos Jenny Train Case:  O.K., I know I’m not supposed to play favorites, but anyone who knows me knows that I always travel with a Jenny.  It’s just the right size to hold all of my essentials – shampoo and conditioner, moisturizer, a hair brush – and its rectangular shape makes it easy to stow in a suitcase.  The interior elastic allows you to strap product in place, and it comes equipped with a bonus clear zip pouch and a mirror.  And if your Mom isn’t a frequent traveler, who cares?  This bag is just as pretty (and useful!) as an at-home organizer on your bathroom countertop.

2.) Palm Desert Denim Large Flat Pouch and Gold Wristlet:  Our Large Flat Pouches are quickly becoming my new must-have.  Fill it with essentials – everything from band aids to hair ties to makeup to jewelry – to keep in your handbag, or attach our gold wristlet to the zipper pull to easily transform it into a pretty clutch.  I’ve selected the glam Palm Desert Denim print as I think it’s perfect for a night on the town, but we’ve got oodles of prints and colors to choose from!

3.) Palm Desert Orange Erela Jewelry Clutch:  Named after my four year old daughter Erela, this jewelry case has a special place in my heart.  An upgrade from our popular jewelry roll style, this boxy clutch includes two clear zip pockets, a ring roll, and a sizeable snap-out fabric pouch with zip closure, all with plenty of room to house your favorite gems.  Why not enclose a carefully chosen pair of earrings or necklace inside, to make for an extra special gift?

4.) Malibu Lemon Luggage Tag:  Designed to make life easier for the frequent traveler, our vibrant luggage tags ensure that your suitcase will stand out from the crowd.  I recommend pairing with our Passport Cover as the ultimate travel gift set!

5.) Fiji Pink Medium Zip Cosmetic:  Our Medium Zip Cosmetic is a favorite among beauty editors because its size and shape makes it the ideal everyday makeup bag.  With its waterproof exterior, I consider this a necessity for trips to the gym!

6.) Riviera Maya iPad Case:   For the tech savvy Moms out there!  Admittedly, I’m addicted to my iPad, and I use one of our chic iPad cases (with its softly cushioned nylon interior) to keep it protected.  With rainbows zigzagging against white cotton knit, who could resist the cheerful Riviera Maya pattern and its promise of eternal summer?

7.) Palm Springs Turquoise Medium Flat Pouch and Snap Mirror:  While sold separately, I love this pairing as a sweet gift set.  Tuck the mirror inside the medium pouch, and there’s still plenty of room for makeup essentials or anything else Mom wants to carry around for touch ups on the go.

8.) Turks & Caicos Emily Tote:  With summer approaching, who isn’t craving the perfect beach tote?  The natural raffia means it can work as an everyday carry-all, while the lime green shoulder straps and tassel closure keep it breezy and fun.

9.) Palm Desert Orange ML Traveler:  A perennial best-seller, our ML Traveler is the Cadillac of cosmetic carry-alls.  With two snap-out mesh pouches, a removable clear zip pouch, clear wall pocket, and removable mirror, it may be the most versatile piece in our organizational arsenal.  If your Mom appreciates having everything in its place, she’ll love the ML.

10.) Fiji Blue Jumbo Zip:  For travel or for life, this jumbo sized case is simply a bright and pretty way to carry and store lots and lots of beauty products.  The tranquil blue ikat print never ceases to make me happy!

11.) Malibu Aqua Passport Cover:   Your Mom may not cross international borders as frequently as the Secretary of State, but even so, doesn’t such an ultra-important form of identification deserve a stylish home?  I think so!  Pair it with a matching luggage tag as encouragement for her to take that trip she’s been putting off.

12.) Lima Purple Katie Folding Clutch:  With its two clear zip pockets and snap closure, this sleek cosmetic case is a great home for makeup essentials, but it’s also so pretty that I think Mom might prefer it as an evening bag!


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