Wow. Here’s an awesome BOLD resource for you! Kendra Porter is a plus size image consultant. Based out of New York, she runs a company called “Honor You.” Honor You is a personal image agency for full figured women in the Northeast. They provide one-on-one service from personal shopping for undergarments and overcoats to wardrobe assessments and closet reorganization. Honor You works one-on-one to help you express the best in yourself inside and out.
It’s not just about size at Honor You. It’s about optimizing your size, shape, and image, as a whole. We LOVE this idea. Thankfully, we got a chance to chat with Ms. Kendra Porter to talk about her new venture, Honor You.
Bold Magazine: How long have you been in business for? When did you decide you wanted to help full figured women?
Kendra Porter: I’ve been working formally on the business over this past year, and officially launched in March 2011. Sometime while I was in undergrad I initially thought I would love to have a jean boutique that catered to women of all shapes and sizes with a tailor on hand to customize a perfect fit for their bodies. Over the years the idea has grown and morphed into something larger. Now, its about helping women feel give from the inside out. Anyone can change how they look on the outside but if you can’t change how you feel on the inside it doesn’t matter. Honor You is about teaching women to love and accept who they are and if you want to change great, support is there for that to. I work with women to understand not only their bodies but acknowledge what ever misperceptions they have about themselves and go about changing to a more positive, self-loving concept. My motto is: Honor your shape. Honor your size. Honor You!
BM: Can you give us a brief history of yourself, Kendra?
KP: I started off in marketing, working in the sports and entertainment arena then moved over to the nonprofit world about 10 years ago. From working on projects with the PGA Tour, U.S. Soccer and Nascar to managing concerts with the likes of Beenie Man, Busta Rhymes and Jewel, onto managing marathon training fundraising programs, raising funds for higher education institutions and serving on Boards of Directors — Its been an interesting ride. My most rewarding work personally has come from nonprofit. Over the last several years, my efforts have been focused on international work.
As for the fashion end of things, I started as a sales associate for Lord & Taylor years ago and it was never about the commission or numbers. What made me feel good at the end of the day was when a woman would smile and get all excited because I was able to find something that suited her. When I seriously started contemplating opening up a shop it only made sense to head over to Lane Bryant to learn from a leader in the industry.
BM: Wow! You’re pretty qualified! So, how is your business doing, so far?
KP: Business is slowly growing and doing well. I’ve had the opportunity to meet some really wonderful people that have given me a new perspective. While my specialty is working with the full figured woman, I have plus and straight size clients.
BM: What have been your challenges in starting your own business?
KP: I challenge myself to go above and beyond. Its the fear factor that can paralyze you, so I try my best to stay focused and remember that God is my strength and through him I can do all things. That can be easy to forget at times when your wrapped up in work. Being your own boss is great but you have to be able to stay on top of everything because it is all about you. You are the business.
BM: What’s next for Honor You? Any big projects coming up?
KP: Most recently I assisted stylist Steffany Bready-Edwards on the shoot for the August issue of Plus Model Magazine for a denim campaign. Plus, I just finished filming an episode for a television project that will air in the fall. I’m excited.*
BM: Lastly, Kendra, show us your bold!
KP: My bold is going against the grain — I left the states about six years ago to help a friend of mine start a school in Ghana called The Youth Institute of Technology. I headed back in 2009 to spend another 6 months to plan for growth. We now have a little over 300 kids from nursery to eighth grade and are opening a high school in September. If that’s not enough, I used to drive a truck for a living! But seriously, I’m the one that when you’re not in the best of moods you can trust I’ll do the running man for you in public to make you smile.