As an actress, New York Times best-selling author and successful fashion designer, we wouldn’t blame Lauren Conrad for wanting to rest on her laurels. Instead, her close friend Hannah Skvarla helped shepherd Conrad toward co-founding a nonprofit, online marketplace featuring products made by mostly female artisans from around the world called The Little Market. Now, inspired by a community interested in combining their dollars with socially conscious choices, The Little Market is growing, with plans to open a brick-and-mortar store in Los Angeles this month to showcase the brand’s one-of-a-kind pieces.
Skvarla’s background in humanitarian work and Conrad’s influence and design background matched well to accomplish their ultimate goal: empowering women by curating a network of traditional crafts with a modern flair and bringing them to a broader market. Created mostly by women in need from more than 60 artisan groups in 28 countries as well as refugees in the U.S. The Little Market purchases fund education or training, health care and child care. Here, Conrad talks to Montage Magazine about traveling the world to build brighter futures for women.
Montage Magazine: With 28 countries represented in your business, where do you go for a weekend getaway?
LAUREN CONRAD: I travel for business at least once a month, and I always look forward to planning family trips when we’re able. With [our son] Liam, we love having a staycation at Montage Laguna Beach, but we also love going to Mexico. I’m dying to plan a trip to Montage’s new Cabo location.
MM: What’s your favorite luggage to travel with?
LC: I like to use a small weekend bag as my purse and a rolling suitcase that I can carry on. I use our handwoven luggage tags and pouches, which are made by female artisans who are able to preserve their cultural techniques and earn fair wages. For small suitcases and larger check-in bags, I opt for brands like Away or Rimowa.
MM: Anything you always carry?
LC: I’ll carry healthy snacks, a scarf or blanket to stay cozy and something to keep my son entertained. And no matter where I’m going, you’ll always find me with an extra phone charger and skin care essentials like It cosmetics CC cream and Summer Friday’s Jet Lag Mask.
MM: What staples do you travel with?
LC: I try to incorporate versatile accessories so that I can easily mix and match them. When I go somewhere tropical, my Kohl’s LC Lauren Conrad sunglasses and sun hats are staples. Our little tassel necklace handmade by female artisans in Cambodia has become a staple in my wardrobe recently. I also love a rose gold detail, so our newest jewelry collection, which includes rose gold bracelets and necklaces handmade by female artisans in the Philippines, is going to be on rotation in my wardrobe.
By Suzette Lipscomb
Feature Image: Little Market co-founders Hannah Skvarla (left) and Lauren Conrad in Thailand