Dig Baton Rouge

With Flair

Leslie Presnall has a passion for fashion and a love for her Louisiana roots. Her blog, Southern Flair, covers all things Baton Rouge—from beauty and fashion, to DIY projects and fun activities around the city. She’s an LSU alumn who wants to inspire you to live your BEST life, right here in the Bayou State.

How did you first become interested in fashion?
When I was growing up, it was always fashion magazines that fascinated me. I knew I wanted to be a writer and I knew I loved fashion, which is why I decided to go the fashion magazine route in college. At LSU, I majored in journalism with a minor in textiles, apparel and merchandising, then made the big move to NYC. Ultimately, I REALLY missed the South, so I didn’t last long! Luckily, I was able to use my degree to start my blog and turn it into a real business!

What made you want to start a blog focused around fashion and life in Baton Rouge?
I started my blog in 2010, and originally it was a typical fashion and lifestyle blog. However, by 2013 I realized there weren’t any blogs in Baton Rouge focusing on our Louisiana lifestyle—or specifically Baton Rouge brands, so I wanted to fill that gap. We have a really unique culture here in the South, and I wanted to tap into that niche.

How do you think styles in Louisiana are unique?
People tend to think Louisiana is far behind fashion trends, but thanks to social media—specifically Instagram—we are more in the loop and more current than ever. But we do still have our casual laid back style, which goes right along with our state’s personality!

What are some of your favorite seasonal Louisiana trends?
We wear a lot of warmer weather clothing, which I love. Shorts, flowy dresses and blouses are my favorite things. But I still get excited for our winter—no matter how short it may be to wear heavy coats, scarves and boots! I fully embrace all four seasons!

What are your favorite local brands and shops? What are your favorite pieces from them?
My favorite local jewelry brands are Rebl Creative with her colorful tassel earrings, Kat Noel Designs with her natural stones and boho vibes and Mimosa Handcrafted for her original take on Louisiana-themed statement pieces.

My favorite boutiques include Hey, Penelope for its local focus and t-shirt designs, Southern Sophisticate for its mission to give back and The Purple Rack for its trendy items at really great prices. I’ve also been a huge fan of Sosis since they were initially a pop-up and online store. I’ve loved seeing the evolution of their brand the past several years!

Living in Louisiana, what are 5 things you think everyone needs in their closet?
(1) Something purple and gold (2) A vest – it’s your best bet for our crazy weather  (3) Rainboots… and a raincoat (4) Denim Jeans (5) A clear handbag—always need to be prepared for football/baseball season!

What are your favorite events to get ready for in Baton Rouge?
Tailgates for sure! I love seeing everyone’s spin on game day attire and how they get creative with their purple and gold vs wearing t-shirts or jerseys. I also love putting together outfits for festivals and parades!

Since starting your blog, how have the trends in Baton Rouge changed?
I’ve noticed a huge increase in state pride in our fashion trends the past few years. We’ve seen a lot of Baton Rouge designers and boutiques really embrace LOCAL. They’re getting creative with how they promote their local love and putting a Louisiana spin on trends—whether that’s t-shirts or  hats or jewelry. I’m always excited each season to see what else they can come up with!

What are some of the other topics you like to write about on your blog?
My blog focuses on three main categories—Southern Fashion, Louisiana Lifestyle and Local Love. It’s all about living your best life right here in Baton Rouge. Plus, I like to add a local Louisiana twist to anything I can too! I blog about DIY projects, outfit inspiration, recipes, and features on local people and places—just to name a few!

What trends should we look out for this spring?
Florals, fringe and stripes will continue to stick around. Plus, Pantone’s color of the year is violet, so that works out perfect for us here in Baton Rouge!

Photos by Conrad Brethold

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