The Garden State acquired a gem: Dileiny Rodriguez Baron. The New Jersey fashion influencer and founder of the blog, Love Fashion and Friends, takes pride in her Latina roots, using her booming Instagram account and website to highlight style inspired by her Caribbean descent. In addition to being a full-time blogger, Baron is also a mother and entrepreneur—on a mission to help every woman look their best while keeping their outfits versatile and simple.
Although Baron was born in New York, she considers herself a New Jersey native after being brought to the state by her parents at 10-years-old. Currently, this prominent Jersey City influencer is not only inspiring others to pursue their own fashion style, but she’s also putting her English degree into action through her blog and very own styling e-book available on Etsy.
Recently, I had the pleasure of speaking with Baron to learn more about her love for fashion, her Hispanic roots and what it’s like being a full-time mom while balancing her blog, Love Fashion and Friends.
Tell us, what inspired your love for fashion?
My father was a tailor. He made custom suits and always had a clothing store. It’s something that I was born into. My mother also learned how to sew so she would make me these over the top dresses and sets, so it’s always been a thing in my life, to dress well and love it.
Has your ethnic background influenced your style?
Dominicans are vibrant and loud Caribbean people, so growing up around that 100 percent influenced my style. It may not come out in every outfit but there’s always a flair.
What’s your favorite thing about being an influencer?
Being an inspiration for others. I love getting messages and photos of other women with style tips I’ve shared—knowing that I’m helping them feel good about what they wear and how they wear it. I enjoy connecting with people I would never meet in real life!
Where do you personally find your inspiration? Who were your role models while growing up?
My inspiration comes from everywhere and everything! It’s so hard not to be inspired. It can come from a music video, or someone walking on the street, down to my husband’s style choices.
My mother is definitely my role model. She came from a poor upbringing and somehow managed to buy a house in the suburbs, give us a great life, help us finish school and become professionals.
As a mother yourself, how would you describe working as a content creator and being there for your family?
It’s one of my biggest challenges. Work is on my mind 24/7, so disconnecting and focusing on my family is something I have to consciously work on and make it a point to disconnect. I would love to include them more in my content but they just don’t love it like I do. I’ve learned to separate the two and try my best to balance.
What would you say to people who don’t want to spend money on new clothes every season?
Invest in versatile pieces! Staples that will transition throughout the year.
What are your thoughts on thrift shopping and how often do you do it?
I’ve been a thrifter since my early 20s. I do it at least twice a month. My passion for thrifting has also become another revenue stream for me, as now I now find pieces to sell in my vintage shop on Etsy.
Do you have a piece of advice for aspiring influencers in the Garden State? And what would you say is your most “Jersey” trait?
Find other Jersey bloggers and connect with them. It makes this lifestyle so much easier when you connect with others that do the same thing as you. You can support one another, give and receive tips. I’ve met so many girls in NJ that have become friends via this industry.
The most typical Jersey stereotype—I 100 percent can’t pump my own gas. I’ve had to ask strangers to help me. I make it a point to get gas in NJ always! Another one is that I’m pretty straightforward, I think that’s a NY/NJ thing. I hate small talk or beating around the bush. I always get straight to the point.
What reminds you of home?
Chinese food! Anytime I’ve been out of the country I always miss Chinese food and it’s the first thing I do when I get back.
What’s your favorite spot to visit in New Jersey?
I love riding my bike along the Hudson here in Jersey City. The waterfront is everything on beautiful summer days.
Share with us a fun fact about yourself or something not that many people know about you.
I don’t think people know how much I love Latin music. The Latin station is on in my car 24/7. I love old school merengue and salsa—I probably know every Marc Anthony song—and then there’s the new school reggaeton that I’m always dancing along to. I’m a big Bad Bunny fan. I’m also beyond excited for “Selena: The Series” on Netflix!
Loved our interview with Dileiny Rodriguez Baron? Let us know below which fashion influencer we should talk to next.