Hi all! I’m Nicole. I figured it would be a good idea to introduce myself and give you a little background information of what has led me to creating en shell.

I was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, but I have lived in California for the past 10 years. I had a little stint in San Francisco, went to school in Los Angeles, but have mostly resided in the beautiful and sunny San Diego. Just recently, I’ve moved to New Zealand with my husband on a quest to chase some new experiences and get a little out of our comfort zone of California. We both were in dire need to get re-inspired about life! Travel, nature, moving, and creating have always fueled who I am. I’m one of those types of people who get quite agitated and feel stagnant when I’ve been stuck in a routine for too long.

Throughout the past decade, I’ve jumped from job to job in a creative field or a realm of interest of some sort. I have done everything from visual displays for Anthropologie to doing freelance retail installations. I’ve worked for a modern, artisan based home décor and jewelry company, Rose & Fitzgerald, and I even got to travel to Uganda, Africa to see the design and production process first hand. I’ve worked for two San Diego based interior designers as an assistant and interior stylist, and I still currently do some occasional blog and social media content for them, too. Amongst it all, I have also fallen hard for all things fitness, nutrition, and wellness. I taught barre fitness classes for five years in San Diego. The feeling of self-empowerment and the amount of self-confidence I have gained, mentally and physically, from being an instructor is truly immeasurable. Though I owe each and every one of these shifts in my career path journey an infinite amount of gratitude, I couldn’t help but notice that I still had an itch to create even more.  

In an effort to channel my own inspiration, feelings, and creative urges, I bring you en shell. En shell is a melting pot of all of these many interests of mine. It’s all things that make me feel alive, all things that keep me up at night because I’ve fallen down a deep rabbit hole of obsession. As cliché as it sounds, en shell truly is a creative outlet where I can exercise thoughts and ideas that make me feel like me. It is the place where I can go within, express myself, and feel like my best self.

As for the name, well, it derived from my introverted, hermit crab ways. I was at home with my husband one night, and he was trying to get me out of bed to go socialize. I said jokingly that there was no way he could get me out of my “shell”. I was in my shell, and there was no way I was coming out... and well, it just stuck. As a pretty solid introvert, I’ve always considered the home as a safe haven, a space to recharge and reflect, a place to retreat. When I can get those moments to reconnect with myself, I truly feel in tune with who I am which can be powerful.

So I hope this space can fill your cup with some inspiration to create your own safe haven, place of wellness, or sense of refuge. I hope it can serve you as much as it is serving me. I hope it reminds us all to take those necessary moments to connect with who we are so that we can follow our gut, and we can listen to those pings that push us all towards growth and down a path of self-discovery. I hope this space inspires us all to acknowledge our personal passions and to take the steps we need to take to be our brightest, best versions of ourselves.

En shell – retreat, go within.