In Convo With Sabrina Chazen
Talking with the artist formerly known as Sample Size 16.
So much love for this powerhouse, who's harnessing her lifetime obsession with finding the right pieces at her size that work for everyone, no matter the size or budget.
We sat down with Ariel's longtime friend, Sabrina Chazen, to discuss her lifetime obsession with finding the right pieces at her size (and budget), and how it's led to her #samestyledifferentsize campaign.
What is your background?
I got married straight out of college with a Political Science degree while my husband was in law school and I was teaching swim lessons and looking for a job in LA. I was doing a plus size fashion blog and ended up taking a day job as an executive assistant for a lady, who co-founded Stand Up to Cancer and then her own women’s cancer foundation, The Noreen Fraser Foundation. After that, I got a job I really loved for great people at Exclusive Artists, which is an agency that represents celebrity hair stylists, makeup artists, wardrobe stylists, photographers, and so forth. They were in the same building as LA Models and some talent agencies and it was a really fun, stereotypical LA working experience.
AGJ is inclusive at its core. Yes, we can all style our AGJ pieces differently, but at its roots, it comes from the conception of a designer, who is not afraid to stand up and share what she believe to be right, fair, just, and ultimately inclusive. So, because of her, this jewelry is inclusive of ALL THINGS, size included.
How did you first meet Ariel?
Through mutual friends. For me, when someone whose styleI respect tells me to meet someone else, whose aesthetic and heart is amazing, it's an instant connection and ultimate fascination—immediate girl crush.
What do you like most about AGJ?
First and foremost, I love the jewels. Ariel has en eye that is ever-evolving and the pieces mean something and evoke emotion as jewelry should. But mostly, I love the woman behind it. She makes it stand out from the other competitors in the market. Her heart becomes the sentiment of the item you are wearing, and you can’t put a price on that.
Do you have a particular favorite piece of AGJ?
The Stone Baroque Pearl Drop Necklace. I’m a pearl girl always and forever. I wear one in some form every single day. I believe they have a luster that does something to me. I love that it’s personalized with gemstones that mean something to me. And, I love that you can add it to any other piece. I love mine...a lot.
How did you first start Same Style, Different Size?
Years ago when I was doing the plus size blog, I dreamt of this series. Originally, I envisioned it to be one friend and I, doing it weekly or monthly. Then one day I decided (after being turned down years prior by the gals I asked to do it with me) that it shouldn’t be just ONE person consistently, it should change every time, to showcase all different types of bodies to speak to more people, so that more people would be able to relate. It’s been such a joy to create in this form.
What's been your favorite Same Style, Different Size moment so far?
Truly, each one is my favorite in that moment while it’s live and new. They all carry so much emotion and I’m so fond of all the stories of how they each individually came to be. They embody all the things that are important to me: inclusion, connection, fashion, friendship, creativity, spontaneity, hustle, etc. etc. And, that’s not me being PC, it’s just the truth. Of course, it’s helped to me when people with bigger followings have matched with me, but each one is truly so special for unique reasons.
How do you decide who you're going to work with?
Each match is organic. It’s people, who are already somehow in my existing orbit. Friends, acquaintances, and friends of friends. I’m sure (gd willing) that opportunities to match with people. who are more peripheral or strangers will begin to come to me, but I always want it to feel natural, like there was a clear path for us to collaborate.
What changes have you seen made? What reception has the concept received?
THIS!!! This is my favorite—some times when people agree to match with me I will tell them to also try and find the outfit. EVERY SINGLE TIME without fail, they come back and tell me how hard it was to find the plus size portion of the match. Just in showing people how the market is lacking, that's change. Showing people why this series is so much more than clicking and buying a matching outfit, that why it’s HARD work and important. It's seeing the change that people in bigger bodies like me are finding more clothes that their friends are able to wear—and they've always wanted to wear, too. Hopefully, the next level of success will be when brands want to come and service us and everything we want to wear! That’s the hope.