We had the chance to learn all about the lifestyle of Michelle Luong, one of our original customers and a forever traveling Business Operations Manager at Stacey Boehman Coaching. Here's what she had to say on the evolution of her nomadic lifestyle.
What was the catalyst for the many moves during your lifetime up until now?
I had gone on a weeklong trip with a group of my friends about four years ago to Croatia and once I was back home, I couldn’t stop thinking about my next adventure. I immediately booked a solo adventure for a few months down the line and then started getting targeted travel ads. One ad that caught my attention was one for Remote Year - a program that curated a group of professionals who could work from “home” and they would take care of all the logistics — travel, accommodations, workspace — so we would only have to focus on our jobs. I applied and to my surprise, was accepted! I pitched the program to my boss at the time and he said “yes”! My lease happened to be ending so I sold all my things, canceled my solo trip, and got on a plane to Malaysia 6 weeks later! We moved to a new country every month and I just never stopped traveling once the year was over — until now! My bf and I just signed a one year lease in Chicago - a city that was between both of our hometowns and has TWO international airports.
You’ve lived all over the globe! What locations have brought the most inspiration in your life?
Vietnam — This is where my family is from. It’s inspiring in so many different ways to me. What strikes me the most is that my parents immigrated to the US during a war and have built this beautiful life for my sisters and me. If they can do that, I can do anything with what they’ve been able to provide for me.
Turkey — One of my absolute favorite places in this world. It has such a deep history and is a connector - of all sorts. It’s also cool that you can be in Asia one minute and Europe the next when you’re in Istanbul.
Portugal — I grew up on the East Coast so the ocean (almost any large body of water) brings me so much peace. Lisbon is full of architectural eye candy and is super walkable (and hills for those glute workouts!). The food is also the best!
Mexico — This is the place that has felt the most like “home”. I’ve always been a city girl so CDMX keeps calling me back. I’m so inspired by the fashion, art, and the people! What I don’t think a lot of people realize are the amount of expats that live in Mexico — and that camaraderie the locals share always pulls at me. I also love that I can jump on a plane and be back in the US so quickly — my dad had a transplant a few years back and was able to get on a flight and be by his side by the time he was out of the surgery — something like that sticks with you.
How has your style changed, or how have you adapted it to the different places you’ve visited and lived?
This might sound so crazy, but I can travel for a full year with just a carry-on bag! I prefer not to linger at the airport (read: I like to arrive at the very last possible minute) so to avoid waiting in checked bag lines, I always only pack enough to meet the carry on limits. This means being very intentional about what I own. Pieces that are super classic and versatile are vital to me. Solids and layers.
What are your favorite styles or trends that you’ve picked up from your travels?
Signature pieces. A lot of what I mix in from wherever I’m living are accessories! I love hats and scarves — and sunglasses!
What has the new WFH culture meant for you and your career and lifestyle? What's it like staying put? And, how are you making the best of, or even enjoying this slowdown?
I’ve been working from “home” for 4 years now and it’s always meant that I could constantly be on the move and go wherever (as long as there’s strong WiFi) — until Covid-19! My boyfriend and I were some of the lucky ones who were able to take the extended time to spend with family and that was so lovely.
After 3 months with them we decided to make our move back to a city and have been enjoying bike rides along the lakefront and are spending a lot of time making our apartment a home now so we can enjoy it for longer! The slowdown has been really nice, but I am hoping for a vaccine sooner than later so I can (safely) jump back on a plane!
Most recently, you lived on a farm! Why was Mother Oxford the right piece for that stage of your life?
Yes! Such a change of scenery for me. My boyfriend’s family has a farm in Iowa so that’s where we hunkered down when our winter lease in Park City, Utah was up. I honestly LIVED in my Mother Oxford top. The second I read stain resistant and versatile, I was in. It made it so easy to jump on calls and look pulled together but also something I could stay in all day because it’s so breathable. I’m one of those people who try, at all costs, to protect my skin so I would even use my MO as a beach cover-up when we would hang out at the farm’s pond. It kept me covered but not hot and I LOVED that. This is, for sure, a staple that will be the right piece for many stages of my life!