We had the good fortune of connecting with Jennifer Harrup and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jennifer, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit. I remember in 7th grade when my computer lab teacher taught us what the word “entrepreneur” meant and I thought to myself… oh that’s what I want to do! One of my favorite projects in elementary school was even coming up with a business idea and creating a project around it. I designed a school store concept that would be built into an old school bus- of course decorating the old school bus was the part that excited me most. I planned to gut the entire thing and design it to be a cool hang-out. This was the 90’s so of course blow-up furniture would have been involved. It was just a concept project, but I remember asking my parents if there was an old school bus we could get our hands on to convert… I desperately wanted to actually execute my idea. Fast forward 15 years and getting a job felt like the logical step after getting my interior design degree in college, but getting pregnant at 25 was the best blessing, it gave me the excuse to leave that job and start a business just like I always knew I would.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I started my journey as an entrepreneur with a wedding planning business in 2012. I had just finished interior design school, graduated, and worked as an interior designer for about a year. Then I got pregnant with THE most amazing boy on the planet (my now 8 year old Phoenix), I knew I wanted to start a business, but I didn’t own a home or have any interior design portfolio to speak of… how could I start a design business? I had just gotten married though and had some really beautiful wedding images, and that’s how I spent 8 years planning and designing luxury weddings here in Houston. It wasn’t until my dad passed away in 2019 that I decided I couldn’t keep plugging away at a business that didn’t have my full heart and passion behind it, my first love was always interior design and I needed to get back to it. We also happened to be buying our first home at this time as well. I was finally going to have a space I could rip up and decorate to my heart’s content, thus Jennifer Laura Living was born.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Houston is such an incredible place and I have loved living here for most of my life. Re-discovering it as an adult has been a fun adventure as well. I would start my day at Tiny Boxwoods with some brunch, then go biking around Buffalo Bayou park, take a cooking class at Sur La Table (the pasta class is my favorite!). After that I would check into my hotel room downtown at Marriott Marquis and go for a swim in the lazy river. For dinner, I’m dining at Traveler’s Table. Late night dip back at the hotel in the hot tub.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Honestly, the mind + body connection is more important than I ever previously realized. I joined one of Krystal Nielson’s programs last spring thinking it would be a fun way to tone up and lose a few pounds, but what I found was the motivation and key to get my butt in gear- working out and eating well isn’t something we “have to do”, it’s something we CAN choose to do to make ourselves feel better, give us the energy to not just get through the day, but CONQUER the day, and ultimately look and feel good. Working out and clean eating isn’t something I share about much on social media because I’m a smaller account and still finding my niche, but it’s absolutely what has set my life on the path it is now!
Other: Tik Tok- https://www.tiktok.com/@jenniferlauraliving
Photography- Jennifer Laura Living