Kendra Szabo of KJZZ and 24 Maple Favors Light and Airy Style Inspired by Her Furniture

Andie Flores
Kendra sits in her new Phoenix home.

Phoenix native Kendra Szabo is a woman of many talents, with a style to match.

The 21-year-old journalism and justice studies is set to graduate from Arizona State University this month, and she's well on her way to turning her hobbies into a career.

See also: Phoenix Artist Zach Bootz on Ditching Denim for Slacks

Szabo may have studied and held jobs in print and broadcast journalism, but she's pursuing a career that has little to do with her degrees.

Currently, she works for KJZZ 91.5, where she produces Morning Edition. The job begins at 4:30 a.m. every day, and in the afternoon, you can find Szabo at a bakery called Ollie Vaughn's, where she helps bake.

Szabo also works with bees at Roosevelt Growhouse. The gig started journalistically, but her love of bees is real.

"I have a giant thigh tattoo of a bee," she says. "When I'm in the bee suit, I'm totally protected. Once you get past the terrified stage, you can just watch them."

The business Szabo is truly pursuing and the thing she likes most is building furniture. It's also where most of her style inspiration comes from.

"My life dream is to build and make custom furniture for a living," says Szabo. "I built my living room and dining table and I do small woodworking projects."

Szabo reveals to us that even the couch we're sitting on is about to become an upholstery project.

She says she gets inspiration for her daily looks from the raw materials she likes to work with. "That's how I try to dress too," she says, "Super simplistic. I pay more attention to texture and color. I do think shapes are very interesting and you can tell in my furniture how I incorporate that idea.

"For the furniture I make, I focus on a very industrial, raw natural material. I think of being outside and what the city looks like. For my clothes, I like light and airy pieces. My friends joke that they only see me wearing white and creme."

When she doesn't know what she's going to wear and needs fashion inspiration, Szabo turns to her favorite magazine, Kinfolk. "I love the aesthetic of the magazine," she says. "It's more lifestyle and not fashion, but I like to mimic the people who are featured in it."

Szabo also admires the blogs Call to Style and Life Without Tanlines, as well as Refinery29.

Her website, 24 Maple, launched this week. It will be a design blog that features her furniture and writing.

Location Info

Ollie Vaughn's

1526 E. McDowell Road, Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

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