Message from our Founder
By Ashley South
Welcome to the first issue of Main & Luxe Magazine in Naperville!
It is a new season, new magazine, and for me: a new beginning. The world is different. Almost 65% of people are considering changing employers or careers. Work-life balance is more important than ever, and many of us cultivated varied interests over the last year and a half. We baked bread, turned into near-professional bartenders, and became foodies! We learned to knit and craft with abandon. Guitar? Beer brewing? Writing? We cultivated lingering ideas that had been relegated to “if only I had more time…” This magazine was born of exactly that. I am part of that 65%.
Passion. Fascination. Enthusiasm. Obsession. That is what many of us found. With the extra time, passion pushed us to seek or create the best. When I talked with people about what they were doing, I became energized and thrilled to listen. The passion made those conversations compelling and turned the wheels in my own brain.
I spent two decades in a traditional work setting. Along with my cohort of the forty percent, including many of you, I came out of the last eighteen months changed. I had taken so many things for granted and want to continue the rich conversations and be out and about while doing it. We are re-entering the roaring 20s; and we are going to hustle, sing, and dance our way through this next decade. Everything will now be viewed through a new passionate lens.
This magazine itself is my passion project. Bluehouse Publishing Inc. and Main & Luxe Magazine were born after many of those conversations and much self-reflection about my professional future.
My corporate career could not have been going any better, but I found myself enjoying the various side projects I started – a monthly mobility-focused “unmuted” meeting, mentoring, and casual journaling. My wine club pals, neighbors, and friends all had ideas about what could be included in a magazine. Eventually, I ended up on the doorstop of Quad Printing, the largest printing company in the United States (think Time and People Mag). Ken Lipske took my call and agreed to work with me directly after listening to my ideas. From there, we began to snowball and materialize.
We are a resident-owned startup. Our staff live and work in Naperville. Everything we bring to you will have a tie to our local community and pride behind it. To ensure we always keep our finger on the heartbeat of our community, we have pulled together an advisory board to help guide content creation. And to support our local community, each month we will give a charitable contribution to support local resources for our residents. Our goal is to weave community, passion, and the finer things in life together.
As residents, we stand by everything we will bring you: the stories, the recommendations, and especially the paid advertisements. Everything has been curated to the highest degree. Within the magazine, we will highlight what is great about Naperville. We will focus on the unique and truly special within the 4th largest city in Illinois.
At the beginning of each season, we will bring you The Luxe List of Naperville. Each list will be based on feedback received from our readership. We plan to offer the opportunity to vote on different categories pulled from as many submissions as we receive. You, the readers, will tell us which restaurants, shops, and service providers should be heralded and added on to The Luxe List!
This issue brings you details on the man behind the downtown live music scene, a resident food blogger couple with a passion to review every single restaurant within our borders, the business library that helped me get this idea off the ground, and we will introduce you to our small business mentor that continues supporting “solo-preneurs” including this one!
Whatever your passion, come along with us to learn more about the city, to dabble in something different, and to experience Main & Luxe Naperville!
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Posts from the past.