Introducing ROSE & IVY Journal No.11 Starring Julia Stiles
Welcome to the Issue
Back when I was 16, I decided to participate in my high school’s French exchange program. I didn’t know entirely what I was signing up for except that I would spend a few days in Paris with my classmates before going our separate ways and syncing up with our appropriate host families in Dijon. There I would stay for two weeks, attend a local school and live like a teenager in France. This was a big deal for me because it was my first time traveling on an airplane and going abroad. At that point, I had one year of French under my belt and let’s just say, the language didn’t come as easily as I had hoped, my grades certainly reflected that! I saved money from my part-time job and I went—I saw it as an escape from my not so pleasant high school experience, but little did I know, something larger was at play.
First and foremost, I fell in love with Paris. After a few days there, I met my host family in Dijon. I pictured them living in the city—at the time I was living in Vermont and I craved anything with a glimmer of metropolitan—and I’d walk to school every day, but I came to find out that they lived in Vézelay, a very small town located over an hour away. They resided in an old house on a vineyard in the heart of Burgundy, reached by flat, windy roads edged with stone walls. Adjusting to life with my family was hard. The parents spoke little to no English, and what little English the father could speak was mostly anti-American rhetoric. Truth be told, I cried almost every night—I felt uncomfortable and out of place. I wanted to leave but knew I had to stick it out. I’m glad I did. I returned knowing that the world was much more expansive than my small, familiar bubble.
That experience ultimately opened my eyes to the world and in turn, planted a desire within me to see more of it—an eternal wanderlust of sorts. It taught me to step outside of my comfort zone as much as possible. I’ve learned that seeing the world is vital and while it can be unpredictable at times, it’s important to understand that there are many unique ways of life. I believe it’s more vital than ever to witness and have compassion for how different cultures live and thrive. With that notion, you’ll find woven throughout this edition a global theme. We spotlight and celebrate the interior and fashion companies that champion and sustain traditional crafts in far-flung places by providing economic development and livable wages.
For our cover story, I am beyond delighted to feature Julia Stiles. Who could forget Julia’s earlier iconic work that defined the late 1990s and early 2000s pop culture with her iconic films Ten Things I Hate About You and Save the Last Dance to later roles in the Bourne franchise. Today, she stars in the hit drama series Riviera. I caught up with the actress in New York to talk about growing up in the city, her show and how life has changed since becoming a mom.
In this issue, I was able to check off a mega bucket list destination, Peru. Ever since I started taking photographs it has been on my list of places I dreamed to visit. You can read all about my journey in The Valley of the Sun. Elsewhere, we explored the vibrant island of Curaçao in True Blue and ventured to Guatemala’s Lake Atitlán in A Land of Many Colors.
When it came to how I wanted you, our dear reader, to feel while reading our newest edition, it boiled down to happiness. It’s so easy to get bogged down by what we see and hear on a daily basis, which is why we infused colorful places and stories throughout the issue. I hope you find inspiration on each page and enjoy a season that is both joyful and free.