At last year’s American Craft Council Show in St. Paul, fashion stylist and creative director Christina Fortier was tasked with styling an ensemble to coordinate with the ’90s-themed “Make Room” installation created by art and trend director, Ashley Schulzetenberg. The pair hit it off, and starting talking about collaborating on a creative project-and the Blunt Cuts podcast was born.
Blunt Cuts is described as a “female-driven podcast on curiosity, creativity, and self-empowerment” filled with “personal reflections and blunt, honest perspectives.” With Fortier serving as the host and Schulzetenberg as the first season’s guest host, the show “explores fashion, beauty, friendships, work life, and all the messy details in between.”
The name “Blunt Cuts” comes from both of the founders’ love for sharply angled haircuts, as well as a nod to the unabashed honesty they lend to hot-button topics such as social media jealousy and sexual imagery in fashion. Clocking in under 20 minutes, the short format of Blunt Cuts is intended to keep things direct, honest, and to the point.
“We started with the idea of being super-honest, female-empowering, and thought-provoking,” Fortier says over a phone call. “We knew we had a love for fashion, but we wanted it to be about more than just clothes.”
The first episode sets the tone in its exploration of personal style, and Fortier talks about how she discovered her own signature look. “It came out of me minimizing things and organizing my closet in a way that was easy, so I didn’t have to stress out in the morning,” she explains. “I know what works for me, so I’m not clouded by the trends popping in and out. I’m not opposed to wearing something different, but it’s important to have a foundation.”
While Blunt Cuts is still airing new episodes from its first season, Fortier says plans are already underway for the second season. Schulzetenberg will move on from guest host to art direct the brand’s super-stylish Instagram feed (@bluntcuts_podcast), opening the door for Fortier to bring in a different guest host for each episode. She says she plans to bring on female business owners to talk about what it’s like to start a business and the challenges (and joys) of being a female boss.
“I want to be around women who are excited to take a leap and show their expression through their wardrobe and talk about what it’s like to start a business,” she says. “What obstacles have they overcome, and showing it’s not easy-or sharing ideas on how to make things easier.”
Upcoming topics include the creative process with model/painter/jeweler Valerie Carpender, beauty product detoxing with makeup artist Nicole Fae, and the challenges of starting your own business with Katie Steller of Steller Hair Co.
As for the brand’s Instagram feed, following it is half of the fun of the project for the pair. “We’re both such visual people and we’re entering a business that’s not usually visual-based,” says Fortier. “Ashley’s a master of curation. I love when I get inspired by the images she chooses. Since this is our project, we don’t have to be afraid to push the envelope. We want to keep things free reign. If it’s visually inspiring, we’ll do it.”
Listen to the “Blunt Cuts” podcast now at bluntcutspodcast.podbean.com or wherever you access podcasts.