Welcome to Scout

Welcome to Scout. Nice to have you here.

What’s Scout? Simply put, it’s Minnesota Monthly’s blog for all things stylish, fashionable, serviceable, and smart. Oh, and it’s written by me: Katie Dohman, the new style editor in charge of Muse, which is the new style section at Minnesota Monthly.

I’m a big believer of if you can dream it, you can do it. But sometimes it’s hard to get up the energy, or maybe even the courage, to make that dream happen. Perhaps you can’t quite communicate it to the world. You can’t quite define it. Or you need some inspiration to get started.

I’m here for you. When you come to Scout you’ll find things that inspire me and, I hope, can help you put together the pieces of your dream, the style you want to convey, the spirit you want to radiate. That spark may come in the form of a vintage skirt, a brick wall covered in graffiti, shiny baubles, or a bit of design news.

Where do I get my inspiration? I come from a long line of stylistas.

My Grandma Marion is one of my chief inspirations. She’s been gone a long time, but her style notions have stayed with me; her wooden dresser is literally now my dresser. If only her own design creations could leap out of it—she was an accomplished seamstress. But it wasn’t just her fashion sense. Her house was full of glamorous, understated, midcentury modern furnishings. When I see houndstooth, or Danish teak, I think Grandma Marion.

My Grandma Jeanne is the sort of woman who puts her “face on” every day. She isn’t afraid of hot pink. Her nails are perfectly filed ovals with smooth coats of polish. I probably get a little of my “more is more” philosophy from her.

My mother is a stylista, too. She loves Shabby Chic, and so our design philosophies are not exactly the same, but she’s my go-to gal for questions about what this part of a shirt is called (the placket) or what that one fashion trend was back in the day (Carnaby Street). She would love it if I became more proficient with an iron.

These women helped teach me that one’s individual sense of style can come from anywhere—from sofas to silverware to stationery. I find inspiration in design blogs, local art crawls, the St. Paul Retro Loop, zebra prints, Pantone color-swatch collections, J. Crew stores, and even sentences with a lot of perfectly placed commas. My style icons include Jackie O. and Twiggy and Kate Moss. Why pigeonhole yourself, sticking with one style? Confucius once said, “Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.” I go out of my way to see it.

But enough about me. Tell me what inspires you, too.