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Gina Papa is a PR maven, influential stylist and all around creative entrepeneur

Gina Papa

Name
Gina Papa

Descriptor 
Creator is a good word.

Astrological sign
Sagittarius

Are you a morning person or a night owl?
Night owl for sure!

Tea or coffee drinker? 
Both. Coffee in the morning; tea during the day.

Gina Papa, PR expert & style influencer

We’re food lovers - name a dish you love. We love a recipe share too!
I never thought of a chicken dish earning the top spot, but when I first met my husband we went to Vinegar Hill in Brooklyn where I fell in love with their cast iron chicken. Since then we make a similar traditional Italian chicken dish we had at Leuca, an Italian trattoria located the WilliamVale Hotel in Williamsburg's, called "Pollo al Mattone" (Chicken under a brick). It's been two years now and we are still going strong! See recipe below.

Pollo Al Mattone

Step 1
Take a whole chicken and butterfly it. In a bowl we mix chopped rosemary, minced garlic, red chili pepper flakes, sea salt, pepper and a dash of cumin. In an aluminum tray drizzle some olive oil over the opened chicken and then season with the mixture. Rub everything over both sides of the chicken. Wrap two bricks completely in aluminum foil and set to the side.

Step 2
Preheat oven to 400°F. Place the chicken in a cast iron skillet skin side down and place the foil-wrapped bricks on top of the chicken and cook until golden brown, about 7 minutes (do not turn chicken over). Then continue to roast the chicken in the oven (with the bricks still on top) for 30 minutes. Remove the bricks and turn the chicken over and continue to roast for another 30 minutes. Garnish with rosemary sprigs and voila!

What's the best advice you have ever received? What's the worst?
My best advice may sound silly but when I started working in PR my first experience was with Tom Ford. I remember the PR manger asking me where something was and I told him I couldn't find it. He said to me, "that is never an excuse and sorry Gina, but you need to look hard enough or have a better answer than I don't know." It has stuck after 12 years. To this day I rather keep looking for something than saying, IDK- I can't find it, which also often finds me going down the rabbit hole...

The worst advice was when I was told was to look out for myself. While guarding your heart is very important, I often wear it on my sleeve, I learned, and I'm still learning, that it's not just about you. How you measure is how you will be measured and so its important to Help others and when you look out for yourself no one else will ever look out for you. Stay humble.

Our first collection was named after streets we’ve lived on and loved. What’s a street or city you’ve loved and why?
That's a great question. We actually named all the tables at our wedding after streets we loved. If you asked me this pre-COVID I would have said Mercer down in soho NYC. Since we live just outside of the city I appreciate the open air a bit more. In the town of Montclair, NJ there is a road I love called Highland Street. It sights high above the town with expansive views of the NYC skyline. The homes and vibe have a San Francisco/Cali feel where we lived after my husband and I got married so taking a morning walk on highland has became a routine walk down memory lane.

Gina Papa, style maven

What are you listening to lately? 
At the moment it's Christmas music... lol. This is definitely my favorite time of year. When it's not Chipmunks Christmas, I toggle between Kanye West and EDM - we have a playlist that ranges from Flume to Hotel Garuda.

Whose style inspires you?
Emilio Pucci. I loved his baroque inspired silk scarfs and dresses. His patterns and prints are uniquely and distincivly Pucci. Every pattern design literally bears his name because so many tried to replicate his work and pass it off as their own. As an avid traveler I appreciate that Pucci made ski wear fashionable and his swimwear designs are the "old Hollywood" styles we reference today.

Fun Fact: Pucci was an expert skier who represented Italy in the 1932 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid.

Gina Papa in button up shirt

What are you watching or seen lately that you loved?
The Queen's Gambit! A story of a woman's rise to intenational Chess Master status. It's not just a tale of female empowerment but of the power of the importance of having a strong support group. I binged! Two days. The 60s fashion and makeup in the film was on point.

What’s inspiring you lately?
Faith. It's important for me to stay humbled and grateful at the moment and connecting with spiritually has kept me grounded. I am constantly reading and listening to spiritual based text on how how to take on courage, love and have trust in a higher being. During this pandemic is has been important to know that even throughout our struggle an even when we don't see anything happening, we must trust that there is a greater plan for our lives that involves not just ourselves but everyone around us. Love God. Love people.

Who should we be following? 
There is so much talent out there and people I would love to support...especially in these times. Just to name a few would be:

@interwovenap (super cool boutique in Asbury Park, NJ, with the best IG stories day in and day out)

@limniajewlry (jewelry 2.0 that's modular so you build upon each piece..truly unique)

@mduenasjacobs (former accessories editor and founder of @super.smalls - the cutest kids accessories brand. I've been obsessed lately)

@telshaanderson (owner of @t.a.newyork) She has such a great energy and I love her creative vision.

Gina Papa in Noyette's Fillmore dress

What’s an upcoming project you are excited about?
Many people may not know this but I left my PR gig to join my husband's company Union Translations, which provides foreign language consulting to companies and firms all over the world. We now work together as partners and have new projects we work on together everyday that are a change of pace for me.

Where can we find you? 
IG: @slightly_flirty - email: slightlyflirty@gmail.com

Any last words you'd like to share?
It's important to support each other right now. Everyone's circumstances are different and offering kindness, advice and building relationships is vital.

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