The Recipe to Success Through Style

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Oct. 28 (Bloomberg) –- “Style and the Successful Girl” Author Gretta Monahan discusses her path to success and reinventing style. She speaks with Pimm Fox on Bloomberg Television's "Taking Stock." (Source: Bloomberg)

Let's go right to bottom line anchor, mark hunton.

-- mark crumpton.

Apple forecast top analyst projections, but at the same time predicted lighter than estimated gross margins.

$55 billion to $58 billion in gross margins.

The stock for bristol-myers squibb rose to its highest closing price since 2001. the company released trial results that showed its experimental drugs for lung cancer helped patients.

The stock also saw its biggest one-day gain since march, 2009. consumer reports is not recommending any version of the toyota camry.

It is the top selling u.s. car in the past 11 years.

But lexis and its namesake brand capture the top two spots in the reliability survey.

Coming up tonight on "bottom line,", the lead from the higher education prop -- center will join me.

We will look at what could potentially be a crisis in student loans.

That is tonight at 7 p.m. eastern.

My next guest is an author and actor and filmmaker, and oh, yes, a philanthropist.

His latest book is a major most in picture starring harry connick jr.. he has worked with nobel laureates and other leaders in order to advocate for basic rights for children everywhere -- everywhere.

Thank you for "taking doc." i've got to ask you, when people say the name turck pipkin, did they ever ask you where you get your name?

They do.

And my parents have a sense of humor, because it is my given name.

You and i could go anywhere and have the best names.

Talk about comedy.

I want to give people a little sense of your background.

I did comedy for a long time.

My big buddy and partner was harry anderson, the guy from night court, the judge, the magician.

We did a lot of shows.

I always wanted to be a writer.

I started writing film and writing books.

And the comedy went away.

Not only did the comedy go away, eventually, but having said that, you also have a career on the screen.

I do occasionally.

Most people know me as the idiot narcoleptic guy from the sopranos.

They come up to me in the street in new york in particular and say, have you heard the good news, and then, yes, he has risen.

But the sopranos helped fund this project because there are fans out there that want to know what else i'm doing.

Like the book itself, let's start right there, "when angels sing." why did you write this book?

I originally published it as a christmas present for my family.

I had written other novels, but it was just a little novel, a hand bound edition.

I gave it to all my family members.

One copy came to me in -- came to a friend in new york and he said he just read it on christmas day.

He walked it over to algonquin books and the next year we were a bestseller.

And now it is a motion picture, which is a pretty good christmas present.

How did you get harry connick jr., willie nelson?

I have some pretty good producers.

It was an effort to make it in hollywood, but eventually it got made in texas, which is where i've -- i'm from.

It is a texas made movie.

I always envisioned willie nelson playing the part of nick.

And i always pictured kris kristofferson as the character of brad.

Lyle lovett and cap edmundson have an injury -- an amazing version of a song.

There are many musicians in the movie.

Great texas musicians who play parts in the movie.

They all had chances to sing.

The business of motion pictures, give us a little behind the curtains idea of what it was like to make this.

Never ask writers about business.

They are the worst business people in the world.

Making a movie is always a challenge.

Everyone always says, i wish there were more family movies.

Not little kid movies, but real family movies that everyone would enjoy.

And christmas movies and christmas stories are evergreen.

Ever since this book came out, people have been coming up to me saying, my family reads "when angels sing" as part of our christmas tradition every year.

What about your nonprofit?


The nobility project.

It is like nobel.

We started working with a lot of nobel laureates.

We use the money to build schools.

We have 18 schools in kenya right now.

We have a clinic in nepal.

And we work with other countries.

And we work in this country, too.

The problems are not all overseas.

The work here is as satisfying as anywhere else.

Since the book is so successful, "when angels sing," any chance there will be a sequel, maybe that it will be focused on another holiday?

Another holiday is a good idea, actually.

I have another story to tell, which is another christmas story about what happened to willie's character, nick.

I don't know if that will come out later.

You've got to love the holidays, because it is a chance when families come together, thanksgiving and christmas in particular, and you kind of remember where you all came from.

I want you to -- i want to thank you for being with us.

The movie opens on friday.

Friday, the movie, harry connick jr.

As well as willie nelson and kris kristofferson.

Coming up, joined by rachael ray's fashion goo roo.

We will tell you who she is and what the recipe for style success is all about.

And it is time for mystery guest clue number two.

My mystery guest's are made in the usa.

? 100 years ago, the panama canal open.

Of course, with great fanfare.

Now it is going through a $5 billion expansion so that ships that are bigger than three football fields can get through all of its locks.

That has ports up and down the coast of the united states by -- vying for its business.

For more, here is carol massar.

[inaudible] we will come to her with all of the improvement in the panama canal, but maybe it has to do with style.

Maybe they have to rebrand the panama canal.

Here to help us about style is a style maven.

Greta, it is a pleasure.

One of the things we were talking about is this idea of style and life.

It is not necessarily a surface issue.

You have to be authentic in your own personal style.

Talk about how you became this style expert.

I think more than ever, people have to have their individuality.

It used to be that you set a first impression within 10 seconds, and now in this age it is one or two.

Everything is about your look.

For me, it was when i was 23 or 24 years old i wanted to start my own business.

I had to figure it out and be scrappy about it because there was no big pile of money hanging around.

It was coming up with who wanted to be in that light and how i was going to get there.

Do you recall a story where you had found what you are looking for?

Where were you?

I was here in new york.

My first love was to be a fashion designer, so i went to f i.t., which was the right place to be.

And then i took on a second job to earn more money and i put my phone -- myself through school as a hair and makeup artist.

And i ended up loving working with people one-on-one.

I started doing a bit more of that and i sort of making more and more money and i thought, ok, i've got to merge these two things.

How will i do it?

And here in new york it was about those businesses being separate totally.

They were sisterly, but not for you could do them together.

It prompted me to start my own company.

Who is aunt kathy?

She is my mom's older sister and she was very influential in my life.

As you know, my book was dedicated to her.

She is a strong woman of her time.

She really knew her way and excelled in her business and failed, and in that his days -- and in those days women were -- in those days it was the electronic underworld.

She was just working to get the next job and the next upgrade.

We talk about success and the book uses that word in the title , "style and the successful girl." but it is not just financial success you are talking about.

It is not about a grade point average or whether you own your own business or you want to, success is a common thread we all feel.

We want to feel successful whether we are mothering, in our jobs, dating.

It is about getting to a place where you are maximizing your own potential.

And that comes with image.

But it also comes with what you put in your body, right?

Because you talk about diet in your book.

I talk about everything.

I take it from a 360 degrees look in our lives and how it affects everything.

A little bit on exercise.

I'm not a diet and exercise pro.

It is about all those pieces.

My entire book is about taking care of yourself, stop and focus.

That is how i build my business, people saying, hey, i need this kind of help.

I want to get everything in order so i can feel my best.

What would you like to do next?

I would love to have a website devoted where women could actually talk to me.

That is what i want to do next, take what i look -- and do in the book and do it elsewhere.

That would be my dream.

Thank you very much.

We are going to talk about a transformation, one that is going on to the panama canal.

It opened 100 years ago and it is going through a bit of a facelift, $5 billion worth.

It will accommodate ships that are bigger than three football fields.

Here is carol massar.

A perfect segue.

You have a lot of ports up and down the east coast vying for the business.

Baltimore, new jersey, and others are making their push.

Some ports are already to go.

One that is spending lots of money getting ready is miami.

It is a big day for port miami.

A delivery of cranes cost $40 million.

They traveled more than 90 days from shanghai, through storms along the way.

These cranes coming are huge.

These are the worlds largest.

They have a reach across in terms of containers, 22, 23 across.

These are the big boys.

The big cranes are needed for the big ships, which now mostly docking california.

An expanded panama canal will give direct access to ports on the east coast.

And give shipping companies less expensive ways to get their goods there.

The port is helping a lot more goods will be arriving in containers, stacked on the giant vessels.

You can see ships carrying 12,000, 13,000, triple the volume.

To handle the volume, they are beefing up miami.

This will go to 50 feet, the same depth of the panama canal.

Getting goods to shore is just one part of the strategy.

Getting them out as fast as possible is the other.

It took us two years to dig the tunnel.

More than one quarter of 2 billion dollars in reported spending is for the construction of the smile -- this tunnel that runs nearly a mile under the bay.

We are about 20 feet below sea level.

We will provide a direct link to the major interstate right from the port.

It is built on a remote rail system that will span out with destinations all over the country.

With all -- with all of these investments, port miami is hoping for a big payoff, a doubling of the container business in the next six years and 33,000 new jobs.

Critics say that payback will be tough, considering miami is one of several ports vying for the business.

We are one of the first ports from the panama canal.

We are the last port out.

Summer, 2015, we will be big ship ready.

That is our phrase.

Big ship ready.

They will be ready for when the panama canal completion, which is expected by the middle of 2015. thank you.

My last clue.

My mystery guest has patterned her life after a passion for design.

? it is monday.

Mystery guest is now on mondays.

Luckily, my producers have given us all a few clued.

You could call my mystery guest a bag lady.

She has patterned her life after a passion for design and her products are made in the usa.

Come on out.

Do you make bags?


And you make them in the united states.

I do.

I detect a slight accent.

Are you from the northeast?

No, i'm not.

Are you from the south?

I am.

And you make bags in the staff -- in the south?


you make bags in the northeast.


do you make leather bags?


do you make bags that are quilted, for example?

I do.

You make the quilted bags.

You are a brand with your own name on them.


Would've second.

You are not hackett and harnett.


i got 35 seconds.

My goodness.

Are you spin to be -- i am spin the boomer shine.

And you make your bags in indiana.

I do.

I remember reading that.

How did you start?

I needed a bag and i started making them and i had a passion for business.

I combined them.

Why did you decide to make the bags in indiana gecko i wanted manufactured in america products.

Here are some of my bags.


I originally manufactured in california and that manufacturer could not keep up with demand.

I wanted to keep manufacturing in the states and i was trying to figure out what to do.

I got a call from a great manufacturer in for wayne, who had a main customer that they had been working with for 20 years who had taken their production elsewhere.

We suited working together and they are fabulous.

Tell us about the products that you make.

This is a fun little assortment.

Everything is made in america.

It is all machine washable, stain resistant and water resistant.

It is 11 different patterns with 50 different styles.

People can add to their collection.

We have travel bags, cosmetic bags, purses, coats, wallets, clutches.

We have an assortment of everything.

How do you know what will be popular and what will not?

That is a good question.

We do a lot of trend research and try to predict what the market wants.

And there is intuition as well.

There is research, analysis, and we talked to our customers.

And we have an advisory board.

We make all that together and that is how we design our patterns and styles.

You probably spend a lot of time around the country checking in on retailers.

I do.

I was down in disney last weekend because they sell our products.

I was in north georgia yesterday.

I talked with customers and tell everybody about what we do.

How many stores?

-- how many employees now?

We have about 20 employees now.

They are full-time employees.

And then we have sales reps that sell to the stores we are in.

What would you like to do next gecko i would love to branch out in different lifestyle products.

The trick is what we can make in america and be competitive against the competition that is manufacturing overseas.

Where did you get the money to start the business in the first place?

Was there a magic moment?

I needed a bag and i started it literally out of my guest bedroom.

I had some savings.

Every dollar that came in, we poured back into the company.

And then in 2009, i took on some investors and we were able to grow.

It is like an overnight success, but it has been how many years in the making?

I started the first bag into thousand four.

It has been a while.

-- we i started the first bag in 2004. it has been a while.

Thank you for being here.

Thank you.

It is an honor.

It is 56 past the hour, so it is time to go on the market.

The dow jones industrial average loses a point.

The nasdaq lost three.

Thanks for "taking stock." "luber west" is coming up next.

Thanks to our mystery guest.

? .

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.


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