Previously in my style spotlight posts, I wrote about celebrities who presented a style that I admired. I will still do that from time to time. Now, I’d like to incorporate interview posts of people I actually know (online and in real life) who exemplify great personal style.
I first met Mattie…actually, I can’t remember! Lol. Probably through a fashion event or via Twitter. What I admire the most about Mattie is that she has a tenacious spirit and she executes all of her aspirations effortlessly. I’m often left wondering, “when does this girl have time to sleep?!” She does it all gracefully.
Mattie James is from a little bit of every where. Born in Huntsville, AL, raised between Atlanta, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, she traveled around a lot with her parents (originally from Liberia). She eventually settled (back) in Atlanta in 2006. In June 2009, she won Miss Liberia Georgia and in July 2009, she won Miss Liberia USA.
“I said that if I was gonna do Miss Liberia Georgia, it was to win Miss Liberia USA.”
This was very important to her as she was engaged to an American man. In September 2009, she got married. By this time, her name was everywhere, which created a great buzz for when she started her blog, Mattieologie, in January 2010.
Branding. Your Mattieisms. Mattie Muse. Mattie Makeup. Mattie Mail. How did you come up with that idea?
It makes sense. It’s funny because it was kind of accidental. I couldn’t think of a blog name that was original or clever enough with the words fashion or style in it. If anything at least you’ll remember my name. When Mattieologie first started, I was completely lost. I just knew that I wanted to talk about fashion and style and beauty. I’m obsessed with alliteration so it just kinda worked out for the best.
You have five businesses as well as a 9-5, spouse, a life, family and friends. How do you make it work?
I’m really blessed to have a wonderful support system…and I think everybody who is prominent and relevant in my life understands that Mattieologie.com is a priority in my life. Sometimes I’m not home…but…this is the life I wanted and you can have anything you want as long as you’re willing to pay the price for it. I have a great team of interns that hold me down. I can’t say that I do this all by myself. Not at all.
You kinda have to give yourself credit and allow yourself to be human because it’s not about perfection; it’s about greatness. At the end of the day, if you’re producing and creating something great and inspiring someone else to do the same…for me, that’s success. I’m not trying to be perfect.
I’m obsessed with giving back and I love to see great people lend their talents to others. How do you feel that you give back to the community? What do you think you give back?
I feel like I need to do more. I am really passionate about blogging so creating Atlanta Style Bloggers and Style Bloggers of Color was to bring other bloggers together. People now know that there’s more than two or three of us that blog here in Atlanta. I feel like as far as community in the blogging aspect, I’ve gone beyond. I really wanted that. I wanted to create a place for that and it’s been good.
How would you describe your style?
Actively feminine. Some days I’ll be in chucks, even flip-flops! I do like to be really casual but it always has an aspect of femininity. That’s one thing I take pride in. I really like the color pink but it really doesn’t look flattering on me. Even though I really love wearing dresses, I also love a great pant. Whether it’s a cropped trouser or wide leg or a great skinny denim. I love my dresses. Whether it’s a maxi dress or an a-line or a peplum. So whether I’m wearing target or Helmut Lang, I always want to look like myself.
What is your one piece of advice to someone trying to figure out their style?
It’s honestly about knowing yourself. Be appropriately you. Be you, have your own style, but be appropriate in the situation. Once it’s appropriate than it’s received better.