Monday, May 12, 2014

Behind the blog: Maria of the Style Letters

Name: Maria MacNamara

Blog Name: the style letters

Current City: Chicago, IL

When & why did you start blogging? 
I spent most of 2012 developing the style letters and officially launched the blog on October 1 that year. Almost two already! My dream was always to edit and write for a fashion magazine, and blogging was a way to have a similar experience while focusing on the type of things I wanted to read/write about.

What’s the greatest thing that’s come out of blogging?
There have been so amazing things! But, if I have to pick one, it’s honestly the friendships I’ve made over the past couple of years. The blogging communities in both Cleveland (where I started) and Chicago are incredibly supportive and encouraging, and it’s been a great way to meet people in Chicago.

When you’re not blogging what can you be found doing?
I moved to Chicago last August, so I’m having so much fun exploring the city! There’s always a new place to eat or a new neighborhood to visit. (Any recommendations, send them my way!)

If you were stranded on a desert island, what would be the one thing you would take with you {people don’t count!}
A stack of all the September issues. That should keep me going for awhile.

What’s the one piece of advice you would share with bloggers just starting out? 
Be yourself and write what you love. In the past, I’ve struggled with covering certain trends that everyone’s talking about, even if they’re not for me. (One word: Birkenstocks.) Or, the dreaded anxiety of needing another post for the week and scrambling to throw something together at the last minute. No one is judging your timeline or expecting you to write just for them – this is about you and your passion, and it’s why you got into blogging in the first place.

What’s your “can’t live without” piece in your closet, kitchen, home etc.?
My engagement ring and wedding band. Not only do I love the sparkle, but they remind me of my favorite person in the world.

On a Friday night, what can you be found doing?
After a long week at work, Friday nights usually consist of yoga pants, takeout, and movie night with my husband. I do love a good happy hour, though.

How do you balance blogging with a work/social life?
I’m still trying to figure that out! I treat the blog as a second job, so it’s definitely been a balancing act from the beginning. I’ve learned a few tricks along the way to make things a little easier. For example, we plan looks and shots ahead of time and have gotten much faster at photo shoots. We try to shoot a few looks at a time so that we’re not spending every weekend in front of/behind the camera. (Especially in Chicago weather.) I write all my blog posts on Sunday so that I only need to promote on social media throughout the week, and I create a blog calendar every month to keep me on track. And sometimes, I just need a small break to recharge. (Hence Friday nights in yoga pants.)

What’s your favorite quote? Or what’s a quote that describes you?
I have two. The first by Coco Chanel: “A girl should be two things: who and what she wants.” I love the idea of staying true to who you are, but still allowing yourself to grow into something even better.

The second by Theodore Roosevelt: “Comparison is the thief of joy.” It can be easy to forget all you’ve accomplished and how much you truly love something when you compare yourself to someone else. Be proud to be you.

What’s your dream job if you haven’t landed it yet?
I would love to work on the style letters full-time and write a series of style books. In the meantime, I want to keep collaborating with brands and bloggers I love and work with The Everygirl someday.

Guilty pleasures?
Twizzlers, magazines, and a good sale.

What’s your favorite “little thing” in life?
Sharing a good laugh with someone. No matter what’s going on or where you are, there’s something really wonderful about finding humor in the moment. On a superficial level, finding that must-have piece on sale and getting an even bigger markdown at the register. That’s pretty awesome, too.

Fun events coming up?

Yes! Join myself , Maya of Charmingly Styled, and Cait of Pretty and Fun for a spring shopping event at kate spade new york on Oak Street on Thursday, May 22 from 6-9pm!

Thanks for letting us know a little more about you, Maria! If you're interested in following along with Maria's blogging adventures, follow along below! 

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