This is the woman who Marie Denee, owner and editor-in-chief of The Curvy Fashionista writes for, and the inspiration behind her “Curvy. Confident. Chic” blog! From fashion and style, to hair and beauty, to shopping resources, to lifestyle and celebrity, to the latest in tech, the plus size woman can find everything she needs to look great and feel confident. In our December COCOBlogger of the Month interview, Marie gives us the scoop on how she got her start in blogging, how she describes her signature style, what’s on her holiday wish list, and what she thinks the biggest misconception is about curvy fashion.
In 3-4 sentences, tell us a bit about who you are and what you do.
I am a goofy, silly, playful plus size blogger who happened into this as a career! I am a bit of a nerd who has been blessed to do what I love. I have a passion for sharing and showing the plus size woman the options she has and showing her how to put it all together to put her best curve forward! My blog provides this platform!
What prompted you to start The Curvy Fashionista?
You know, this was just supposed to be a secondary thing. I wanted a boutique, so I started this as a place to share what I was finding, to put all of my resources, and to tell my brand's story. Well, that changed quickly and it evolved into a place where I became that girlfriend, sharing with you finds and giving tips on how to put it all together! Once I lost my day job on Friday the 13th of March 2009, I never looked back. I tried to get a 9-5, but the economy at that time? This site became something I saw growing. Into what? I didn't know...but I had faith, nerve, and drive.
What has been the most rewarding aspect of blogging? What keeps you inspired to keep creating content and posting?
You know, as much as it is rewarding to read or receive emails and notes from others about how my words or what I have done has impacted them, currently MY GROWTH as a woman and business owner has given me pause. Being able to stand on my own two feet and look around at what I have created? I feel so blessed. Seeing my personal growth, and overcoming my OWN fears and insecurities (still working on this)--this has been such a blessing!
What keeps me going? My faith and my belief that sky is the limit! I do not know where this desire and drive to think bigger, to challenge myself to do more, and to leave a legacy comes from, but once you have had the freedom to create your own, you will always find ways to express that creative freedom! But also, those emails and notes form the readers--they let me know that it IS for something special. Something bigger than myself!
What has been your proudest blogging moment to date?
Right now... THIS MOVE to Atlanta! I recently took the biggest leap of faith by moving across the country, away from all of my family! I am so proud of myself. To leap so boldly and blindly! LOL I am officially GROWN and it feels sooooo good. Haha.
Let's talk style and beauty. How would you describe your signature style?
You know... it is evolving. If you would have asked me at the top of last year, it would be completely different but I find myself right now loving a polished edge--both feminine and edgy. Midi skirts, daring heels, lace and leather. I like the juxtaposition and the contrast of it all. Still fine tuning it!
If you had 2 hours to pick out an outfit from head to toe, where would you shop and why?
Does my closet count? I have sooo much to wear and to rock out in, yet never enough places to go! But a store?? Hmm... Probably City Chic right now... although that would require me to be in Cali--but they have that balance of edgy and sweet, and a variety of options to play in, depending on my mood and the occasion. In Atlanta, I think Nordstrom, because I can get my whole life in one fell swoop! Shoes included.
What 3 products are in your Ultimate Beauty Arsenal--those Holy Grail items you just can't live without?
BB Cream or CC Creams from Kiss, SheaMoisture, or Iman Cosmetics--they are on rotation for me and give me a natural clean look!
My Eyeliners! Love a pop of color, a hit of drama, or a playful addition and these Urban Decay Liners give me everything!
Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Gel. Hello brows! What a better way to frame your face, fake a perfect complexion, and pull everything all together than with a defined brow? I never leave home without it!
What's on your holiday 'style & beauty' wish list?
I want a leather midi skirt--both a fitted one and an A-line one. I have this obsession with leather and finding the perfect skirt. I saw one once on this lady--a midi wrap leather skirt and went on the hunt for it! Never in plus though :( In addition to this skirt, I want a pair of black high-heeled thigh-high boots--for larger calves. NEED this. Stuart Weitzman is close, but I haven't had the pleasure of seeing if they would fit.
What is the biggest misconception about curvy fashion, and how do you combat it?
That we are in transition. Some women are actually content where they are at, go figure. They work out, they eat right, and they are perfectly content at their size. They do not buy into the idea of having to diet their life away but rather they love themselves, or are learning to, and want to look amazing while doing it!
On the blog, this is why I showcase other plus size bloggers, women, and include art that celebrates our shapes and life!! I have included a column, His Two Cents, that shines a light on what he thinks, as I would have a lot of comments about what a man is thinking. So I reached out to a man who admires the curves on a woman. I also include a hashtag on Instagram where women can tag themselves and I share a few faves on my FB page and on my blog! I think it is all about listening to my reader and giving women and men what they are looking for and need!
Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
This month is my SIXTH anniversary! My blog turns six--can you believe that? Too cool! Anyhoo, normally I would have my anniversary party, but with my move and everything, I have tabled that but will be celebrating all month long with giveaways! Wheeeee!
Get into all of Marie Denee’s curvy fab content at TheCurvyFashionista.com and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube.