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Meet Jamerly De La Cruz (BTC x ManeAttire Collaboration Part 1)

July 20, 2017

BTC got to chat with fashion and identity blogger, Jamerly De La Cruz to learn more about her journey as a writer and fashionista!

 

 

Jamerly is the face, founder and writer behind ManeAttire! Jamerly and I met at Skidmore College, where I graduated and where Jamerly will be entering her senior year this fall! Go girl!

 

Jamerly and I weren't super close in college, as we were a few years apart, but her style and quiet, genuine spirit always caught my eye. I truly have enjoyed watching her grow as a beautiful young lady and creative. I remember first meeting her and thinking she was shy, but during our few years together at Skidmore I saw her boldly come into herself with both style and confidence. She started to model with photographer friends and share her writing. To see her now launching look books, fantastic writing from the heart, build social media presence and partnerships has been SO inspiring.

 

I don't remember how the conversation started, but a few months ago Jamerly and I were talking and it came up in conversation that we both wanted to do a collaborative project and interview each other. Jamerly had already launched her blog mane-attire.com, and I was prepping for the launch of mine (thanks for visiting btw!) We planned to follow up once the summer started and make it happen. And here we are now!

 

Last month Jamerly and I met for an interview and photoshoot downtown in the Lower East Side! We had such an amazing time catching up and experimenting. Even met some encouraging strangers who were interested in our work! Also can I just say how BEAUTIFUL of a model she is! Literally every photo was perfect!

 

I'm so excited to finally be launching this project that's been in the works for months now!

 

This is PART ONE of a three part series!

  • Part one (today) will include my interview and photography of Jamerly

  • Part two (next week) will include Jamerly's interview and photography of me

  • Part Three (next next week) will include extra outtakes and photography from our shoot

 

Let's get started! Read how Jamerly is LIVING LIFE BEYOND THE CLOUDS below!

 

 

  • Name?

    • Jamerly De La Cruz

 

  • Where are you from?

    • Brooklyn, NY

 

  • How do you identify?

    • Latinx and a dreamer

 

 

  • What are your passions and interests?

    • My passion is in anything art form that relates to the bigger issues in our society. My blog is an example of that as well as my attire and my hair, as I do consider them art forms. My interests lie in bringing communities together and highlighting social issues through positivity.

 

  • How did you find your passions and how did they blossom?

    • I won’t say I found my passions, I kind of discovered them. Before I even started my blog I was investing in it because I knew it was something I liked doing and it interested me. I decided to take an online class on blogging and branding during winter break and six months later I had a blog. What most people don’t know is that I have been blogging since 2013. I use to upload my rants and emotional issues on Wordpress when I thought the world wasn’t listening to me, so I think having that experience led me to believe that I wanted to take it a step further. Then from there I noticed that people enjoyed it and I loved doing so I tried my best to produce content and it kind of just took off from there like most things that foster from love.

 

  • What is the mission with your work?

    • My mission is to inspire people of color to focus on their passions and take a risk on their dreams. I try to tell narratives on my blog not just to share my stories and my difficulties, but to create a platform where these stories of vulnerability are embraced so that no one feels alone. I like to give tips on style that may fit various people and show looks that are not really looks that we see in fashion or in fashion bloggers so that people could possibly look at their clothes different and make the most of what is in their closet. That’s why I think expand your closet is my favorite segment and I would like to grow it a lot more.

 

 

 

  • What has been a huge breakthrough in your creative/entrepreneurial journey?

    • I think one of the biggest breakthrough is just hearing the support from my friends and family and just how much people are enjoying my blog because the scariest thing for me was constantly thinking about if my work even mattered. So knowing that it does is the biggest breakthrough.

 

  • What has been the biggest struggle in your creative/entrepreneurial journey?

    • The biggest struggle is multitasking. A lot of times when it comes to the beginning stages of the creative journey, there are a lot of part time jobs that have to be taken to support that dream and it is often difficult to keep up in making that become a reality. So sometimes I would get caught up in work and school work and would not have any new content for the next upcoming weeks, but I knew it was something important because my blog was something I always came back to. What has it taught you?  My blog has taught me that hard work and passion could co exist. As a young girl I was always encouraged to go for the safe job, but knowing that does not have to be a reality for me means so much. Through my blog I can complete one of my dreams of doing a job that does not feel like work. I think it makes living easier that way.

 

  • How do you practice self love and rejuvenation when you're overwhelmed by your work?

    • I usually listen to music and provide myself time to cry. I am definitely a cryer and I think it’s important for my human stability. On days I am feeling ugly or am not feeling my outfit, I always try to speak to myself and remind myself of how beautiful I am. My favorite mantra is “I is smart, I is kind, I is important” from The Help. This line really helps me remind myself that I matter and my work can create an impact and so that keeps me going.

 

  • What investments have you made for yourself?

    • The most investments I have made for myself is in my blog. There is so much money that goes into it; the website, the equipment, the materials, the software. The bigger I want to get, the more I have to invest although I am trying to get into the think smarter not harder and to me that means finding ways I can get the quality content I want and save money.

 

  • What projects are you working on or have coming up?

    • I am currently working on a documentary/exhibition called, “I am my Hair.” It is a four person series that focuses on the emotional value behind transitioning and how it really changes your life when you do. I think too often people just think of it as hair, but it is sooo much more than that. It is a self empowerment journey and I wanted to reflect and showcase that through this project. The exhibition will encompass local artists from NYC as well as performances, all of them young individuals as I believe we are the future and there is not enough light shown on the wonderful everyday acts of resistance we do through various forms of art.

 

  • What advice can you offer to our who are hesitant to dive head first in their dreams or struggling to balance it all?

    • I think most times when people do not dive into their dreams it is because they fear what is to come, feel that they have too much on their plate, or feel that they are not good enough. So, I am here to say that you are good enough, in fact you are great and no one else can execute your ideals the way you can and the world needs your impact. There will never be a better time than now, waiting for the perfect time is unrealistic because there will never be a perfect time. But there will be moments in time of your journey to accomplishing your dreams that you will look at as a perfect moment. Too much on your plate? That is everyone, life always gives us a million and one things to pay attention but once we start focusing on our dreams those things are so minimal compared to the great future we start to see.

 

  • How do you live beyond the clouds?

    • By pushing myself every single day. I am always proud of the work I do, but I am never content because I always want to be better. My constant reflections and evaluations, whether that means learning to take better pictures, editing, showing rather than telling when writing, wanting to read work of other bloggers, wanting to be more informed with the world, etc. really push me to live beyond the clouds because it pushes me to live beyond my reality.

 

  • How can we follow/support your journey?

    • The greatest thing would be to subscribe to my blog at mane-attire.com if you are genuinely interested and ready to embark on this journey with me and every other MANE.

 

  • What is your favorite genre of movie?

    • I like all types of movies as long as there are good storylines that make me view the world different, a reflection of social issues, or realign my thought process. Some of my favorites are Dope, Inception, Divergent, and Before I Fall. Oh and Happy Feet! It just always makes my heart smile plus it has a great message. Sometimes people are different but that doesn’t make them any less valuable to a community, in fact being different may lead to going on different paths and discovering new realities; like when Mambo discovered that humans are real.

 

 

 

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