As the title suggests, hello and welcome to Styled By Madalyn Joy! I am so incredibly happy to have you all here to join me in this exciting new adventure!
Styled By Madalyn Joy is a fashion design blog that will document the design process and give you a behind the scenes look on creating garments from start to finish. This first post will be a little different since I am not wearing any of my designs but rather showcasing my personal style and daily uniform (classic black on black styled with denim, luxe faux fur, fine leather goods, and pops of red beauty details). This first post is a warm welcome to all you readers and is an oh so big thank you to the person who inspired me to finally start my own blog!
Maya McDonald of Charmingly Styled is an absolute girl boss and the sweetest, most amazing big sister I never had. I was Maya's blogger intern the summer of 2014 and I truly learned so much from her about the blogging world. She always encouraged me to start my own blog but quite frankly I was just too scared. I had no clue where to start, what my angle would be, or what I would even post about!
Fast forward two years and to be honest, I still am scared to start this blog! However, this time around it is the right mix of scared, excited, inspired, and determined. Maya has always believed in me and encouraged me to showcase my illustrations and designs. So I decided now is the time to go for it and use this blog as a platform to share my designs.
A couple weeks ago I was in Chicago visiting Maya and she snapped some pictures of me while we were out and about enjoying the perfect fall day. It was so great to be collaborating, but now both as bloggers! I thought, "What better way to kick off my blog than with a photo shoot with Maya!?" So thank you, Maya, for your encouragement, knowledge, wisdom, and kindness over the years and for believing in me as a blogger even before I knew that's what I wanted to be. I look forward to many more collaborations (and brunch dates and shopping sprees) in the future!
Also, a quick thank you to all of the people who encourage and support me on a daily basis and made this blog possible! Thank you to my boyfriend, Ben, my family (mom, dad, brother, sister, grandmas, cousins), my amazing friends (Courtney Pelot, Cassie Sterwald, Emma Conklin, Taylor Fredrick, Kelsey Knorr, Anna Bolwerk), my first sewing instructor and mentor, Nichole Schneider, my fellow designers for creating a supportive community (Sarah Nasgowitz, Eleanor Fink, Emma Conklin, Erin Schulenberg, Andie Gechtman) and finally to the blogging community that I am grateful and excited to be a part of!
Now that you know what inspired me to start my blog, what inspired you to start yours? Even if you don't have a blog, who inspires you on a daily basis? A family member or a close friend? Maybe a boss or a mentor? A celebrity? I think we all can agree Beyonce is the ultimate role model because let's be honest, she is Queen B after all. ;)
Also, I recently got the chance to sit down with Courtney Pelot, Miss Wisconsin 2016, to chat about my fashion designs and new blogging adventure. The interview is just below so make sure to scroll down and read it! If you want to check it out a different time, I also have it in the About section here on my website.
Please comment and share what YOU would like to see here on the blog whether that be a specific theme or inspiration or design. This blog is just as much about you as it is about me!
Thanks so much for stopping by and I cannot wait to hear from all of you!
Courtney Pelot, Miss Wisconsin 2016, interviewed Madalyn Joy about her fashion designs and new blogging adventure. Read below what the girls chatted about from design to beauty to personal style and all things fashion!
Courtney Pelot: Let us get started! Tell me, what made you want to be a designer? Was there a particular moment where it all clicked?
Madalyn Manzeck: The moment that I remember most distinctly was when I was 12 years old (6th grade) in the car with my mom. It somehow came up in conversation and she asked, “So you don’t know what fashion magazines are? You mean you've never heard of Vogue? Not even designers like Chanel, Dior and Versace?” And I just looked at her like she was speaking a foreign language; I had never heard of any of this! So a couple days later she went and bought me my very first Vogue magazine and I remember flipping through the glossy pages, thinking, "Wow, this is a whole other magical world that I had no idea about!" So my fate was sealed since then.
CP: What was the first garment you designed and constructed?
MM: The first garment I made was my prom dress junior year. I was 16-17, and I had worked on it for about 7 months. That was the first time I had really made a pattern to fit me with the help from my sewing instructor, Nichole. It was a red satin mermaid style gown with a lipstick print lining. I was inspired by old Hollywood glamour: Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe, sparkly diamonds, red lipstick—the whole essence of femininity and beauty. I was so proud when people asked, “Oh, where did you get your dress?” and I could proudly say that I had made it.
CP: You have a very distinct personal style and design aesthetic. Tell me about that and how that came to be?
MM: Well, when I was in preschool I thought I wanted to be a nun. Which was weird because I wasn’t even Catholic! So my mom was like “Ok, good for you. But, you’re not Catholic...” When I look back, it was really the nuns' habits (outfits) I loved. I was drawn to the pristine black and white look. I know it sounds ridiculous—why would a little four-year-old want to become a nun? It’s the funniest thing! I’ve always had a very classic, minimalist style. I’m trying to really take classics, but put a spin on them. For example, I really like Olivia Palermo because she does that. She’ll have a white button-down, but it’ll be a unique design or she’ll style it in a different way. So, I’m really trying to embody that mentality.
CP: What has been your biggest accomplishment to date in terms of designing?
MM: I would say that there are two things. The first one is the YMA Scholarship I won just because I worked so hard to get it. I learned about it a year before I could even apply for it and I worked really hard and kept bothering my professors, asking when could I apply for this. I was chosen by my professors and I won the scholarship so I got to go to New York and have an incredible experience at the gala. The YMA organization also helped me get my internship so that was all very exciting. I would also say my senior thesis collection: Madalyn Joy Lingerie. That was really exciting to just make a collection for the first time versus individual projects. Seeing your collection walk down the runway is a very rewarding experience.
CP: You have always been a go-getter and #girlboss. What made you decide to pursue this blog and go this route a few months after college life?
MM: I have always loved blogs. I think they’re a really unique platform to showcase your personal style, lifestyle, food, whatever it may be. For me, it’s my designs. I was always scared because everyone else had one; I didn’t know how to make mine unique and still there are millions of fashion blogs. What makes mine unique is that it is a way to show off my designs and have a creative outlet that is fun. So, if I decide to do something more corporate, I still have this creative outlet.
CP: Why is your personal brand and blog innovative and unique?
MM: Good question! My entire blog is dedicated to my designs so everything you see on the blog, minus a few speciality items and accessories, are my designs that I made myself. I also try to make my designs fanciful yet wearable. The whole point of this blog is to show that you can make this amazing woven poncho that took months to make, but it doesn’t have to just sit in your closet collecting dust. You can wear it every day with a turtleneck and jeans and show it off to the world. Essentially, my inspiration for this mentality comes from Anna Winter's first Vogue cover where she paired an exorbitantly expensive couture jacket with a pair of jeans and it was truly revolutionary.
CP: I’ve always been interested in schedules and what a productive #girlboss does to get things done. I’d love to learn what a day in the life of Madalyn Joy is like. Tell me what your typical daily schedule looks like.
MM: Well, I wake up and always coffee first. I always like to say “I drink the coffee and then I do things.” It’s so true. I then check in with everyone from Ben to my family and friends and see what they are up to that day. I check my emails and social media to see the news of the day and what’s all going on. Most times then in the morning I’ll do errands, whether that means going to Target or Joann’s to get fabric or supplies I need for different projects. I feel like I’m the most productive in the afternoon/evening work wise you know after I’m fed and not hangry. I spend time in my little sweatshop, work on sewing, whether that be estimates for projects, sketches, inspiration, talking to clients or just actual sewing. I like to work in blocks of time for sewing because I get more done that way. I’ll then have dinner and watch a little tv or Netflix or read a book. Again, I’ll check on social media to see what other people are wearing, doing, eating, traveling, etc.
CP: What’s your morning beauty routine? What products do you use every day?
MM: I recently just got more into beauty now that I have more time post-college. I have started Birchbox again. They really know what’s up and coming. I like Avene. It’s a skincare company based out of France. They have a thermal spring water spray. Fun fact: This thermal spring water spray helps with sensitive skin and burns. So when the Chicago fire happened, they sent their products to patients there. They have this whole skincare line that I found through Birchbox. I fell in love with their facial mist and also a serum because it’s lightweight and helps with sensitive skin. I also recently learned that you should start using eye cream in your 20s. I use an eye cream from Acure; it’s all organic, all natural. I’m really trying to get rid of all parabens and plastics because I have this irrational, yet rational, fear of getting cancer. And of course, makeup. I really like my new Diorshow mascara, Stila matte red lipstick, Nars blush, and my lip enhancing balm from Jouer that I love.
CP: How about your nighttime routine? Any special products you use?
MM: I always like to shower at night. I use the face wash from Nars and I typically put my serum on at night in addition to items from the Beautycounter collaboration with Target. It is a facial moisturizer and eye cream and I like to let both moisturize overnight.
CP: What keeps you motivated and inspired to work hard and get ahead?
MM: I’ve been having a struggle with this recently since I’m not in school anymore and I don’t have the motivation of deadlines. Since having the epiphany that I wanted to start this blog, I have been more determined. I think it’s very important to have projects you love, even if that’s outside of your work, because you need to have things that you’re passionate about.
CP: Ok, now I want to know some of your favorites.
MM: Tom Ford
CP: Coffee shop (NYC)
MM: Trattoria Stefano in Sheboygan
CP: Brunch spot
MM: Café 1505 in Mequon
MM: My new Henri Bendel monogramed Rivington tote
MM: Can I pick three? The trio: Karlie Kloss, Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid
CP: I have to ask: Miss Wisconsin ☺
MM: Courtney Pelot, Miss Wisconsin 2016, of course!