I read Alexandra before I met her — which is to say, I first read her words; her composition, her literature, before I witnessed her appearance.
And to be quite frank, it’s pretty surreal when the person behind such eloquent words, is just as beautiful photographed; let alone standing in front of you.
You know how one may begin to develop these anxiously pending ambitions to meet someone once they’ve stumbled upon that person’s greatness; be it beauty, intellect or natural gift? (in her case being all of the above) Well, that ‘anxiously pending ambition’ — desire if you will, to meet Alex Elle face-to-face, never went away for me.
After reading a few of her poems, haiku’s and words alike, I hastily followed her on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr.
And from there I was given a daily reminder of her words and virtue as a woman.
On some days her words offered refuge or confirmation. On others they gave birth to inspiration and new found peace of mind.
Every opportunity provided to me to read her writing felt like a gift, and I couldn’t help but wanting to thank her each time.
Months flew by, fast-forwarding to the ending of this year’s summer, and what do you believe I came across?
Ladies and gentlemen, and children of all ages reading this post right now, I would first like you to know that never in all my years have I been diagnosed with the crazies, and I own not a single straight-jacket. However, upon seeing this post, I remember being in the midst of Herald Square in New York on a busy Friday afternoon, screaming aloud at the photo displayed on my phone screen.
But, acceptable behavior for something like this?
Yes, of course!
When arriving home, I did my research, checked the information provided and continued to prance around with sheer excitement!
But before I allowed myself to get too lost in high-emotion, I thought.. “for $50 (which is both a little and a lot in New York expenses) I want to make the most of this experience.”
Because I was sure I wasn’t the only Alexandra Elle admirer out there, I understood that many of the other women attending this event would be going to meet and speak with her too.
Thus, in reference of a suggestion made to me by my mother, I took a moment to compose a formal email to Ms. Alexandra to ask her permission to interview her one-on-one while in attendance of the Big Hair and Brunch.
Upon writing to Alexandra, I prepared myself for rejection — she’s a busy lady and after 3 hrs of an event that day, I was sure she would’ve had to jet off elsewhere that Saturday.
I expected a quick, “Oh, thank you for writing to me, but unfortunately…” excetra-excetra.
However, this was not the case as she not only responded warmly to my email, but made an effort to help make it work, making it that more possible for us to connect.
As soon as I got the green light for the interview I called my mother (naturally), thanked her, started mentally going through what I could possibly wear for the occasion, and the rest — well, the rest is provided all for you below!
Big Hair and Brunch NY:
Inside of the attendees’ Goodie-Bags: Camille Rose (Full Size Product), Cantu Moisturizing Shampoo, Naturally Me (dot) com wide-tooth comb, hair accessories and so much more!
There were discussions held about products and natural hair, as well as heat free hair too! Giveaways, food, the whole sha-bang!
Interviewing: Alexandra Elle
I believe that the moment it hit me that this was all really happening — that I was merely seconds away from holding a conversation/personal interview with Alex, was when the event had ended and I walked up to her and said “Hello, Ms. Alex? Hi, I’m Alexandria..”
She looked at me with this genuine gleam of enthusiasm in her eyes and replied, “Ah! You made it!”
1. When do you believe your venture as a creative mind began?
A: I would have to say when I was 12. I received my first journal from my mom. I actually found it the other day with all of my little writings in it from when I was in middle school as a girl. And it just reminded me of all the trails and tribulations I went through at that age. And reading it made me want to go back to my old 12-13yr old self and say, “you’re going to be okay.”
My writing was truly my outlet at a young age.
And as far as my brands are concerned, like my jewelry, which is something I do full-time: My mom was a jewelry creator when I was growing up, so she planted that seed of creativity in me. And I would say that started in middle school; I’m 24 now and still loving making the jewelry which I sell.
2. What inspired you to embrace clean and healthy eating?
A: Well, I breast-feed my daughter until she was about 1 year of age, and I ate really clean and healthy around that time; though, I was still eating meat.
An now, I went vegetarian about a year and a half ago, and I embraced it because I really just wanted something different, you know?
And I wanted to give my body something good in return, which would also help get me through my day.
But it wasn’t always like that. Going through college I was eating a lot of fast-foods; eating just JUNK.
McDonalds-double-cheese-burgers-big-mac… It was just NASTY!
And I decided one day after getting really sick from a cheeseburger, “you know what? I’m just going to literally stop just eating meat!”
So, I did.
3. How did you first begin your own natural hair journey?
A: I started my natural hair journey in 2009, and I did the Big Chop. I decided that I wanted to stop getting relaxers.
“I’m going to do something different with my hair and for my hair.” I told myself.
I can honestly say that I would never go back, especially knowing what I know now, and being a natural hair blogger and doing my research, and raising an almost 6 year-old daughter who has curly hair.
I wouldn’t want it any other way; it all just seems like it makes sense.
4. Who is Alex Elle in 3 words?
I am a Mother. I’m a Leo. And I’m a Writer.
(That’s also in my twitter bio, too! *laughs* But yes, that is what I am.)
5. Where did the inspiration for your book, Words From A Wanderer, come from?
A: Ohh-my-gosh, it’s crazy! The book was released in May and over 1,000 copies have sold over the summer which is crazy, and such a blessing!
It came from people asking me to publish a book. I literally would just post my writings on Instagram and what not.
And people would say, “Listen, we need a compilation of ALL of this stuff!” So, I made one.
Now I’m working on book two.
My goal in life is to inspire women, especially young women of color. It’s a HUGE deal for me. And if I can touch somebody through writing, I’m going to do it! And I believe that this has been my grandest glory thus far.
6. Motherhood. What is that experience like for you?
A: As a lot of people know — I share this with no secret — I was a teen mom. I became pregnant at 17, and had my daughter at 18.
She has literally changed my life for the better.
She made me into a better person — a better woman — a stronger individual.
I really attribute a lot of my life change to her.
I am able to touch people because my daughter is the main person I want to experience me in my glory and me at my best.
And when I started demonstrating that and actually being a consciously better person — a better mother, everything else came full circle.
So, motherhood for me has been joyous.
And though it maybe didn’t happen at the time that it should have — I was very young — I still love and accept it.
But, I don’t encourage teen pregnancy. I encourage people to wait, or to practice safe sex.
Babies are expensive. Babies take patience..
And she’s not a baby anymore, she’ll be 6 — she’s in kindergarten!
It takes a lot of effort.
But it has been my biggest lesson, and she my greatest gift.
It originated from the idea that everyone was always thinking/saying that “good hair only comes from a certain type of texture.”
So, for me, good hair is healthy hair — that’s my motto; The Good Hair Blog: Where Good Hair is Healthy Hair.
And my hair, after I big chopped it, was the inspiration to a diary, which is how the blog started; as a diary.
I told my mom “I’m going to do this and document my hair journey.”
And I guess I began the blog at the right time because it EXPLODED!
SO MANY women were going natural at that time and needed resources, and I was one of the first blogs (not the first), but one of the first where people would say, “Oh, she has hair line mine,” and “oh, she tried these products too.” Honestly, it’s been such an awesome experience to help connect all these women. Like, seeing all these women here today — all that hair — all the colors — all the styles.. This is why I do stuff like this!
8. The most rewarding part of being all that you are?
..I’m still trying to figure out all that I am still; I haven’t really figured it all out yet.
I know that I was put here to help people.
I know that I was put here to use my struggle and my heartache and my hardships and my journey to help other women.
I was thinking the other day, “Who would’ve thought that the lost girl would end up being someone who helped other girls and women find themselves?”
So, I can’t really answer that question because I, myself am still evolving into who I am.
But I hope that I can continue to travel on the path that I am, which has been inspiring young women and bring them together so that we can create and bond — a sisterhood with each other.
9. Anything up and coming from Alex Elle that we should be on the look out for?
I’m going to be doing a book tour in New York; hopefully in January *crosses fingers*.
I’ll be heading to L.A in October for book signings and events. Southern University of Baton Rouge just booked me to come out and speak to the young women there and book sign as well — and all that great stuff. But, you know just that! (she says humbly.)
10. Where can we find you?
Words From A Wanderer:
“Words From A Wanderer is a timeless and beautiful compilation of notes and poetry. This book was created with hopes of uplifting and encouraging readers in many ways. There is a journal in the back of the book for readers and fellow writers to indulge in to keep the “conversation” going. Author, Alexandra Elle, wrote this book to shed light on the fact that indeed not all who wander are lost; some are simply still finding their way.”
Shop ALS – The Alex Elle Online Store
Shop ALS is a personal guilty pleasure of mine. And this guilty pleasure always strikes me when I know I should be saving money ^_^ Nevertheless, this is the shop of many wonderful things as created by Alexandra herself; in which everything sings artistic and creative!
Check it out here, or click the photo below to go to the specific item!
Alexandra has given a piece of herself to each of her readers so sincerely as I believe a writing should.
Thus, in some way I wanted to give back to the person who has given to me.
With glory being first to God, as always, I’d also like to give a boundless thank you to Alexandra.
Your words and writing and light has shone through to so many young women from all over.
Ones whom I know feel the exact gratitude which I do each time that we receive the goodness you have to offer.
This article-post is dedicated to not only the things you do, but who you are as a creative mind.
The experience of meeting you is on record in my book of life with a ribbon and bow because it was truly a gift to have met you.
May you continue to blossom and bloom into the virtuous woman that you are.
Your daughter has one of the greatest role models.
And for that, I am delighted to also see her grow with your guidance.
Hoping to cross paths with you again soon!
With Love and Many Blessings,