As many of my longtime readers know, ever since I started my blog I try and squeeze in a few interviews with my fellow bloggers and creatives each year. Well, this year, I am trying something a little different and am trying to have a new face on here each month! I have decided to do this because I feel it is incredibly important to stay connected in the community and feel that it is a great way to meet other bloggers and artists, as well as provide my readers with some new content to check out!
This month, my first interview of 2018, I'm thrilled that I had the opportunity to interview a fellow blogger and Pittsburgher, Terra McBride. For those of you who do know know Terra, she is the face behind the fashion and lifestyle blog, Love Nothing More, and she is honestly one of my personal favorite bloggers. For one, her writing style is open, relaxed and incredibly welcoming, and of course like any fashion blogger, she has killer style. But that's enough of me talking about her, so let's get to the interview and you can see all of these things for yourself!
Terra McBride: Love Nothing More
Bree Fesh: When did you first develop a love of style and an interest in the fashion world?
Terra McBride: Fashion has been a huge interest of mine since I was quite young. I would spend countless hours pouring over my Sassy and YM magazines, trying to figure out how to copy the fashions and hairstyles on display. I distinctly remember watching every episode of MTV’s House of Style with Cindy Crawford and Fashion Television on VH1 with Jeanne Beker. That’s how I first discovered André Leon Talley, as a matter of fact. He was often interviewed for Fashion TV after shows.
I started sewing when I was six years old. But I never considered fashion as a career path. I’ve never thought of myself as very creative and when I was younger, I thought I’d grow up to be a psychologist. So I kept fashion at arms length. Until a friend shared a style blog with me. The blogger was based in NYC. I searched for something similar in Pittsburgh. There wasn’t anything like that at the time, so I decided someone needed to show off our beautiful city and feature the boutiques we had available. And my first blog was born!
BF: When did you first start your blog, Love Nothing More, and what made you decide to start it?
TM: I’ve been blogging since 2009. But I took a hiatus between 2013-2015 when I changed jobs and I was asked to quit. To be honest, I was burned out. With my old blog, I carried my camera with me and took my own pictures with a tripod and a remote every single day. After I had my daughter, I just wasn’t loving it anymore. The break was a great opportunity to reset my priorities and figure out exactly how I wanted to approach things the second time around.
I started Love Nothing More in December 2015 because I missed the community and the outlet. It’s so exciting to see how fashion and personal style blogging has changed. Hopefully my voice adds a unique perspective to the conversations happening!
BF: You mention in your "About Section" that you moved to Pittsburgh, at first just as a pit stop, back in 2006. So I'm curious, where are you originally from, where were you initially headed, and what made you decide to stay here in the 'Burgh?
TM: My hometown isn’t so far from Pittsburgh. I’m originally from Meadville, PA, straight up I-79 and just south of Erie. I always felt like a big city girl stuck in a small town though, so I knew I’d leave at some point. And I did. I lived in Washington D.C. for a couple years working for the Pennsylvania governor as part of the lobbying office down there. Eventually, I moved back to Meadville for graduate school. I always told myself that move back would be temporary. So my intent was to head back to D.C. after grad school to be with my friends there, but I bumped into an old high school classmate who stole my heart.
His company had plans to open an office in the Pittsburgh region and they wanted him to spearhead that initiative. I figured Pittsburgh was a step in the right direction. So when the time was right, I started searching for jobs. I landed at the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership and, because my work was deeply involved with the rejuvenation of downtown, I convinced CJ to get an apartment in Downtown Pittsburgh. We were entrenched in the city experience from the beginning. We took full advantage of our central access to everything Pittsburgh had to offer. We could feel that something special was happening here. When our friends from Chicago and Philly would visit, their reactions were always shock, because they thought Pittsburgh was dirty and boring. But it was quite the opposite. It didn’t take long for me to get over myself and recognize that Pittsburgh suited us quite well. It was just big enough and just far enough from my hometown to satisfy my need for city life. And it was just small enough and close enough that we could stay connected to family and build an amazing life for ourselves. Eventually, CJ asked me to marry him on the rooftop deck of our apartment building with the city rising up on one side and the river flowing on the other. Saying yes to him and Pittsburgh are my two best life decisions!
BF: Also in your about section, you mention if we were to meet in a pub, one thing you would want to talk about is the best vegan meal each of us have ever had. So, I'm curious, are you vegan? And if so, what is one of your favorite dishes, because about the only vegan thing I can make is a salad!
TM: The best way to describe my choice is that since 2009, I’ve followed a strict, vegan-inspired diet. I still wear silk, wool and leather though. I have a few favorite vegan dishes but two of my go-tos are Oh She Glow’s Mushroom Risotto with Caramelized Onions and Protein Power Goddess Bowl. Both are hearty and flavorful, which makes them incredibly satisfying. Plus anytime I hear the word caramelized or goddess, I tend to get on board.
BF: Though your blog's focus is primarily on fashion, it also covers topics ranging from health and lifestyle as well. This being said, what is your favorite topic (or favorite topics) to write about?
TM: This is a difficult question to answer because it really depends on my mood and what I’m experiencing in my life at the time. I guess my favorite thing to write about is my honest life. What am I wearing? What is life with my daughter like? How am I trying to be my best self? How am I succeeding? How am I failing? I hope that what I write resonates with people but in the end, all that matters is I put my real self out there.
BF: I love that you have a list of some of your favorite blogs on your page, it’s quite refreshing to see bloggers support one another with how competitive our field can sometimes be. So, in your opinion, why do you feel it is important for bloggers to build one another up within the community?
TM: Well, that’s how things were when the fashion blogger community started. When you made the decision to blog, you did it because you wanted an outlet for your thoughts, a place to be creative and to meet like-minded people. Not because you wanted to be a professional blogger. Having a blogroll was a way to say, “I enjoy how these people present their perspectives and I think you should know them.”
We need to lift each other up for lots of reasons, not the least of which is because it’s the right thing to do. I believe it’s important to embrace the full spectrum of perspectives on fashion, culture and style. It enriches our broader community. And you know what? There are lots of points of view that I appreciate even though they’re not my own. I think it’s rather arrogant to believe I could offer everything my readers could ever want on my blog. Sharing other blogs means I get to serve up a richer experience for my own little Love Nothing More community! Plus, I love the idea of amplifying the voices of other people.
BF: With the last question in mind, do you have any advice for bloggers that are just starting out? If so, what is it?
TM: My advice has always been the same: BE YOURSELF. Authenticity has been and always will be the secret to long-term success. If you wouldn’t enjoy something as a reader, then don’t do it to yours. Don’t work with brands that you wouldn’t use your own dollars to support. And don’t be afraid to say no when something isn’t a good fit.
BF: Considering you run a style blog, you obviously have killer fashion sense (and I admittedly stalk your Instagram and get a slight case of wardrobe envy every time), so who are some of your biggest style inspirations?
TM: You flatter me! Thank you :)
My answer to this question seems to morph daily. I’m such a Gemini. Ok, soooo… my biggest style inspirations right now include but are not limited to Michelle Williams (that hair!), Jacey Duprie, Geri Hirsch, Nicole Richie, Blaire Eadie and Krystal Bick.
BF: From reading your blog, I noticed that you also love Stranger Things, being a huge fan of the show myself, I just have to ask, who is your favorite character?! (Mine is Hopper!)
TM: Best question ever. Yeah, I love Hopper! And before I rewatched the entire series I probably would have agreed with you. But when I went back to the beginning, knowing where Joyce Byers ends up, her character arc is the one I appreciate the most. On the surface she seems like a quivering, helpless mom. But she was fighting, alone, to keep people focused on what she knew to be true. She always believed her son was alive. When she told Hopper kids bullied him and called him gay, Hopper says, “Is he?” And her response without pause is, “HE’S MISSING.” She never gave up on him. She hovers over him in Season 2 but come on! Of course she does. She kept communication with Will open and got him to explain what he was seeing so that she could help him. I see myself in Joyce as a mom and as a strong woman. JOYCE BYERS 2020!
BF: Recently, you wrote a guide on how to shop for luxury items at discounted prices online, which was super helpful by the way, and I urge those reading this to check it out here. So, if you have one, what is your favorite luxury steal that you're styling right now? (Personally, I'm super envious of the Helmut Lang blazer.)
TM: Oh, thank you so much! That blazer just won’t quit. It’s got to be my most valuable piece in my closet, especially when you consider price per wear. Second to that is probably my red Céline sunglasses that I snagged from eBay. They always make me feel sophisticated, even in jeans and a t-shirt.
BF: Last but not least, since I know you're a music lover, what are the top five bands you think everyone should give a listen to right now?
TM: AWESOME question!
My Top Five Bands RN…
Post Animal - Since we’re talking about Stranger Things, Joe Keery (Steve) used to be in this band. He had to quit because he couldn’t dedicate the time to touring. Boo. Start with “When I Get Home.”
Faces On Film - Start with “Daytime Nowhere”
Night Moves - Start with “Only To Live In Your Memories” and move on to “Carl Sagan”
Cool Ghouls - Start with “The Mile”
Natural Child - Start with “DTV”
What do you think of Terra's advice, and which look of her's here is your favorite? Let's chat about it in the comments below or you can tweet me at @StarkRavingChic!