Welcome to the first edition of “Not Your Average” Style files. This is where we get into the lives and closets of some of the most stylish women on social media. I get an opportunity to go a little deeper than the pictures and get into the persona’s, thoughts and views on style, their place in the fashion industry and what matters most. Our first Q&A we sat down with Jezra Mathews the Guidance Counselor and plus model from Brooklyn New York. We get into everything concerning her life as a plus size model and how she really feels about the Fashion industry, check it out!
Reese B: First things first. Have you always been into fashion? Has fashion always been your thing?
Jezra_M: I really don’t study fashion; I look for things that compliment my body. I have never been one of those people that buy tons of magazines, and follow a particular trend. But I do love clothes and clothing that compliments me and my style.
Reese B: What made you want to become a plus size model?
Jezra_M: I’ve always enjoyed being in front of the camera and pictures is everything to me. I believe it send a very positive message that “yes” you can be big and still look good in your clothing, and “yes” you can rock out in pictures. My desire is to become a counselor, and I want to build young women’s confidence. So I took social media as a way to express myself. I started to get people from all over the world saying things like you inspired me to wear skirts and to switch up my hair. For me, that showed I had to continue pursuing modeling.
Reese: How would you describe your personal style?
Jezra_M: My main concern is comfort! It has to be something I feel comfortable in, and then I think about things like what the weather might be.
Reese: What is your take on style compared to fashion? And do you feel that style should mimic the current time or just be a reflection of what you like?
Jezra_M: Fashion is more commercial, while style is inside of you or something that you create. It’s your own invention of who you are. It should be a reflection of you at that time. What people don’t understand is this: what’s for me may not be for you and what’s for you may not be for me.
Reese B: How do you feel about the current state of the Plus size Industry, Do you think this is a great time for us?
Jezra_M: I’m still in the learning process of the industry, so I won’t say I know it all. I believe there are great aspects and not so great aspects. What I have noticed is some of the clothing from certain boutiques, especially on Instagram are of poor quality and are a bit overpriced. Because there are so many new boutiques, you might not get clothing that will last you past a night. I have gotten great pieces through Instagram, but I also shop EVERYWHERE. I don’t limit myself.
Reese B: How important is your confidence in the way you carry yourself?
Jezra_M: It’s very important; I know that what I wear is a reflection of me. How I dress has the potential to inspire so many people. When I walk out my house the message I want to express is be confident at whatever size you might be. Confidence is inside of you; but you have to believe in yourself.
Reese B: Where do you shop for under garments? Do you believe in shape wear?
Jezra_M: My go to places for under garments are Lane Bryant, Intimacy, and Macy’s. I believe there are a time and a place for shape wear. If I’m wearing a body con dress, I believe it’s necessary, I’m not trying to look thin obviously, but I want to look neat. But there are times where I don’t need it so I don’t wear one. It comes down to wanting to look neat, so there is a time and a place.
Reese B: Does your family embrace you and your size?
Jezra_M: For the most part I get full support from my family, but we all have that one family member that ALWAYS has something to say; but that’s where that confidence in yourself comes in, and I don’t allow it to shake me.
Reese B: Have you always worn your hair natural? Does it inspire how you dress as well?
Jezra_M: I have always been natural. I actually started to lock my hair the first year of college. But it doesn’t affect how I dress.
Reese B: Do you think you’re embraced more in certain environments because you’re natural?
Jezra_M: It depends on, because if we go to a hip hop event, no one would care. But certain events where the majority of the people are natural, a woman with relaxed hair could feel out of place.
Reese B: Do you prefer on line shopping or in-store shopping? What are some of your favorite brands?
Jezra_M: I prefer to shop in the store. Every company size runs differently so I prefer the in-store experience. But there are exceptions—one thing I buy online is shoes.
Reese B: What are some of your fall essentials?
Jezra_M: Hats, scarfs, dark lips, boots, and leggings.
Reese B: What are some reassure things you tell yourself every day?
Jezra_M: What the difference between me and a smaller woman? If they can pull that off why can’t I? It’s the simple idea that we can all look good collectively.
Reese B: Dear fashion Industry?
Jezra_M: When will you take the plus size industry seriously? We should be included in the Merceds Benz Fashion Week. When we’re there, I’ll know we have a voice.
Reese B: I’m not your average because…
Jezra_M: Because I’m Jezra and I don’t follow trends. I do what I want.
If you want to check out what Jezra_M is up, and follow her as she continues the mission to inspire, follow her:
@Jezra_M on Instagram
JezraM+ on Facebook
JezraM.com on the internet