We had the good fortune of connecting with Monica Carter and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Monica, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I have always been one to think, what’s my purpose here on this earth? What am I here for? From knee high, especially in the Black community we’re always taught graduate, go to college, get a degree, and go get your dream job in which you work for 25 years and then you’ll be able to retire.

As I got older it dawned on me, I never wanted that. Not that it was something wrong with it because many people find this to be their way, but I wanted different. I wanted to go against the grain. I wanted to be able to share the gift that God gave me with the world. And why hide that, why limit that with what society says I should do.

I wanted freedom, I wanted to be able to go and come as I pleased. I wanted to not miss those important moments with my daughter, because she was most important. That was and still is my though process.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m a stylist/creator, I create looks in my head first and I use style-boards to help me see the visual, and I use people to make my outfits come to life. Fashion has always come easy to me. When I first started I knew nothing about how to get myself to where the world could see my style, my creations. Yes, social media is the go to now, but I wasn’t use to using social media especially since I’m a shy person. I felt like I had to open myself up to the world. That part was hard for me. Because then you wonder about the people who have already built a name for themselves. You’re thinking what are they going to say? Like who’s this newbie on the block?. But in my mind it’s enough space for all of our gifts and all our talents. We all bring something unique. And I know I do. People see my styling and they’re like wow I never would have thought to put this outfit together or they say things like can you be my Stylist? It makes me love my gift even more. You know I’m a stylist and I’m sensitive about my ish…. in my Badu voice.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’m from Birmingham, Alabama so of course good eating has it place here. I mean it is the south right. So I have to see what mood my friend is in. If they’re feeling boujee then we can get dressed up, heels and all, and go downtown Birmingham and eat in the uptown spots like Southern Bar &Grill or Texas de Brazil. Or, we’ll head to 280 to the Village Tavern or Perry’s Steakhouse.

Now if she’s feeling more on the laid back side then we’ll get cute and go kick it at Urban Smoke or better yet my sister’s grandma house(Ma). And you’re
going to get some good eating, good drinks, and some belly aching laughing. And you’re definitely going to become a part of the family.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I have a girl group in which we called ourselves The Sisters because that’s what we are. Blood couldn’t have made us any closer. They are my everything. They are really my biggest fans. They have kept me going, they have held my hand as I gave birth to my dream. They were right there telling me to push, telling me I can do it. That’s love to me, that’s support to me. The kind that’s genuine. The kind that can’t be faked.

So to Catt, Ro, Quon, Meg I love each of you ladies to life. You all are definitely the definition of Black Girl

Website: iflookscouldsteal.com

Instagram: thee_beautybandit or slaybymonicarenee

Facebook: Thee_beautybandit

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutAtlanta is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.