Southern In the City – Meet Alex McLean

Mar 19 2014

by Whitney Long

I recently spoke with Lexington, KY native Alex McLean , and would love for you to meet her, too! Our Southern gone Yankee fashionista friend is now living in New York City and is the creative mind behind the fashion blog Lex What Wear.

Though she loves her adopted city, you can tell this true Southern belle carries a lot of the South with her no matter what her physical address. She was kind enough to tell us a little about herself, her life in the big city and share some great finds and favorites tips for a New York jaunt…

Why the move to NYC and how long have you been here?

Moving to New York has as been a dream of mine since I was very young. All of the years of playing dress up in my Mom’s closet finally transformed from a 5-year-old’s fantasy to a young adult’s reality. I knew it was possible to pack up my things, leaving a life full of happiness behind, but only if I pushed myself mentally, physically, and emotionally. A leap of faith this large takes guts for a Southern gal like me. To be honest, I wasn’t sure how I’d handle a move from small town Kentucky to the streets of Manhattan.

Before I moved to NYC, my entire life was all-Kentucky. I grew up in the horse capital of the world in Central Kentucky and went to Western Kentucky University where I studied public relations and marketing – and home of Big Red, the now-world-famous mascot!

A year later, I am 100-percent certain my life is heading in the direction that God has planned for me, and I can proudly say that I finally feel like I’m “making it.” I’ve surprised myself with my stick-to-it-iveness and I am finally seeing the hard work pay off. I have recently accepted a job as an account executive at Haute Hippie – my first big step into the fashion industry and I’m enjoying every single minute of it. I am still managing my full-time fashion blog and that helps keep me somewhat level headed and grounded.

My style spotting and fashion blog, which I started almost two years ago, also reminds me of why I am so passionate about fashion! I have had an incredible amount of support through each journey. I would have to say that my blog has not only instilled confidence in my everyday life, but it has opened up my eyes to a sense of creativity I never knew I had. It is definitely my mojo and will continue to be as long as this NYC adventure lasts.

What do you miss most about living in the South?

My family and friends and a well-balanced meal. My mother is a saint. Her words of wisdom, endless encouragement, and unconditional love keep me going every day. I would also have to say that I miss a southern gentleman. You seriously can’t beat a guy who opens the door for you and treats you like a lady across the board!

The only place better than NYC is:

The back roads of Midway and Woodford County in Central Kentucky. It’s some of the most breathtaking landscape in the world, and it reminds me of the value of growing up in a small town.

24 hours in the city – three must-do’s:

1. Go shopping on 5th Avenue – even if it’s only window shopping.

2. Eat an abundance of the following – pizza, cheesecake and Shake Shack

3. See the lights – they are so inspiring. Go to a rooftop or the top of the Rock, or the top of the Empire State Building. It may seem touristy but just do it. Once you look over this city, you’ll see how truly beautiful and magical it is.

Secret only a local knows:

Perfect lazy Saturday: Enjoying a light lunch in the middle of Central Park by yourself.

New York Favorites Speed-Round:

Southern BreakfastSouthern Hospitality

Bar – 200 Orchard

Broadway ShowOnce

Clothing StoreZARA

Furniture/InteriorsFishs Eddy

Antique Store – White Trash

Thrift ShopHousing Works

Whitney Long, co-founder of The Southern C and contributing editor for Southern Living, is always in a New York state of mind. In this series, she gets to live, eat and shop vicariously through her subjects and friends she has met on The Southern C – The Social Network of the South. Her wallet and her husband are most appreciative.

Meet more Southerners in the City:

Hannah Goff

Mary Dell Harrington

Natalie Broulette

Frances Bailey


Whitney Long View More Blog Posts from this Author

Whitney Long is co-founder of The Southern C and The Southern C Summit. Mama x 4, wife x 1. Entrepreneur, thinker, doer, writer, researcher, believer. Enjoys working alongside creative entrepreneurs to build community while supporting established and upcoming brands. Hobbies include travel, reading, bike rides and clever craft cocktails.

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