The Southern (C )ity Guide to Atlanta With Michelle Blue

Aug 30 2016

by Cheri Leavy

At The Southern C, our demographics span the entire South, from large cities to small towns, each with their own unique blend of Southern culture. This mix is a large part of what makes The Southern C special.

We want to promote this mix by having members in different cities peel back the curtain on the way they conduct business in their town.

Serving on the University of Georgia alumni board and creating Bulldawg Illustrated, I have the privilege to meet so many remarkable Bulldogs and Michelle Blue is one of them.  She chased her dream immediately after college and launched Bené Scarves.  She is creating beautiful scarves and realizing the dreams of young girls in Ghana. Michelle’s benevolence is inspiring!

Michelle Blue (BerrioPic)

Get to know Michelle and Bené Scarves as she shares her guide to Atlanta …

Describe your brand/business and how it got started:

While I was a student at the University of Georgia, I had the opportunity to study abroad to Ghana. Forever changed by the experience my best friend and I were inspired to start Bené, a collection of scarves committed to help support girls in Ghana continue their secondary education by providing tuition, books, supplies and uniforms to fulfill their dreams. We recently made our transition into the luxury space, featuring unique designs specific to our brand, 100% silk fabrics and scarf production here in Atlanta. Visit us at to shop the collection and learn more about the inspiration behind Bené.

First job:

My first job ever was after I graduated high school and I worked at Charlotte Russe to help save money before going to college.


“ I stand on the shoulders of giants.”

I could not and would not be the person that I am if it had not been for those that came before me. I think about the sacrifices that were made for me and I can’t help but ensure that their lives, their work, and their sacrifices were not in vain. I work to make sure that those that came before me, known and unknown, are proud of my work and that I too can pave the way for those yet to come.

#1 skill needed to be an entrepreneur:

Tenacity! You have to stay in the fight.

Role model:

I always tell people that my mother is the real MVP in this story. She has believed in me and supported me every step of the way. I literally would not be able to do the business full time without her and I am so blessed to have her in my life.

Favorite social media:

I’m pretty sure I spend way too much of my life on Instagram … it’s so addictive

Fave Insta accounts to follow:

My friends are pretty hilarious … they are all I need to follow for some comedic relief

Most used emoji:

I’m a sucker for kissy faces


Favorite quote:

“Here’s to the crazy ones … because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

-Steve Jobs

Biggest risk that paid off:

The quote is a perfect segue because two weeks after college I was crazy enough to start my business full time, letting my vision and passion guide me.

Interesting tidbit about you or your business:

This May we had the opportunity to go back to Ghana to celebrate the graduation of the girls we started the business to support. Celebrating this accomplishment with our girls made all of our work worth it.

Theme song:

Pretty much any NSync song.

What will you do for the UGA vs. UNC game day:

I’m hoping someone will give me tickets to the game … fingers crossed.

Favorite dining in your town:

My new place to go is Barcelona in West Midtown … you have to try the Branzino.

Favorite shops in your town:

I am always at Eco Denizen whether I am picking up a quick gift or dropping off more Bené scarves … I love going in the store and seeing what new products they have.

What you love most about your town:

Atlanta just has so much to offer … from entertainment to culture, there is something here for everyone.

Describe a typical day in your town:

As an entrepreneur, there is no typical day for me. You always have to be ready for whatever life is going to throw at you.

Name three must see spots in your town:

The Beltline, Ponce City Market and any place where you can listen to good Atlanta music.


Want to know more about Michelle and the Bene Scarves story? Check out her interview with The Southern C co-founder Whitney Wise Long!


The Southern C(ity) Guides:

Cheri Leavy of The Southern Cotherie in the Golden Isles and Athens, GA

Whitney Long of The Southern Coterie in the Golden Isles, GA

Holly Phillips of The English Room in Charlotte, NC

Kelly Shatat of Moon and Lola in Raleigh, NC

Cassie Kelley of Womanista in Nashville, TN

Molly Waring of Charleston Area Convention and Visitors Bureau

Libbie Summers of A Food Inspired Life in Savannah, GA

Beth Aschenbach and Danielle Norcross of Palm Beach Lately in Palm Beach, FLA

Kim Schlegal Whitman of Dallas

Jennifer Goldman of Charleston, SC

Betsy Riley of Atlanta, GA






Cheri Leavy View More Blog Posts from this Author

Cheri Leavy is a connector, cheerleader and marketing consultant for fellow entrepreneurs.
Building rapport and strengthening a sense of community:
• A community of female entrepreneurs through the The Southern Coterie and The Southern C Summit
• The faces and places of Athens that make our city so vibrant through guide2athens
• A community of devoted football fans through Bulldawg Illustrated
- Contributing editor to Coastal Illustrated, Executive Board Member of the UGA Alumni Association

Leave a Comment

2 responses on “The Southern (C )ity Guide to Atlanta With Michelle Blue

  1. Dominique Paye

    Love when a beautiful product supports an even more beautiful mission. Really inspiring story and shows that an impact can be made from your first day out of college!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts