Amplify by atmos: Almost Famous

Introducing Almost Famous: Philadelphia's premier shopping event founded by visionary Melasia Pinder. This extraordinary gathering has captured the hearts of art lovers and fashion enthusiasts citywide, known for its unrivaled curation of apparel, jewelry, and art brands. Step into a captivating world of diverse artistic styles, where creativity knows no bounds. With a deep commitment to showcasing local talents, Almost Famous has become the go-to platform for cutting-edge fashion and captivating artistic expressions. Proudly partnering with atmos as a sponsor this weekend, they solidify their dedication to uplifting the vibrant local creative scene. Join us as we explore Melasia Pinder's inspiring journey, her passion for uniting like minds, and the pivotal moment that sparked Almost Famous during the pandemic.

How did the concept for Almost Famous come about and what inspired you to start it?

My passion for uniting like minds in creative spaces stems at a very young age. The concept isn’t new, the brand is. I, myself, am an artist. Throughout my adolescence and young adulthood I’d gotten my hands involved in a variety of artistic disciplines. I’ve always been passionate about fashion in particular, but as an artist you’ll understand that they all go hand in hand. I’d use my sewing skills to design and sell clothes to friends and family, my eye for detail to extend my services as a stylist for local performers, my good looks to model for fashion brands, and my beginner graphic design skills to design flyers for local events. Upon graduating college during the pandemic in 2020, I had a lot of free time to think about where it was that I wanted to apply my skills and education. I had a B.S. in Fashion Merchandising with no opportunity to work at the time. Although college hadn’t necessarily encouraged entrepreneurship, I’d always known in my heart that it was my calling. The excessive alone time fueled a breakthrough, and I took the opportunity to further explore the ideas that were buried in my mind for so long. Thus, Almost Famous was born. 

Put us on to some of your favorite local brands.

Some of my favorite local brands include Julia Silver, YORI, 5 More Days Official, ADW, Emotional Therapy, Hiero Maar, Delirium Dreaming, Overstood Clothing, AJHires, MUSE Brand and 3BHH Collective to name a few.

The name has a ring to it, what is the meaning behind it?

As any piece of art, the meaning should be personal to the individual who is interpreting it. It’s more about the feeling than the meaning. It certainly has a personal meaning to me. What does it mean to you?

Walk us through your creative process when planning an event.

It starts with a pretty vague idea that is either new or is brought to the forefront of my brain from the archives of my mind. Then I find real world examples that help paint a clearer picture. I create moodboards, conduct market research, and gather materials. The physical space follows up. Scouting the perfect venue creates the atmosphere for the layout and flow of the event. Next is curating the best collective of people to provide a service that will push the boundaries of the identity of the event. I want to make sure this idea reaches its highest potential and engages brilliant minds that bring new perspectives to the space. Everything about the organization of this event must feel personal to me but also relevant to the needs of my community.

One thing that attracts me so much to the brand is the community aspect - how important is community to you?

Community is extremely important because it helps you feel a sense of belonging. It’s an exchange of familiar energy, of like minds, and of common interests. Community has encouraged me to tap into my potential, my genius, to take risks and to try new things. You’ll find love in community. You’ll find yourself.

What are your plans for the future - what do you hope to see this project grow into?

I've always foreseen my entrepreneurial pursuits being grand and having a positive impact on the world. I’m very present in my work. I draw from past and present experiences to build the future. I’d love to explore large-scale art and music festivals with this brand. The Almost Famous Festival.

Describe the perfect day.

The perfect day starts with an early morning. I like to have slow mornings where I can appreciate the stillness of the moment. I’ll put some tea on the stove, eat a small meal and begin to review my work for the day. Following work, I must make time for play. Practicing my guitar, hiking, roller skating, or even playing video games can fulfill that need. Lastly, I’ll end the day with a full dinner and some quality time with my partner. That is the perfect day for me.

What role does footwear play in your personal style?

Footwear has always played an essential role in my style. The kind of shoes that I wear influence my aesthetic. I really like platform shoes. They make me feel larger than I am physically but as large as I feel in my heart. I like shoes that have an interesting shape, color and texture. Almost dramatic. My shoes are always a conversation starter, and I like that.

Why is it important for Black and Brown creatives to create or be a part of spaces for people who look like them?

Exposure to people that look like us and are living in their truth is very inspiring. Naturally we reflect the behavior of those around us. Representation is essential to the confidence and fearlessness of black and brown youth. Our experience here is unique and calls for a special kind of attention. One that comes from us.