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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

MSU alumni open clothing store in town

Downtown Starkville welcomed its first urban menswear store on North Jackson St. earlier this fall. 

Greg Ware and Nicholas Madison, two 2012 Mississippi State University graduates, opened Life of Starkville in September.However, Ware and Madison’s friendship dates back to over 15 years ago and the young entrepreneurs said they always dreamed of owning their own business. 

“As a child, Nick always wanted to have his own clothing store, but me, I always wanted my own business,” Ware said. “We both have always been very business-minded.”

In 2006, Ware and Madison took their first step into the business world by raising and selling blue  nose pitbulls. The Starkville natives said it was the start to a great partnership.

“Greg knew about the dogs so I bought food and supplies, or I would get them their shots,” Madison said. “We always had each other’s back.”

Around the same time, Madison began selling clothes and shoes out of the trunk of his car. He said fashion was a big part of his life. 

Madison and Ware both worked at Citi Trends where they gained knowledge of retail. They would also sell T-shirts that read “Club Chase.” The shirts became very popular amongst MSU students.

Even though Club Chase was just a fictional name, Madison said Club Chase became so well known, they began having parties at the State Theatre, which is now the Dawg House Sports Grill.  

Club Chase was later renamed Chase Life, inspired by Madison’s uncle. Madison and Ware literally chased life  to accomplish their dreams. Madison said he wakes up every morning ready to show people that no matter the circumstances, one should  never lose hope and faith.   

“Whatever your dreams, goals and aspirations are, chase them,” Madison said. “Sometimes it may feel as if people can’t see your vision. Just never lose faith.” 

Inspired by the wardrobe of Future and South Memphis rapper Young Dolph, Ware said Life of Starkville was a simple dream turned into reality. 

“God told me that we [Ware and Madison] would be the life of Starkville— that we would be the night life and business aspirations of Starkville,” Ware said.

Madison, who describes his fashion sense as “fresh,” said nearly 10 years ago, they both knew they would one day be where they are today. 

Both Starkville High School Alumni said they were known as the pretty boys in life. Madison said they were also known to always wear matching hats and shoes to accompany their outfits. The two retro fans said in today’s fashion, people are missing the originality other generations had. 

“The 90’s were a period where people were really creative. Now everybody just piggy backs off each other,” Madison said. 

The two said they strive to style every person that shops with them no matter what the customer’s budget may be. According to Ware and Madison, Life of Starkville’s biggest concept is affordability. 

Following the success of Life of Starkville, Ware and Madison said they have plans on opening a womenswear store in the next six to 12 months. The Life of Starkville currently offers a small amount of women’s clothing.

While their ultimate goal is to own many businesses in the Starkville area, Madison said he even looks forward to owning restaurants and student living complexes. 

“I would love to one day offer students the chance to start their own business, sort of like Shark Tank,” Madison said. “I could help them invest in a dream the same way Greg and I did.”  

As the school semester continues and holidays approach, Madison and Ware hope to style and provide service to students and residents of Starkville

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MSU alumni open clothing store in town