MBFW-Swim 2011: Backstage at Mara Hoffman

It’s no big deal for my New York bloggers, but this Florida blogger has never been backstage at any Mercedes-Benz fashion show. Which believe it or not, is a bit of a faux pas for a 3-year old beauty or fashion blogger. Needless to say, I was geeked up! I grabbed my assistant Nikki New and off we went to the beautiful Raleigh Hotel in South Beach.

Ahhh….the Cabana Grande where all of the action happens.

I won’t tell y’all how I accidentally went through the Designer’s Check-In. I’ll save that story for another day. Ha!


We made it backstage for Mara Hoffman only to be thrown into the hustle and bustle of hairstylists, models, make-up artists, the designer team and fellow members of the press.

I tweeted away while Nikki New snapped shots of the models getting all dolled up.

I stole a peek at some of the products that the make-up artists were using.

See any of your favorites?

Lovin’ the messy fishbone braids.

And before we knew it, the models had to line up for the pre-walk .

The proud designer watching her work…

It must be amazing to see your vision and drawings come to live like that. We actually missed the official runway walk because of we were watching another show. Check out the pieces  here. Mara Hoffman’s Native American, Indian, African and island inspirations blow my mind. Stay tuned! I’ve got a lot more for you from Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim.

Adventures in Summer Shopping

I’m not much of a shopper. I know, I know…it just doesn’t seem right but I’ve never liked going from store to store for many hours at time. I usually only go when I NEED something and even then, I’m out within an hour. I blame my Mom for spending hours in department stores when I was younger. I swear I spent half of my before I could drive life in Sears and Dillard’s.

And even when I do go shopping, I make a bee-line to the clearance racks. Virtually everything I buy is on sale!

When I was in D.C. I copped this oversized shirt.

It wasn’t even on sale. That never happens! And the other day, I got the cutest wedges at Target for $9!

Oh yes…they’re cute and comfortable; a must have for a size 10 flat footed sista like myself.

But I’m a wee bit lost when it comes to shopping for other outfits for summer. I’ve got several maxi dresses, bermuda shorts and tanks but I really want to step my game up in the fashion department. I have to dress professionally during the week but on the weekends I want to look hot!!

What are styles are you rockin’ this summer?

Guest Post: Spring Fashion by Channing

*taps mic* 

Is this thing on? Helllllooo out there! I’m Channing, a freelance fashion and beauty journalist. I recently started writing my own blog, Channing in the City.

Brittany was nice enough to share her lovely readers with me because it would be nice for someone to actually read my posts for once. Hehe!

Anywhoo, onward with the post. Are you looking to update your look for spring? Allow me to be of some assistance.

I think everyone deserves to be fabulous and fashionable without breaking the bank. So if you are just looking to add a few trendy pieces to a wardrobe or even starting from scratch, here are a few major trends (for cheap!) that will march you into the right direction.

  1. SEQUINtial Order
    Think sequins are only appropriate for night? Not anymore! Don’t be afraid to shine in the daytime as well.
  1. Big BANGles
    Think of bangles like last season’s signature chunky necklaces, the bigger the better! Pile them on.
  1. Naughty and Nautical
  1. LWD- The Little WHITE Dress
    This spring, ditch your faithful LBD for something, well, WHITE!
  1. Peachy Keen
    The hot new look for lips and tips this spring? Peach! Bold or light, this shade is universally flattering.
  1. AT EASE!
    With military inspired looks of course. Pair a structured military jacket with a ruffle-y dress for a utilitarian look with a feminine touch.
  1. If I Were A Boy…
    No need to wonder, just don a boy’s blazer! The boyfriend blazer trend is marching into spring and summer.
  1. Pick Your Platform

Clog, that is! Platform shoes are back in a major way. The can be worn with wide leg jeans just as easily as a dress.

B Says: I love Channing! Y’all know I’m no fashionista (I be tryin’ though…lol) so it helps to have fashion-savvy ladies just a click away.  Want to write a guest post for Clumps? Email me at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com for consideration. 

(photo source)

New York Fashion Week: Ashunta Sheriff does LaQuan Smith’s show

Lady Ashunta is quickly becoming one of my favorite make-up artists in the game. Here’s what she created for LaQuan Smith!


“The look for LaQuan Smith’s Fall 2010 collection was exciting because it was his debut to the fashion world after such huge buzz for the last few years. We wanted to make it special and LaQuan’s concept of water and sand inspired the sun glow goddess look we created using COVERGIRL and COVERGIRL Queen Collection. I applied COVERGIRL Smoky ShadowBlast in Bronze Fire on the lids and completed the eye look with a few coats of COVERGIRL LashBlast Length Mascara and Urban Decay glitter eye liner in the corner of the eye. To make the lips pop with brilliance, I mixed COVERGIRL ShineBlast Lip Gloss  in Flare with MAC Gold pigment. COVERGIRL Queen Collection Natural Hue Minerals Bronzer was the driving force to give glowing radiant 
skin.”


 
  
 

Dear NY Fashion Week, Can Brown Stick Around?

I have still yet to actually attend any real deal New York fashion shows…a complete faux pas for the seasoned beauty or fashion blogger. Every season I endure an influx of blog posts, articles and features all done by those who have been so fortunate to attend the NYFW festivities.

Sometimes I cry silently as I click here and there, being mesmerized by the models and the designers’ pieces.


You see, I cry for many reasons, fam. I cry for not being an attendee at these shows AND I cry for the lack of brown girls on the runway. The latter is just down right annoying. Flipping through Essence’s History of Black Models slideshow made me feel a little better though. My favorite?

Um, yes!! You better work it Chanel, Sessilee, Jourdan and Arlenis. The pulled back hair, loud lips and beautiful expressions? Loves. It! I hope that we see more diversity this time around. In the meantime, view Essence’s slideshow here. I didn’t know there were so many popular Black runway models. That Kiara Kubukuru was absolutely stunning!

New York Fashion Week: the Vessel by Lois

MOJ and COM team up for Mercedes Benz New York Fashion WeekRemember when Meryl Streep was in The Devil Wears Prada? To be more specific? When she was explaining to Anne Hathaway how designers and the fashion industry as a whole contribute to her decision of even a belt? That’s how I feel sometimes when I’m at these shows.

the Vessel by Lois is a great collection of womenswear with a masculine twist. Tailored to a T, the dresses and suits combine the angles of menswear with just a smidge of a feminine touch. Let’s just say this is what I would consider the difference to be between going into the Men’s Wearhouse and getting myself a men’s blazer in my size, and getting a similar blazer with bold shoulders and lines, but tailored with consideration to the female body. We have fabulous curves for a reason you know.

This show started on the first day of the forsaken snowstorm. It was actually a shame that many people lost the opportunity to witness this show in person. But at the same time – my socks were drying for half a day after my adventure to the venue, so if they stayed warm as an alternative? God bless ‘em.

Being that the fashion industry is a bit ahead of the commercial industry, these presentations are a year ahead. This is where trends start to surface, along with what your favorite stores choose to purchase for the following seasons. The slightly less than year in between? Spent on ordering, producing, shipping, marketing, and selling. Fall 2010 so far has been true to autumnal nature. Earth tones, knits, high collars, heavy fabrics (tweeds, wool, etc.), and of course, layering.

MOJ and COM team up for Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week

Before the show

Check out after the jump for more pictures and the makeup details.

MOJ and COM team up for Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week

After the show

My humble opinion? I really liked the line. It didn’t veer too far from the safe side (but then again, not everyone is Lady Gaga in their day to day life), but it still had plenty of personality to distinguish it from every other line with a blazer or a suit in their collection. The black coat on the right (above) was my favorite piece, and there was a similar one in purple. Made me think of a grown up Red Riding Hood – you know, when she leaves the forest and enters corporate world. My other favorite? The diversity of the models. Beyond that, the fact that every model had strong features that made you notice them, instead of dismiss ‘em as a walking hanger.

MOJ and COM team up for Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week

The designer (middle) posing with models.

MOJ and COM team up for Mercedes Benz New York Fashion WeekThe hair and makeup teams for the show were Cutler and Youngblood, respectively. I have to admit, yours truly, the Yayameister came a little too late to catch the details about hair. There was much snow in the way of my advance arrival. I did get a chance to speak to the Creative Director of Makeup (and fellow blogger) for the show, Felicia Walker Benson of ThisThatBeauty.com.

Felicia described the look as “traditional” and consistent with the mood of the line and the past collections. Clean with a masculine influence. Being that this season’s presentation was for fall, the colors were amped up a bit and shades customary to autumn, like purple and berry were used. To recreate the look, check out the following eyeshadows: halo, alabaster, storm, bordeaux (pressed shadows), and heather smoke (mineral shadow). The lip was created by using the color bistro as a stain. The brow artist set was used to finely craft the brows, and a heavy contour was used to sculpt the face. Instead of blush, splendor was used as a highlighter on the face. To be true to the “clean” look, no lashes were used for this look.

Want to recreate the lip stain look? Use bistro, or your favorite cranberry color on hand to apply freely to the lips (make sure to moisturize and prep lips first). Blot the color with a tissue (blot not wipe) or a makeup sponge, and apply mineral powder over it to mattify the color. If you choose to leave out the last step, or add clear gloss, you will have created three versions of a traditional, but always appropriate fall look.

Like this review? Want different coverage? Lovin’ Lois? Spill!

Lisa Bonet’s Style: Bummy or Bohem?

I was always a fan of Lisa Bonet’s character on The Cosby Show. She was free-spirited, carefree, a dreamer and although she took a lot of unconventional routes she reminded me of….myself.

Seriously! Ask my sisters. Whenever we play “Which sister are you from The Cosby Show?” they would all say I’m like Denise. I’m the one that went to college and cut off all of my hair. I moved to the other side of the country and dabbled in veganism, vegetarianism and everything in between.

Yeah yeah….so I’m the “eccentric” one in my family. And proud!


Some photos of Ms. Lisa Bonet popped up in the blogosphere and it appears that some of the Young, Black & Fabulous readers thinks she looks like a bum. What say you? Hit the jump to view the photos.

Am I missing something? I think she looks fine! I know, I know…you’re expecting me to question why she isn’t wearing any lip gloss or blush, right? Wrong! While I always like to look my best when I go out (even if to the grocery store), being comfortable means the world to me. Ms. Bonet doesn’t feel the need to wear 4-inch heels or skirt just to run some errands. And for that, I love her! Her skin is flawless and her freeform locs are just beautiful. Not to mention she is a 42-year old Mom with a toddler. She doesn’t have a drop of make-up and still looks youthful.

And she shops at Erewhon? I used to love shopping at that store when I lived in Los Angeles. But, um yeah..I don’t see anything wrong with her look at all.

What say you?

Is she taking the bum look too far or is this just classic comfortable bohem?




(photo source) (photo source)

Guest Post: Winter Fashion by Miss. Yaya

PhotobucketWelcome back COM readers for another guest post by Miss Yaya from My Own Judge!! While I attempt to assign myself as the style guide while Miss Britt is not looking, read on about making your wardrobe work through all seasons and through the thinnest of wallets.

For many, the weather is getting frightful and a summer wardrobe is starting to look as flimsy as swimsuit attire in a snowstorm. But apart from the hoarders and overprepared girl and boy scouts who have separate sets of attire per season (guilty), who has the space and time to separate wardrobes and store unused items? Money and space are getting as precious as air and water, so who’s to know what to do when looking at camisoles in weather best described as ‘brick cold’?

For y’all warm weather folks, let me tell you. I’m jealous. Why do I have to hear about your beach going shenanigans when my teeth chatter while crossing the street? Have you no shame? Do you not understand cardigans are needed for more than just AC filled offices?!?! I can rant forever of course. Or I can let y’all in on a few secrets.

We all spend money on wardrobes. Some more than others, but none can refuse the claim that a precious money is spent to cover our bodies. So how do we make the most of our money and the biggest bang for our buck when temperatures shift?

Layer effectively:
Remember that underwear is not limited to being your singular layer of fabric underneath your outside clothes. Thermals, long-johns, etc. are great for holding the heat that your body needs in colder weather. Not a fan of waffle knit articles? Make use of leggings and stockings (men: long sleeve plain tees & workout pants work as well) under your jeans and dress pants. Dress pants of all things have a tendency to waver around your legs sometimes when you walk. This lets wind and cold seep through. If the waists seem too high, choose a fun pattern to fold over your pants as part of your outfit. (You can try this in a fitting room or in the privacy of your own home toPhotobucket insure you look fine. Trust me.)

Mix fabrics:
That soft, super thin tee/blouse you were raving about in the heat of July not keeping you warm? Slip it under a button down or a sweater. The mix of fabrics (and layering) will add warmth as well as aesthetics to your getup. And let’s not forget – make use of your summer clothes.

Purchase additional staples:
Blasphemous? How to save money by purchasing more? Give me a chance! You only need a few staple items to add to your summer clothes to make it fall and winter appropriate:

  • jacket
  • blazer
  • scarf
  • gloves (depending on the severity of your climate’s chill/freezing factor)
  • boots

Sound pretty simple right?

A blazer can warm up many a light top. Imagine those three quarter sleeve items you have. They aren’t too cold but not too warm either, but they fit just great under a blazer (which adds all the warmth you miss in the first place). These buggers also have a knack for making the person who wears them pretty snazzy looking. For men, they make a t-shirt and jeans combo look neat and put together, and for women they can nip in at the waist just Photobucketright to have us looking like Coke bottles all night.

The warm-up ad(dress):
The tricky part about dresses for gals? They’re usually not floor length and made out of wool (and if they are a lot of us are not inclined to wear or purchase them).

So what do we do about those to die for strapless mini dresses we bought in May and have yet to wear?

Check out my cornmuffin of a slogan in the image to the left. “If cold feet is what ya got, leggings are what’s hot!

All laughs aside, this year above all we have been given carte-blanche with our leggings. Leopard spots, lace, (p)leather, sequins, and whatnot! Pay close attention to the dress you wear and pair leggings or stockings aproppriately. If you are wearing patterns up top, keep it simple below, same vice versa. Have a soft material dress – stay away from textured tights to prevent the lumpy bottom look at the Christmas party. Most important, wear what you feel good in.

Feel free to use that blazer or scarf as a cover up for your summery dress. Once you get to the party and you hide the evidence, no one will know how you managed such a display of skin without freezing (unless they too read Clumps).

So when you want to be financially savvy with frigid fashion? Layer it on like a cake (or onion a la Shrek), mix textures, and keep reading you some COM!



Disclaimer: Neither COM nor Yaya are in anyway responsible for readers taking this advice too far. If you live in an arctic environment and need a bear for warmth, these may not be the best tips for you. Remember to take the tips and make them your own!