Sista Show-Off: Pieces & Blessings


Welcome to another post from the Sista Show Off series! In this series I like to show some love to other companies, blogs, businesses, organizations or just regular ladies like myself who are paving the way for women everywhere! Let me feature you! Shoot me an email at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

I have always been an enormous fan of jewelry. See….most women like diamonds and pearls (I’d like them more if I could afford them, ha!) but I don’t mind funky jewelery. You know the kind where people say,

“Ohhhh girl, your ring is so pretty! I’ve never see anything like that.
Where did you get it from?”

Yeah love the uniqueness that a great deal of my jewels have.

Pieces & Blessings has the following….

-Earrings
-Loc jewels
-Rings

Each piece of jewelery is hand made intricately and with love.

And I must say….working with Samantha has been absolutely wonderful. I received my shipping notification the SAME day I ordered and my package was in the mail within 2-3 days. And yall know I’m not a big fan of waiting for packages to arrive.

Samantha’s Story of how Pieces & Blessings came about:

“Well, I started when my lil girl decided that she wanted to get locs! I was so proud of her. I asked her why did she want them and she said that she wanted to be closer to her heritage. Very impressive for a (then)10 year old. Well, when she did begin to loc I wasn’t able to find many cute things to adorn her hair. I didn’t want her to begin to equate natural with not cute or plain. I wanted her to continue to feel like the same lil girl. That’s when I began to make small jewels and then I made her earrings to match. People began to make comments and request pieces … : ). I am self taught through my love for working with my hands, love for my daughter, fashion, and natural hair.”

Check out my purchases!

I LOVE this ring…I get so many compliments on it. It was only $7.

And my baby locs are supporting jewels too. $5

Right now Samantha is offering FREE SHIPPING!!! Stroll on over to her site and see what looks interesting to you. Rock on, Samantha! You womanprenuer, you!

Peaces & blessings,

Sista Show-Off: Lauri Lyons


Welcome to another post from the Sista Show Off series! In this series I like to show some love to other companies, blogs, businesses, organizations or just regular ladies like myself who are paving the way for women everywhere! Let me feature you! Shoot me an email at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

Allow me to introduce you to Lauri Lyons. She is the FIRST black female photographer to be signed by Getty Images. She is also a photojournalist and art photographer who shoots and exhibits globally (she just returned from a long assignment in Salvador, Brazil) AND the subject of a biopic that’s a running favorite on CurrentTV.

Her most recent monograph, Flag International (2008), is one piece of a multi media documentary project that incorporates photography, video, audio and handwritten text. As a series of portraits of people from 8 countries posing with the American flag, the project investigates how the international community views the United States in the 21st Century–a timely project given our historic recent election year.

Um…..wow. Check out my personal favorites from this monograph.

Men in Harlem

Girl with Black Hoodie


Muslim Girls

Amazing work, right? You can check out her website HERE.

Beauty in photos? Gotta love it….

Because you are a muse,

Sista Show Off: Jam Donaldson


Welcome to another post from the Sista Show Off series! In this series I like to show some love to other companies, blogs, businesses, organizations or just regular ladies like myself who are paving the way for women everywhere! Let me feature you! Shoot me an email at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com

As a beauty blogger, I can’t help but find beauty in everything! The way we speak being one of them. I once took a course in college called Black English. In it, I learned how language among African Americans was critical to survival. We even focused on Ebonics and “the hip hop language”. But, the line has to be drawn somewhere. Let me introduce you to:

Jam Donaldson Designs


The bio from her site says, “Jam Donaldson has shown she’s a force to be reckoned with on the internet. Her website www.hotghettomess.com is one of the most highly trafficked African-American owned websites in the world. The site has been stirring up controversy, praise, ire and powerful discourse since its inception in 2004. The site continues to grow and evolve and hopes to be a facilitator of edgy, racial dialogue for years to come. She hopes to partner with organizations that are working to help the community do better. A portion of proceeds from merchandise is donated to grass roots organizations that are helping us do better, one person at a time.”

Bad sista, ain’t she? (<---example of Black English, lol!) I had the opportunity to interview Jam.

1) So what was really the defining moment for you to start creating these t-shirts? Was it a particular song or saying that irked you to the point where you said, “I’ve got to do something,”?

I guess people using the word”conversate” has always been a big pet peeve of mine. Initially, it was typically used by the urban community and you can frequently hear it in hip-hop and R & B. Though as communities begin to mesh through popular culture, you can hear it used by any and everyone. Its use is spreading. Like the plague. My blog is actually called Conversate is Not a word, and I got such a big response to the title, that I thought it would be cool to create some shirts based on usage errors in English. So many people may not know what they are saying is incorrect and it may just cost you that next job. Just wanted to take a unique, humorous slant on the high-end t-shirt markets and start some conversations… Plus everyone has Ed hardy and Affliction tees, I think its time to do something different. So I created Jam Donaldson Designs and the response has been great.

2) As a beauty blog ClumpsOfMascara.com tries to find beauty in anything that represents us and language, without a doubt is one form of representation. How can we erase words like “conversate” and “irregardless” from our vocabularies?

I think its as simple as having the hard conversations with each other. So many people are afraid to challenge errors like this because it comes off as pretentious and elitist. You never want someone to feel like you’re turning your nose up at them. I thought these shirts were a funny, light-hearted way of doing this, no one gets their feelings hurt and at the same time you can look hot.


3) I did not know how prevalent “conversate” was in music until I went to your website. Any idea where this word came from? It doesn’t even sound right!

It’s really funny! I think it has been used so much, most people don’t even know its wrong. I have no idea where it came from but it looks like its definitely here to stay.

4) I am so glad to get the opportunity to present a young female entrepreneur to the Clumps of Mascara community. You have no idea how much of an inspiration you are to us. Any words of encouragement that you can drop to help others who may be considering pursuing entrepreneurial ventures?

I firmly believe that the path to happiness if following what makes you happy, what satisfies you. Entrepreneurship is not easy, but its infinitely rewarding. Even in the tough times of starting a business, its so much more fulfilling than working for someone else. It requires hard work and a passion. I’ve never started any project to make money. I only start projects because I have an idea or want to create something I think is important. I find when love and fun and integrity are the source of your businesses, the money will come eventually because people sense your sincerity and passion. You have to be willing to take risks and jump out there into the scary unknown sometimes , but its soooooo worth it. You wont be successful everytime. Lord knows I’ve had some disasters but you pick yourself up, learn from your mistakes and keep it moving. We all have bad experiences at jobs, but that doesnt stop us from getting another one. Entrepreneurship is the same way. I have a quote that I love by Kipling that says, “No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.” That says it all.

5) Ohmigoodness, have you heard this one too? “Pacifically” instead of “specifically”?

Absolutely–that one may actually end up in the new Fall designs for the shirts… LOL.

6) Do you think we should get rid of slang all together?

Absolutely not. I think our slang and colloquialisms make us who we are and are a big part of our culture. I use a ton of slang, bad english and cuss words. The big thing is simply knowing there is a time and place for everything. Its when you cant distinguish when slang is appropriate and when it isnt, that we run into trouble.

7) And because we are beauty obsessed folx….do you mind telling us your favorite beauty product and why?

I have a couple of beauty products — one is the Arbonne bronzing powder for my face. I don’t wear a lot of make up so this gives me a great glow while getting rid of the greasies. I also wear my hair natural and my favorite hair product is Kiehl’s “Just Out of the Shower” its a hair gel I can put on my hair while it is wet and it keeps it nice and curly without making it hard or drying it out.

You can find out more about Jam Donaldson and her designs here. And while you’re at it….check out her Conversate is Not a Word blog.

Sista Show Off: Divalicious Designs & giveaway


Welcome to the first installment of the re-named series: Sista Show-Off! This series is where I interview and/or feature women of color doin’ their thang in all areas!! “But Brit…that ain’t beauty!” Are you kidding me? Being inspired by women everywhere is a beautiful thing! Know of someone who would like to be featured on Clumps of Mascara’s Sista Show-Off….shoot me an email at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

I am proud to show-off not only an impeccable web designer but wonderful workin’ lady who I can call a friend, as well. Candice is not only responsible for that beautiful banner you see and my new menu bar, but also the complete make-over of my personal blog. Her work is unique and she is fast and professional. Professionalism is a big deal to me and my girl delivers all the way. I could talk about how fab she is all day but let me drop you the little chit-chat session we have so you can learn more about her and Divalicious Designs.

Tell us a little bit about how Divalicious Designs was born?


Well, I would say about 2 years ago, I started making my own blogger templates. I felt that the ones that were available at the time didn’t represent me. They were nice and all but, just not my style. Girly yet sophisticated. Then when I did find some that I felt were, they were ridiculously priced. So since I have a computer programming background from being in the Air Force I decided to make my own and was I was very happy with it. After that an online girlfriend of mine saw it, and loved it, and wanted me to make a template for her site as well. I really enjoyed the whole process of making templates. So I first decided to make ones for free to see if people would actually be interested in downloading any of my free templates. I put them on one of my other blog sites.

After I saw that people were interested. I made a site completely dedicated to free blogger templates. And that was fun. So after a while, I decided I was ready to start selling some. I really love designing templates. And I figured why not have this as a way to supplement my husbands income. I am a SAHM, and I was spending up my honey’s money so I could do my hobby. I really felt bad about that, plus I saw so many beautiful illustrations at stock photography sites, that I just had to use. And I can’t give those for free even if I wanted to because I’d be cutting into someone else’s way of living. So I decided to go ahead and make a go for it. And poof Divalicious Designs was born! I try to be as versatile as possible, and I also try to focus on making some templates for the brown sisters as well, because I noticed there weren’t that many out there.


Your templates are just amazing! I am proud to endorse you and I know that fellow bloggers who have worked with you would say the same thing. What are your goals for Divalicious Designs?

Thank you so much, that really means a lot to me. I do this because I love to do it and that just helps me along. I do hope to one day branch out into doing full websites, and also WordPress themes. That would be a big step and right now, I just don’t have the time to do that. I need to wait till my babies are older. Plus I wanted to go back to school for web/graphic designing so I can be proficient in what I do. And so I can also provide web support when a customer has a problem, if need be.

What advice would you give to ladies who are trying to “get out there” in terms of web/template design?

First be patient, everyone is not gonna come running to you for your designs. You need to first build a repertoire of HAPPY customers. Most people are are gonna be afraid to try you if you don’t have some sort of background with people. Secondly don’t be stingy go ahead and do some projects for free. If they have good traffic they will be helping you as much as you are helping them. This is also a good way to build your portfolio. And be honest give credit where it due. I try to always give credit to where I get my resources from, and not try and pass them off as my own.

What has been the biggest reward so far in your venture?

I just LOVE to read (LOL) the joy in the customers email when they say how happy they are and how much they love the design. All the positive reviews and comments that I’ve gotten from the customers make me SOOOO happy. I have all my customers in my favorites, in a special folder. And I just love to go back by and see the site, and how they are doing, and to see the positive feedback from their readers on their new design, is just icing on the cake.



What are some of your other hobbies?

OH goodness, where do I start.I also make matching Proboard and Myspace Templates (if the customer requests). I play the piano and make urban gospel music with my hubby. I have another site, HipehopeUrbanGospelSpot. Where me and my husband showcase Holy Hip Hop among other types of Urban Gospel. And we put together a free music podcast. I also have another site, dedicated to brown mama’s but I ain’t gonna tell you that site info, because I been neglecting it, LOL.

And because we are beauty obsessed folks around here, tell us your favorite beauty product!

Hon I don’t know where to start! I LOVE mascara and eyeshadow and blush and lip gloss. Can’t live without it! As far as brands I haven’t been able to go and get the top notch of everything but I love Iman for foundation. Right now since I am on a budget,I am a AVON girl when it comes to mascara. When I curl it, it stays, nuff said, LOL.I’ve just recently been hipped to the Black Beauty Blogs so I will be making the rounds as far as what’s best for us, because I am totally clueless and have wasted so much money on stuff that didn’t ‘work’ for ME. So I guess I can say now because of that I am stuck in a rut, scared to try anything new basically…

I can’t thank Candice enough allowing me to interview her and working with me! For all of your blogging needs, shoot her an email her at DivaliciousDesigns@gmail.com. And tell her Brittany from Clumps of Mascara sent you! I want to give one lucky blogger one of the templates from Divalicious Designs! The Package Includes: Header, Customized Title & Description, Background, Sidebar Background, RSS feed icon and Menu. Wowsers!

…..and all you have to do is visit her template page and come back and tell me which one you like best! Candice and I will randomly choose a winner on Friday, October 3, 2008! Good luck all!!!

Sista Show Off: Divalicious Designs & giveaway


Welcome to the first installment of the re-named series: Sista Show-Off! This series is where I interview and/or feature women of color doin’ their thang in all areas!! “But Brit…that ain’t beauty!” Are you kidding me? Being inspired by women everywhere is a beautiful thing! Know of someone who would like to be featured on Clumps of Mascara’s Sista Show-Off….shoot me an email at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

I am proud to show-off not only an impeccable web designer but wonderful workin’ lady who I can call a friend, as well. Candice is not only responsible for that beautiful banner you see and my new menu bar, but also the complete make-over of my personal blog. Her work is unique and she is fast and professional. Professionalism is a big deal to me and my girl delivers all the way. I could talk about how fab she is all day but let me drop you the little chit-chat session we have so you can learn more about her and Divalicious Designs.

Tell us a little bit about how Divalicious Designs was born?


Well, I would say about 2 years ago, I started making my own blogger templates. I felt that the ones that were available at the time didn’t represent me. They were nice and all but, just not my style. Girly yet sophisticated. Then when I did find some that I felt were, they were ridiculously priced. So since I have a computer programming background from being in the Air Force I decided to make my own and was I was very happy with it. After that an online girlfriend of mine saw it, and loved it, and wanted me to make a template for her site as well. I really enjoyed the whole process of making templates. So I first decided to make ones for free to see if people would actually be interested in downloading any of my free templates. I put them on one of my other blog sites.

After I saw that people were interested. I made a site completely dedicated to free blogger templates. And that was fun. So after a while, I decided I was ready to start selling some. I really love designing templates. And I figured why not have this as a way to supplement my husbands income. I am a SAHM, and I was spending up my honey’s money so I could do my hobby. I really felt bad about that, plus I saw so many beautiful illustrations at stock photography sites, that I just had to use. And I can’t give those for free even if I wanted to because I’d be cutting into someone else’s way of living. So I decided to go ahead and make a go for it. And poof Divalicious Designs was born! I try to be as versatile as possible, and I also try to focus on making some templates for the brown sisters as well, because I noticed there weren’t that many out there.


Your templates are just amazing! I am proud to endorse you and I know that fellow bloggers who have worked with you would say the same thing. What are your goals for Divalicious Designs?

Thank you so much, that really means a lot to me. I do this because I love to do it and that just helps me along. I do hope to one day branch out into doing full websites, and also WordPress themes. That would be a big step and right now, I just don’t have the time to do that. I need to wait till my babies are older. Plus I wanted to go back to school for web/graphic designing so I can be proficient in what I do. And so I can also provide web support when a customer has a problem, if need be.

What advice would you give to ladies who are trying to “get out there” in terms of web/template design?

First be patient, everyone is not gonna come running to you for your designs. You need to first build a repertoire of HAPPY customers. Most people are are gonna be afraid to try you if you don’t have some sort of background with people. Secondly don’t be stingy go ahead and do some projects for free. If they have good traffic they will be helping you as much as you are helping them. This is also a good way to build your portfolio. And be honest give credit where it due. I try to always give credit to where I get my resources from, and not try and pass them off as my own.

What has been the biggest reward so far in your venture?

I just LOVE to read (LOL) the joy in the customers email when they say how happy they are and how much they love the design. All the positive reviews and comments that I’ve gotten from the customers make me SOOOO happy. I have all my customers in my favorites, in a special folder. And I just love to go back by and see the site, and how they are doing, and to see the positive feedback from their readers on their new design, is just icing on the cake.



What are some of your other hobbies?

OH goodness, where do I start.I also make matching Proboard and Myspace Templates (if the customer requests). I play the piano and make urban gospel music with my hubby. I have another site, HipehopeUrbanGospelSpot. Where me and my husband showcase Holy Hip Hop among other types of Urban Gospel. And we put together a free music podcast. I also have another site, dedicated to brown mama’s but I ain’t gonna tell you that site info, because I been neglecting it, LOL.

And because we are beauty obsessed folks around here, tell us your favorite beauty product!

Hon I don’t know where to start! I LOVE mascara and eyeshadow and blush and lip gloss. Can’t live without it! As far as brands I haven’t been able to go and get the top notch of everything but I love Iman for foundation. Right now since I am on a budget,I am a AVON girl when it comes to mascara. When I curl it, it stays, nuff said, LOL.I’ve just recently been hipped to the Black Beauty Blogs so I will be making the rounds as far as what’s best for us, because I am totally clueless and have wasted so much money on stuff that didn’t ‘work’ for ME. So I guess I can say now because of that I am stuck in a rut, scared to try anything new basically…

I can’t thank Candice enough allowing me to interview her and working with me! For all of your blogging needs, shoot her an email her at DivaliciousDesigns@gmail.com. And tell her Brittany from Clumps of Mascara sent you! I want to give one lucky blogger one of the templates from Divalicious Designs! The Package Includes: Header, Customized Title & Description, Background, Sidebar Background, RSS feed icon and Menu. Wowsers!

…..and all you have to do is visit her template page and come back and tell me which one you like best! Candice and I will randomly choose a winner on Friday, October 3, 2008! Good luck all!!!