Wednesday, September 7, 2016

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Fashion Fix

NYFW and What to Watch For--

New York Fashion Week begins today, and there are a few things to keep any eye out for.  The long awaited designs from well-established, and new, up-and-coming artists goes without saying.  But, these are just a few more things you're sure to see and hear about...

More Ire on Kanye's "multicultural models only" Call
With so much racial tension in society and the media today, this one is a bit of a doozy. Kanye's Yeezy Season 4 casting call requested "multicultural models only--no makeup, come as you are". Emm!  Ok.  

Some say it's his prerogative as an artist and visionary.  Some say it's ridiculous and divisive.  Others say it's what we should want--all multicultural people because we've finally come together.  

Wherever you stand on this one, it will surely be a theme throughout the week.  After hearing how the call went, Kanye won't get off the hook easily for this one.

Photo via @ladybreec

More Diversity on the Runway
Yes, this is something to look out for--even despite the drama around Kanye's call.  The Council of Fashion Designers of America issued a letter from their Diversity Coalition, encouraging designers to be inclusive when selecting models for their shows. The CFDA asserts "Our objective is to make a shift on how the model of color is viewed so it becomes natural to see them participating each season in a greater number than past seasons." 

Nubian Skin is already helping to expand the definition of "nude" in the industry with their lingerie line.  Christian Louboutin has been doing his part on this as well.  

The push is already starting to work. 31.9% of models walking during February's NYFW were models of color, up from 28.4% last September, and up nearly 10% from six months before that. 

Maybe this is what Kanye was aiming for...?

*Check our more on diversity in the fashion industry here

Google Tests Search Carousels by Catwalk Brands
Through the duration of NYFW, search giant Google will make way for brands to manage what consumers see first when they search certain terms in their engine.  This will give designers more control over what pops up when their names, styles, or other related jargon is searched.  Surely this will also help designers in filtering what does not come up when they are searched...or at least what will take a couple pages to get through.

Google has already partnered with 50 brands on this initiative--including Burberry, Marc Jacobs, Tom Ford, and Hermes.  One major goal here is to give users a front row seat to the NYFW action, while also allowing designers to drive their message a bit more.  Surely this will serve as a launching pad for designers revolutionizing their brands...and Google continuing to revolutionize the internet experience.  Get excited!

We'll be watching the happenings of the week, so stay tuned for more news and updates, especially up-to-the-minute on Twitter!

Monday, August 29, 2016

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Celebrates

Michael Jackson!

Happy Birthday to the King of Pop!

Today we celebrate MJ for all his kindness, generosity, and of course legendary musical genius.  For many of us, Michael's work was the soundtrack to our lives.  He left us far too soon, but his music will never die.

We'll never forget you Michael.



Remember the Time


Man in the Mirror

I Want You Back

Rock With You

Working Day and Night  

Billie Jean


You Rock My World

I Like (The Way You Love Me)

I'll Be There  


Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'  

The Way You Make Me Feel

Smooth Criminal  

Love Never Felt So Good

Saturday, July 23, 2016

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Fashion Fix

Summertime Fine: 2016 Fashion Hits--

Summer is well underway, and so is fashion in this fun warm weather.  Temperatures have been steamy across the globe, but many are staying cool in their fly-wear for the season.  
Check out some of the best...

Cuban Olympic Team Dons Louboutin
The Summer Olympics are on the horizon, and of course we are not only excited about the games, but the fashion, too!  The Cuban Olympic team will be outfitted by famed French designer, Christian Louboutin.  He's partnered with Henry Tai, a former pro handball player, to design the attire the Cuban team will wear during closing ceremonies.  These threads are major!  Take a look...

Summertime Chi - The T-shirt Line
Summertime Chi is a curator of cultured events in Chicago.  While making sure natives and tourists are entertained in the best way, they can now look good while doing it.  The shirts are not only soft, but stylish.  Peruse the catalog, as well as the event calendar!

Andrea Iyamah Swimwear 
This swimwear line is vibrant and classy.  With unique designs and even a bridal collection, Andrea Iyamah is making onlookers stare.  Launched in 2013 by Nigerian designer Dumebi Iyamah, AI is meant to highlight colors and themes inspired by African culture.  The suits and resort attire are all made with care by a team dedicated to quality, style, and ethnicity with a modern twist.  Heads will certainly turn on the beach with this collection.  

Jordans - The Sole Mainstay
Jordans are always on the map, at all times of the year.  This summer, the Jordan Brand is launching the throwback of the "Banned" Air Jordan with the famed black and red colorways.  Legend has it, the NBA was not for the shoes being worn because of they conflicted with their uniform code...meanwhile Nike footed the bill on MJ's fined.  Reality or Scandal?  In addition, Jumpman has also released the Ultra Fly kick, worn by Chicago's own Jimmy Butler in this summer's Rio Olympic games.  The 2016 Men's Basketball team will be stocked with Nike, as the uniforms were designed by Nike, and Carmelo Anthony will be wearing his collection as well.  Once again, Jordan/Nike is expected to go gold.  

What other fashion wins are you seeing this summer?

Monday, July 11, 2016

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Fashion Fix

The Capsule Wardrobe: Stepping Up Your Closet Game--

While talking to an awesomely fashionable and hair savvy friend, she shared her plans to embark on the capsule wardrobe experience.  

Capsule wardrobe?  Yes, capsule wardrobe.  What this is, is a set amount of items in your arsenal, taken separately to become a set for mixing and matching over a designated timeframe.  The items are to be worn together in several pairings, so the colors coordinate, and the tops and bottoms mix and match easily with all options.  One of the main reasons for utilizing the capsule wardrobe is to truly test your styling skills, particularly when you have a finite amount of options.  Another reason is to stock your closet with stronger, more quality pieces, rather than the limited-life items purchased in the fast fashion market.

We've talked quite a bit about the downfalls of fast fashion--lots of fashion law faux pas, as many hardworking designers, both well-established and not, are infringed upon.  Money from fast fashion markets and production is often used for human trafficking or in other illegal activities.  Working conditions in fast fashion factories is usually far from suitable.  Lights are dim, hours are long, and wages are low.  

The capsule wardrobe helps skirt these instances in other ways.  In building your capsule wardrobe for whatever designated period you choose--a week, 2, a business trip length, etc.--you focus on purchasing pieces which do cost a bit more.  However, these pieces, for their worth, last longer.  They also build the foundation for a full wardrobe with sustainable options.  You'll buy something today which can be paired with something you buy months or years from now, and the quality is still there.

For the fashionistas and stylists out there, the capsule wardrobe pushes your skills to the limit.  There could be several reasons you can't go and buy out a whole store or a bunch of new items all at once.  Maybe you have to pack light when you travel.  With the capsule wardrobe, you can push your creative mind to the limit, and sharpen your styling skills.  You can also make investing in quality pieces, whether through retail outlets or local designers, a priority.  

We're looking forward to hearing about how the capsule wardrobe experience works.  Check out these infographics and plenty more on Pinterest.

Stay tuned and share your stories.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Recognizes

Serena Williams Shines in Week of Darkness--

After a horrific week in America, with the killings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile at the hands of law enforcement, people have been shaken.  Racial lines have gotten bolder.  Consciousness is at the forefront.  Questions of "What next?!?" are being asked.  

In spite of this tough few days, debates over who and how lives matter, and tears unnecessarily shed, Serena's victory has been a breath of fresh air.  Yesterday, tennis legend Serena Williams won her 22nd Grand Slam singles title, tying the record for most in the Open Era.  This win was not only a bright spot in a week of darkness, but a reminder of how a nation can unite when it wants to.

Many other bloggers have written about the experience Black America has endured this week.  It's completely worth everyone taking the time to become more conscious of something often put to the side because of the harsh, divisive history this nation has been built on.  Like the horrors of 9-11 and many other American tragedies, we must never forget that which is continuing to hold us back.  Remember, so you're equipped to rise.

Athletics has always been a uniting force.  No matter the event, Americans always find a way to band together over athletic events.  Serena's win is also a good reminder of the value African-Americans should put on themselves and the value others should see in us, too.

Thank you, Serena.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. for Dads

Happy Father's Day!

This is one of my favorite posts to share.  My Daddy means the world to me and I am so very thankful for him.  He has taught me so much, and there's never any way I could enumerate or repay it. He continues to teach me lessons all the time, and the lessons I learned growing up are with me every day.  He has not only had an influence on me, but so many others.  

Here are just a few reasons why...


1.  Be a good decision-maker.
Many times, we think things are just happening to us, or the world is mad at us for some reason.  Daddy helped me realize, nothing is by accident.  The decisions you make in life, big and small, set the stage for what will and won't happen ahead.  When things are going well, you can look back and see the choices you made as the reason--same as when things are not going so well.

In Daddy's words, "We control our own destiny."  It's true there are many things beyond our control, but making the best decisions on the ones in your hands is essential.

Daddy and I the day I was sworn in as an attorney.
2. The key to success is doing the things no one likes to do.
You don't want to hear this one as a kid, but as an adult, you realize how true it is.  Often, the difference between happy and successful people, and the unhappy strugglers is the ability to just suck it up and do what you have to for the end goal.  We all come across things we don't want to do--they take too long, they're too hard, no one else is doing them, you just don't feel like it--the list is endless.  This is the case for everyone, but the decision to do what you must no matter what is usually the difference-maker.  I take this lesson with me everyday.

3. Be good, be helpful.
Daddy still tells me "if you can help someone, help them".  He's so right, and why not?  A lot of times, it's easy to consider what's in it for you, but maybe the chance to help someone else is what's in it for you.  Do you really need more?  After all, what goes around, comes around, so there's really no need to worry.

*This is actually a bonus lesson:  Don't worry.  If you've planned and are doing what you are supposed to do, you don't have time to worry.  

4. Do not let your fears dictate your actions.
I keep this in mind so often, especially when a major decision needs to be made.  My Daddy has taught me about fear, and helped me realize, there's no need for it.  We all get scared from time to time, or frightened at the encounter of a surprise, but we cannot let fear of anything we face dictate what's necessary for us to do or achieve.  Fears are just roadblocks, and letting them stand in the way of our actions does nothing more than just hold us back.  When I think I may be facing fear, I remember it's just an illusion. 

5. Keep your word.
The importance of this one is immeasurable.  Your word is sometimes all you have as an adult, with the countless circumstances you'll encounter.  Whether it's at work or in a personal relationship, being trustworthy is what will precede and succeed everything you do.  It is easy to make promises, but it takes real effort to keep them.  I can't think of one thing my Daddy has told me which hasn't held up, and I want to be sure people can say the same about me.  To some, this seems to be quite difficult, which is hard to understand, but there is nothing like the truth.  We should all embrace it.

I hope you all enjoyed these lessons as much as I did sharing them.  I am blessed to know I have many more lessons ahead for Daddy to share with me, and am even more thankful to have the ones I do.

~Love you Daddy!!

Sunday, May 8, 2016

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Celebrates

Happy Mothers' Day!!

I always like to share the top 5 things my Mommy taught me. The list is obviously much longer than this site will allow, but these are some of the main things I keep with me all the time.  Some, she taught me and I got right away, some took time, others...still working on.

What has your mom taught you that has changed or directed your life in a certain way?   Share yours with us, and check these out!


1. Be nice.
This is a simple lesson, but it goes a long way.  Being nice to people not only gives them a good feeling about you, but also puts out good Karma to come back to you.  My mommy still reminds me today the importance of being nice, especially when it is easy not to.   I see traces of her whenever I feel the need to bake for friends and coworkers, have guests over, style for people, advise on legal matters, or whatever comes to mind to allow me to lend a hand to someone else. I carry this with me all the time.

2. Beauty is simple.
Mommy has made it clear to me, loads of make-up does not make you pretty, and there's a way to look your best without a mess!  Going back to being nice on the inside, it is easy to look nice on the outside, too.  Too much of anything is usually just that--too much and it will catch the wrong eyes most times.  As I put together my looks for each day, I definitely think..."what would Mommy say?"

As Tatyana Ali put it: "My mother is my beauty role model.  She's gorgeous, giving, and gracious - a true G!"

3. Be strong.
I haven't come across a strength like the strength my mother has, and am not sure I will.  Her lessons in being strong go far beyond helping my dad out in the yard against my will.  They extend to knowing things won't always go my way, and when they don't, I cannot give up.  I will encounter some challenges, and as cliche as it sounds I hear her telling me "this, too shall pass".  I may not want to hear it, but I always want to believe it...and in due time, I see it to be true.  I know my mother got her strength from my grandmother, and great-grandmother, so I work hard to be sure I can pass it on someday as well.  Because of my Mommy, I feel there is nothing I cannot do.  

4.  Be....patient!
Ugh!  I am still working on this one, and actually, so is Mommy.  She's been trying to teach me patience all my life, and I think I just may be starting to get it--a little.  I remember as a little girl hearing her tell me "beee..." and waiting for me to say "patient". I'm not sure I always understood the value of patience as a youngster, but I have gotten a much better understanding in my adult life.  I can't count the number of times I hear her in my head reminding me...and sometimes it is her actual voice.  I have found patience to be so critical, especially as I get older, and can say I have received and encountered some wonderful things from being patient.  I keep this lesson with me.  But, she and I both know, I'm not done learning it.

5. Always do your best.
I often look at my mom and think she has so many things on her plate...and wonder how she balances them all.  Then I realize I am, in my own way, doing the same thing.  I have learned over the years, she not only has a lot on her plate, but only enough for her to handle, and handle well.  It appears to be a lot to the onlooker, and I know it is to her as well.  But, the way she handles family, work, and social activities is always with ease and grace.  Mommy has taught me about not taking on too much, but being there to step up and step in if necessary.  Sure, you may have a lot going on, but giving each your very best is all that's acceptable.  I keep this lesson close.

I could go on and on about the lessons my mother has taught me, but the space here is limited.  I am endlessly thankful for such a loving and giving mother, and wouldn't trade her for the world.  Thank you, Mommy for everything.

Happy Mother's Day to all the amazing Mommys out there.

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