Wednesday, December 30, 2009

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Remembers

The Loves We Lost

Each year, almost every
news outlet pays homage to the celebrities lost during the year. In this regard, B.A.F.F.L.E.D. is no different, but will put a twist on things. Being a blog about Business, Fashion, Law and Entertainment, the notables in this posting will be from these categories.

Michael Jackson - King of Pop, Entertainer


Solange Magnano - Former Miss Argentina, Model



Natasha Richardson - Actress



Naomi Sims - Supermodel



Ted Kennedy - Senator


Bea Arthur - Actress



Walter Cronkite - Journalist



E. Lynn Harris - Author



Farrah Faucet - Actress, Charlie's Angel


Yves Rocher - French Cosmetics Tycoon



Alaina Reed Hall - Actress



Brittany Murphy - Actress



Patrick Swayze - Actor, Dancer



Irving Penn - Famed Fashion Photographer


Rest in Peace to each of them and ultimate comfort to their families. They are missed more than they could ever know.

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


Fashion in Review - 2009

Like any other year, we’ve seen a slew of new and repeated fashion trends. The last 12 months had provided us with some unsightly attire in the media, and I’m sure some to each of our eyes close to home. We’ve seen everything from animal print oneness, to fitted velour sweats....on men.

On a positive note, we’ve seen elegant dressings at award shows and premiers and have timeless styles to take us into the new year. Skinny jeans have continued to be staples in our closets, oddly enough for men and women. Calf height boots have grown to the ever-popular knee boot, and leggings have resurrected their way from the 80s and made a place in the 21st century.
Ugg boots have gotten mixed reviews; you either love them or hate them. According to us at B.A.F.F.L.E.D., stilettos will never die and ballerina flats are not only a hurting foot’s lifesaver, but the touch of elegance we all need here and there, especially at after work events.

Traditional royalty maintains it’s position in current fashion as well. Empire waists and big belts are mainstays in our closets and can take almost any outfit to the next level.

What were some of your favorite trends of ’09? How many will be the biggest fashion mistakes ever by mid 2010?

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

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


Cat eyes on the Catwalk

Over the years, the fashion industry has been well-known for using paper-thin models on the runway. It’s been made clear, the sample size is an uncommon fit to most consumers, Fashionista or Fashion Victim. Not so many women are over 5’7”, still a size 2, with not a curve in sight. From what a number of men say, curves are preferred; at least a little meat in some places.

Fashion industry notables have even spoken against this tradition, as Tyra Banks has had a number of “plus sized” models on America’s Next Top Model. Sienna Miller spoke recently about preferring thicker women on the catwalk
http://nymag.com/daily/fashion/2009/12/sienna_miller_thinks_plus-size.html?mid=fashion-alert--20091214. Famed rappers, Salt N Pepa even said the industry needs “more booty on the runway!”

Let’s face it, you don’t have to be too “thick” to outweigh most traditional models. There is definitely not a thin line between model size and overweight; the spectrum is wide with variety. Sure, obesity is a rampant problem in our society and it absolutely needs to be addressed. However, there is no need to appear malnourished to rock the designer originals.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Arts


2 Must-See Productions!
______
With the weather being a bit colder, we must find warm entertainment. Below are 2 productions, providing warmth and deserving ultimate support!

For those of you in the Chicagoland area, be sure to check out “
Shades of My Skin”: A Celebration of the Black Experience -A new play by Evin Marie Rayford

Monday, December 28, 2009 and Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Malcolm X College
1900 W. Van Buren Street
Doors Open at 6:45pm - Show Starts at 7:00pm (both nights)

Tickets are $16 in Advance $20 at the Door
For group rates email: shades@blacknoiseproductions.org

Purchase Tickets Online at http://www.blogger.com/www.blacknoiseproductions.org

*Special shouts out to
Stephanie Jackson, this Chicago actress is constantly doing big things!! Check her out this Monday or Tuesday!
~~~~~~
For play patrons on the east coast, you gotta check out
Platanos and Collard Greens, an Off-Broadway must-see!

Platanos & Collard Greens is the hit romantic comedic play that tells the story of Freeman, an African-American man, and Angelita, a Latino woman, who are both forced to confront and overcome cultural and racial prejudices, while defending their bond from family and friends. 
Platanos will remind you of your family, your love and your life.


Take a look at the website and book your tickets now!!
http://www.platanosandcollardgreens.com/
*Special shouts out to
Nehanda Loiseau, an amazing actress and model taking over the scene!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Green

'Tis the Season for Green!
By Contributing Writer, Michael Harrington

Happy Holidays! I was going to write up a big article about greening your holidays, but this site says it so much better: http://www.greenamericatoday.org/programs/shopunshop/buyinggreen/HolidayTips.cfm(courtesy of GreenAmericaToday.org).

During the holiday season, waste disposal increases 25% in the United States, causing an extra 5 billion pounds of waste in the landfills according to the Medical University of South Carolina. Plus, travelers will be logging tons of miles and creating tons of greenhouse gas emissions.

Here are tips to help you plan ahead to reduce your waste and green your gift giving this year:

1. Don't Buy Wrapping Paper
Reuse old wrapping paper or put your gifts in reusable bags or boxes. Be creative about giving old materials new life -scraps of fabric, magazines, or calendars make great patchwork bags or collage wrapping paper.


2. Send Tree-free Holiday Cards
Search the National Green Pages for cards made from kenaf, hemp, and other tree-free resources. Or, send e-cards and avoid the wait at the post office for stamps.

3. Hold a Zero Waste Holiday Party
Host a zero-waste party. Minimize the garbage by asking people to bring their own cups, plates and utensils if you don't have enough of your own. Use fabric tablecloths and napkins. Then be sure to recycle any post-party cans and bottles and compost food scraps.

4. Consider the Lifecycle of Electronic Gifts
Some of the most popular gift items for children and teens are electronics like computers, video games, and music devices. But the manufacturing and disposal of these items creates significant human health and environmental hazards. To learn more about the environmental impact of computers and electronic devices, check out the Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition. The Recycled Video Games Network is a great resource to dispose of old equipment or buy recycled games and systems for less, reducing the amount of new materials made.

5. Give Gifts from the Heart
Instead of spending money on commercial goods, give the gift of your time and talent to loved ones this year. Offer to make dinner, walk the dog, help with gardening or home repairs, or invite friends over for Fair Trade coffee and tea.

6. Give the Gift of a Better World
Make a donation in honor of a loved one. Choose a cause that addresses an issue that you and your friends and family members care about and support. Green America offers gift memberships at special rates during the holiday. Green America gift memberships are a great way to support our work for a green future while introducing more people to the ideas of just and sustainable purchasing and investing. Give gift memberships »

7. Green Your Holiday Travel
If you are one of the many people planning to log a lot of travel miles this holiday season, don't forget to look into green options for getting around. Better World Travelers Club can help you offset the carbon emissions from your travel through their Travel Cool program. Plus, Green America has partnered with Native Energy to help you offset your energy impact, including travel impact, fund the production of more wind energy, and generate support Green America's Green Energy program.

8. Buy Green Gifts
If you choose to give presents over the holidays, shop with green businesses listed in the National Green Pages. This year, a number of green businesses are offering special discounts to make green gift giving even easier. Check out our Green Gift Catalog.

9. Avoid Toys Made with PVC plastic
70% of PVC is used in construction, but it is also found in everyday plastics, including some children’s toys. Vinyl chloride, the chemical used to make PVC, is a known human carcinogen. Also, additives, such as lead and cadmium, are sometimes added to PVC to keep it from breaking down; these additives can be particularly dangerous in children’s toys. PVC is also the least recycled plastic. Find safe toys in the National Green Pages™ »

10. Recycle Packaging From Gifts
To reduce environmental impacts, it is important to recycle all cardboard packaging and peanuts or other Styrofoam packing that comes with gifts or purchases as these items will not de-compost in a landfill but can be used over and over again for packaging and shipping. The National Green Pages contains several listings for easy drop-off centers for both types of waste.

A few other things you can do are not to buy an actual or plastic tree (if that is your thing), but try to think of other ways to decorate without promoting the cutting and temporary use of trees or plastic. Also, since it is a bit colder and buying all those gifts can take a chunk out of your wallet, weatherizing your home and taking small steps (such as lowering your thermostat by 3 degrees or an optimal 68 degrees and lowering the temp by 8 degrees when asleep or away at work) will save you a lot!
Having a green holiday does not take a lot of work, and will not put a damper on the spirit of celebration; in fact, knowing that you’re keeping our planet cleaner should brighten your mood even more!

Enjoy, and have a happy green holiday!

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Princess is Here!!!


Walt Disney studios debuted the first African-American Princess last Friday and grossed $25 million on the feature. B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Is excited about the new Disney royalty and is sending major thanks and recognition to the cast and crew.

Check your local Disney Store for merchandise.
www.disneystore.com
www.disney.go.com/PrincessAndTheFrog

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Keep Your Eye Out!

Thanks to your voting and her amazing talent, Kimberly Matthews won Chicago radio station 92.3’s Remix the Runway competition http://www.remixtherunway.com. Kimberly not only has modeling talent, but has been in a number of plays, too.


Keep your eyes open for this upcoming mega model; she’s on the move!

Congrats, Kim!


Monday, December 14, 2009


Guest Posting from an Environmentalist:

One year ago, if anyone would have told me that I would become an environmentalist, I probably would have thought they were joking. Sure, I knew that pollution was running rampant, our emissions levels were not likely going to be reigned in before irreversible climate change set in, and a lot of the refuse in landfills won't break down for thousands, if not millions of years, but I did not think that I would be able to do anything about it. In fact, I felt that there were more pressing issues, such as joblessness, poverty and violence, especially considering the neighborhood and environment that spawned me. With only a passing interest in these issues, and my focus on trying to obtain a position in which I felt that I could directly benefit my community, I could never have seen myself as becoming an active crusader in the fight to preserve this sole planet that we humans need for sustenance. I felt like this even leading up to my appointment as the lead person at my placement through Public Allies at Uptown United, slated as the person in charge of creating a recycling program for neighborhood schools.

I did not think that this position would allow me to gain the skills and experience that I felt I needed to be an asset to my community in a meaningful way. However, as I began to research and learn more about what is considered the “environment” and environmental issues through independent research and training through the Chicago Conservation Corps, a volunteer based training program whose aim is to educate and arm citizens with the knowledge and tools to make Chicago a cleaner and greener place, I began to realize that making positive and meaningful changes to ones environment leads not only to a cleaner street, block, etc., but it also builds communities, can lead to jobs and income streams, and generally elevates the moods of people when they have a clean and safe place that they can call home.


So, I can say with confidence that becoming more concerned and active about environmental sustainability and responsibility can improve all of our lives in unimaginable ways; ways that many do not consider until they actually participate in sustainability practices (such as recycling) with their families, coworkers and communities and witness first hand the power that being an environmental steward puts into their hands and the potential that it brings.


-Michael Harrington, Environmentalist/Project Coordinator - Uptown United

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Green

Are you Environmentally Conscious?

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. readers,

Over the last few months we've solicited the idea of having guest writers contribute to the blog. Our first victim....er contributor :-) is
Michael Harrington. He's a Project Coordinator at Uptown United http://www.uptownunited.org/, an environmental conservation agency in northern Chicago. Please take a look at Michael's entry. This spot is likely to be the first of a series, where we can learn and share a plethora of ways to "heal the world we live in".

Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Entertainment

Ladies and Gentlemen...The Jackson 4??!?!?!?



Over the last few months, we've seen a number of commercials. In this past week, we've seen numerous interviews. Michael Jackson's brothers, from the famed group the Jackson 5 (Jackie, Tito, Jermaine and Marlon), have been promoting their new reality series, The Jacksons: A Family Dynasty. The series premiers on A&E this coming Sunday at 8pm CST http://www.aetv.com/the-jacksons-a-family-dynasty/. It's the first of 5 episodes following the brothers as they seek to cope with life after Michael and the resurgence of their careers as a group.

Don't misunderstand, B.A.F.F.L.E.D. loves the Jacksons, ok mostly Michael, but the family has a lot of talent. The issue at hand here, is whether the 4 brothers will be able to make it in the industry without their little brother.

Are they riding Michael's fame too far? Can they make it without him and create their own niche? This series is going to be beyond interesting. We'll need more than 5 episodes, for sure.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Economics


The Barter Business


Do you find yourself having to be more and more creative in today’s economic times? A lot of people are taking this time to find their destiny after losing employment; returning to school or joining the hustle and bustle of job-hunting...again.


In many cases, those who start their own businesses are forced to think outside the box. They must, in order to survive in this economy and fill a niche once voided by a thriving system. One of the many ways to think outside the box is to barter.

Bartering is the swapping of services, leaving money out of the picture and bringing help to one’s fellow man into it. Business owners these days will trade their service for advertising, legal work for web design or referrals for bundling of goods and services.
The options are endless. Bartering not only builds greater networks, but also strengthens the economy. Consumers can gain more advantages, as business owners are spending less and passing on the savings.

Do you barter in your business? Would you? What are some of the advantages you see in trading?
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