Monday, January 23, 2012
Monday, December 12, 2011
The third channel that I subscribed to was to Lauren’s channel aka The Queen of Blending MUA. A total California girl and young mother (http://www.youtube.com/user/QueenofBlendingMUA). Lauren reminds me a bit of myself in that she seems like a girl that never leaves home without at least doing her brows, a coat of mascara and some gloss. A true girly girl diva, I LOVE IT!!
What I love most about Lauren is that she shares my love of tranny lashes (like drag queens wear), and colorful simplistic looks. I also love that some of her favorite make-up and tools that she’s loving right now can be found at your local Wal-Mart, Target or CVS. For example her favorites of the moment are an eyeshadow brush by Sonia Kashuk (Target) and eyeshadow palette is by Wet and Wild.
How I Got Hooked:
At this point I was a full on YouTube junkie. I would watch tons of make-up videos to see who I would subscribe to next. Sometimes I would stay up all night researching and watching videos.
Risa used to work for MAC and has been blessed to do make-up at NY Fashion Week as well as other fashion and trade shows. I noticed on her blog today (http://www.makeupbyrisa.blogspot.com/) that she is working on getting her channel up and running again. I will continue to try to follow Risa to see if she has a new channel that she is uploading her videos to, so stay tuned. I am sure someone with that level of talent is still doing make-up but may no longer have the time to do videos. COME BACK RISA WE MISS YOU!!
How I Got Hooked:
This year Angie revealed something that I did not know about her, she is a cake decorator in her “real” life. It all makes since now because occasionally she will do incredibly small and detailed work on her face just like decorating a cake. (See this year’s reverse sugar skull video – link is above)
These are just 3 of the make-up gurus that I am featuring today, more to come.
Thursday, December 8, 2011
The next channel that I subscribed to was Lauren Luke’s channel, Panacea 81 (http://www.youtube.com/user/panacea81). Like me Lauren is self taught. One day she just started playing around with make-up and decided to film it.
Sunday, October 2, 2011
The other thing I noticed that I hadn’t noticed before is that she looks like she has had some Botox in her forehead but not in her chin area where I feel she needs a little something. I guess I never noticed it before because I could only focus on the bags under her eyes, the mark of a true stylist as anyone in the fashion industry knows.
I have to say that I love Rachel and hope to one day follow in her career footsteps but there are definitely a few things that I would do differently.
First, I would like to say that Rachel’s LA style is not really for me. I am an east coast DC girl so I tend to lean more on the conservative side of the fashion spectrum. Rachel loves the ease and flow of the 70s era where I am more of a fan of the 40s, with the structured suits and polished hair and make-up.
Secondly, being an African-American woman I think that Rachel could benefit greatly with more diversity on her staff, you know someone like me. I could guide her through the world of urban fashion. I think that she could use with more influences like Kimora Lee Simmons Baby Phat collection as well as the amazing local DC designers KAS (http://www.kascollectioninc.com/) and Andrew Nowell Menswear (http://www.andrewnowell.com/). These designers know how to do urban with edge and luxury.
Talking about these last 2 local designers brings me to my final point of what I would do differently from Rachel. I would support local designers and do what I could to elevate their collections to an international level. I believe that someone that has that much influence in the fashion industry should be doing more to seek out amazing local talent and mentoring them to the next level.
In spite of these differences I will say that Rachel and I do have quite a bit in common. We both love the drama and artistry of couture and love high art designers such as the late great Alexander McQueen, Prabal Gurung, and Alexander Wang.
Now back to the gossip of the show.
I adore the new guy Jeremiah that she hired. Not only is he adorable, talented, and has a great eye but he seems like his going to be a great asset to the Zoe team. I feel that he will not become a media whore like Taylor and Brad were. Oh the drama those 2 created in the first 3 seasons. Of course it made for great TV but they were annoying and let the cameras make them loose site of the main goal of styling.
Jeremiah also thinks outside of the box in a thoughtful manner, really wants to please Rachel, and most importantly is willing to learn the fashion industry from the ground up and who better to learn from than the amazing Rachel.
On the other hand Joey is the epitome of every gay stereotype that I hate. I should first say that I started my career as a dancer and have been around gay men all my life. Most of my men friends are gay and I love them all but this Joey character (I call him that because it is so obvious that he is playing a character) is so over the top and flamboyant that it takes every ounce of my strength not to reach through the TV and slap the shit out of him. I liked it better when we only saw him every few episodes sitting quietly doing Rachel’s hair and make-up; interjecting every once in a while on Rachel’s wardrobe. Now that they have decided to make him more of a main character on the show I am seriously considering hulu’ing the show so I can skip all sections he is in.
I know this is just a shot in the dark that the incredible Rachel Zoe would actually read my little blog but on the 1 and a million chance that she does I have 2 pieces of advice for her and the Bravo! producers of The Rachel Zoe Project:
1. Hire me to diversify your staff, I have been in this business for over 15 years and have incredible knowledge of fashion history. I know your favorite color is white but if you don’t diversify your staff people are going to think that you are prejudice and you will never get amazing African American and Latina stars on your client roster. I know you are currently styling Eva Mendes but what other ethnic stars are you styling?
2. Give Joey less air time because I feel that he is offensive to the gay community. So many gay men are doing their best to not become the stereotypical gay man that the hetero world pigeonholes them in. I believe that Joey just sets gay men back on the evolutionary scale.
Stay Fashionable and ABsolutely FABulous!
Sunday, September 18, 2011
I had been listening to the weather all week and I heard cold but nothing about rain; so when I woke up this morning to clouds and a drizzle I was not very happy. For the past 3 or 4 years that I have been doing make-up for the H Street Festival it has always been really hot. This is the first time that this event could potentially be rained out.
I forged ahead anyway making sure my make-up looked flawless: soft gold on the lid, soft bronze in the crease, and skin-toned highlighter - Red Ginger 88 palette in matte and shimmer; a touch of bronzer and highlighted with a soft pink – Coastal Scents 8 palette, the amazing Ardell 117 lashes and my MAC Pro Longwear Lipcolour in Passion Preserved.
The outfit was cute but workable for the task at hand, with my jet black skinny jeans, dusty rose tank top, V-neck cable knit long-sleeved Kelly green pullover sweater and black gladiator style peep-toe 3” booties.
When I got to the gym on 10th and H Street NE the models and make-up artists were getting set up and it just felt amazing to be back with my true fashion friends. I came in and got big hugs and kisses from my dear friend and fellow make-up colleague Lynette Evans (seek her out, she’s amazing) and my beautiful friends, Model Coordinator, April Miller (one of the best walkers in the business) and Model, Heather Shue (as tall as she is beautiful). A few moments later, Executive Producer, Jimmy Jones came up behind me and gave me a huge hug and kiss and a bit later the founder of DC Fashion Week and Creative Director of Corjor International, Ean Williams came in. I jumped away from my model to give him a hug and kiss. Aaaahhh I was home!
The make-up look for today was a black smoky eye and a red lip for the female models and a light coverage and powder for the male models. Any make-up artist that has worked DC Fashion Week knows that is the standard make-up vision. It is a look that is striking on the runway and works with the varied skin tones of the models as well as the varied artists that present their collections.
The mood was uplifting and fun as I worked on the 5 models that I glamourized for the show. There was laughing, catching up, and a bit of gossip; all the things that I love about backstage at fashion shows.
We finished right on time and everyone noted that it was cloudy but not raining so the show was going on. I stayed to pack up my kit as the models made their way to the outdoor stage on 12th and H.
I was unable to see the first designer but I made it backstage to the tents in time to see the Corjor collection up close and personal. Ean Williams, Creative Director for Corjor International and Founder of DC Fashion Week, restyled a few of his classic pieces from a previous collection giving them a freshness and modernity. The pieces I have not seen previously were spectacular. He has been playing with shredding for a few seasons but this season Ean took his signature classic silhouettes, shredded 1” strips of chiffon in a neutral palette of chocolate brown and black and layered them to create his pieces. He gave us short and long halter dresses but the piece that blew me away was the cutest pair of black hot pants done in the same shredded style paired with a corseted black satin spaghetti strapped top that was pleated like the top of ball gown - AMAZING!! At the end of the show I told Ean, who also MC’s the shows, that I was dying over the new pieces and he told me that I have not seen anything. He said that the pieces that he will be showing later during DC Fashion Week are over the edge. All I can say to that is, I am holding my breath in anticipation.
The next designer was a DC Fashion Week favorite Renee Frances Designs (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Renee-France-Designs/192230820822696?sk=wall#!/pages/Renee-France-Designs/192230820822696). Renee does knit wear like no one else. She takes traditional crochet shapes and string them into tropical confections. What other designer do you know can create swimwear and beach looks from knitwear fabrics? Renee’s pieces are always bright and fun, but most importantly sexy. I don’t know if Renee grew up in a warm climate but she creates like she was born in Brazil. From photos that I have seen of Brazilian beaches they wear very little and that is exactly what you get when you wear Renee’s bathing suits. She always peppers the collection with adorable crocheted cocktail dress as well as long pants finished with ruffled hems. Great collection as always Renee!
The final designer of the day was a lovely young woman names Elizabeth St. John. I first saw Elizabeth’s collection at last year’s DC Fashion Week S/S collections during the bridal show at the Textile Museum in DC. Elizabeth does incredible evening gowns as well as bridal wear. Her choice of fabrics is impeccable and it is evident that she has a great understanding of the female body and passion for her craft. Today she showed gowns with a high level of sophistication, vibrant colors, and fantastic skill; pretty remarkable for someone so young. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.
All in all it was a great day. It didn’t rain and the sun had actually come out by the time the show was over. The festival was in full swing when I left shortly after the show which I think is the mark of a great event. If you get the opportunity to catch this amazing festival next year I high recommend you check it out.
For more information on the other shows being held at the Spring/Summer 2012 DC Fashion Week go to the website: http://dcfashionweek.org/dcfw/index.php/schedules/.
Make sure you come back to my blog later in the week for more backstage scoop and my insights into Spring/Summer 2012 NY Fashion Week.
Monday, December 8, 2008
For those that have never been to Strathmore Mansion or the adjacent Music Center I would say to take the short trip from the beltway to see it. This time of the year is the best because the Mansion is decorated for the holidays as you can see from mine and Hila’s pictures.
The Strathmore Mansion and Music Center are truly one of Bethesda’s amazingly beautiful architectural landmarks: http://www.strathmore.org/.
The current exhibitions are:
I. Jane Brashares – handmade paper and mixed media
This incredible artist gave the small Invitational Gallery real presence; the unusual mediums of the artist completely draws you in. Hila and I had fun reading the titles of the pieces and getting a real sense of the artists intent of each piece. The titles were what gave the piece purpose but the use of sea glass, stones, wood, wire and handmade paper made you fall in love.
AB-FAB FIERECEABULOUS PICKS:
II. Alice Hui – pottery
Also located in the meek Invitational Gallery are these sculptural pottery works that are both wheel thrown and slab built. For those that know me they know I love unusual, vibrant, colored works. When a color defies the choosen medium, that’s when my heart skips a beat. The splashes of blood red Alice uses in her Flambe pieces were the true stand outs of the collection. She also picked a gold speckled glaze that she called “dust” to create beautiful contrasting patterns in her functional pieces. As with Jane Brashares collection the prices of this collection were not only fair but reasonable.
AB-FAB FIERECEABULOUS PICKS:
1. The Gala Flambe Figured Vase (set of 4)
III. 75th Annual International Exhibition of Fine Art in Miniature – Diamond Anniversary
I am always humbled by great art but to see paintings with details that compare to the great masters of all time in miniature was increble to see; [the details] made you forget about the size of the piece.
The vibrancy of the colors, the subjects, the frames all made me want to stay there forever examining every brush stroke and pondering, “How’d they do that?”
No painting was over 25 square inches and the lower floor of the Mansion has works painted on piano keys.
AB-FAB FIERECEABULOUS PICKS:
1. Attic Treasure (this was worth the whole gallery trip for me)
2. Thorsmork, Iceland (I love that this was done on stainless steel)
3. Grey Squirrel
4. Summer Fun (Oil on Ivorine)
5. Winter Creekside (Oil on Silk)
6. Studio Chat
7. Unknown - The last piece I forgot the title of but isn’t it beautiful
IV. Nebiur Arellano: Timeless Filigree – textile artist
The Peruvian artist is what got me to go to Strathmore Mansion to begin with and I will say that she took my breath away.
Her works are inspired by Pre-Columbian art and in her bio she mentions the masters Klimt, Miro, Mondrain, and Klee (which she pays homage to – see below in FIERECABULOUS PICKS).
It's artist like Nebiur that allow me to show people the art in fashion and textiles. I believe that textiles are the greatest mediums for art but then again I am biased.
This collection gave me a real inspirational charge and I am thrilled to have had the opportunity to see these works as closely and intimately as I did.
Hila and I had gone through the entire Mansion, and were ready for some food; we went back to the 1st floor because we missed the piano key miniatures. As we were walking out of that part of the gallery we heard that Nebiur Arellano was there and I asked her if she wouldn’t mind posing next to one of her pieces (see below).
AB-FAB FIERECEABULOUS PICKS:
4. Family Tree (this is the close up of this piece)
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Still the critics question should the works produced by a 4 year old be in the same company as Rembrandt
Can an elephant or dog create beauty on a canvas? Some say yes while others refuse to see the beauty in abstract art.
This being a fashion blog, of course this tale leads to the question; Do avant garde and haute couture fashion designers have a place in fashion?
Some say that Marc Jacobs reigns supreme when it comes to fashion and I am not denying that I covet all things Louis Vuitton but the fashionista in me remembers Marc Jacobs’ roots. I remember when he single handily brought grunge fashion to the masses (oops, showing my age).
Although he created the buzz words “’IT’ Bag” and creates some of the best luxury designs in the world, he still loves to do more offbeat, innovative creations in his Marc by Marc Jacobs line. These are the creations that allow this genius to have the true creative outlet he needs to push the Louis Vuitton brand to the forefront of luxury fashion.
So again I ask What is Art and What is Fashion?
After writing my blog about Thom Browne (see blog dated 11-13-08) I went to see my friend Amanda and was told by another friend that I was the topic of conversation in their department that morning and he had a question for me.
He asked, “Do you really think that the average American male would wear Thom Browne’s designs?”
I have been in many a conversation having to defend and explain a fashion designers vision. Like the old saying goes, “Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. “
I am aware that most people do not have my view when it comes to fashion and I am also aware that not everyone likes my style – FOOLS!
However, it has become my ultimate mission to convert the masses (this blog is for you) to broaden their view of what they consider fashion.
If you can appreciate the brilliance of Dali
I have mentioned in many a blog that one of my favorite fashion designers is Alexander McQueen
Some of my favorite over the top McQueen creations were the circuit boards on catsuits at Givenchy, ball skirts using laser cut wood, a machine spray-painted gown (this was done while the model was on stage), and only McQueen could be bold enough to see the beauty of an amputee model.
Art is relative and I hope this blog allows you to open your mind when you see and outrageous fashion collection. That you will be able to pull apart the drama of the show and see the collection with an artistic eye and say, “OK that’s a bit much for me but I can appreciate the work the designer put into making it.”
The AB-FAB picks on this blog will be some of my favorite avant garde and couture designers:
1. Alexander McQueen – DUH!!Here are links so that you can see this avant garde designers' genius:
THIS ONE IS TRULY GENIUS:
2. Ozwald Boateng – a black British bespoke menswear designer – FIERCEABULOUS!! His looks have been seen on many celebrities and featured in many movies. He is hoping to one day break into American fashion and turn American men in to gentleman.
Here is a link to watch a video of Ozwald’s TV show.: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyXZZRr9yLQ
3. Philip Treacy – Those that know me; know I love a fierce hat. Philip is another British designer (are you seeing the pattern yet?) that creates some of the most luxurious hats in the world.
http://www.philiptreacy.co.uk/ - the 2001 RTW (ready to wear) collection
Here is a hat that Philip Treacy did for one of Alexander McQueen’s collections in 2008 (he also designed the hat that Sarah Jessica Parker is wearing in the Alexander McQueen look above)
4. Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton Couture – designer for Louis Vuitton for almost a decade now.
5. Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel Couture – he is the leader in haute couture. Madame Chanel would be proud to see her legacy carried forth by this anomalous man. You can say without wavering that Karl Lagerfeld is the first and last word in fashion. His haute couture lines are what drive the ready to wear collections of every major fashion designer.
6. John Galliano for Dior Couture – another peculiar man that is known for his outrageous fashion shows and over the top designs. Women love to wear his “brand” designs but fashionistas know that he is legendary for creating the wedding dresses for Gwen Stefani and the Donald’s latest Milania Trump.
7. Issey Miyake – you can’t talk about avant garde fashion without mentioning a Japanese designer. Issey is known for his layered looks and for brining avant garde style to everyday companies like Nike or was it Puma? I suggest if the designs are too much for you then try his fragrances.