Thursday, April 28, 2011

In a Romantic Way

Love is in the air… the Royal wedding has certainly influenced the mood in fashion these days.   Oh how sweet it is to mimic the exciting rush of first love, the giddy feeling of the first kiss, the most cherished moment of the first dance… Now now enough of the mushiness…  I want go all out romantic with dressing up, make up, accessories, and hair style.

The Romantic Fashion

So how can we dress romantically?  Nothing can be more romantic and magical than a wardrobe that speaks sophistication and ladylike sensibilities.  Here are a few hints and suggestions on how you can pull-off an outfit that can sweep any guy off his feet.
  • Dainty skirts with intricate details and frothy layers can make you float effortlessly across any room.
  • A-line skirt silhouettes in lace or tulle can gorgeously make a mesmerizing and rich fall.
  • Off-shoulder sleeves with flattering fit and flare style with elaborate lace appliqué details in flimsy georgette fabric is just the right touch of femininity and elegance.
  • Dresses with flounce of lace are truly ethereal and beguiling.
  • Tiered and empire cut dresses made of crepe satin and chiffon creates beautiful sexy silhouettes.
  • Ballerina dresses in empire cuts that comes in shades of pastels is truly a vintage piece that sets an aura of classical romance.  The ballerina's statuesque neckline can also complete a glorious number.
  • Embroideries in the right places are simply eye-catching.  Opt for embellishments that are positioned gracefully at the waist or bust area.
  • Stay away from crisp strictly white undergarments but go for the muted and gentle colors that create a soothing feel. Go for shades like creams, pearls, baby pinks, subtle lavenders, nudes and faded blues and greens.

These are a few of my favorite ideas that make me feel that I am woman and I am just proud to be one!  A dose of any of what I have just listed can make you the romantic siren you have never thought you can pull off wonderfully.  Now I have gone a little too excited on the romantic fashion… watch out for my next blogs on romantic makeup and hairstyles.  Tata for now…
Sunday, April 17, 2011

A few of my favorite matches

Part 2: Endless Possibilities on Fashion Mix and Match

Since I have already mentioned the endless possibilities on mix and match, allow me to delve more on that topic.  The slightly warm weather has taken its toll on me and I am just in the mood for loading on the basic pieces. And by basic, I mean tees, camis, tanks and jeans.   For my perpetual need of always going around errands, the basics have proven to be the perfect complement on my lifestyle.

Layering has created innumerable touches to even the plainest wardrobes.  The basics like camis with lace patterns have had outstanding finish under a dress or a fabulous cardigan.  They come in a variety of colors making your dress look different each and every time you wear them.  Just add on a stylish belt, and then you’ve got the layers that change the ordinary to extraordinary.

Another wardrobe that I can also consider as basic is a pair of solid colored skinny jeans.  It goes very well with a nice piece of glamorous Dashiki and it can also match with anything casual like a pair of classic tees.  Layer it up with layers of accessories and your glam up for the day. 

And if I really have to mix and match a black and white pair, a dash of colorful scarf and statement jewelry will do the trick.  I use the scarf as a belt and I find the perfect necklace to match with it.  And don’t forget the shoe, let go of black and white!

On the busy-beauty side of me, which sometimes has no time for make-up, the perfect sunglasses and scarf has saved me in those days.  Hey don’t get me wrong, I still love to put on make-up it’s not just as frequent as I want it to be.  Just be sure to nourish your face with vitamins to keep it that glow even without make-up.  With a solid tank and a nice pair of blazer, I can go anywhere I want! 

That’s the madness of everything basic – it’s a fashionista’s canvas, it allows us to explore the many possibilities of layering and accessorizing.

Be Bold, Black and Beautiful

“It had always been my personal advocacy that all women possess natural beauty – inside and out.  It was a long and arduous journey for me, and it is with great passion that I walk a beautiful life now.”

Like you, I grew up being the ordinary girl in the neighborhood.  I went through the awkward stages of bad skin clad with zits, dull kinky hair, and a crazy set of uneven and protruding teeth.    Of course there is obviously nothing wrong with being ordinary, but I had this silly thought that I had to get the validation from someone else.  And mind you, I had the strangest feeling of wanting to be someone else.  After years of learning the tricks and trades to be beautiful, after every roadblocks of countless trials and errors - - I managed to be get through it alive!  All I ever needed was a dose of inspiration, and I need not look far and wide, I had it right before me, I wanted to make a difference and make my Momma proud… that was the most powerful passion that has led me to a beautiful life and a beautiful me.

Decide and make the conscious decision to live your life with conviction and grace.  Strive to create a world of balance to fuel your life for the long and exciting journey ahead - on self discovery and self expression.  Live each day to pursue your dreams and discover the things that matters most.  Yes, I wanted to be beautiful and I want people around me to gravitate from that happiness.  I was inspired, I was glowing inside and my life was full.

Of course, I still love dresses, and I love everything about fashion.   I never forego my beauty regimen towards beautiful skin and healthier lifestyle.  And I still have bad habits and careless mistakes.
I still have occasional bout of insecurities (trust me that’s normal!), but that never get in the way to overpower what’s already there – the passion and inspiration to stay beautiful inside out.

Now sistahs, it’s your turn. What was your bold, black and beautiful story?  I am happy to invite you to join me and take part in my advocacy.
Thursday, April 14, 2011

Fashionable Scents

I’m going to veer a little wayward from my usual fashion blogs today. It’s been a long and tough week and I want to do something light and scented.  It doesn’t have to be the most expensive bottle that makes you smell good; finding the right scent for you may only mean exploring every scent there is possible (may it be from that nearby drugstore or the posh store!).

Oftentimes, we don’t just get noticed because of what we wear, we get the most complements because of how good we smell.  A perfume can be an attention catcher.  It is the invisible and mysterious proportion we add to our wardrobe creating a haunting beauty that keeps people wondering what has crossed them.

First, you have to know when to wear perfumes.  If you intend to go to the cinema and you are forced to sit with other people for hours, please have the decency to wear something very very light to leave some air (or go scentless if it’s really jam-packed). People might just hate you for wearing that strong Poison!  If you are going to a party, give yourself an ideal touch up of that fruit-cocktail fragrance.  If you are headed for work, but it might depend on which type of work you have, imagine the aura that you want to project – it can be the fresh one or it can be the intellectual one.

Try not to stick to your usual paradigms when it comes to perfumes.  Say, if you are flirty and want to smell flirty all the time then that makes your boring.  Try to surprise yourself by wearing something floral and fresh!  If you are the luxuriant one, try something you think is not too pricey.  And if you are the most feminine one, try something more masculine.  Who knows, your new scent might just be the best one that works for you.

Don’t just buy a perfume because you liked it on someone else, get one that satisfy your liking and what it does to your moods and how it suits your lifestyle.  So whenever you think of the perfect dress to wear for that occasion, never forget to wear that seemingly invisible piece of fashion – the fragrance.  

Endless Possibilities on Fashion Mix and Match

Mixing and matching fashion essentials are one sure way of enriching our wardrobe, plus it is one of the most economical ways of enhancing our outfits without hurting our budget.  It is just a matter of being creative and knowing when to coordinate colors, fabrics, patterns and styles.  Putting up a terrific look is not difficult and can be something even more gratifying.  You will be surprised with yourself at how fun it can be and how different and interesting some looks can become even if you have been using them a dozen times already.

For completely different looks every day, I have some few favorite ideas to help you get the most of your money and (sometimes limited!) wardrobes.

-The upper part of the body usually gets noticed more than the bottoms, so even if you wear different pants or shirt everyday but you wear the same cardigan (or same shade), then your everyday attire looks the same.  Yes you were mixing and matching, but you forgot the basic element that people notice more.  So in choosing tops, build up with the basic solid colors and move forward with the prints and patterns.

-Patterns and prints go well with a complementary solid colored top or bottom.  It can be tricky to mix and match them, but if you have loaded up on the basic colors, that wouldn’t be so difficult.  You can always create and recreate a charming number by matching a graphic skirt with any other neutral or solid color top.

-Dresses can be very difficult to do mix and match, but an equal amount of accessories like belts, scarves, and jewelries can completely transform the dress.  Plus always remember to style your hair differently every time for an added twist of variety.

If you are planning on shopping for dresses and fashion accessories any time soon - explore the many possibilities of choosing those that can build the basics and enhance the essentials.  One unique item that you can mix and match with a dozen pieces in your wardrobe will certainly give you a more versatile edge.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Dress Up with a Scarf

Scarves have always enamored me in so many ways.  It is some sort of magic on how a piece of fabric can simply transform an outfit to an entirely new look and appeal.  Scarves can be made of any fabric and can come in a multitude of colors, patterns, designs, and sizes.    In ancient times, a scarf was not always used to make a fashion display or as piece to add warmth, it was of symbolic importance to society and military. Its meaningful past has found its way to this day.   There are just a lot of things and endless possibilities we can do with it and the innovation never stops.   

Cut the Chill
Keep warm while holding the look of understated elegance by wrapping your neck once or twice with a scarf.  You can also try different variations of twists to come up with something stylish that can complement any necklines.  A well chosen scarf will not only keep you warm, it can add a zest of personality and artistry to your wardrobe while keeping you chic and comfortable all through the breezy months.

A Jolt of Color
When you don’t need more warmth in the summer months, a brightly colored scarf can be used as a belt to liven up a pair of casual shorts or jeans.  It can instantly jazz up and add a touch of color and versatility to that boring bottom.  Are you fond of bold colors but you’re afraid to pull off a dress or top swathe with it? A vibrant scarf in any color of your preference over a black or neutral wardrobe can finish that look just as perfectly.

The Perfect Wrap
Whether you need a good wrap to protect or hair or be simply stylish, a good scarf will serve its purpose aesthetically.  You can either wrap it around your head and tie a knot behind the ear and let the ends of the scarf fall gloriously through the shoulders.  It’s simple, stunning, and effortlessly sophisticated.

Do you know of many more ways to use a scarf? Post something; I would appreciate your ideas.   Check out Facebook for a wide selection of the scarves.  For the latest trends on African Fashions, check also Twitter.   
Monday, April 11, 2011

8 Things Every African-American Lady Must Own

Here’s my list of necessities that no wardrobe should be without.  Grab them and the rest of pieces should be easier to decide.

1. Printed Scarf
One of the most inexpensive and interesting ways to liven up and elevate any outfit is the addition of a printed scarf.  Some beautiful pieces perfect for you are readily available online.   For a feminine finish and pretty touch up, make sure you have this in your wardrobe.

2. Classic sunglasses
A nice pair of classic sunglasses never goes out of style.  It can wrap up a look that’s both functional and versatile.

3. Tailored black blazer
A black blazer is a fashion staple that you shouldn’t pass off.    It can exude a fine finish of womanly authority and corporate elegance.

4. A piece of culture and heritage
While we want our everyday look to be as interesting as possible, we want something that’s decidedly African to be the perfect ensemble wherever and whenever the occasion calls for it.  Afrawear has the biggest and widest selections you can choose from.

5. Little White Dress
It’s not all about the little black dress that every woman must have.  While black is beautiful and safe for everyone, for your ebony complexion, swathe yourself with the sweet sophistication of this achromatic hue.  Find a dress with the detail to make it more unique and stunning, like an embellished neckline, accentuated belt, or interesting sleeve.  And if white is too revealing for you, try some exciting shades of cream, off-white and ivory.

6. Comfy flats
Do you have a pair of the most comfortable flats to cushion your feet any time of the day and through the night?  Get yourself a pair of metallic flats to glam up almost every pretty piece of outfit in your closet.

7. Statement Necklace
You can be stylish anytime with an ideal dose of signature elegance to add an unexpected edge of glamour to your favorite attire.  Check out some beautiful pieces online.

8. Printed Top
It is always great to have a nice top that can liven up any day and add color to any boring wardrobe.  It is perfect underneath a cardigan or peeking out from under a blazer.

There you have it – 8 things that every African-American lady must own.  So if you don’t have them all, think about it!  Or do you have a piece that you think deserves to be in this list?  Share it and I would be delighted to add them in…
Friday, April 8, 2011

Fashion Myths Unveiled

Believe it or not but some fashion myths have been with us through the ages and try as we must, “avoid” or “adhere” to them at all cost.  Logically, they can be true but wait until you try it and you realize, “it’s just a myth after all”.

-A black dress is for everyone.  Yes, it’s a color of sophistication and confidence. But well, if you’re black and you don on all black, that’s utterly boring and muted.  So liven up, try some solid bold colors.  Or if you really must wear black, accessorize!

-Women of weight should avoid horizontal stripes.  We’ve heard it a million times.  Okay, so you gained weight and you thought it’s downright unflattering.  How about you give it a try now and tell me if I’m bluffing?  You’d be surprised at how good it can be on you.

-Always match shoes with bag or belt.  That should be an age old story accepted by our mothers.  But hey, that’s gone wayside now.  There are so many shoes out there, do you just want to pass it up coz u don’t have the perfect bag or belt to match with it? How about matching your dress with your shoe or your bag?

-Long skirts and long skirts make you look bigger.  But truth be told, it can actually make you look slimmer and taller.

-Long dresses aren’t for small, petite women.  Well, check out some famous petite stars who have mastered this style.  Long dresses that reach down to the ankles are simply sophisticated and you certainly wouldn’t want to pass up on it because of your height.   Try to stick on light and silky fabrics and pair it with those lovely wedges and you’d be just stunning!

-Sequins and sparkles are only for the night.  The shimmering fabrics are just as eye catching and glamorous for the day as it is for the night.  But be sure to layer it with plain basics.  Take it down a notch under a jacket or cardigan or choose those tops with sparkles at the neckline.

Many of these myths (or should I say rules) have been going around for decades now.  It’s all up to you to challenge it and let’s say experiment.  And to start off, try out some cool stuff from my sistahs in the fashion business.

When Less is More

Part 2 on Fashion Blunders

More often than not, as we see people sashay across us, we take notice of their fashions sense, and little did we know that we also fall prey for this kind of thing.  Now what I am talking about? There is what I call the beauty in minimalism.  I’m no fashion maven, but isn’t it obvious when too much means too much? Elegance is neither trendy nor fussy, and making a statement is not just a parade of everything we have in our closet, it is the beauty that is timeless and chic.

I have already featured in my previous blog a few fashion faux pas to avoid, there were pointers on flattering colors, prints, accessories and embellishments.  And since my sistahs love them, here’s a few more:

Too Much Patterns
Now try to imagine yourself in a herringbone pattern skirt matched with alternating squares of colorful top?  While we see that on others, please oh please, that is very very difficult to pull off.  So try matching your favorite pattern with one or two solid color.  Don’t try to satisfy every trend in one go coz that might just be silly.

Too Much Colors
Too many colors are eye catching but also draw major trouble.  So here’s a hint that always works for me.  Try to use the color wheel.  Complementary colors and analogous colors are the best color combo or trio that works all the time.  Complementary are those colors that are opposite each other in the color wheel: typical ones are orange and blue, purple and yellow.  So to look intense and bold, try some complementary colors.  Analogous colors are those that are right beside each other in the color wheel like yellow-green, green, and blue green.  These colors can give you a look of total freshness, coordination, and excitement.

Too Much Fabrics
In the language of fabrics, there are those that never meet half way.  So if you can simply keep your summer and winter wardrobes away from each other, then you’re all set.
Now while I’m admittedly a minimalist, in the true sense of fashion, there is always a matter of style and design that calls for simplicity and excesses - because the future of fashion should be something without limitations and restrictions on whatever potentialities. So for the champions of minimalism out there, we are in the same boat, and for the avid maximalists, convince me why I should try and experiment that kind of style.  Your style could be more interesting, so take a stand, post something coz I really want to hear your thoughts.

By the way, we have online resources that can show you what’s big on fashion now.  Check out also facebook and twitter to get a grip on what’s new with African-American Fashion.
Thursday, April 7, 2011

The African Wedding

I’m always excited about weddings and I tend to go all agog to dress up for it.  I mean it’s an excuse to be overly glamorous and all, but of course, not to compete with the bride.  And for this specific topic, I want to feature the African wedding.   What should you expect in African weddings? African weddings can be as rich and diversified as its continent, so here are a few things you need to know about African Weddings.

African Wedding Traditions

The most important element in African weddings is the bringing together of two families above all else.  African wedding traditions are embraced in America today to celebrate their roots and find more meaning in the occasion.  The ceremonies and receptions are often customized to capture the beautiful and colorful collection that is truly of African heritage.  Africa is bountiful of chants, dance, music and colors; they are big on parties and celebrations.  In recent years, an African wedding is a fusion of age old traditions and a touch of contemporary nuptial rites. 

One tradition during the wedding ceremony is called the “jumping the broom” which is still widely popular to this day.   The broom straw symbolically represents family, the handle signifies the Creator and the ribbon represents the knot that binds the couple together.  The jumping of the broom ritual is symbolic of uniting the couple in marriage and would also mean fertility and prosperity.

The Wedding Attire

Traditional wedding attire of the bride would consist of an elaborate wrap skirt (iro), loose blouse (buba), shawl (iborum) and a headpiece (gele).  The groom’s attire would be a pair of slacks (sokoto), traditional shirt (bubba), a flowing jacket (agbada) and rounded hat (fila).  The most of often used fabric for the wedding attire is the African woven cloth kente.

Some couples might prefer a more western flare, thus the white bridal gown and tuxedo are worn with a twist of African royalty color in purple with gold accents.  These accents are often demonstrated throughout the bridal party as well as the adornments in the ceremony and reception.

Discover the beautiful traditions that are unique to African weddings.  There’s more to know and its far off traditions ranging from Morocco to Nile are what make it mysterious and captivating.

So what must you wear if you are invited to an African wedding anytime soon?  There’s plenty to choose from online.  Afrawear features a wide array of African dresses perfect for that African wedding.
Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The Black History Month

If there is one month in a year that celebrates the courage, determination, and dignity of the African people, that would be the Black History Month.  It officially commemorates the achievements, milestones, sacrifices, and history of the African diaspora.  It has been annually observed in the US and Canada in February and in the UK in October.

This event started off from the “Negro History Week” in 1926 that was an inspiration from the renowned historian and scholar Dr. Carter G. Woodson.  The weeklong celebration encouraged schools and communities in the US to organize local activities and establish functions, history clubs, and lectures to promote awareness to African American history.  The event has then evolved into a month long celebration and was later officially declared by President Gerald R. Ford as the “Black History Month” in 1976 to honor the contributions and endeavors of African Americans throughout the American history.

How is it Celebrated
What are the celebratory events and activities that make the Black History Month memorable each year?  Many events are organized across many campuses and communities all over the US, Canada, and UK to mark this event.  In the US, some of these events would include lectures & forums, days-long concerts, documentary film screenings, musical plays, African-Caribbean & hip-hop dancing, poetry, story-telling and chanting.  In the UK, it is celebrated through museum events and exhibitions, jazz and hip-hop performances and sessions, speeches and orations, and specialized tours.  In Canada, it is highlighted through banquets and dances, musical dinner performances, stage plays, movies, discussions and dialogues, spirit & wine tasting events, boot camps, quizzes, and fellowships.

Tattles behind the Black History Month
Devoting a month to celebrating black history has stirred a different connotation by some critics.  Most of the argument relies on the fact that relegating one month dedicated to Black history provokes a condescending mindset that black history is different from the American history.  Other debates rested on the assumption that the black history has gone to becoming a marketing scheme to celebrities and African goods instead of realizing the dream that it originally signified.  It has been argued too often that it has evolved into an occasion to boost multiculturalism instead of its intent to promote the history of African-Americans to this day.

I am inviting you take a stand and share your thoughts about this one event that marks your history.  How do you celebrate it in your community?  Are you equipped with the proper attire to celebrate it?  For more ideas on African-American inspirations, check also Facebook and Twitter.  
Monday, April 4, 2011

Beauty and Fashion under Pressure

Are you running from end to end trying to keep up with yourself in the middle of all the frenzy?  Or do you have a really stressful job keeping you off your levelheadedness? How do you manage to keep your composure under extreme pressure? How do you pull yourself together after a fashion faux pas?  Are you often stressed out at a slightest degree of criticism?  These are just some of the questions that I want to ponder on as I try to elevate myself to a new level of maturity wherein I can step up with an air of confidence no matter how crucial or frantic the circumstance might be.

Maintaining a cool and calm aura amidst all the chaos around us can be difficult, that’s why, based on experience, poise and beauty to go about it is acquired and practiced over time.  I mentioned my so called maturity right?  Yes, attaining that tranquil state while everyone is tormented is a good sign of maturity.  It doesn’t happen overnight but we can sure do start to practice now.  For starters, I can spell out a few tested techniques.
  • Staying beautiful and fashionable everyday is a “conscious decision”.  So no matter how long your day might be or no matter how tomorrow worries you, each new day you wake up, you do your best to keep your hair in a secure up do or half-do and a touch of optimistic make-up.   I’m not telling you everything would go easily, but I know that caring for oneself is one sure way to go.
  • Take a deep breath and relax your nerves before you face the world.  “Choose” to be calm and composed.
  • “Keep it easy” with your wardrobe. Don on your most comfortable and favorite outfit suiting for work or the occasion.  This way you don’t need to stress yourself even more planning what to wear.
  • Always prepare the “quick fixes” – meaning vibrant lip gloss, elegant scarves and a pretty pair of shades must come in handy.  This will keep up with your outfit as you run around and go about your day.
  • Invest on a few pieces of “timeless” jewelry and handbag.  These are the pieces that can keep you pulled together no matter how casual you are wearing.  Hey, I’m not telling you to splurge. Think about it. 
These are just a few tips to stay beautiful and fashionable even through the craziest of days. Learn more about beauty and fashion from African FashionsFacebook and Twitter.

Did you experience extreme pressure all the while needing beauty and fashion to stand by you through the day?  So what did you do? How did you cope up with it?  I would be happy to hear from you… You’re thoughts would surely mean a lot to our sistahs out there… reach out and post your suggestions or ideas or what have you.

African Fashion Face Off

Featuring the Fashions of North – South – East – West Africa

Could there be any difference in the fashion of the different regions of Africa?  Or do they meet in the middle and manage to be similar in many ways? Oftentimes when we see magazines, African fashion can either be demonstrated as South African Fashion, West African fashion, and so forth. So in order to answer my insatiable inquisitiveness, I have to check around and see if I can find any distinct differentiation.  Hmnnn, let’s see.  How should we start? First, we have to be familiar with the facets in each region and see if it rings a bell.  Let’s start from there and see where it leads us.

South Africa in itself is the 25th largest country in the world with a rich diversity in culture, arts, and languages.  It is not only a haven for surfers, safari trails, picturesque landscapes and wine connoisseurs; it has emerged to become a fashion metropolis.  South African fashion is inspired by the style of the women all over town.  Their fashion includes vibrant and upbeat accessories made of intertwined beads and colorful fabrics in bold geometric patterns and deep colors.  This fashion has taken the catwalks and magazines quite surprisingly over the years.

North Africa includes the seven countries of Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Sudan, Tunisia, and Western Sahara.  This region has been historically and ecologically separated by the rest of Africa by the arid sands of the Sahara.  North African fashion is a fusion of the traditional Sudanese and Egyptian clothing ranging from the dainty head gear to elaborate dresses.  Kaftans with intricate embroideries and detailed patterns are the staple in Morocco.  The splendor of their fashion has influenced many designers to date.
East Africa is home to 19 territories: Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia, Mozambique, Madagascar, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Comoros, Mauritius, Seychelles, Réunion and Mayotte.  East African fashion is all about quality, luxury, and exquisite tailoring as well as exuberance in colors and shapes.  Most of the statement and detailed necklaces we see nowadays are strongly influenced by the Kenyan and Tanzanian fashion.  East Africa is also known as a fashion jungle of animal prints, spots and stripes.  Imagine how designers can work wonders out of Zebra’s stripes, wildebeest’s legs, giraffe’s tail, hyena spots, or a buffalo’s horns!

West Africa comprises of 16 countries such as Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Cote d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.  The famous bògòlanfini or bogolan ("mud cloth") fabric is a hand-made product of Malian cultural identity.  Kente fashion showcases the enviable Ghanaian culture and is widely known globally.

All in all, African fashion is a beautiful concoction of the varied styles of the different regions of Mother Africa.  No one is above the rest.  Every African piece is a chef-d'oeuvre that every African should be proud of.

Do you have an African piece and you want to tell the world about it? Share your story and will be happy to take you to a face-off!  For more features on African fashion check also Facebook and Twitter.
Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Spirit of Africa in a Piece of Cloth

The African fabric has stirred the fashion industry and has gained worldwide popularity by rocking the international runways and fashion magazines.  Celebrated designers have grown to favor the intricate and rich designs of this fabric to give glory to their creations.  Most of African fashions can be rooted and highly influenced by the amazing artistry of the African fabrics.  It is unique and embodies original creativity like no other fashion style can.

The African textile has been a significant part of African history.  According to ancient accounts, the textiles of Africa were used as their form of monetary exchange.  The value and width of every strip of cloth was standardized in each region making it easy in the business trades.  Other than that, textiles were also used to identify the members of the tribe.

Every fragment of African fabric is an embodiment of African culture, arts, wealth, and history. Every weave and spin of the thread was believed to have profound symbolic and spiritual meanings.  Today these fabrics remain to be celebrated and appreciated for its unequalled craftsmanship, vibrant colors, and elaborate patterns.

Among the most popular fabrics known to many are the kente, adinkra, and bogolan.  The kente is a beautiful piece of cloth hand-woven on a loom wherein about four inch strips are sewn together to form a larger piece of cloth in various patterns, designs, and colors.  Adinkra textile is a kind of hand printed fabric divided into squares by dye lines and stamped with traditional symbols.  The bogolan (or sometimes called as Bògòlanfini) is a traditional fabric dyed with fermented mud featuring exquisite designs.  These fabrics have played very important roles in the many social and religious gatherings of the African regions.

Although the textiles have much great societal and spiritual relevance to Africa, nowadays, it has been the primary source of occupation and income to the absolute majority of Africans.  Do you know that we can see many textile manufacturers who have gone out of their way not only to sell and market their fabrics but to help Mother Africa as well? Find out more at
Friday, April 1, 2011

Can’t Get Enough of Afrawear

Part 2: Irresistible Finds @ Afrawear

Afrawear never cease to surprise me!  They’ve got all the best and most exquisite pieces I am just dying to have.  Sshhhh… I’m at it again!  So what is it this time?  I’m talking about some ornate accessories to brighten up your days, flourish every ordinary dress, and some twinkling gems to transform just about any look. They are just as unique and captivating as it can get.  Wait no more as I will show you each of my favorite pieces.
So a special occasion is coming up and you can’t decide which dress to wear.  Here’s a hint: work yourself backward starting from this beautiful set of gems.  You will definitely be the envy of all the fashionistas in town!  This is really gorgeous and just about the right size to play ladylike in whatever outfit you can come up with after you’ve seen this.  Need I elaborate more? Or you’ve already figured out the right dress?

And now you have that perfect white dress, and you thought maybe you need a zest of color.  This one is just right for you; the vivid blue accent simply elevates the classic dress.  The glittering accents is just the ideal amount of drama to make that statement.

Are you planning to wear that hot tube dress anytime soon? I can’t think of a better way to glamorize it than this lovely bib necklace.  This great embellishment is a great highlight to any delicate and sexy outfit.  And by the way, this accessory is not only eye-catching; it will draw attention to your face.  Meaning, this is a good piece to start a good conversation.

Have you been meaning to wear that solid colored dress but couldn’t find the right accessory to add a perfect jolt?  This is indeed the serious piece of sumptuous jewelry that can go well with it.  Exactly the right kind of accessory that can make you feel effortlessly sophisticated and beguiling.

Accessorize, that’s the simplest, fun, and affordable way to amplify and update your wardrobe.

Hey, before I forget, they are all available online at Facebook! And if you want to know more, check also Twitter.

Irresistible Finds @ Afrawear

Shopping anytime soon?  Trying to figure out the right balance between hard-core urban style and traditional basics?  Sometimes the basics can make you surprisingly sexy, and sometimes you need a good urbanized ensemble to keep up with today’s trends.  Well, I found both in one store and I am just as happy to blab about it. Since I don’t want to keep the excitement all to myself I will share with you some amazing finds and must-haves that every African-American girl out there shouldn’t live without.

This dress says sexy in every way, is this urban or basic?  It’s a balance of both.  Its fine V-neck pattern complemented with full exquisite tie-die print and sheer wide sleeves exudes nothing but “sheer elegance”.  It’s flowing, breezy, and feminine design is an expression of true grace, beauty, and exoticism.  This is one piece of clothing that’s both dressy and comfy and I can surely flaunt it with ease.  It is not too tight fitting and it flows really well with every stride.  Plus the fabric is so soft and gentle.  Oh I just love it!

This one is a traditional basic and currently my favorite piece of practical and most comfortable clothing.  It is what I call “rustic elegance”.    The colors and prints are just beyond perfection to liven up a gloomy day.  It’s fun and exciting to wear this top.  I can pair it with any bottom from leggings to cowboy shorts and I can unbelievably pull it off pretty well.  What’s more, I can wear it anywhere, from the beach to the mall.  So I guess, it meets urban half-way.

The color complements perfectly to my ebony skin!  The intricate patterns are so pretty and a real work of art.   This is what I call “casual elegance”.  I can wear it with about any errand and it’s suitable enough with any occasion if I add a twist of accessories to go along with it.

I love shopping.  And isn’t it great to do that at the comforts of our own homes?  It is extremely convenient and it offers unparalleled products to choose from.  So much has been said but one thing’s for sure, it’s amazing to realize that the greatest freedom in fashion is to know that you have a choice…

Are you an online shopper?   Do you want to share your online shopping experience?  I’d be delighted to hear from you.  Check also Facebook and Twitter for more catches from Afrawear.

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