Ode to Locs

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Ciara

Although Giuliana Rancis has apologised for her, now we learned scripted slur on Zendaya’s locs hairstyle at the Oscars, it still raises the question of the negative connotations surrounding them and other more natural ‘black’ hairstyles. I wish we could live in a day where all people can wear their hair however they want without being judged (with the exception of a presumed mentally challenged lady I saw wearing a wig after cutting off all the hair from the ‘roots’- leaving a bald Barbie effect #onlyinlondon). However black people who choose to wear their hair without chemical processing- for those who don’t know we don’t have naturally straight hair so use either heat, straight perm or weave to get the look- are often forced to make a political statement. Whilst naturally straight haired people or even those with loose curls can wake up- put a comb through their hair and go to work, the same is often frowned upon if someone like me decided to go to work with my hair- combed but its natural tightly coiled poofy fro. I went though a period of time where I actually did this- as my hair was an awkward length- too short to tie back- and I’ve never been one that likes to spend ages doing the usual styles- braids, weaves even twists on my hair. I’m lucky enough to be living in the most cosmopolitan city in the world and have worked in a lot of very relaxed and cool workplaces where my hair has not been an issue but since I’ve never stayed anywhere that long I don’t know if this would have changed if I had tried to climb the career ladder. I’m not sure how well my fro would go down in a board meeting for example. I understand that some work environments demand very neat styles and even those with straight hair are required to tie it back- and I have no problem with this.

I just think there is still a very dated attitude towards natural black hairstyles like locs and the even sadder thing is that some of the worst attitudes are within our own community. I have Jamaican heritage and surprisingly its not a hairstyle that is well respected in the country where it currently has the strongest cultural links ( although it actually originated in ancient India and Egypt and is said to have been worn in the Bible). I’m glad Giuiliana / Fashion Police made the comments as discussion is always a positive thing. I hope people of all races will be challenged about their attitudes not just on hair but on judging people  based on old fashioned  ‘backwards’ concepts of beauty.

Here are some absolutely gorgeous celebs rocking locs and showing them in all their glory. Plus the best women I know wears them, my Mum <3

 

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Lauryn Hill

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India Arie

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Lisa Bonet

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Ode to Erykah Badu; Queen E

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It was love at first sight since I first saw Erykah Badu’s first single, on & on, TV many moons ago. I was hypnotized by her unique beauty and sound and have been a lifelong fan as have the rest of my family ever since. She is an artist through to the bone and expresses herself through all art forms. Erykah is without a doubt my number 1 style icon as she really brings the phrase wearable art to life- even if sadly I won’t be copying her looks due to being a bit less on the eccentric side- she still encourages me to be different and celebrate my unique qualities-  regardless however obvious or subtle they are. Her music has provided a sound track for the past 20 years of my life and has enhanced my best and soothed my worst moments. Queen E, I salute you and have a blessed birthday. Love and peace!

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Killing the Givenchy campaign!

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With my other love; Janelle Monae

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With hottie Frank Ocean (I know hes gay- I think?-but one can dream)

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London Fashion Week AW15; Collection’s Lust

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Peekaboo (Giles)

I’m happy that some of my favourite designers in the world happen to be London based. Am not sure if its because I’m born here but the quirky style and colourfulness of many of London’s finest design talent is just my cup of tea. Each fashion week seems to churn out something more original than the last and I’m increasingly in awe of the collections. Here are my LFW Best bits; a mixture of extravagance, class, sparkle, glamour, goth, lace hugs and just general amazingness. I could daydream all day about owning every single one of these pieces, especially the winter coats. I’ve just expressed my love of something able to keep you warm and also look amazing and the knits and jackets featured here are just as beautiful as the most glamorous flimsier garments. I’m counting down the months til September!

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Giles

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David Koma

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Christopher Kane

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London Fashion Week AW14; The Showcases

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London Fashion Week has a million and 1 showcases and presentations but these ones really will stay in my mind for a while.

Soropol, the brand which is known extravagance and drama, as is co founder Daniel Lismore, created a fantasy world with atmospheric rooms dotted with cool models draped in luxurious silks, with bold gold and silver embellishments, sparkles and the full works. This Season was a lot  more wearable than their SS15 catwalk show featuring huge Victorian style ball gowns inspired by French African Queens, but just as stunning. They also treated us to Champagne and canapés set in a cool art gallery in Soho so no effort was spared in creating a little world of luxury which I could definitely get used to!

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One of my highlights of London Fashion week was seeing Typical Freaks in the Fashion Scout Showcase in Covent Garden. They also do jewellery and I have been  stocking their funky bling for www.realmoftreasure.com for a while although most of it has unsurprisingly sold out. I’m so excited to have planned a new order of their latest jewellery and clothing which I’ll be selling on Broadway market , The School Yard, in time for spring / summer!

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GF Hawthorne‘s fun designs took me back to my childhood albeit an imagined much more stylish childhood than in reality. Maybe I can now understand what my mum was aiming for when dressing me in lime green as Hawthorne makes this colour look like the coolest thing ever with her tassled crop top 2 piece set. I’m also obsessed with the raincoat with little pockets of blue water and embellished penguins- its just an overload of cuteness but still high fashion- which is an impressive feat.

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J Moon also used ingenuity to create pieces allowing the wearer to be extremely warm and even more stylish. I’ve rarely seen such beautiful knitwear and especially something that looks somewhat practical- (I attended Mark Fast a few seasons back but his knitwear is only for superficial purposes- its gorgeous so fits this purpose quite well). Being someone who personally hates the cold and who hates to compromise on comfort- even though I have some fashionista moments where I force myself, this collection ticked all my boxes! I love the geometrical shapes, the warm and bold colours and perfect tailoring. J Moon was one of the designers in the Ones to Watch show also at  Fashion Scout and I will definitely be watching to see whats next! Oh and did I mention she’s South Korean- my favourite country on the planet- and bursting with design talent. I could go on forever about my love for this collection but I’ll stop here.

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Fashion Scout is an exhibition plus fashion shows featuring  up and coming designers, usually recent graduates and its where a lot the big names start so I’m always happy to be a part of it and can’t wait til the next season!

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London Fashion Week AW15; The Warm Up

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My London Fashion Week experience has been less busy than usual but equally enjoyable. It kicked off on Thursday with a few pre – events including the amazing London College of Fashion MA exhibition. LCF MA Fashion grads are under a humungous amount of pressure to produce mystical wonders and they somehow manage to live up to these high expectations. There were visual treats of all kinds from Dali inspired abstract bags to shoes that could pass for mini wearable sculptures-  (not sure how wearable in reality). I was in awe of everything!

 

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New York Fashion Week AW15; Best of the Best

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Rosie Assoulin

Glitz and glam + New York  go together like peanut butter and jelly but the former combination is definitely 1000 times better for me personally. New York Fashion Week AW15 did not disappoint and glam was taken to the extreme with excesses of sequins, feathers and luxurious fabrics. Some ingenious designers managed to infuse some quirkiness within their bold glamourous pieces and as I think more about NYFW I consider it to be the more wearable fashion week with something to suit everyone from the most timid person to the more eccentric.

Zac Posen started with understated chic leading onto full blown glam. My fave model Maria Borges did her thing strutting next to the Naomi Campbell.

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Maria Borges

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The award for quirky factor goes to Rosie Assoulin who I forever love for incorporating an afro into a high fashion showcase (its probably been done before but is rare). I’m fascinated by her bold sculptured shapes which are oddly very feminine and flattering.

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Milly also had an interesting mix of exaggerated shapes, bold colours but there was also a simplicity about the collection which incorporated more classic with slightly edgier designs.

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The floaty fabrics with delicate floral prints of Lela Rose’s collection made me feel serene and at peace with the world. Who said fashion is frivolous!

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Words can’t quite express how much I loved everything about  Naeem Khan’s collection from the colour palette to every last detail on the extravagant ball gowns. This is glamour at its finest.

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I had to give a shout out to one of my fave Brit fashion designers doing her thing in NYC, Jenny Packham (Victoria Beckham can’t get all the glory). Not that Jenny Packham needs much help – she’s only dressed the likes of royalty, with Kate Middleton being a fan. This collection proved that she is without a doubt a designer fit to dress princesses as the level  of detail in the embroidery on her gowns was mesmerizing.

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(Photos from Vogue.com)

Now just one more sleep til London  Fashion Week and I’m more than ready!

New York Fashion Week AW15; Best Of

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Herve Leger

With all the celebrity hype I sometimes forget that New York Fashion week certainly contains its fair share of talent. Whilst most designers tend to offer more wearable garms than their wackier counterparts over the pond, here in London, creativity is not lacking and designs are interesting enough to provoke curiousity and at the same time can be pictured in the wardrobe of your average girl, like me. I actually pictured and dreamed of having every one of the following in my wardrobe so am taking my hat of to the formerly underrated (in my mind) NYFW.

Thakoon’s collection made me feel warm and cosy with its Autumnal hues and beautiful geometric and other intricate patterns and prints. I love the fact that the wearer of this collection can turn heads and still be in the utmost of comfort- a rare feat!

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Prabul Gurung mixed class with sex appeal. The perfect tailoring of the collection was more noticeable than the high thigh splits and deep plunge necklines and it was definitely a sophisticated display of flesh.

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I always imagine how pissed of Herve Leger must be at the billion (often tragic) copies of his iconic bandage dress. With this collection he has jumped 100 steps ahead of the fraudsters and shown that the original bandage dress indeed deserves its place in the world of high fashion. I’m completely mesmerised by the wonder of this collection, the bold detailed patterns, the flattering curve enhancing shapes, I could go on forever but to sum it up I’ve fallen hard for this one.

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DKNY’s collection was a perfect representation of new York and was urban chic at its best. I loved the mix of rigid lines mixed with floaty chiffons and topped off with chunky black platforms. Oversized jumpers and bombers added the sports and casuals mix which is always expected from NYFW and it was done perfectly.

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My appetite has been whetted and I’m counting sleeps til London Fashion Week!!!