Saturday, February 28, 2009

PPT's Black Female Style Icons (Part II)

I promised it so here it is, on the last day of our so-called Black History Month. Peep last year's list here. And do leave me a comment to let me know who I missed.

GRACE JONES

I honestly don't know too much about Ms. Jones, the Jamaican native who started her career as a model in New York City and Paris. Apparently she was a regular at infamous spots like Studio 54 and became a muse to cats like Andy Warhol back in the 70s. I most remember her for the 80s hit Slave to the Rhythym and her role in the 90s flick Boomerang. But chick is a bad ass fo' real. From sporting a short natural do when everyone wanted long, flowing locks to pushing the envelope with her androgynous look. Every now and again the game needs someone like Grace Jones to shake things up a bit.

RIHANNA

I might catch some heat for including RiRi in the midst of this Chris Brown drama. Know that I don't take domestic violence lightly, not in the least. But one thing that Rihanna has demonstrated in her brief career is the ability to evolve and 50 years from now, folks will still be giving her props for being a trendsetter -- trust me. (Hopefully we'll be giving her props for having the strength to walk away too.) When she first came on the scene with her dancehall inspired Pon the Replay, she was heavily styled with the A&R prerequisites for an up and coming R&B singer: long, light weaves, Seventeen mag-friendly gear and an all-around middle-America ready image. It didn't take but a minute for Rihanna to get her mojo together and bring her own distinct fierceness to the world. From her short tresses (yeah, I admitted that she wasn't the first to sport this look but she took it mainstream) to her risk-taking garb. Baby girl looks so much more comfortable now with her rocker edged look then she did during her pop bubblegum debut. Now I sincerely hope she gets her mind right emotionally.

DIANA ROSS

From her days as a Supreme to her memorable role in Mahogany, Ms. Ross has been the boss. When I look back at old pics of her in her hey day I'm in awe. She was bringing it long before artists has professional stylists to dress them. The feathers, the sequins, the platforms...I'm so jealous that her daughter Tracee has access to all this ridiculously fly gear. Even with all her over-the-top costumes, she was equally (if not more) beautiful in shots like the one above wearing a simple tee and jeans. Modern-day divas take note.

LISA BONET

I have a confession: I LOVE The Cosby Show. And Denise was the Huxtable who made the show just a little more interesting for me every Thursday night during my formative years. See Lisa is one of those actresses who you know told the costume designer on set, "I got this". To me, she is a pioneer of the boho-chic era of the 90s to present. She never matched, never had perfectly coiffed hair yet still managed to look fly in every episode and whenever photographed out and about. Sure, she was/is pretty but lots of pretty girls still can't pull this off. Then Lisa and her ex-hubby Lenny went and passed that "it" factor to their daughter Zoe. Geesh.

JAN'ET DUBOIS

Ja'Net played the beloved Willona Woods on the hit sitcom Good Times in the late 70s. Thanks to TVOne, I've been catching up on some old episodes and I admittedly want everything Willona (and Thelma) wore. Everything. I can't say that Good Times demonstrated amazing acting but Willona's character was probably my first introduction to a strong, independent Black woman on the small-screen (I wasn't around for Julia.). Plus, her character adopted which is one of my life long dreams. All the while she was as sexy as she wanted to be in her body hugging frocks and jumpsuits. HA! It's so good to see that Ja'Net is still out and about too.

EARTHA KITT

Last Christmas, while my family sat around and ate second and third helpings of grub in between games of Taboo, I received a text message from a coworker about Eartha Kitt's death. Initially I was a little annoyed; it was Christmas and I was with my fam after all... But after I shared the breaking news with my loved ones, I actually appreciated the info. The older relatives present began to share with the younger ones about how gangsta Ms. Kitt was. My cousins and I listened in awe of stories about how she spoke out against the Vietnam War at The White House, causing her to lose a lucrative Hollywood career for standing up for what she believed in. Dang, they don't make 'em like that anymore. Sometimes I feel like my generation are such cowards (another post for another day). Anyhoo, Eartha demonstrated such tenacity and grace all the while demonstronating oodles of feminity and sex appeal. She showed that it is possible to rock a sick pair of heels with a booty hugging pencil skirt and still keep abreast of global affairs and be a voice to the voiceless. What a fabulous personification of "smart style".

R.I.P. Eartha Kitt.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Bridal Bliss

It's Fat Tuesday! (Shout out to everyone enjoying Mardi Gras and Carnival all over the world.)

So let's get to it. I need your help. Don't worry, it's fun. I'm working on a project at work that invloves something I love: WEDDINGS. Sure I'm a semi-hopeless romantic but weddings have less to do with love than most folks think in my opinion. (People often confuse marriage with weddings.) However, I am smitten with the endless ways one can display their personal style through a wedding ceremony and reception, whether their budget is $500 or $500,000. Read the deets below and either submit your story and pics or pass on to your newly wedded friends and family. Many thanks in advance for your help.




ESSENCE.com is creating an exciting new feature and would like newlyweds from all over to take part. Were you and your beloved both divorced and cynical about getting remarried before you fell in love? Is your new hubby an Iraq vet? ESSENCE.com wants all these stories and more.

All you have to do is send an email to realweddings@essence-online.com with your name, your husband's name, both of your ages, date of the wedding, city of residence and a 150 word description of your special nuptials and why they should appear on ESSENCE.com. Also be sure to include 10 to 15 photos from your big day.

Please note only weddings that have taken place in the last six months will be considered.



If you have any questions, leave me a comment and I'll get right back to ya.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Tied Up: Krimson by Kwame

Why do Mondays always pop up so fast? Geesh. Recently, I went to a shindig for a new menswear designer here in NYC. I plan to post on the designer (he's SO talented) later but in the meantime, I needed to dish about a tie line I've been sleeping on and was reintroduced to at said shindig.

Between chatting folks up at this fashion fete, I met a charming young man named Kwame Jackson. I admitedly have delayed reactions so I didn't realize he was from The Apprentice until after I left the event and my coworker told me. (I only watched that show a couple of times with Mr. TK.) However, Kwame and his friend were quite the dapper duo so when he told me that he had a tie collection and was actually wearing one of them, my interest was peaked. His colorful creations are sold at select Macys and Belks stores and retail for about $75. Go to the site and check out the complete assortment of Krimson ties and learn more about the line. Primarily made of silk, I really am feeling the polka dot ones. These ties are true conversation starters (the colors and the prints pop and will surely add dazzle to any stuffy suit) and are timeless. Unlike a lot of other items from "celebrity" lines, these ties don't have an expiration date and don't scream look at me. They're for grown-ups. We like that, no? In hindsight, I had read about these ties before but something about seeing them in person on the creator of the line made me excited about them again. How's that for good marketing? I'll have to snag one for Mr. TK soon.


R to L: Kwame with his friend and frat brother Dave. They're Kappas. (Don't they look like Kappas?)

Friday, February 20, 2009

Grandma's Apron

Happy Friday! Today is the last day of Fall 2009 NY Fashion Week, more on that later, but I can't bear to dish on trends right now. I read the passage below a few moments ago as it was sent via email from my mom and (partly) because my other posts are not ready, I decided to share with my PPT fam because I was so moved after reading it. While I've touched on the cultural significances that clothing often has, after reading this I realize it is something I want to revisit here deeper very soon.

I do realize that not everyone has a biological grandmother to remember fondly. And not everyone's grandmother even wore an apron. This is much bigger than that though. EVERYONE has SOMEONE (blood related or not) who is looking out for us or has looked out for us unconditionally. And if you still think you don't or never had that, then be that person for someone else.



The principal use of Grandma's apron was to protect the dress
underneath; because she only had a few, it was easier to wash
aprons than dresses and they used less material, but along with
that, it served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.

It was wonderful for drying children's tears, and on occasion was
even used for cleaning out dirty ears.

From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy
chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the
warming oven.

When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids.

And when the weather was cold, grandma wrapped it around her arms.

Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over the
hot wood stove.

Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.

From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables.. After the
peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.

In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen
from the trees.

When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how
much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.

When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved
her apron, and the men knew it was time to come in from the fields
to dinner.

It will be a long time before someone invents something that will
replace that 'old-time apron' that served so many purposes.

Send this to those who would know, and love, the story about
Grandma's aprons. Or it can be a good history lesson for those
that have no idea how the apron played a part in our lives.

REMEMBER:

Grandma used to set her hot baked apple pies on the window sill to
cool. Her granddaughters set theirs on the window sill to thaw.

They would go crazy now trying to figure out how many germs were
on that apron.
I don't think I ever caught anything from an apron......
But Love !!


***This passage was a forward so I don't know who the original writer is to credit them.

P.S. - If you're in the New York tri-state area, stop buying the NY Post. Seriuosly.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My New Crush



STOP staring at MY crush. Oh nevermind, I know you can't help it. Aren't these Liberty-print Nikes just SICK??!! It's no secret how fond I am of Liberty (I gotta get back to London this year.) and I'm really feeling this juxtaposition of ultra-feminine and sporty. The genius collabo officially debuted last year but I didn't jump at them then. However, the folks at Daily Candy put me on to the fine pair above this morning. These lovely kicks are available exclusively at Opening Ceremony who is celebrating the grand opening of e-commerce on the site today.

The damage is $100 which isn't too bad considering I would probably wear them for years. (I'm still rocking a pair of blue and brown Le Coq Sportif kicks I copped in Paris six years ago!) But there are things I need a heck of a lot more right now than these sneakers. Like a new lamp and bookshelf for the cribo. But the beautiful thing about crushes is that there is no pressure to act immediately. One can just admire from afar...

I'll be sure to let you know if anything serious like a purchase comes from this crush.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Finding Your Barack: A Crash Course



I have the day off. YAY!

So in honor of President's Day and the recently passed Valentine's Day, I'm linking to a story I worked on a couple of weeks ago for the full-time gig. Check it out here. It honestly didn't even feel like work. My coworker Queen, another coworker and myself so enjoyed brainstorming for this gallery and writing the captions plus I was forced to check myself ; like I had to do just this past weekend actually. Be sure to read until the end, there's a real jewel from the Prez in the very last caption.

HAPPY PRESIDENT'S DAY!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

My First Lady Covers Vogue: A Critique

I was/am in a funky mood. I shoulda gone to church but I didn't for silly reasons and now I'm regretting it. Hopefully the smoke will clear soon (real soon) and I can get back to being happy. I'm about to get into some Proverbs right after I finish this post. That always helps me put things in perspective. Hopefully blogging, especially about my First Lady, will be theraputic too.

Despite my funky mood, I did manage to find pleasure in reading the March 2009 Vogue cover story. Admitedly, I have been anticipating it's arrival for weeks now, ever since I learned that Michelle Obama was going to grace the cover. So I picked it up yesterday. What do ya think?



First and formost, Vogue sure isn't suffering in the ad department by the look (and weight) of this issue. The older East Indian woman at the NYC Penn Station store where I purchased my copy went out of her way to tell me how many people are buying the issue and it literally just hit newsstands this week. Very telling. But NYC is another universe. I wonder how it will sell in the Bible Belt and Middle America...

I like, but don't love, the cover. I think Michelle looks good but there are a couple of post-production things I'm not too thrilled with. However, her arms look fantastic and the fuschia shift dress works on her and for the seated shot. There is also a spread of Michelle writing wearing a J.Crew ensemble that I really like because she looks comfortable and at ease and the colors work for her complexion. Don't care for the opening spread of her on the phone though.

I don't want to give too much anyway as I realize most of you might not have read the piece yet. I will say that I think Andre Leon Talley did a good job. While the article did leave me wanting a little more (but maybe that's because I already know so much more about her than the average Vogue reader). At the end of the day, Vogue is a fashion pub. Still, I think Talley was able to get some real jewels in and I've shared a few of my faves below:

Michelle on growing up in a modest, working class community:
"We like to joke that the South Side of Chicago is our Kennebunkport. We learned in our household that there was nothing you couldn't talk about and that you found humor in even the toughest times."
Don't know where Kennebunkport is or what it represents? Don't worry, I had to Google it myself. It's an upscale town in Maine where many of the world's wealthiest go to "summer". I love that Michelle doesn't come from money and wasn't even involved in most of the things middle/upper class Black folks are supposed to participate in (no Jack & Jill meetings for her or Craig as kids, no Link galas for her mother Ms. Marian, no vacations in Sag Harbor) yet she still became our country's first Black First Lady.

Talley on his first meeting with Michelle:
"I first met Mrs. Obama at an impromptu dinner at Oprah Winfrey's house in Santa Barabra, CA, on the eve of the divine Ms.O's Legends Ball in 2005. I was seated between the then Senator Barack Obama's wife and Tina Turner. Do I remember what Michelle was wearing? Not at all. What I do remember was how informed she was on so many topics."
For those of you who are wondering why everything this woman wears sells out in hours and why she's being lauded as a style icon when you think she usually looks mediocre at best, reread the above quote from Talley. Hopefully, you'll start to get it soon.

Oprah on Michelle:
"Michelle Obama is a full-blown, grown-up woman. An authentically empowered real woman who looks and feels like a modern woman in the 21st century, allowing us to see the best of ourselves in her."
Point blank, this is just a dang good quote. And it is making me feel a whole lot better about the current growing pains I'm having.

Talley on the Whistle Tour:
"As we rolled along, I thought of my own journey. How many among the crowds gathered to watch us pass were like me--an African-American who grew up in the Jim Crow South, whose father drove a taxi, whose uncle Lewis was a barber, whose grandmother was a maid her entire life--and turned their eyes to the Obamas not just with hope but with recognition?
Wow.

Other highlights in this issue are the feature story on Melinda Gates which I haven't finished reading but I look forward to doing so because she seems to be a real grown-up woman too. I was not too thrilled with Liya's fashion well story, Desert Fox. Don't get me wrong, Liya looks as gorgeous as ever. But how cliche is it to use an African model in yet another safari inspired story in 2009? After taking a real life safari last year in South Africa I'm really annoyed by it. Surprisingly, I enjoyed Wintour's editor's letter. I appreciate when an EIC takes the time to share their genuine thoughts and feelings with their readers. Here's a snippet:

"There is no doubt that we live in the toughest and most trying of times: wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Gaza; a global economic recession of historic proportions; and a planet whose physical and biological health grows more imperiled by the day. These are the facts, and we are forced to face them whether we like it or not. However, there is another fact that bears mentioning: We are resourceful and resislient people who have survived far worse. (Couldn't help but to think about my maternal Grandma here.) As I talk to fellow members of the business and fashion communities, it seems that we can too readily succumb to doom, gloom and fatalism. I'm not a Pollyanna. But it is critical that we not exchange one bubble (euphoric consumerism) for another (funeral pessimism). The truth is we are blessed as ever with drive, talent, and practical, proactive measure can be taken to improve our lot."
Way to go Anna!

Did you read the March 2009 Vogue yet? Please share your thoughts about the cover story or any other article in the issue.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Black Male Style Icons Part 2

Click here for last year's list.

RUN-DMC

Often credited for bringing rap to the mainstream, Run-DMC are truly pioneers in music. (This April, they will be inducted into the Rock and Rock Hall of Fame.) But with their unprecedented Adidas contract, slick black fedora and Lee jeans getups, they definitely made their mark on fashion as well. I remember as a little girl looking up to them with their gold rope chains and leather bombers and thinking their influence was just local. But now as an adult who has traveled the world, I know that they have inspired folks globally as well. And oh yeah, they're from Queens too. R.I.P. JMJ



BARACK OBAMA

He almost made my list last year but I had no choice but to add him this time around. Yeah I know we really only see him in (kinda boring) suits, but it's the way he wears those suits. Based on a convo I just had with women who are all several years my senior, I am reminded that a lot of folks still don't realize that true style has very little to do with clothes. Poor things. Obama is swagger personified. His confidence is so palpable that regardless of what he wears, he looks like he's the man in it. He and his family are going to play a major part in changing our country's obsession with materialistc things too - mark my words. (The recession might help do that a little bit too, lol.) The desire to wear $500 Evisu jeans and drive a car with rims that cost God knows how much is quickly dwindling. A lot of that is because of our new Prez whether people immediately recognize it or not. I think a lot of folks will start to say Hey, if he can be that cool without flaunting, then so can I.


KANYE WEST

Now I have to admit that Ye has been getting on my nerves a little bit as of late but I'm gonna cough it up to him still mourning the lost of his mother. Speaking of his mother (R.I.P. D.W.), she was a college English professor. Perhaps that had something to do with Kanye's style. He made being (or dressing like) a nerd cool. His obsession with LV is a bit much at times but I dig Kanye for coming on the scene and not being afraid to go slightly left with his backpack and snug fitting jeans. Today's popularity of the preppy kid meets b-boy look is very much because of Kanye. (Maybe Pharrel will make next year's list.)



PRINCE

C’mon. Who else can pull off roller sets (tight ones I might add), purple britches, ruffles and high heels yet still manage to be one of the biggest sex symbols to women for the past three decades? No one. Prince paved the way for guys like Andre 3000 (who I bigged up last year). Even the hardest cats I know give Prince his props for being that dude. Oh yeah, and he's only like 5 feet tall but he never, ever seems like he's not in control. Like ever. And both Prince and I adore the color purple.



ANDRE LEON TALLEY

He's been holding down a coveted position as editor-at-large of American Vogue for years. Talley is reportedly 6'7" tall and far from a string bean but he slides into a room as graceful as someone half his size. He's a very big Black man, which in the fashion and publishing industries is beyond rare, but that doesn't stop him from wearing whatever he wants. From velour track suits to velvet slippers... Who can't respect that? I secretly think we have a special connection too because we both have roots in North Carolina. And though he never responded to the corny letter I sent him after reading his book a few years ago, I have learned a thing or two from Talley, even if it has all been from a distance.




Did I forget someone? Leave me a comment and let me know. The female list is coming next week!

Maternity Wardrobe Woes: I Actually Liked M.I.A.'s Grammy Look!

It's Hump Day! I plan to post later on tonight too but I wanna get some other folks opinions on something in the meantime. EVERYBODY is still speculating about the whole Chrianna drama but allow me to diverge your attention for a bit.

One of the highlights, by far, of the 51st Annual Grammy Awards Show on Sunday night was the Swagger Like Us performance. Now, I'll admit that I was just as shocked at how preggers M.I.A. was while she sang the hook and moved around on stage. (My girl Mija pointed out that Jay was very reluctant to stand next to her in the beginning of the performance because he was probably thinking to himself, I don't know nothing about birthing no babies. HILARIOUS!) So now that we've gotten how just how pregnant she was out the way (I mean it was her scheduled due date and all), can we discuss her outfit?



Folks are so not feelin' it! I have heard and read people cutting up the House of Holland by Henry Holland Spring/Summer 2009 getup she was wearing something awful. C'mon people it's the freakin' Grammy Awards! We (collectively) always say we hate when everyone plays it safe and rocks the same boring red carpet frocks from designers we're all kinda tired of seeing. I quite like that M.I.A. thought outside the box. And for those who claim that she was too pregnant to wear the ensemble, you get the gasface. Bringing life into the world is, to me, the biggest accomplishment known to man. A pregnant woman can wear whatever the freak she wants. She's earned that right for what she is enduring and what she is about to endure. Plus, M.I.A.'s "important parts" were strategically covered with the polka dots. I also loved that she completed her look with a pair of fresh white $54.11's and bright yellow nail polish (I always adore an unexpected pop of color).

Of course, M.I.A. is an artist and known for her sorta avante garde style - preggo or not. But even I hope to keep my personal style up while I'm carrying (when and if that day ever comes). Sure certain items don't fit the same, but I love to see women add their own personal spin to their maternity garb. I'm thinking you're probably already uncomfortable, maybe not feeling your prettiest... why not let your clothes express your individual taste up until the very end? Layer a funky accessory or two with that Pea in the Pod gear every now and again. Who says that one needs to start wearing muumuus the moment that little wand reads positive?

So what does my PPT fam think? Am I tripping? Leave me a comment and let me know. For the mothers who are reading, did your style completely change when you were carrying? Why or why not? Oh and Big C, since you actually saw the outfit up close, I really want your opinion.

By the way, Henry Holland is a British designer and reportedly debuted M.I.A.'s Grammy look on the runway during the shows at London Fashion Week last fall. Y'all know I dig those Brits!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Black Men Need Sweet Potato Pies

Happy Monday cyberfam! So much I’m itching to blog about this week: I went to the best bridal shower of my life yesterday, I finally found the perfect Freakum’ Dress and I am getting the scoop on the best places to score a fab cocktail ring. It’s all coming up soon so stay tuned….

But on this beautiful Monday morning, I had to get a story off my chest that I’ve been thinking about a whole lot lately. And it has nothing to do with "style" in the traditional sense. But, I’ve been wanting to share this conversation I had with my mother some years ago for a minute and that desire has increased since Barack Obama became President. And then last night when I learned of the allegations against singer Chris Brown involving songstress Rihanna, I knew I had to post it. (Please read this to get my thoughts on Black women and domestic violence.) It might take me a minute to get to the point of this but stay with me please, there is a definite jewel at the end of this (kinda long) story.



About seven years ago, a friend and I were discussing being away at college in my kitchen while my mother cooked. I joked that although my mother sent food to my brother while he was away at college, I never remember her doing the same for me. It was one of those moments when I was joking, but not really joking. I proceeded to share with my friend all about how my mother would bake sweet potato pies from scratch, freeze them and overnight them to Virginia from New York and how my brother and his buddies in his dorm would inhale them in less than 48 hours of receipt.

Now while circumstances were indeed different when I went away to college (I didn’t live in a traditional dorm and had access to a full kitchen so I could always cook when I didn’t want the cafĂ© food, I wasn’t as far away as my bro was, etc.) I still felt some kinda way about not getting those pies overnighted to me like my big bro did. My mother being the type of mother she is could sense this and politely said to me, "One day when you have a son of your own you’ll understand."

I didn’t get what she meant by that until a few years later. But when I did finally get it, it was like someone dropped a piano on my foot. The world, yes even with Barack Obama being President, has a way of putting Black men through the wringer. Really, through the ringer. And no I’m not claiming that all Black men are created equal because in my opinion, they are not. For every Barack Obama there is a shiftless, non-child support paying dude who thinks the world owes him something. Please understand that I realize this. But there are also a lot of Black men who have unfortunately never been told their worth. Never been introduced to the likes of Thurgood Marshall or Vivien Thomas or even Floyd Flake. And so when you’re only shown negative images of yourself, constantly at that, you typically start to believe them. See, now I understand how homemade sweet potato pies help to balance that a whole lot. They let you know that someone is rooting for you. That someone has your back unconditionally and is supporting you and your dreams and aspirations. As a woman, I am now usually able to tell when a man has had someone bake sweet potato pies for them at some point in their lives. It isn’t always their mother either. It might be a grandmother (I think that was the case for Barack), it might be an aunt or grandmother, it might even be a teacher.

There is an old adage that goes something like "Black women raise their daughters and love their sons." On the surface, some might think that is what I’m reinforcing in this blog post. But it so isn’t. On the contrary, I hope that folks see I’m saying it is even more important that we encourage Black men to get and keep their ish together. Sweet potato pies, to me, can actually help to do that. These pies can be in the form of genuine encouragement, a hug or a smile. I’ve had situations occur with my brother, male amigos and Mr. TK of walking into a "posh" hoity toity boutique to know that they experience ish I don’t even think twice about, even as a Black woman. (By the way, for every time that my mom baked a sweet potato pie for my bro, my father was going in on my brother and riding him about something. Trust. But that’s a whole ‘notha post for another day…)

My mother has actually been sharing her wisdom on life with me over food for a while now, perhaps that is a southern thing. Mom, thanks for the love and the lessons, as always. Now, can you teach me how to bake a sweet potato pie?

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Cute Cocktails

So, while I was down in the "urea" for Inauguration Weekend, several of my peeps gathered for a celebratory brunch at our friend's new house in northern Virginia. I've been friends with these folks for forever and we always have a ball when we get together. Isn't it great to be around people that you can TOTALLY be yourself with and vice versa? But since life (mostly careers) has us pulled in such different directions, we can't get together as often as we would like. We had a great time reminiscing on college road trips, sharing dreams about life ahead and of course breaking bread. We were so proud of ourselves for the huge spread that was prepared. Tress, we couldn't have pulled it off without your warm maple syrup, LOL. Everyone chipped in and I'm confident that B. Smith and Martha S. would have been proud. The hostess even garnished most of the dishes with fresh parsley (numerous jokes proceeded).

My contribution to the brunch was a signature cocktail. Funny since I probably drink the least out of the crew. I was too excited about this lil' "drank". I got suggestions from the sales guy at the liquor store for my Obamatini (I insisted that it be blue) and here's what I ended up getting:

Blue Curacao (one part)
Cranberry flavored vodka (one part)
Tonic water (a splash or two)
*Use a martini shaker to mix and chill the beverages.



Mr. TK helped me prepare the cocktails which eneded up being kinda strong (funny since he drinks even less than me). We quickly figured out that we had to add a little more water for most people's taste. It could have been that everyone was also drinking mimosas... I also garnished the drinks with pineapple chunks (very pretty). And drumroll: Everyone loved my Obamatini! We toasted to our new prez and positive change and the entire shindig was pretty daggone fabulous. We totally planned it at the last minute but I've learned that those are the times I tend to have the most fun.

Have you ever created a signature cocktail? Leave me a comment and tell me about it!

BTW - The above pic is not of my Obamatini. I forgot to take a picture of it so I just used this pretty cosmo to give you a "feeling" instead.

Oh and one more thing, be sure to check out my girl Cynthia's recent blog post about folks mean muggin' Prez Obama on his office attire. Seems as though many are claiming he's a bit too casual for the Oval Office. Oy vey. I think it's all quite ridiculous. What about you? Leave me a comment on this too please.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I Finally Got Minxed! (And My Nails Will Never Be The Same.)

Although it now seems like it was decades ago, I recently traveled to Washington D.C. for Inuaguration Weekend. I had to return to work Tuesday so I missed the swearing in but I was determined to take in at least some of the energy in the District for my new prez. Plus, I got to spend lots of QT with Mr. TK. And don't go feeling sorry for me, lots of folks don't have jobs now that need them so I tried not to complain about having to return a day early. I'm so glad I followed my gut and went for the abbreviated trip. (More on that in the next post.)

Anyhoo, in preparation for my getaway, I got MINXED! (see pics below) The fabulous manicurist to the stars, Lisa Logan, wanted to hook me up for the festivities and who am I to turn down such a sweet perk? Lisa figured giving me the MINX treatment was a good way to show off her work to some new potential clients. And boy, she was so right! I received compliments from a jillion people on the Gold Lightening MINX she applied to my nails. (They sorta looked like shimmering coins on my fingertips and became a real conversation starter.) But when folks saw Obama's face on my thumb, they darn near lost it! Different races, ages, income levels - you name it, everyone had something (good) to say. In hindsight, I think folks in D.C. were high on Obama love that weekend. LOL The best compliment probably came from Jesse Jackson, Jr. who I bumped into at a brunch honoring Hill Harper, Kerry Washington and others for their contributions to Obama's campaign. JJ Jr. literally stopped me and gave a thumbs up after he peeped my tricked out Obama nail. Who woulda thunk it?

I have to admit that my MINX were very delicate; I wished they lasted a bit longer. But I kept them for a week and that is pretty standard for a basic manicure. I would certainly get them (and pay) again for a special occasion. However I don't think they are too practical for a working gal like me who washes dishes regularly. And I highly doubt I'll get someone's face on my nails again but it was a fun thing to do once, especially with the President.

Are you based in the NYC area and interested in getting the MINX treatment for yourself? Leave me a comment and I'll put you in touch with Lisa.



Tuesday, February 3, 2009

CALLING ALL DESIGNERS!

So, this isn't a real post but I couldn't let another day past without spreading this info (been meaning to since last week). It just might help put the next Tracy Reese or Ozwald Boateng on the map!

As appeared in WWD:

What: Bloomingdale's is hosting their FIRST EVER Designer Open-See for Women's Ready-to-Wear and Accessories

When: Noon until 4pm starting this Friday, February 6th (And every first Friday of each month going forward: March 6th, April 3rd, May 1st...)

Where: Bloomies Fashion Office - 155 East 60th Street, 11th floor
***Designers will be seen on a first come, first serve basis so I suggest showing up around 10am. When Bendel's does their similiar open-see, folks show up hella early!

Please call 212.705.3437 for more info.