Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Transition-Time- To Layer Up

Well, spring is here according to the Old Farmer's Almanac yet when most of us  leave to begin our day, that burst of cold air makes us feel otherwise. Then there is also the warmer afternoon climate to contend with that makes that premature bundling that happened in the morning, quite regrettable as the sweat from your daily trek to the metro, becomes even more exhausting. So whats the solution to dressing for cold mornings, that end in warm afternoons and potentially cool evenings? Your answer begins and ends with layers. Layering if done properly may prove to be an invaluable skill set that is worthy of adding to any style resume. There are some considerations to be made when comprising the elements of your layers, focusing on color schemes, textures, and proportion is essential. After verifying the weather, your first step is selecting your foundation, be it a midi dress, or pant and shirt. Now begin choosing your layers, this includes things that can fit into your tote bag, in case you need to take them off. Cardigans, vests, light jackets, scarves, hats, wraps, ponchos, are great portable pieces to own, for this purpose. Last, consider any detail that will make your look feel and look cohesive. Your choice of color, texture, and proportion, will blend everything and make it more harmonious.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Courageously in Love with, "Me"

At the tender age of 35, a girl has to reconcile with her sense of self, all be it met with contentment or not. For many 40, is the big milestone birthday to be reckoned with but for me 35, was eerily reminiscent of the same feelings of reflection and soul searching, that presumably will happen at age 40. I found myself pondering my accomplishments, my hopes, my dreams, and even my disappointments. Thinking retrospectively, I guess I am deserving of a pat on the back. Reigning in a happy 5 year marriage, a new job, and of course my uncontrollable pursuit of the fashion, art, life, nirvana, is no small feat. What's scathingly untrue of this time in my life, contrary to what most report, is a feeling that it's all down hill from here. Especially, in the looks department, one would think you'd have to succumb to ritually using Botox and spend all your free time  at the gym. Withstanding some of my favorite reality starlets, to whom I can appreciate this type of occupational hazard, I am not there yet! In fact, I am far from it, despite not being at my ideal weight, for me there is no long list of cosmetic dreams. All of these thoughts prompted me to do a photo shoot, different from any other yet only in the sense that it had sentimental ties with my womanhood, femininity, and sense of self-awareness. I felt liberated and of course this was fun too! RenĂ© Karl Wilhelm Johann Josef Maria Rilke captures it best:  “Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.” 
Photography: rmathisphotography.format.com
Styling: Styled for You, -Katorra Enoch-Longshore

Pink Combo : Rebdolls

Pilot jacket: H&M
Bodysuit: Boohoo+
Jogger: Forever 21

Sheer Dress Cross Strap brallet: Rebdolls

Coat with Tail s Vintage: Nomad Yard Collective
White Button Up: Forever 21

Monday, March 7, 2016

Rule Breaker

“If I had a world of my own, everything would be nonsense. Nothing would be what it is, because everything would be what it isn't. And contrary wise, what is, it wouldn't be. And what it wouldn't be, it would. You see?”
― Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass

The Mad hatter paraphrases the way I conceive style perfectly. Although, I'm sure you've heard someone recant the phrase "style has no rules", and  in most instances this is true.  I support this statement because in theory self expression in this context is synonymous with style, and at its most rudimentary core is existential in nature. Therefor uniqueness is absolute as we are all different in some respect. Yet I am still inclined to rebut this theory because as I stylist, I know even the act of rule breaking in fashion, embodies certain principles. So by that definition, there will always be a quarrel of ideas, that then form into actions, that then translates into a finished product. For example, my outfit pictured below was inspired by one of my favorite fashionistas, Tracee Ellis Ross. Tracy is currently setting new heights for style exploration on her hit comedy series Blackish, in more ways than one. A heralded fashion enthusiast who once worked in the fashion industry, as a model and contributing fashion editor to Mirabella and New York magazine, Tracee, has a high style aptitude. Placing my personal admiration aside, I find that individuals like Tracee, tend to be comfortable with the idea of making their own rules in fashion, which opens the door to explore, discover, and invent new rules of your own.    

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Partnering and Collaborating

During my recent interview on the Tabia Pope Show, I started to scratch the surface of the most important aspects of successful blogging or anything that you pursue in your professional life. One aforementioned mistake many can overlook, is the benefits of collaborating or partnering with others. Undoubtedly, partnering with someone else for the greater good of personal or professional success, could present itself as a gamble rather than guarantee. Similar to group projects in school, the dynamics can be unpredictable and the potential for an unbalanced product seemingly high. However even with that being said if plausible considerations are made regarding why, who, and what you and the collaborator are bringing to the table then mastering a successful partnership isn't so far-fetched.

I am happy to discuss a success story regarding a huge collaborative project presented on behalf of  Art Lives Here. In 2011, a quartet of neighbors and colleagues created Art Lives Here, a collaborative initiative that would saturate the Gateway Arts District with temporary arts programming to increase visibility for working artists, spur economic development, and affirm the community’s funky and diverse local cultures. If it sounds like an amazing initiative that's because it is, the photos pictured here is the result of one of many ongoing projects designed to empower the local arts community of the Gateway Arts District and Washington, DC area. So you may be asking how did this happen, how do I engage in collaborative partnerships?

Well it's more simple than you might think, first begin with assessing your needs and assets. Determining what your needs are will help you pinpoint who and or what, you require to complete your project. Assessing your assets, helps you articulate what you can provide as a commodity to barter or trade with your potential partner. Clearly outlining a proposal that outlines deliverables, achievements, and a timeline will help everything go smoothly and prevent misunderstandings. Also keep in mind that you will undoubtedly have some challenges, depending on the scope of the project but it is important to always maintain your professionalism and communicate often. Lastly, once your partnership has ended remember to follow up, with appreciation. And on that note, I'd like to thank the Art Lives Here, network for an amazing opportunity to participate in a wonderful project! Photography by:  Jeremy Mines Film LLC

Do you have a big event or project coming up? Style and Substance, is the perfect package to help you showcase your best creativity for photoshoots, projects, branding etc.! It includes a one hour minimum consultation, in person* or remote, to discuss and plan contractual project deliverables * (client must provide budget). This package may be tailored.