The Feast: Frida Khalo Fashion Showcase - Hit or Miss?

Frida Khalo Post Cover.png

Hello lovely,

This past Thursday, Bahamian fashion designer, Cardell McClam premiered his newest collection inspired by the iconic Frida Khalo. Frida Kahlo de Rivera (Spanish pronunciation:[ˈfɾiða ˈkalo]; born Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo y Calderón; 6 July 1907 – 13 July 1954) was a Mexican artist who painted many portraits, self-portraits, and works inspired by the nature and artifacts of Mexico. Inspired by the country's popular culture, she employed a naïve folk art style to explore questions of identity, post-colonialism, gender, class, and race in Mexican society. Her paintings often had strong autobiographical elements and mixed realism with fantasy. In addition to belonging to the post-revolutionary Mexicayotl movement, which sought to define a Mexican identity, Kahlo has been described as a surrealist or magical realist.

DSC_0021-2.jpg

Hosted at the Courtyard Marriott, the night began with a cocktail hour hosted by Perez Clarke, who held stimulating discussions with guests about HIV and it's effects on the Bahamian population. Many vendors set up shop, while we were treated to a sensational Bachatta by the Maydi Dancers.

As always with a Cardellicious fashion show, the fashion show began with a provocative video, to set the stage for the story that would unfold on the runway. The video clip was taken from a scene in the movie about Frida Khalo played by Salma Hayek. The video depicted what appeared to be the death of Frida Khalo followed by a tribute, but it went on way too long, with the gist being understood within the first minute.

An artist by the name of Positive Energy took centre stage to deliver a prolific spoken word piece. We saw another seemingly misplaced video before a new artist named Danette performed her studio single, Melanin to the Core. In an effort to raise awareness on the facts about HIV,

DSC_0058-2.jpg

Cardell hosted a round table discussion asking tough hitting questions like, “Would you date a person who is HIV positive?” The answer shocked everyone, when epidemiologist, Glenise Johnson said, yes she would, because if a person is taking their medication properly, the antiretrovirals would prevent the infection from passing on to someone else. It gave everyone a lot to think about. We watched one more video with Cardellicious designers Cardell McClam and Christopher explaining the purpose of the new line. I loved that we were going to see pieces meant to be worn in everyday settings that we will soon be able to buy in a boutique. I can’t wait to show you the piece that I fell in love with!

We were told that the colours of the night were Blueberry blue and lemon yellow, but we saw a lot more than that. At first the men’s apparel appeared to be random pieces that didn’t belong together in a collection, because none of them shared a commonality, function or theme, but they were still very nice looks. I didn’t get a Mexican vibe from the clothing, but they do look like pieces men can add to their wardrobe.

The blue suit was my favourite men’s look because I love turbans and fitted suits. I also loved the fuschia combo with the large black belt. I felt they were the strongest looks in terms of visual appeal and marketability. Then came the women’s looks, which really blew me away. Naturally I didn’t LOVE every piece, but this collection really spoke to the theme, and I felt it flowed wonderfully. I’ll save my favourite pieces for last.

Like I said, these looks, looked as though they belonged in the same collection. Bold colours, powerful lines and structures - I was able to see the Frida Khalo influence in these pieces and they were well done. These next two pieces I gave a little nickname: The one on the left is what you would wear to your ex’s funeral, and the one on the right is what you would wear to your ex’s wedding. You know, THAT ex. Am I wrong? Or just petty? You be the judge.

That leaves my favourite looks of the night. Everything about these looks screamed fantastic: the hair, the makeup, the models. I loved these looks because they looked the most ready to wear. That’s pretty much what I look for in fashion. It’s all well and good when a designer makes something couture that belongs on the cover of a magazine, but what happens to it afterwards? If a look transcends from the runway to my closet, I’m sold. The first look is a beautiful beach cover-up that looks luxurious to lounge in. Then there is a simple black tuxedo look that I love (I told you I love a fitted suit). It’s on my bucket list to own a matching fitted suit one day. Then there is a sexy long sleeved dress that screams DATE NIGHT! That’s the piece I want the most!

What did you think of the looks? Share whether you think this collection was a hit or miss in the comment section below. If you missed any or want to see them on the runway, check out my live stream here for a full rundown! On Friday I’ll have the complete breakdown of EVERYONE nominated for an Elevation Award in the 2019 Award Show, so stay tuned for that! Will I be nominated again? Only one way to find out!

The Feast Frida Khalo: BEAUTY PRESS PREVIEW

Hello lovely,

 On November 22, Cardell Mcclam Men & Women Fashion Brand & Cardellicious "The Full Figured Fashion Brand of the Bahamas" will showcase its NEW 2019 Fashion Collections, under the theme, "The Feast: FRIDA KAHLO" at the Courtyard by Marriott Nassau Downtown/Junkanoo Beach.

This past Sunday, Cardell and his team invited me to their exclusive Press Party to highlight some of the makeup and hair we’ll see on the runway next Thursday. Check out the highlights below, including an exclusive interview with the designer himself!

 

Before I go, I want to wish a VERY VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my best friend (one of the greatest friends anyone could ask for), Doran!

Sail Away Fashion Show Recap

Hello Lovely,

This past Sunday, the remarkable designers, Cardell McClam and Christopher John of Cardellicious collaborated with R.E.A.C.H. Bahamas. R.E.A.C.H to bring The Sailor Boy 2018/2019 Collections. Bahamas is a non-profit organization that aims to provide parents with comprehensive knowledge and tools in all areas of the Autism disorder and other related challenges in the Bahamas. 

26169950_1729045253807561_5178753819025738865_n.jpg

The show opened with a sizzling performance by Patrice Murrell, singing her original hit song, "Your Ting." Patrice's confidence translated superbly as she sauntered around the catwalk, getting everyone excited for the show that was about to come. She was followed by the incredible Chase Fernander who rocked everyone with her smooth Hip Hop song entitled, "Repeat". The last musical artist was Rapp Quelle. I've heard of him for years but never had the opportunity to meet him so I loved hearing him live.

DSC_0531.JPG

The show consisted of over 20 dazzling looks! Just like the Cardallicious showcase at Bahamas Fashion Week, the apparel was ready to wear! I loved almost every single piece that graced the runway.

This one was particularly my favourite look. I'm completely obsessed with the duster look right now so I immediately gravitated towards this look! I genuinely would wear this look belted around the waist with a "Cinderella" heel.

I love how this model and the others walked the runway so confidently. I felt compelled to buy the clothes right away! (Not like I need an excuse to shop any way).

Here are some more of my favourite looks.

Areas that I thought could improve were the environmental and runway music, and lighting in the room. Someone kept dimming the lights making it near impossible to get a decent shot of the models. There was a point when the lights were fully up and it was the perfect lighting, however, once they were dimmed, it became a real struggle. Another area for improvement was the direction the models entered and exited the runway. With the media in the back of the room, the entrance of the runway for many models was at the back of the room. This also made it near impossible to get a decent shot of the models as they did not pause long enough in front of us.

But don't worry. I was able to capture the final walk, with Cardell's closing vote of thanks. See the full recap in this video below. 

I was so happy to purchase a R.E.A.C.H t-shirt as well as a pin and car decal. I look forward to volunteering with them in any way I can this year. Which look was your favourite of the night? What do you look for in a Fashion Show? Share your reactions in the comment section below!

Bahamas Fashion Week

Bahamas Fashion Week

Bahamas Fashion Week is focused on propelling Bahamian and international designers to the forefront of the global fashion market. It is the Nation’s Premier Fashion Showcase. a fusion of art, style, culture, fashion, entertainment and runway. This event captures the international sensibility of the country while providing a calendar of social and educational activities. For 3 strategically focused days, The Bahamas becomes the epicenter of fashion, art and entertainment, as all eyes on local and international stage witness collections unveiled for the first time. And I was there for everything! Here's my review of the first ever Bahamas Fashion Week.

Read More

What I'm Wearing Wednesday: Linen Off The Shoulder Dress

Hello Lovely,

I'm back from a much needed 3 week vacation! I kept you guys up to date on my Instagram and Twitter and even managed to post a few times while I was away. I updated you on why I needed to get away, shared the 10 things I love about my LDR (long distance relationship), gave away a free countdown calendar for people in LDRs, and even started a diary for self-reflection on my relationship of nearly two years! And how could we forget that AMAZING money-saving tutorial on how to make your own Febreeze at home! So yeah, I've been busy! Between taking time out for spiritual reflection and creating lesson plans for the upcoming school year, I really wanted to maintain communication with you guys!

One of the things I couldn't wait to share with you was this dress! I made it before my trip with my linen fabric that kind of looks like denim. We've had the fabric for years and just never used it. But with the off the shoulder trend sweeping the summer, I had to get in on the action! I wore it to dinner at TGIF with my boyfriend and his sisters.  The dress was definitely boyfriend approved!

Enjoy the rest of your week guys!

Power Woman of the Week: Ria Georgina

The Bahamian Icon Awards may be over, but hype hasn't died yet! If you were on the Red Carpet at the Bahamian Icon Awards, then you probably heard the same name, over and over again!

Three nominees graced the red carpet in custom designs by none other than the fabulous Ria Georgina! Her designs were the most stunning and talked about, all night! I have the pleasure of calling her a friend so scoring this interview wasn't difficult but it was still a privilege to be able to sit down with her and talk about her and her brand! So let’s take a minute to meet the woman behind the dress!

If you were on the Red Carpet at the Bahamian Icon Awards, then you probably heard the same name, over and over again!

Three nominees graced the red carpet in custom designs by none other than the fabulous Ria Georgina! Her designs were the most stunning and talked about, all night! So let’s take a minute to meet the woman behind the dress!

 

Her full, government name, according to her passport, is Kenria Geoginia Smith (side eye to the government worker who butchered her intended middle name of 'Georgina' so perfectly). At the young age of 29 she has been operating under the brand name Ria Georgina, since 2012. Kenria’s (Ria for short) grandmother used to sew and passed it on to her mother, whom she mostly learned the basics from. As she got older and started to gain more interest in fashion, she started to experiment with different techniques, purchase textbooks and everything else she pretty much learned from trial and error and, of course Youtube. I sat down with this Power Woman this week to talk about her Red Carpet debut and gain insight on who she is and what’s next for her brand.

How did it feel to design for 3 Bahamian Icon Nominees?   

It really didn't hit me until I started working on Leanne's dress (I had less than 24 hours to pull that together lol). I knew Leah and Leanne from Facebook, and Wendy is one of my newer clients, but I love all of their energy, so it felt pretty easy breezy as opposed to 'Holy crap, these are ICONS'.   It was my first red carpet as well, so watching the red carpet and the show was kind of surreal, especially when Leanne was asked who she was wearing and she said 'Ria Georgina'. I legitimately almost jumped out of my skin.

What is your personal development plan?  

I'm not a big planner, especially when it comes to things like running a business. I literally have no idea what I'm doing, but I know that I would be miserable if I were doing anything else.  For now, I just want to build my clientele and continue doing what I love and see where it takes me.

What is your guilty pleasure? 

Hmmm, probably the combination of the Love and Hip Hop series (all of them lol) and Twitter. It's so ratchet but I can't stop watching/tweeting. It's hilarious.

Who was your favourite person to design/style for and why? 

 And NOW you're trying to get me into trouble.   Generally speaking, I love designing for women who know what they want, come with reference photos, but are open to trying something different. I love when I can get to that sweet spot where the client trusts me completely, it's really quite the compliment.

What are the top three life lessons you've learned that have been the most helpful in your career?  

The main lesson I've learned is that not everyone is as honest as you may be. Just because I would never commission someone to make a dress and drop off the face of the earth without paying for it, doesn't mean that someone else won't. I had that happen to me more times than I'd like to admit.   I've also learned that if you don't love what you do, it won't matter how much money you make. I worked for a handful of people before finally deciding to try it on my own, and the same thing usually happened; I'd be happy the first few weeks because I could finally save up for something I may have wanted, but once I got it, I kind of felt unfulfilled, like I was missing something important. Money is nice to have in abundance, but to be honest, if the world never ran on currency, I would still be doing what I do now.   The third thing is that your client should NEVER see you panic. There are times when something is a bit too snug, or too short, and I can visibly see the panic in my clients' eyes. I always keep a cool head and reassure them that it's not the end of the world, and that it can be fixed. Because in most cases, it can. Things go wrong all the time, but it's the way that we handle it that people usually remember.

Name someone you would really like to work with. Why?  

I have a designer bucket list that I constantly add to, but if I had to pick one person right now, it would be Emma Stone. She's one of my favorite redheads and I love that she likes to stand out on the Red Carpet. Plus she would be so much fun to hang out with.

What are the top three life lessons you would pass on to someone else?   

First, I would advise them not to take failures and the word 'no' as the end of the road. None of these things are permanent unless we let it be.  Also, I'd tell them to not let the way the world treats you change you for the worse. If you are a positive person, hold on to that. If you're a video game enthusiast way into your 30's, own it. The world needs diversity.   Finally, I would encourage them to travel and learn as much as you can about as many places as you can, while you can.

You run into a potential client in the elevator/coffee shop and you only have 60 seconds to sell yourself. Go!

Hmmm. Well at least 20 of that 60 seconds would be wasted on me just going back and forth in my head about whether or not I should even approach them. If it's someone who's in the public eye, I'd ask them if they were so-and-so and then I'd say something like 'Awesome, I really appreciate what you do for (insert charity here). My name is Kenria Smith, I'm a local designer and stylist, and I'd love to work with you for your next event.' Then I'd give them my card and let the rest sort itself out. I'm not an aggressive human.

 What's next for Ria Georgina?  

I'm currently working on some pieces for an upcoming music video (I won't say who yet), and after that, I will be winging it. I'm open to whatever opportunities this profession has waiting for me.