Met Gala 2018 Stream of Consciousness

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I’m working at lot nowadays. Three days jobs, transitioning into freelancing and the relaunch of my clothing company has me very stretched very thin. But 2018 is about self care, after work 8 hours in an office  and 2 hours of Postmates I decided to take a little time to do what all good little fashion boys and girls do in spring. With Janelle Monae “Don’t Judge Me” playing in my earphones and the sun setting in the sky I browsed Vouge.com’s covering of this years Met Gala

 

I had no intention of posting on this, but as my Facebook comment grew in word count, it started to look more like a blog. Except it wasn’t all that … linear? Just bullet points and notes on my thoughts. So I’m just gonna Ctrl+V them on the blog. I’ll crop the photos later ( as if you didn’t know they were from vogue.com) Don’t like it? I don’t care. You get what you get, so don’t throw a fit.

 

-Janelle and Solange are my lock screen. Nuff said.

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– I hate celebrities who don’t even attempt the theme. Why don’t the Kardashian just stay home?


-Lena Waithe basically said “fuck yo couch Charlie Murphy” to theme and is still on theme. How Sway?

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-Zendaya serves for her generation. Consistently giving us looks!

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– Rihanna told us long ago she was a savage. Why did I expect anything less?

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– Donald Glover is a sneaky MF. I see what you did there.


-Belcaliz Almanzar?! What gives you the right? Disrespectful.

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– Speaking of it pleases me that Cardi’s fiance and his fam are wearing dreadlocks and Italian designers in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. What a time to be alive.

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-SJP is an icon and dresses accordingly.

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-SZA default is ethereal. Again sway, answers! You got all the answers, then HOW?!

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-Honestly you had me at capes and head pieces, I’m easy to please.

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-Ariana Grande is giving me opera ingenue.

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-Nicki Minaj is giving too much Grammy performance circa 2009, in my opinion. I would have like to see her in a lighter color.


– Madonna came in like ” Catholic symbolism? Hold my beer!”

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– I love that now Kerri Washington is an A-lister she wears her hair natural. She is all of us after the probationary period at our job.

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-Pharell looks like a sexy pimp vampire and I’m pleased.

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-Diddy is dressed like he dressed in 1997 and is still on theme. Hilarious!

 Honorable mention

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#winning

 

Contrary to the title of this blog I feel like I’ve been losing lately. Over the course of the summer I was hit with harsh life situations that, in review, I did not handle well. Death of relatives and friends, money issues and the stress of filming and financing my first commercial all took a toll on me. I spent a lot of time feeling shitty about myself, and how I was handling life. I felt like I couldn’t roll with the punches and I was failing hard. I was ashamed of what my life looked like and anxious about paying my bills. I believed that I was trapped in a situation that I could work myself out of. Problem with that is, I was working but not getting anything done. My time wasn’t being spent well, so I was working hard, but working dumb.  Side hustling made me feel less anxious but I wasn’t really solving my money issues.
I got to the point that I couldn’t enjoy life. Summer is my favorite time of year. I feel like my city comes alive in the summer. Instead of going to rap concerts, hiking, hanging with friends I was working all the time. Despite the grind, the problems weren’t going away. My stress grew. My shame grew. My anger grew.
I was falling the fuck off.

 

I was scrolling through Facebook this week. I saw Issa Rae, Jackie Aina, Lena Waithe and started to feel bad. Jealous of their amazing growth and shine, my curated feed of black girl magic was killing me. I felt like trash. Not sure if I mentioned this, but I listen to a lot of podcasts. One of the many mentioned Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers and it sparked a memory. In the book, Gladwell introduces the concept of 10,000 hours. Basically, to become the master of a craft you must invest at least 10,000 hours in developing their skills. I started this business 3 years ago. 1 hour on average a day x 365 days a year x 3 years =1095 hours. I want the shine. I want accolades. I want sales. I want security based on my creative gifts, but the reality is I have work to do.  It’s okay to be sad, or anxious, but it’s not okay to quit. This is the life I chose for myself. As my mom says this it’s the price you pay for the life you lead.  Losing isn’t being broke. Losing isn’t messing up. Losing is quitting before you win.
I have a renewed energy. It’s not some infomercial scam where I sell you the secrets to my smile. My energy is rooted in the realization I have I work to do. It’s wrapped in the reality that some days I will be straight trash and fail at everything. I am energetic because I am accepting that my imperfections and passions live in the same heart.

I learned what dilettantes are: I don’t like them

I heard the word Dilettante, and realized I didn’t know what it meant. While listening to River of Tears,  I looked up the definition.

 “A person who cultivates an interest such as the arts without real commitment or knowledge.”

This definition gave me such comfort. Since my teen years I would get livid with girls playing fashion. The pretty ones who just wanted to get dressed. The silly ones who thought this life was Project Runway. I would feel  insulted by  those who saw me as one of those girls. They would  ask how I could make money in this industry. They would tell me I was dumb for dreaming of FIT and Parson’s. They thought my analysis of fashion week was shallow. It feels good to have a real word to communicate who I am not.

I aspire to be a producer not a consumer.

This is not a hobby.

Yes, I have a passion for fashion, but nothing about it is shallow or cliche.

This passion means more than calluses from designer shoes. It has been tetanus shots after falling asleep at a sewing machine and having the needle zip through my nail and lodge itself in my finger. It has been sobbing on the kitchen floor after negotiating with my building manager because my photoshoot cannibalized my rent money.  This passion carried 25 yards of soft shell on my back through the streets of Portland. It filled my belly and energized my body the summer I subsisted on Ramen and .49 cent cheeseburgers so that I could pay for my overpriced design school. I can’t count the times I pulled it together, abracadabra-ed the most hopeless situation with this passion.

Maybe as many times as I have felt breathless when viewing couture; acheing to touch it and understand how to  make something so beautiful.

I think that’s what love is.

To have that love, that comes from the purest, realest oldest part of who I am reduced to folly infuriates me.

Forgive me for sinking deep in my feelings. Blame this Alessia Cara song. Blame the hot headed honesty I’ve inherited. Or not. It is what it is. I rather be that girl: angry, crazy, hungry, bleeding, laughing, than be anyone else. Cuz if I’m her then, when I’m gone, you’ll know that I’m done. That I gave it all, and did my best. My mom always said she didn’t care if I got A’s in school as long as I did my best. So if I am a F student because my job isn’t at a desk and doesn’t require  a ph’d,  I will still feel honor roll accomplishment. Because with this passion, I do my best.

Phife

Originally posted 4/6/16

a-tribe-called-quest-new-york-1990-billboard-1548I am not a huge follower of Tribe. I consider myself a respecter of their work. They are a strong pillar of an era of Hip Hop that reminds me of being little. I plugged some ATCQ into my playlist the day Phife Dawg died. Tidal moved from  “Steve Biko” to “Deuces” and  No disrespect to Chris Brown’s artistry ( let’s not get into any opinions on that right now), but in that moment I understood why I have this divide between real Hip Hop and Pop music in my mind. Hip Hop has always inspired me to me do big things. Big audacious dreams, big audacious art. Puff my chest out, stand taller, take up more space.

I am jealous of his life. In 45 years he made great art, inspired people, traveled the world. I wonder if I have wasted some time… doing things the “right way,”  but hip hop is not fashion. The start up cost is higher. As are the opportunity cost. It’s a similar, but different hustle.


Hip hop is like my neighborhood. Phife and the rest of  tribe are like guys that went to school with my brothers. I appreciate their presence in my community. I am not strongly grieving his death, but I appreciate and am thankful for his life. 

Conversations in the Nail Shop

Originally posted 11/16/15

The weekend after Halloween, I went to get a fill and color change. While I loved the pewter polish with flecks of bronze I rocked with my Freddy Kruger Costume on Halloween, it was time to freshen my nails. I choose an antique gold color and was placed at the dryer station next to a delightful man named Danny. Danny wasn’t old enough to be a silver fox, but he was well on his way to Anderson Cooper-ville, with his salt and pepper coif and warm, smiling eyes. He was waiting on his  mani and pedi ( midnight blue might I add)  to dry, while reading the October issue of W. Continue reading