Filed In: dev around the city

The Loc’d and Curly Hair Affair: The Recap!


*Brittany Eve (right) with her team Brittany Harrell, Fernando Cruz, and Gaynelle “Pat” Albert.

A few Sundays ago I had the pleasure of attending an amazing event entitled “The Loc’d and Curly Hair Affair!” An event dedicated to highlighting the beauty that exists within the Black, natural hair community. 

Earlier this month, I interviewed the event’s creator Brittany Eve, she expressed she wanted to create a space that fused the natural hair community together, all while making sure those with locs were adequately represented. Well, Brittany was flawlessly able to bring her vision to life. Every type of natural hairstyle was showcased at the event from locs to box braids to kinky coils. 


*Once Easton girls, now grown women. Myself and fellow Easton alumnae Brittany Eve, Antionette Green, Honorelle Henry, Treasurelynn Johnson and Brittany Harrell. 

The event began with a live how-to tie a headwrap tutorial. Every naturalista(o) knows headwraps are a staple for us. Not only do they protect on hair and add flare to our outfits but they also help us honor our ancestors. Next, was a tutorial on how-to properly install a wig. A segment I was happy to see included in the event. Often there is a stigma attached to wearing weaves or wigs in the natural hair community, but when done correctly can be a very healthy protective hairstyle. It was good to affirm those who choose to wear that particular protective style. It made a statement that being natural doesn’t have to look a particular way. 


​​*New Orleans Hairstylist Edwin Merritt with model.

​​Lastly, the event was brought to a close with an incredible discussion panel with the ladies of the “Baby Bangz Hair Salon.” By far my most favorite part of the evening. Along with a Q&A about natural hair care tips, the ladies emphasized the importance of self-love and unity. Two things that I feel can never be expressed enough within the black community.


*The fabulous hairstylists of the Baby Bangz Hair Salon with panel hostess Brittany Harrell. 


*Hats and necklaces from Shop Ellusions, owner Reiona Star (top picture), Chokers and paintings by B. Sam (bottom picture).

The Loc’d and Curly Hair Affair was a marvelously produced event. It was well thought-out and executed to perfection. I left the event feeling empowered and proud to belong to such a powerful and influential community. I want to thank Brittany and her team for creating an event that was filled with so much black talent, black beauty, and overall black excellence. I’ll be anxiously awaiting the next Loc’d and Curly Hair Affair event! 


*Raffle winners Shantel Bradley and daughter Amari. 


*DJ Legatron Prime was on the 1s & 2s.

*Artist and Designer, B. Sam.

*Owners of “Major Joose All Natural Juice Beverages,” Major and Joose.

*Andrea D. Easter, owner of Bijoux de Delone and assistant.

To learn more about Brittany Eve and The Loc’d and Curly Hair Affair visit: www.facebook.com/MRWLLC and be sure to follow the event’s instagram page @locdandcurlyhairaffair! 

Xo, 

Kia Presents: Rizos On The Road Tour: New Orleans Recap

*Myself and friend India Brooks with the event’s hostesses Rocio Mora and Ada Rojas.

Two weeks ago I had the pleasure of attending the Rizos On The Road Tour: New Orleans, an event dedicated to unifying naturalistas and multicultural women of color. To say the event was simply beautiful is an understatement. It was held at the super chic People’s Health New Orleans Jazz Market, which made for a very chill yet vibrant ambiance. The event included a discussion panel, delectable food and drinks, scalp massages, a product swap segment, and a live curly hair cut transformation.

The Rizos On The Road Tour is hosted by two fabulous naturalista bloggers: Rocio Mora, a New Orleans-based blogger and Ada Rojas a New York-based blogger. During the Q&A segment, the ladies shared a very detailed account of their experiences as Afro-Latinas. They recalled how people would constantly ask them to select a box to classify their identities, and how difficult that often was. An aspect of their experience I could definitely identify with. As a black creole woman, my entire life people have never quite understood how I could be black and still have a multicultural upbringing. It was heart-warming to be surrounded by other women who shared similar stories to mines.


There were several incredible moments throughout the night, but my most favorite was being able to have one-on-one moments with the event’s hostesses Rocio and Ada. They were so down to earth, and made you feel like you had known them for years. We shared laughs, stories, and future business ideas. Another thing I loved about the event? The amount of Women’s Power you could feel throughout the room. Not only is the tour hosted by two wonderful ladies, but the entire production team is filled with fierce women of color.


*Me standing in front of the fabulous Kia Optima that one lucky attendee will be winning.


*Event vendor and owner of The Love of People, Paula Bland


*DJ Lil Jodeci on the 1’s and 2’s


*Goodies! Who doesn’t love a good swag bag?! All the VIPs will leave with all of these fabulous products.

I truly enjoyed my time at the Rizos On The Road event, and I recommend it all of the multicultural naturalistas around the country. I guarantee you’ll leave the event feeling empowered, validated, and high-spirited. I just want to say a big thank you to Rocio Mora for inviting me to such an amazing event.

*The Rizos On The Road Tour will be making 3 more stops in Los Angeles, Chicago, and NYC to purchase tickets visit: www.rizosontheroad.com

Xo,

The Beautiful Ones Let Purple Reign: FWLC 2017 Recap 


*Renown designer Fred Boyd of FredBoydKnits with FWLC Founder Julie Branden and FWLC Models

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of attending Fashion Week Lake Charles, and acting as the media correspondent for the second year in a row. As always the 3-day event did not disappoint. Day one showcase consisted of emerging designers, day two featured seasoned designers, and day three highlighted swim and children’s couture. The event had an host of vendors from around the SouthEast region, a silent auction, and fantastic hor d’oeuvres and cocktails.


*Candace Grace owner of GAGG Shoes and vendor at FWLC 2017



*Raina Darby owner of 6:13 SWIM, vendor and one of FWLC Feautured 2017 Designers



*Taj of Taj Beauty Emporium, vendor for FWLC 2017.

This year’s theme was centered around the Late-Great artist Prince. Elaborate fashions, big personalities, and hints of eloquent self-expression was seen all over the runway. The founder of Fashion Week Lake Charles (FWLC) Julie Brandon expressed she wanted to reflect everything Prince was (and truthfully still is) “I wanted to give a bigger and bolder presentation to the attendees for FWLC 2017, and since the first day of the event fell on the anniversary of his passing it just made sense.”


*Designer, Actress Betty Pruitt paying tribute to Prince.

If I learned anything from participating in Fashion Week Lake Charles last year, is that it is unlike any traditional fashion show event I have ever attended. Instead of a traditional fashion show setting where beautiful models simply walk up and down the runway, the shows included such things as a Lake Charles-based dance squad as an opener to a freestyle runway segment that allowed the models to showcase their own personal style. FWLC 2017 Emerging Designer Competition  winner was Jeanne-Claire Benton, a college student from Lafayette, LA. Her line was filled with vibrant and unique pieces that exemplified the theme of FWLC ’17. Tracee Dundas founder of Fashion Week New Orleans was this year’s honoree, her speech about breaking barriers within the fashion industry, while staying true to her roots was something I still replay in my mind. You could feel the essence of Prince being celebrated in every ounce of the event.


*Vintage Dance Dolls Troop


*FWLC Models Alyssa, Tyler, and Paris wearing FWLC 2017 Emerging Designer Competition Winner Jeanne-Claire Designs


*Day 2 Runway Line-Up

My most favorite thing about FWLC? It’s more than just a fun and fabulous time, the event benefits a good cause as well. A few years ago Julie Branden’s granddaughter was diagnosed with junior diabetes, and a portion of the proceeds from Fashion Week Lake Charles are donated to the Junior Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF) to help further research to find a cure for the disease, and turn “Type One To Type None.”

FWLC 2017 was such an amazing event, and if you missed it you definitely missed out. It was full of glamour, eloquence, and purple reign. I am looking forward to what fabulousness Julie B. and her team come up with for 2018.
Be sure to view all of the amazement that FWLC 2017 was below, including bts footage as well.


*FWLC Models wearing Quad Clothing Company


*FWLC Models Kenya Gradnigo and Gairiah Johnson wearing Quad Clothing Company


*FWLC Models wearing Kiddie Quad


*Renown model and actress Ania Spiering touches up her makeup backstage.


*Julie B. gets her makeup done.


*FWLC Male Models Chase, Jackson, and Nick in chill-mode backstage.



*Julie Branden, Myself, and Fred Boyd


Hope to see you all there next year!

Xo,

Fashion Week Lake Charles: 4 Days of Fabulous! 

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*James Porter, winner of FWLC 2016 posing with models wearing his Spring 2016 collection of James Allen.

To say Fashion Week Lake Charles was just fabulous is an understatement. FWLC was the epitome of a beautiful fashion extravaganza, and definitely made a splash in the city of Lake Charles! When Julie Branden said she wanted to show the great city of Lake Charles the fashion world she was used to, she truly meant it. The event was well thought out, thoroughly planned, and eloquently presented. From the fashions to the parties to the food I was beyond impressed. Everyone that attended the FWLC events brought their fashion A-game, and I was inspired by all of the grand style I was surrounded by.

Julie Branden, founder of Fashion Week Lake Charles, gave me the wonderful opportunity of being the media correspondent for FWLC. I have to say I was a tad nervous, seeing that I had never been given this type of task before. However, after my first interview I felt right at home. I discovered I have a niche for interviewing people. It was fascinating learning about all the designers, vendors, and attendees. I got a chance to interview some passionate and driven individuals. It was a hectic job, but a fun one!

Be sure to check out all of the footage I captured while I was at FWLC below!

Day 1: Media Soirée Party

Day 1 of FWLC took place at a swanky bar called “The Heist” located in historic downtown Lake Charles. The venue was very glamorous, and set the perfect tone for what Fashion Week Lake Charles had to come. I got a chance to get acquainted with the designers and fellow media personnel’s.

IMG_7428*Candace Grace, owner of GAGG Shoes.

IMG_7439*Candace Grace, Shawn Landry, Cliffany Garrison owner of Cliffany Cosmetics, FWLC designer Lex Fondel owner of ReignWear Designs.

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*FWLC Founder Julie Branden and Myself

IMG_7466*FWLC Model Coach Alyssa Burris w/ models. 

Day 2: FWLC Launch Party

Day 2 was all about fun! The FWLC launch party was held at the sexy “Blue Martini Room” in the Golden Nugget Casino Resort. It felt like Las Vegas had come to Lake Charles. There were models covered in body paint, lavish show girls roaming the party, and the drinks were flowing.

IMG_7491*FWLC Media Coordinator Donovan Comeaux and Gale Branden. 

IMG_7483*Alyssa Burris, Myself, and Ciaara Woods.

IMG_7489*Doreen Clark, wearing a ReignWear Design.

IMG_7495*Body paint artwork done by Skin Wars finalist Angela Roberts.

IMG_7497*FWLC designer Barbara Ndarake, owner of Hats by Iniziobella and Julie Branden.

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Day 3: FWLC Runway Showcase Day 1

Day 3 was the first day of the fashion showcase, which featured emerging designers. As well as, vendors of all sorts in the Style Lounge. This event was held at the Isle of Capri Casino Resort.

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*ShauntealPrejean of Voodoo Makeup and a young model.

IMG_7732*Miss Black Louisiana pageant queens and Donovan Comeaux.

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*Pageant queens Maddy Grayce Canik, Skylar Canik, Morgan Monlezun and Mayson Marcle. 

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*American Horror Story model Ania Spiering and Julie Branden. 

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Day 4: FWLC Runway Showcase Day 2

Day 4 was day two of the fashion showcase, which featured seasoned designers and an array of vendors in the Style Lounge. Hosted at the Isle of Capri Casino Resort.

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*FWLC Models Ebobi Johnson and Megan Smith.

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*FWLC Hairstylist Valleen Vallare with a model.

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*Authoress Sierra Jones-Demouchmet and her husband Dion Demouchet.

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*FWLC Founder Julie Branden with NOLAFW Founder Tracee Dumas

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*Candace Grace and Myself.

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*Barbara Ndarake, myself, and Ekei Ion.

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*Ann Monzulen, FWLC Fashion Icon Honoree, and Miss Black Louisiana pageant queen Kiandra Briché.

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*Faces of FWLC Cheyenne Horner and LeeZa Thibideaux with Julie Branden.

FWLC was an extraordinary experience. Lake Charles is more than just boudin or cajun country (as I call it). It’s a city filled with some insanely talented designers.

I want to say thank you to FWLC videographer Jason Keyes of Light Media for being such a joy to work with and making my first correspondent job a pleasant experience. Last, but certainly not least, I want to say a huge Thank You to Julie Branden and the entire FWLC production team for allowing me to partake in such an amazing event. It was truly an honor. Even one week later, as I write this, I am still in awe at how beautiful this event was. I am looking forward to Fashion Week Lake Charles 2017!

Xo,
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*Be sure to be on the lookout for more FWLC posts coming soon!

Come Out This Sunday..! 

Attention all DEVandtheCITY supporters! I will be hosting a “Style Day” at Langford Market Boutique located on Magazine St. this Sunday from 1-4pm. I will be giving style tips and doing mini makeovers! There will also be special discounts, giveaways, and refreshments. Come out and enjoy a day of shopping, relaxation, and fun!

I hope to see you there! (:
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