WANNA GO TO FASHION WEEK?

THINGS I LUV: Miss Bruno So-Called-Dress

www.missbruno.com/

Finally, you can own a gorgeous dress from Miss Bruno’s “So-Called Dress” collection avail. for purchase via their site…Using such fabrics as Batik and Cotton from Mali to soft leather trimmings, each dress is a unique creation. And once again, the theme of the shoot and the organic simple background fixtures bring the dresses to life. My favorite is the Mary One-Piece pictured above…Check the feature we did with the lovely Sister-Duo a while back HERE, and go cop a dress!

GRINDING: Khia Jackson

1. Name/Alias:
Khia Jackson/ Miss Jay, or Khia_Rocks

2.Where are you from/ Where do you currently live?:
Up and Down the East Coast and A few Caribbean Islands/ I live in Qns. A loooong Ride from the late night summer parties.

3. Where did/do you go to school and your major?:
Undergrad @ Hampton University ( English/ Graphic Design) & Grad @ Portfolio Center ( Design )

4. What is your Grind?:
All of my hustles have something to do with design–> I design Magazine advertorials, CD packaging, Graphics for tennis shoes, tees, jeans, logos, book covers, posters, web banners whatever. I also blog for Around the Way Girls and The World Is Ours in conjunction with Liberator Magazine. I refuse to go broke because if worse comes to worse I can still do a Full Set and a Pedi-Don’t Trip!

5. How did you get into what your doing now?:
I used to do print design and I was working In VA for peanuts. I did a c.d. cover for the Fabulous Fuzz Band and PEL former Creative Director of RP55 saw my work ( they do Schmack, Azzuré and Indigo Red) they made me an offer i couldn’t refuse.- Best thing that ever happened to me. Later I moved to NY to be the Head Graphic Designer for the House of Déreon. The rest is right now.

6. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?:
I’ve always wanted to be some kind of an artist: Make up Artist, Designer, Painter, Interior Decorator, Illustrator….

7. What are some contributing factors that shaped the life you live now?:
Living in so many different places, and having family friends of such different cultures. It taught me to have an open mind and a healthy level of acceptance of others

8. Any specific people that mentored or helped guide you to your current path?:
Mom and Dad, both for being strong individuals with a lot of class who live by their own rules. And Mom once again for giving teaching me the Way of The Grind.( Jamaicans are Sensei’s when it comes to hard work !)

9. What motivates you?:
A need to contribute and add something positive to the world around me, the refusal to go broke

10. Your favorite author and why?:
I like the guy who wrote Mystic River–> Dennis Lehane, and Christopher Buckley he wrote ” Thank You For Smoking”. They’re smart, clever authors

11. What are 3 goals you want to achieve within the next year?:

Buy a house, Find a more mainstream outlet for my written work, Design a Product ( not saying what yet) and have it produced.

12. One person that continuously inspires you and why?:
Barack Obama. I hate to admit it, but I didn’t think it was possible. It is inspiring to me that he is so proving me wrong and that he knew he would.

13. 3 Indie brands you LOVE to rock?:
Not many brands fit my frame ( I stand 6 feet tall), but I’ll tell who I WOULD love to rock. Mike and Chris, Taverniti, and Custo ( wait…is that indie?).

14. What annoys you the most?:
Insincerity, Cruelty and people who try TOO HARD. ugh!

15.Your best quality?:I’m trying to be good to everyone around me. Friends, family, strangers…. A little love can go a long way sometimes.

www.theworld-isours.blogspot.com

www.aroundthewaygirls.net

SPOTLIGHT: Neo Sew Mama

www.neosewmama.typepad.com/neo_sew_mama/

I’m forever adding a new section/feature to the site right, ha ha…I just have a spazzmatic brain with an abundance of ideas, so why not share! Well we don’t have to officially classify this as a new feature, it’ll just happen when I feel its right…Like today, I haven’t checked Ms. Nina’s site in a while and was reminded of how dope she is as I re-landed on it today…She’s super-woman/mom, always nurturing, and balanced…Two things I’m working on in my own personal life, sometimes folks think that because your life is a certain way that you automatically adapt and do the things needed…But i’ve found or at least in my life, some things aren’t natural and you have to make the CHOICE to learn them. I’m always encouraged and motivated when I read her blog entries, shes a strong lady and such a GREAT MOM and WOMAN…Its crazy because I truly used to think that I could not do me and be a mom/wife at the same time…But as i’ve gotten older i’ve learned how detrimental it is to not have that IMPORTANT BALANCE…It can be difficult at first but its possible, and that’s what I’ve learned from Nina…Her life isn’t peaches and creams but she seems to always stay positive and consistent which is vital as a MOM/INDIVIDUAL…Anyhoo nuff sobby sobby, check out her blog…She sews too hence the name “NEO SEW MAMA” and shes always got great recipes!

THINGS I LUV

www.http://fightingeel.com/

I’m finally getting around to spotlighting the design duo behind Fighting Eeel…I tend to forget how I find designers if I don’t blog about them immediately, im workin on that…Ahhh I need the Ines racer back dress in my life so bad its not even funny! I love how the gray/white stripes contrast with the neon yellow sports bra strap, so funky! Based in Hawaii these girls really capture the essence and vibe of Hawaii life through their designs…I’ve been to Hawaii once and these digs are an accurate depiction of the carefree simplistic way of life!

CHECK THIS EVENT

GRINDING: N.icky of Heavy

1. Name/Alias:
My momma & daddy named me Nicole Guiland… call me Nicky / N.icky {pronounced N dot Icky}… Ampersand Jones is a fun new persona. I like that chick too.

2.Where are you from/ Where do you currently live?:
I’m a QueensNYc girl. South Jamaica. I’m still out here. It’s a nice get away and reality check. Keeps me grounded. My neighborhood is primarily West Indian, be it immigrants or first generation-ers, like myself… it makes me feel like I’m with family, and watching newcomers come and create a life is inspiring.

3. Where did/do you go to school and your major?:
High School… the infamous Fiorello H. LaGuardia School of Music & Art & the Performing Arts. { a mouthful} I was a vocal major. Went onto The New School University to study Jazz in their Jazz and Contemporary Music program.

4. What is your Grind?:
Being the lead singer of an indie band, HEAVy, entails wearing multiples hats. Online persona maintenance / PR. Writing. Brainstorming. Recording. Performing. Travel agent. It really isn’t any different than the job most artists have to do these days.
I’m thankfully able to say music sustains my lifestyle. Doesn’t mean that’s an easy life to live. Certainly not rolling around in money. It’s a much harder grind at times than juggling a 9-5 and your art. I’ve done that before as well. My workday never ends, and when it’s hectic… boy is it hectic. I share the heavy lifting {no pun intended} with Casey Benjamin, writer/the other half of HEAVy, and Teddycrockett, our “big brother” /manager. My focus has been squarely on writing and performing for/with HEAVy, but I’ve taught, done a wedding or 5, recorded as a featured artist with other bands/musicians. Background singing/reference track work is always fun. I used to make hats and bags too… I still do for friends. It just takes me longer… I still owe someone 2 hats, ordered back in 2007. (Sorry Nick)

5. How did you get into what your doing now?:
How could I NOT get into what I’m doing now? I started out in dancing school like most, but at the age of 2 1/2, since my big sister pretty much lived in the dance studio {She’s in the Lion King these days, and was a part of the original The Color Purple Broadway cast}. I didn’t stop dancing ’til about 13/14, when singing stole my focus. All of my extra curricular activities revolved around performing. Dance classes, vocal studies, piano class, acting class… I was born an artist and trained for this. I’m a little control freaky too… so starting a band was only a natural progression.

6. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?:
An entertainer. Or a veterinarian. I pissed my Grandfather off @ 15 telling him I was going to move to Japan and sing torch songs. What a great moment.

7. What are some contributing factors that shaped the life you live now?:
My folks taught my sister and me that hard work and humility gains you great rewards. I do my best to keep this in mind. We kid and say its the West Indian way…
I’m surrounded by successful people in and outside of my family, but their success is all self created. Their focus keeps me on my path.

8. Any specific people that mentored or helped guide you to your current path?:
The list would be long… I take a little from everyone who crosses my path. My folks and my sister. Case and Teddy. Alison Crockett. My Bff’s Vicky, Tionnei, Carla, Shannon. My HUGE family. My cousin Kisha… Its a big network of support.

9. What motivates you?:
I’m human. Sometimes its jealousies. It’s ugly, but if you shine a light on that dark place, and really look at it, you see what it is that you need to work on… what to strengthen within yourself. That can be a great motivator if you don’t let the envy eat away at you. Most time, New York is a great motivator. I love this city and it’s characters. Flaws and all.

10. Your favorite author and why?:
If I had to pick one, Jamaica Kincaid. For a while I bought every thing that she published. It started with Annie John for me, then came Lucy… Autobiography of My Mother… My Brother… list goes on and on. In high school I was intrigued by her personal story. Reading her novels, the way her characters spoke felt familiar. The subject matter would strike close to home at times too. I re-read Lucy whenever I’m between books.

11. What are 3 goals you want to achieve within the next year?:

1) Complete HEAVy’s 2nd and 3rd records… start the 4th and maybe a solo one.

2) Continue on my path of self acceptance and love.

3) Pay my student loans off.

12. One person that continuously inspires you and why?:
My sis, Stephanie Brown. Through a number of knee injuries and surgeries, ups and downs of a dancer’s life… she remains focused and in love with what she does. For her, there’s always a higher goal. Just when you’d think she’d throw in the towel, she pushes through.

13. 3 Indie brands you LOVE to rock?:
Unfortunately I’m not big on indie brands, ONLY because most times it’s out of my price range… or it’s just not a part of my vision. There is one brand that I do patronize, Collecther dresses in Brooklyn. Other not so indie brands include David Dalrymple for House of Field & Judi Rosen. I have to do my indie homework.

14. What annoys you the most?:
Being discounted.

15. Your best quality?: People say I’m a good listener. I like to think I have a good shoulder to lean on.

www.heavymusic.net

THINGS I LUV food….

www.http://organic-soul.blogspot.com/

Do you like to cook? Hmmm I DON’T AT ALL, but with 4 small children and a husband that’s a vegetarian, I have no choice…I know that probably sounds so dreadful right, well that’s how I feel about cooking for the most part…But I have to self-talk and say to myself, “sometimes you have to do things that you don’t want because its the right thing to do”…One of my friends from church just dropped off a vegetarian cook book for me to try, can we say motivating(mumbling to myself no)…But I’m going to give it a try Sarah, I promise ;)! I recently came across Bryant Terry’s cookbook Grub: Ideas for an Urban Kitchen…The reviews on amazon are excellent for the most part, so I think I’m going to cop it…I’ll let you know how my attempts at making these recipes turn out! Click on the links above and check out Bryant’s blog for some yummy recipes…The pics. make you wanna lick the screen!

THINGS I LUV

www.eduardballester.com/

I’m so feeling Spaniard Eduard Ballester’s Spring/Summer 08′ line…Relaxed and full of color..And i’m diggin the low cut jackets and blazers, very creative…Designers abroad have such a different vibe than American designers…I think international fashion is more adventurous and daring, especially in menswear…When asked about his future plans in a previous interview earlier this year, Ballester replied “I’m beginning to look a little more towards the American market, although I see it as a completely different world.”

ROJAS ON KARMALOOP!!!

Got this in my inbox today…Fab duo Alejandra and Freddie over at Rojas doing big things with Karmaloop…Cute interview, defintely a brand to keep and eye on…Their fall 08 line is sick, check back for some pics. soon!