Ashley D Love.........Fashion Consultant

Hello Everyone,

I hope your week has been going well. I had some things to happen to me, but I’m thankful that everything is okay. While I was getting some personal things taken care of, I written this long, very detailed blog post, only for it to disappear when I had a phone call. 😢😞 So, I’m writing it again.

The other day, I had a free phone consultation with a business coach, and I must say that after the call, I felt really good. I don’t remember how I found her, but I accepted her call. She asked about my background, and when I told her, she became really excited. She made me realize that I’m a fashion consultant in the industry. It shocked me at first because I never thought of myself as a fashion consultant because the definition is used mostly for personal styling, but after she explained it, it made so much sense. She basically said that I was a “one-stop shop” for fashion. Made me feel really good that she said that.

So with that being said, if you are looking for a fashion designer/fashion illustrator who will create your technical designs for your clothing line, let me know. I’m available.

Sincerely,

Ashley Love

Fashion Designer/Fashion Illustrator/Fashion Consultant

Gucci Messed Up......Again!

Hello Everyone,

I had to take a small break because this article about Gucci has just left me dumbfounded! Apparently, this company doesn’t know how to learn it’s lesson. Last year, Gucci received backlash regarding a sweater that resembled blackface was shown on their website (https://nypost.com/2019/02/07/gucci-slammed-for-sweater-that-appears-to-resemble-blackface/).

https://nypost.com/2019/02/07/gucci-slammed-for-sweater-that-appears-to-resemble-blackface/

https://nypost.com/2019/02/07/gucci-slammed-for-sweater-that-appears-to-resemble-blackface/

The sweater was from their Fall/Winter 2018 collection. According to Gucci, it was inspired by “vintage ski masks".” Anybody can see this sweater is clearly blackface. What makes it worse is that this sweater was retailed for $900. Thankfully, it was immediately removed from their site. You would have thought they would’ve learned their lesson from this sweater, but NOPE!!!

During a Gucci fashion show, a tall, lanky, white model appeared on the runway in…………. a bright blue turban!

https://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/lifestyle-buzz/not-a-cute-fashion-accessory-guccis-dollar800-indy-full-turban-draws-backlash/ar-AABrzah?ocid=spartanntp

https://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/lifestyle-buzz/not-a-cute-fashion-accessory-guccis-dollar800-indy-full-turban-draws-backlash/ar-AABrzah?ocid=spartanntp

Now, there are some people out there that may feel that a turban may not seem like anything bad to wear, but this is bad because Gucci basically knocked off the look of the Sikhs, who follow a faith with roots in South Asia, this is exactly how they wear their turbans. People felt they should’ve had a “brown” model wearing this turban. I feel it is a disrespect to the Sikhs.

What’s even worse is that this turban is selling in Nordstrom for $790. If you would like to read more on this story, you can do so on MSN.com:

https://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/lifestyle-buzz/not-a-cute-fashion-accessory-guccis-dollar800-indy-full-turban-draws-backlash/ar-AABrzah?ocid=spartanntp

Or Blavity.com:

https://blavity.com/gucci-manages-to-offend-yet-another-minority-community-with-outrageously-priced-turban

https://blavity.com/gucci-manages-to-offend-yet-another-minority-community-with-outrageously-priced-turban

https://blavity.com/gucci-manages-to-offend-yet-another-minority-community-with-outrageously-priced-turban

Gucci and Nordstrom has received so much backlash from Sikhs because of this. So many Sikhs have been the victims of discrimination and hate crimes simply because of the way they look. Just recently, the comedienne, Jess Hilarious, released a video that went viral about because she had four Sikh men thrown off of a plane because she felt threatened (https://www.essence.com/celebrity/jess-hilarious-sikh-men-boarding-plane/). Now, I am one of many people who do not find Jess Hilarious funny, and she was DEAD wrong for her actions. It was disgusting that she was so proud of getting these men kicked off of a flight simply because of the way they looked. When she received backlash for her actions, she responded with “F*** YOU!” Terrible!

I don’t know every Sikh person, but I have met a few, including Waris Ahluwalia, jewelry designer, actor, and owner of House of Waris. He spoke at my school, Savannah College of Art and Design, and his work is amazing! Sadly, Ahluwalia was also a victim of discrimination when his ad for Gap was vandalized in 2013 (https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2513525/Gap-slams-racist-graffiti-ad-featuring-Sikh-Waris-Ahluwalia-vandalized.html).

Before  https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2513525/Gap-slams-racist-graffiti-ad-featuring-Sikh-Waris-Ahluwalia-vandalized.html

Before

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2513525/Gap-slams-racist-graffiti-ad-featuring-Sikh-Waris-Ahluwalia-vandalized.html

After 😢  https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2513525/Gap-slams-racist-graffiti-ad-featuring-Sikh-Waris-Ahluwalia-vandalized.html

After 😢

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2513525/Gap-slams-racist-graffiti-ad-featuring-Sikh-Waris-Ahluwalia-vandalized.html

It’s disgusting that discrimination still happens, and it’s even more disgusting that Gucci feels they can profit off of the victims of discrimination. The sad part about all of this is that people of color are still going to support this brand. Let’s hope they learned their lesson, but something tells me they haven't, and I hate to say it, but I feel they are going to create something based on discrimination towards black people and other people of color……again.

Don't Judge Me For My Hair

Hello Again,

I was on Facebook the other day, and I saw a post from one of my friends that blessed my life. So, there’s this woman named Tiffany Jana. She’s an author, B Corp CEO, and Inc.com Top 100 Leadership Speaker. I saw this post from her yesterday:

Courtesy of Facebook

Courtesy of Facebook

Courtesy of Facebook

Courtesy of Facebook

Courtesy of Facebook

Courtesy of Facebook

It’s funny that I saw this on my timeline because I had been sick with a cold for the past week, and I’ve been unable to wash my hair. It’s to the point where if I flat ironed it, it would still look limp. I usually wash and deep condition my hair every week, but I haven’t been able to do that because I’m scared that I will get sicker. I’m much better now, but I’m still unable to wash my hair because I’m still stopped up, so I’ve been wearing headwraps. I’m a freelance fashion designer, and a remote stylist, but I’m also a college instructor. I was sick as a dog, but the only thing I was worried about was having a lecture about wearing a headwrap at my job. Thankfully, that didn’t happen. In fact, some of my students really liked my headwrap. Although I’m really happy about that, it’s nothing new for black women to be judged, or even policed because of our hair.

If you read my last blog, you know that a hotel manager wouldn’t even accept my application and resume years ago simply because of my hair. I also said that it’s not the first time something like that happened to me. I have so many stories that involved my hair. The first hair incident happened when I started my first job. The year was 2000, and the place was called Wendell’s. It was a family restaurant. A lady who was the head cook told my mom that I should apply, and since my mom had just given me my first car, I did. When I had my interview, I was wearing colored contacts, and my hair was black and passed my shoulders. Everyone was really nice, and I was hired immediately. Two days prior to my first day, I decided to change my hairstyle. I styled my hair in Zulu twists (two-stranded twists that’s styled like braids) in the front and curly in the back. This was my favorite go-to hairstyle, and it was an easy way to keep me from using heat to my hair. When I came into work, the (white) head server that was training me immediately said “OMG! You changed your hair!” She gives me a tour and tells me of my job duties. Afterwards, we took a break. As soon as we sat down, she says, “Ok…..your hair. It’s really nice, but you’re going to have to change it!” When I asked why, she told me that the owner (who is also white) wanted everyone to look the same. She continued that he wanted every young lady/woman to wear her hair down, or in a ponytail, and because of my hairstyle, I will stand out from everyone. I was pissed, but because I needed that job, I had to take my hair down. That hurt my heart, and it also made me realize that it would not be the last time it happened to me.

My hair is dyed blonde. I always wanted my hair blonde, so when I finally dyed it in college, I was happy! I always loved my blonde hair, but in 2011 while working at another place, one of my coworkers asked if I was told to dye my hair, how would I react. When I asked what did he mean, he said “well, if you were told to dye your hair brown or black, how would you feel?” I told him I’d quit. He looked shocked. He said, “Really? Over hair color?” I said, “Yes! I always wanted my hair this color, and I feel alive with it. For someone to tell me to change my hair color, that means they aren’t accepting me. My hair is a part of my identity, no matter what color it is, so for someone to tell me to change it, they’re basically trying to change me.” I found it odd that he asked me that, until I found out our boss was basically trying to make everyone to dye their hair jet black. She even made a girl take out her blonde weave. She didn’t say anything to me though (I guess she knew my mouth). I didn’t stay there long. A few years before that, my friend tried to get me hired at a high end retail store, but then she asked me if I could do something with my hair. She proceeds to tell me how high end this store is, and because I was natural and blonde, they may not hire me. I didn’t get hired. I was happy.

Flash forward to now. I have a short haircut, shaved on the side, and it’s still blonde. When I had my interview at my school, the only thing I thought was “I hope they don’t say anything about my hair.” I had everything type of qualification that was listed, but I was focused on my hair. I love what I do, whether it’s teaching or working for myself, but when I saw this post, it immediately brought back flashbacks on how I was judged simply for my hair. There are still reports where black women’s hairstyles are considered unprofessional. I also know of several black women who colored their hair, only for them to dye it black because it’s considered “ghetto.” Black women are still subjected to hair searches by TSA agents (https://www.cosmopolitan.com/lifestyle/a18666534/tsa-black-women-hair-searches/).

There are millions of hairstyles out there, and black women are very creative with their hair. So, why are we still judged by it? It’s 2019, and it’s time for this to stop. So, just like the post says, “My Hair Has Nothing To Do With the Ability To Do My Job.” Please stop judging me because of my hair. I’m more than that!

Snitches Get Stitches....Literally

Usually, I would be writing to talk about my works, creative brain, and current things I'm working on; or I’ll be talking about anything related to art and fashion, but today, I’m taking a break to talk about a writer who felt recently felt the wrath of Black Twitter!!! Let’s meet Natasha Tynes, a Turkish-born author in Washington, D.C. who calls herself a “champion for all people of color.” 😒

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Natasha was on the Washington D.C. Metro train on Friday only to find..gasp….an African American woman in a Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority uniform sitting in front of her, alone, eating breakfast on the train. Now, of course it is against the rules to eat on public transit (this is for any public transit in the U.S.), but most of us normal people would have assumed, “Hey! This woman is in uniform, and she’s eating breakfast. She’s probably trying to eat this because her shift is about to start soon.” NOT Natasha!!! She confronted this woman, who was busy minding her business and eating her breakfast to tell her that she’s not supposed to be eating on the train. The woman’s response? “Worry about yourself!” Instead of Natasha doing that, she went into instant snitch mode!

Courtesy of Twitter (Natasha’s account)

Courtesy of Twitter (Natasha’s account)

Courtesy of Twitter (Natasha’s account)

Courtesy of Twitter (Natasha’s account)

WMATA responded, and of course, she replied. She was adamant about getting Sis reported and fired! Thankfully, there was a public servant who saw this, and happily shared it with Black Twitter!

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Black Twitter saw this, and drug her for filth (she was drug for filth on Facebook as well) !!! Here are some of the comments (please excuse the harsh language):

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter and theroot.com

Courtesy of Twitter and theroot.com

Not only that, someone even took the liberty of changing her book cover for her!

Courtesy of Facebook

Courtesy of Facebook

Not only did Black Twitter give her the proper dragging that she deserved, but they also found the publishing house/PR marketing firm that was distributing her book, Rare Bird. Let me just say that Rare Bird doesn’t play around. When they found out about Natasha’s lovely actions, they dropped her immediately, halted distribution of her book, and issued this statement.

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Unfortunately, California Coldblood are not living up to its name.

Courtesy of Twitter and theroot.com

Courtesy of Twitter and theroot.com

Within 12 hours, Natasha went from being an author to being dropped from distribution, and having all ties severed with her PR agency. She also has a one-star review on Goodreads. As for sis on the train:

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Black Twitter knows how to hit people where it hurts. The book will be available on Amazon sometime in June. I just checked, and no one has given a review yet. Somehow, I think that's going to change by later today. Anyway, after Natasha realized her actions caused her to lose everything that she worked hard to accomplish, she issued this bland apology.

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Girl! You are an author! You couldn’t write anything better than that? This is garbage, just like your actions and that book! Here’s Black Twitter with more:

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Courtesy of Twitter

Usually, I would read stories like this, and chuckle with excitement to myself, but today, I felt the need to share this. I can honestly say that I’ve somewhat been in the shoes of the WMATA worker simply because you’re just trying to work and live. Not only have I felt what it was like for another person of color to try to report you, but there have also been times where I tried to better myself with job opportunities, only for me to be shunned by another person of color, simply because something I did while minding my business, or just being my authentic self (I even had a black person to do this, but that’s another story).

Years ago, when I was a newly college graduate, I had applied as a night auditor at a hotel in my hometown. My friend had just left the position, and he encouraged me to apply for it. I had applied in the past, but never received a call back, so since my friend was encouraging me, I decided to give it a second try. I had just become natural (for those of you who don’t know, this is when your hair is free from chemicals, and you style it in its natural state), so I was still trying out different hairstyles, products, etc. At the time, I wore my hair in two-strand twists, but sometimes, I would take the twists down, and it would look like curly dreads. I had seen the ads for the night auditor position in several local newspapers, as well as on the websites of those newspaper companies (this was before Google). Not only did I apply (again), but I also added my resume with it.

The manager at this hotel was a Latina. I came in, professionally dressed, with my application and resume in hand. I introduced myself, and when I told her what position I was applying for, the manager immediately said, “WE’RE NOT HIRING AT THE MOMENT!” I paused, and I asked was she sure because I was told by more than one source that they were hiring for this position. She repeated herself even louder. I said, “Ma’am, not only did three different sources tell me this position is open, but it is posted in several newspapers, as well as on local websites.” She continued to say they weren’t hiring. I asked if I could still give her my application and resume. Not only would she not take it, she continued to say the hotel wasn’t hiring. I simply thanked her for her time, and I left. I was so confused as to why she would act like that. When I told my friend about it, he immediately asked how I wore my hair. I told him it was in two-strand twists, and in an up-do. Then, he said, “that’s why she told you they weren’t hiring. It was your hair!” He proceeded to tell me this manager was known for being discriminatory against black people, even though she was a person of color herself. He continued to tell me that if she was hiring for a position, and a black woman applied, if that black woman’s hair was not straight, or in a smooth ponytail, she would not hire her. He also told me that if a black man applied for a job there, and he had dreads or braids, she would not hire him. He also told me that she fired a young man that she didn’t even hire, simply because he had dreads. She told him to cut his hair, or don’t come back. He chose not to come back. When someone threatened to report her for racial discrimination, she would immediately cry and says that she was not racist. I tried to report her, but it didn’t go anywhere.

I still feel a certain way about the actions of that manager because it’s one of the many things we black women go through. Mind you, that was not the first time something like that happened to me, and sadly, it may not be the last. I hate that we go through things like this simply because we’re seen as a threat. It hurts, but it hurts even harder when it is another person of color who performs those discriminatory actions. There’s a difference between the outcome of that manager, and the outcome of Natasha. As stated previously, that hotel incident happened way before social media, so there was no way to record what happened and report it online. I had to find and call the number for corporate, go through hoops to get to the proper party, only to wait for someone to listen to what happened. I left several messages, only for no one to ever contact me. In Natasha’s case, she’s in the social media age, where everyone pulls out their phones to record everything, as well as reporting everything online. It was easily shared on every platform, website, and blog you can imagine, and she immediately went viral. As the saying goes, the internet is forever, so this is going to haunt her for the rest of her life.

What Natasha did to that woman was horrible, and she deserved everything that happened to her. Hopefully, she has learned her lesson to never bother anyone who’s minding their business because it can really hurt you in the end.

If you want to read more about this, just Google it. It’s everywhere, but you can also find it on The Root:

https://www.theroot.com/natasha-the-snitch-black-twitter-savages-dc-metro-tatt-1834682147

https://www.theroot.com/dc-metro-snitch-may-lose-book-deal-because-karma-is-rea-1834691795 (outcome).

Max Azria Passed Away at 70

I found out last night that Max Azria, founder of BCBGMAXAZRIA (mostly known as BCBG) has passed away at the age of 70. .He passed away at a hospital in Houston after battling lung cancer. Azria, who is from Tunisia, came to the U.S. in 1981 after designing women’s clothing in Paris for 11 years. He created BCBGMAXAZRIA in 1989. His clothes were very popular among celebritites such as Drew Barrymore, Selena Gomez, and Kim Kardashian West.

During its height, his company had over 500 stores, and many of his designs were carried among major department stores. He was inducted in the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) in 1998, and in 2008, he launched BCBGeneration, which caters to the younger generation (or the younger style influencer). Azria is survived by his wife, Lubov, who is also the creative director of the BCBGMaxAzriaGroup, and his six children. If you want to read more about Max Azria, you can do so on the following link:

https://people.com/style/max-azria-dies-obituary/

New Ideas

Hello,

I’ve been a bit under the weather, so I haven’t been able to be my creative self like I want to. In addition to teaching, I also work online, and since no one has been online to talk to me, I’m taking a small break to write to you. If you all have read my recent post, I’ve finally created my Etsy page. I also have a t-shirt business where I sell through Etsy. It’s been slow, so I need more support.

I’ve been thinking of ideas to put on t-shirts. It’s quiet in my house, so I sit and reflect on things I should be doing, which is why I feel I need to start meditating. While researching, I came across this:

Pretty cute! However, I saw this shirt, and it really inspired me:

I’m still on the drawing board with this, but I have generated some ideas. Well, that’s all that I have to talk about right now. I’ll be posting more.

Until Next Time!!

Looks from Met Gala

As you all know, we have seen the looks from the Met Gala. All of the looks were unique as usual, some spectacular, and some were not. I’ve read every last article and shady comment, and now, I’m going to share my favorite looks, as well as my not-so-favorite looks.

*all pictures came from The Full Montea and Elle

Favorite Looks

THEE Billy Porter!!!!!!!!!

THEE Billy Porter!!!!!!!!!

Billy Porter is my favorite person. No matter where he is, I’m here for everything he wears because I know he’s going to SLAY!!! When I saw this outfit, I was in LOVE!! 😍😍

Cardi B

Cardi B

I love how far Cardi B has come in her career! She always comes through for the Met Gala, and this look did not disappoint!! I love this!!!

Jared Leto

Jared Leto

I’ve always loved Jared Leto. He’s so pretty, and he can’t do no wrong! This look was very fitting for him, and I loved it.

Celine Dion

Celine Dion

Now, Celine has been looking gauntly deceased a lot lately, but she rose from the dead and came through for the Met Gala!!! This look was EVERYTHING AND THEN SOME!!!!!!! Also, she looks healthy.

Janelle Monae

Janelle Monae

I love Janelle Monae and all of her looks, and I’m excited to see her in other colors besides black and white. This look is very different for her, and I’m happy to see some skin.

For the Okay Looks

Katy Perry

Katy Perry

Katy Perry is always doing extra stuff to be seen, so this is nothing new. I guess it’s cute.

THEE Naomi Campbell

THEE Naomi Campbell

I LOVE Naomi Campbell, and in my eyes, she can never do no wrong. I feel more could be added to this, but again, it’s Naomi, so it’s beautiful.

Lupita Nyong’o

Lupita Nyong’o

I like this on Lupita because it’s very different, and I like it!!!! I love the bodice.

Now……….The Worst

Tiffany Haddisn

Tiffany Haddisn

Not only did she wear this ugly suit, but she also brought fried chicken and fed it to every (white) person. It was very unfunny and extra. They should've put her out.

Kerry Washington

Kerry Washington

I don’t even understand what Kerry was trying to do. Also, I just realized that Cam Newton is in the background, which makes this picture even worse!

Swizz Beatz and Alicia Keys

Swizz Beatz and Alicia Keys

I just want Alicia Keys to at least put on some lipstick! This is a high end fashion event, so you could’ve done something extra with this natural makeup look. You could’ve used bronzer, highlighter, tinted lip stain…something! I guess she had Swizz Beatz to wear her makeup for her.

Mindy Kaling

Mindy Kaling

This dress makes her look extra wide, and this blonde wig is a no on her. This is a definite no.

Regina Hall

Regina Hall

The dress is cute, but her expression makes the whole look horrible. She just looks like she’s over it, and ready to go home.

Other Looks from the Met Gala

Frank Ocean

Frank Ocean

He looks like a Valet worker. 😒

Ezra Miller

Ezra Miller

I don’t even know who this guy is, but this look is EPIC!!! His makeup is so cool, and out the box. A makeup artist has already created an inspiration look from this.

@naezrahlooks. Shes on IG

@naezrahlooks. Shes on IG

Kanye & Kim Kardashian West

Kanye & Kim Kardashian West

Kim look plastic as usual, and Kanye looks like a delivery driver! Come on, Kanye! You have a fashion line, even though it looks a mess! You could’ve done better than this!

Well, this is my commentary on these looks. I’ll be showing more of my original designs and illustrations. Thanks for reading!!

New Things as well as YouTube Channel

Hello Everyone,

I notice that I always take a break to reflect, as well as do new things to showcase my artwork. I’ve been doing new thing. My Etsy page is up, and I have t-shirts with my artwork on them. I’m celebrating the beauty of the black woman, so I have illustrations showing the faces of beautiful black women in African attire. You can order here:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/ALbyAshleyLove

I’ve now also created a YouTube channel, Ashley D Love. I will be showing myself in action creating quick sketches and fashion illustrations. Here is the link for my YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmC0C0toIew&t=4s

I will be creating more things, so be on the lookout. Talk to you soon

Control

Hello Everyone!

I’ve been in the process of drawing and illustrating more. Working can sometimes take a toll on your creativity, which can be quite normal for a working creative person. Work is very important, and creativity is also very important, so besides work, I’m striving to do a fashion illustration at least once a day.

The other day, I was really inspired from Janet Jackson’s “Control” album cover. It’s one of my favorite covers, from the hair and red background to the gold sketch lines. I always wanted to create a modern design inspiration from this album cover. After working tirelessly on this sketch, I finally finished it. Here is the final product.

Left: Janet Jackson Control album     Right:  My Inspirational illustration of the Janet Jackson’s Control album

Left: Janet Jackson Control album Right: My Inspirational illustration of the Janet Jackson’s Control album

What do you think? I created an illustration in the past of Toni Braxton in 2016

Toni Braxton

Toni Braxton

My rendition of Toni Braxton

My rendition of Toni Braxton

Let me know your thoughts!

Working on Time Management....Again😞

Hello,

I know it has been a while since I talked to you all.  I have become pretty busy.  I've been working as a remote stylist since April, and I'm having so much fun with it.  I've always wanted a job in fashion where I can be involved in fashion, design as well as give style advice, and work from the comfort of my own home.  I must say that I'm doing all of those.  Being a remote stylist is so rewarding to me because I get to help people create their perfect wardrobe, style for special occasions, and help people build confidence (one thing I've noticed is that when people get new outfits, especially dresses, they feel better about themselves).  Although I love working from home, the one challenge I have is time management.

Time management has always been a struggle with me because I'm trying to find time to do one thing, then switch to do the other.  Even with a calendar or planner, things do not work out when it comes to time management.  I've even tried to do a "to do list", and it still doesn't work.  Time management is complicated to me because not only do I work from home, but I'm also an adjunct professor, and I'm still trying to work on grading for school, and working from home.  In addition to that, I'm trying to make time to design as well.  I don't want to burn myself, which is why I take breaks from time to time.  One thing I've decided to do is to work from home in the morning, and have the remainder of the day to grade and design.  This is something that I know I have to tackle, and I'm determined to get it right.

Well, I have to start grading again.  I will continue to check in with you to remain in touch.

Getting Dressed While Black: Why Are Black Girls Judged Harshly on Their Attire?

Hello Everyone,

I've just read an article about how black girls are disciplined more harshly for their school uniforms than white girls.  According to theRoot.com, the National Women's Law Center recently looked at school dress codes in Washington, D.C., and found that black girls are punished over their school uniforms more than their Caucasian peers.  It even states that black girls were found to be in violation of dress code for infractions such as "unladylike," "inappropriate," and a "distraction to the boys."  The article also states that teachers have even sent young black girls home because their physique is curvier than most of their peers.  Some of these young girls have even shared that teachers have come up to them and discussed their undergarments, to the point of asking if they are wearing a bra!  It is to the point where these girls' education is hindered because of these violations and punishments.

Stories like this are not uncommon.  More and more stories like this are shared online, and privately.  Last year, in Miami, FL, a group of high school dancers (members of a well known dance company) performed at a high school football game.  The girls performed at various events before, but this particular performance went viral because not only were they judged for their dance routines, but also judged even harder for their dance attire.

 

Found on Youtube and Google

Found on Youtube and Google

Foudn on Youtube and Google

Foudn on Youtube and Google

I tried to find some clearer pictures, but these were the best that I could find.  According to the dance instructor, Traci Young-Byron, these costumes were actually inspired by Kitana from Mortal Kombat.

http://www.guiadosquadrinhos.com/personagem/kitana/5335

http://www.guiadosquadrinhos.com/personagem/kitana/5335

Although the costumes were very creative, parents (not the parents of the dancers) were outraged.  Here are some the actual comments (some comments came from blogs, while others were actually shared from people on social media) that were made about these girls:

  • "I'm old fashion, but these girls look too sexy!"
  • "These girls look like they're wearing lingerie!"
  • "So, we're raising our girls to be strippers?!"
  • "These girls look like little prostitutes!"
  • "If that was my child, I would take her off the field and beat her a$$!"
  • "These girls should not be wearing this at such a young age.  They're attracting the wrong attention."

What people failed to realize is that:

  1. These girls were honor students at their high schools and already had full scholarships in place for college.
  2. THEY WERE THE ONES SEXUALIZING THESE YOUNG GIRLS!
  3. There are plenty of Caucasian girls, majority who are much younger than these high school girls, who wear much less, but nothing is said about their attire.

When these girls' attire went viral, I loved their outfits.  I felt they were very creative, but I was very upset at the fact that these girls were being sexualized over their attire.  It is a dance costume.  It is not like these girls are wearing these costumes to school or church.  I was happy that the dance instructor made a point to say the reason for the backlash of the attire was because the girls were black, and also shared pictures of Caucasian dancers in attire more revealing than her dancers.  Another thing that made me angry was that everyone called them "little strippers," "strippers in training," or "young whores!" Why would anyone call a child that?  Is it because she has a shape? What makes me angry is that it is always our girls that are punished for their body shapes; it is always our girls who are always sexualized; and it is always our girls who have to tone down their attire because of what other people may think of them.  Stories like this makes me angry because it hits home for me.   This very same thing happened to me at a young age.

I was 12, and just starting seventh grade.  By this time, my bust had grown quite large, and on the first day of school, my teacher came to me and questioned me about a shirt I was wearing (the shirt was buttoned-down).  She asked if I had planned on wearing my shirt again, and when I told her yes with a confused look on my face, she said with an attitude, "Well sweetheart, if you plan on wearing that shirt again, you need to get it together!"  On the third day of school, I wore an outfit that I had purchased on my summer vacation in New Orleans.  My mom had checked the student handbook, and we both read where skirts could be worn up to three inches above the knee.  My mom measured the skirt, and it was EXACTLY three inches above the knee. 

I went to school, and nothing was said to me 1st through 5th period, but when I arrived to my 6th period class, I went to sharpen my pencil.  Well, when I sat down, the tardy bell rang.  My teacher (the same teacher that said something about my shirt) came to me and told me to stand up.  I asked why, and she gave no explanation.  I stood up, and she made me turn around so the whole class could see me, and then said, "Your skirt is too short.  Come follow me." When I told her that my mom and I read the handbook and it stated that the skirt could be worn up to three inches above the knee, and that my skirt was exactly three inches above my knee, she shockingly said "You and your mom ACTUALLY READ THE HANDBOOK?!"  I told her yes! I follow her to my other teacher's room, which was next door.  She says out loud, "Her skirt is too short!"  She then makes me stand in front of the other teacher's classroom, turn around so the class could see how short my skirt was from behind (all of the boys were whistling), and both teachers are in agreement that my skirt was too short.  She also tells the other teacher that my mom and I actually read the handbook and repeated what I said about the skirt.  They are amazed that my mom and I actually read the handbook for some strange reason.  At this point, I'm so humiliated that I start crying in front of the class.  The teacher then takes me back to our classroom and proceeds to give me a demerit.  She calls my mom to see if she could bring me some clothes, but my mom is unable to come to the phone.  Not only does she send me to the office, but I can't even eat lunch.

On the way to the office, we run into the principal.  I'm already crying from embarrassment, but she tries to make me turn around in front of him.  I told her that she has humiliated me enough, and she's not going to do it again.  The principal starts yelling at me that I knew my skirt was too short before I thought about wearing it to school.  When I explained the rule in the handbook about skirts, he says, "YOU READ THE HANDBOOK?!"  By this time, I'm looking at both of them crazy and I ask why is everyone shocked that I read the handbook.  When I go to the office, the assistant principal, who is a member of my church, sees me in the office.  He asks why am I in there.  I tell him what happened, and he is angry.  When I tell him that I didn't eat lunch, he is even more angry, and walks out of the office.  He then comes back with a sack lunch and hands it to me.  He tells me to stop crying, and that everything is going to be okay.  When I came home, I told my mom everything that happened.  She's angry that it happened, but she's even more angry when another teacher told her about it.  The next day, my Caucasian classmate came to class with shorts on that looked like underwear.  Before I knew it, the class was like, "Are you going to send that girl to the office for her shorts?  You sent Ashley to the office, and she had to stay in the office all day because of her skirt!  She wasn't even able to stay in class because you said that her skirt was too short!"  THE TEACHER ACTUALLY TRIED TO JUSTIFY THE FACT THAT THIS GIRL HAD ON SHORT SHORTS!  She said although her shorts are very short, my skirt showed more of my curves, while the other girl's shorts didn't show her curves (LIE).  Everyone in the class told the teacher that she was wrong for sending me to the office, but was allowing this girl to stay in the classroom.  The teacher says, "Fine!" Then, turns to the girl and says, "I'm sorry, but you're going to have to call your mom so you can change your shorts, or I'm going to have to send you to the office."  She lets the girl call her mother, and her mother comes to the school with long pants for her to wear.  My peers are still upset about this.  My mom talked to the teachers about their actions, and they apologized, but that did not stop them from picking on me for my attire.  It had gotten to the point where I started wearing clothes that were two to three sizes too large for me, and the conversations went from my clothes being too short to the teachers asking if my parents knew my clothing size!  They didn't want to own the fact that they were the reason why I became self-conscious of my body. 

Seventh and eighth grade were tough for me because of what I endured, so when I see stories like this, it makes my blood boil.  Why can't people see black girls as people and not the shape of their bodies?  We wear the same clothing as everyone else.  NO ONE should be punished for their physique!  I really hope this double standard with black girls bodies change very soon.  It is ridiculous that black girls are policed and punished because of their figures.

Until Next Time!

Just Drawing

Hello again!

So, I've really been getting back to my creative side, and utilizing my drawing time on the Tracing app.  I must say that it feels good drawing on here.  I've created two illustrations.

Lavender Hair 2018

Lavender Hair 2018

1930s Black Glamour 2018

1930s Black Glamour 2018

I love glamour portraits and vintage pictures, and I always try to create them.  My next step is to create original fashion illustrations on here.  Besides drawing, I'm also a virtual stylist.  Just started a couple of days ago.   I will be showing you more illustrations from the Tracing app.

Until Next Time!

New Things

Hello Everyone!

I just realized the last time I had written a blog on here was New Year's Eve 2017!  That's not good!  I need to get my life together and write on here more! 😂 Great things are happening for me.  Things are going in the right direction career wise.  I have been doing work for people, and I'm starting to do more "Black Power" illustrations.  I did this illustration for someone in February.

Unapologetically Black  2017  *the name of the background print is called "Karo."  I know I found it on Google, but I cannot remember the source where I found it.  If anyone knows, it will be greatly appreciated.

Unapologetically Black

2017

*the name of the background print is called "Karo."  I know I found it on Google, but I cannot remember the source where I found it.  If anyone knows, it will be greatly appreciated.

I created this piece for someone in Denver.  I need to do more empowering pieces like this, especially for fashion!  Also, my birthday will be Sunday, and I'm planning to do something that I feel will help me and my business!  I must say that I'm nervously excited by this because I know that I'm in control, but at the same time I still have that certainty of what the future will hold.  I'm still keeping my faith strong.  Again, if life doesn't have me too busy, I will continue to talk to you all and show you more works.

Until Next Time!

Happy New (Eve and Day)

Hello Everyone!

Happy New Year in advance.  Each new year, we are always talking about what resolution we're going to do.  Whether we stick to it or not, we are always doing something to change, for better or sometimes worse.  I don't know about anyone else, but lately I have been doing a lot of reflecting, and for the first time ever I see that I have really been focusing on other things besides myself.  I used to have so many dreams for myself, and now I haven't even thought of working on those things again.  Well, things are about to change.

Here is my first collection, which is from 2011

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I'm still very proud of this collection.  I worked tirelessly sewing, dying, draping, and creating different textures with fabrics to create this different and unique activewear collection.  Creating this collection was the happiest moment in my life.  I showed this collection when I had my first fashion show in Atlanta, during Fashion Week 2012 in NYC, in various other fashion shows throughout the Southeast, and in fashion shows in Dallas.  This one collection (10 looks to be exact) has taken me to a lot of places.  So, what happened?  Why wasn't I creating more collections?  Why was I solely showing this one collection?  Well, life happened.   Things started happening that was out of my control, and now it seems that I have forgotten about myself and my dreams, and instead started focusing on merely existing.

 

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It's nothing for me to do illustrations like the ones shown.  It is my passion to create fashion illustrations, and fashion collections like what's shown.  I need to get back to this.  During this holiday season, I rarely look at or read about Kwanzaa, but I have been reading about it a lot lately.  It really focuses on creativity and empowerment in oneself and in the community.  This is really speaking to me.

So, what's my "new year resolution?" To get back to the creative person I used to be.  To get back to creating something for myself.  To get back to promoting myself and getting my name out there.  To get back to "finding my niche" in my career.  The things I used to do creatively, I'm getting back to that.  I'm getting back to doing collections, fashion illustrations, gaining clientele, and being the creative me.  I will still continue to talk to you all and show what new things I have done.  I will also continue to promote myself on here.

Stay tuned!

Lacey from Florida

Hello,

I created another custom fashion illustration.  This time, it was for my sorority sister in Florida.  I used to create artwork for my sorority, and she has always liked my artwork, so when I posted my last illustration on social media, she responded saying that she wanted me to create one for her. 

So, after working on this illustration for a week, I have finally finished the final product.

Annette Wilson- Final Product.jpg

She has already received it, and she loves it!  I hope you all love it too.  If you would like for me to create a custom fashion illustration, please contact me.  Thank you, and have a wonderful night.

Colorful Queen

Hello Again,

I've been quite busy.  I'm working to market myself more.  It had been quite some time since I had really sketched something.  After doing a sketch for my sister, I'm quite happy about it.  I want to introduce to you my new fully rendered illustration, Colorful Queen.

Background Photo Source: https://i.pinimg.com/736x/ab/0f/43/ab0f437fb48c90e2adc3177ceaefab27--new-york-city-photography-times-square-new-york-city-photography-tumblr.jpg

Background Photo Source: https://i.pinimg.com/736x/ab/0f/43/ab0f437fb48c90e2adc3177ceaefab27--new-york-city-photography-times-square-new-york-city-photography-tumblr.jpg

This illustration was drawn by hand.  I found the fabric swatch online (I can't remember what site I saw it on), and added the colors through Illustrator and Photoshop.  Doing works like this makes me feel happy.  I'm devoting my time to doing one illustration a day.

Thank you, and have a good day.

Practicing with Tracing

Hello,

I'm taking a small break to play with Tracing, an app with Microsoft.  One of my students have this app on his Surface Pro, and I wanted to see if I could get it on my laptop.  I was happy to see that it had downloaded.  The great thing about Tracing is that you can upload your own drawings, and draw over them.  The bad thing is that when you save the file, it does not save as a JPEG or PDF, and when you save it, it does not save your drawing with the file.

I used it to sketch a jumpsuit.  This is how it turned out.

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I still have to play with it, but I think it came out nicely!  Until next time!

Saint Laurent S/S 18

I'm supposed to be in the bed sleep, but here I am, drooling over Saint Laurent's Spring/Summer 2018 collection from Paris Fashion Week (PFW). 

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Of the collections that I have viewed online, this is by far my favorite.  I've been trying to find the actual theme for this collection, but since I can't find it, I'm going to just guess at it.  This is a modernized "ode to the 80s" collection.   I'm an 80s baby, so large, puffy everything was normal during that time. 

Saint Laurent 9.jpg
Saint Laurent 7.jpg

I'm really not a huge fan of fringe, but the fringe in this collection is amazing!!! There's even fringe on the boots!

Saint Laurent 10.jpg
Saint Laurent 4.jpg
Saint Laurent 6.jpg

There was also plenty of stylish menswear looks included.  Some tailored, and some casual.  These two are my favorites.

Saint Laurent 5.jpg
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I know there are a lot of pictures, but this is a 91 look collection.  Every look was unique in its own way.  Even thought I love all of these looks, which are my favorite?

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Saint Laurent 11.jpg

If you want to view the pictures or watch the full collection, you can visit the British Vogue website listed above, or visit http://fashionweekonline.com/paris