Friday, July 23, 2010

The Roof Is On Fire!

It's been hot as hell!  At least that's what some have reported back to me after their visit to the fiery depths.  But the heat cannot impede my progress with the collection.  I've gotten a ton of advance praise for my aesthetic from my fellow bloggers who represent the curvy customer.  And I am so pleased.  I will admit that it feels a little strange to go from a fashion community that virtually ignores me to a tight-knit club who reveres my work.  But I ain't complaining.  I really appreciate it, ladies!  Thank you.  One issue that has remained constant, however, is how my business partners and I are always on the hunt for valid and creative ways to finance our endeavor.  It is quite a challenge.  And I know I am only speaking to the choir because all of us are faced with a similar conundrum.  This time, though, the universe has spoken and there is a demand for what I do.  Unlike any other time, women are more interested in learning how they can find the dresses for purchase instead of just congratulating me saying, "That's pretty."  A few weeks ago, I had a phone conversation with my milliner friend, OH, and my sister-in-law who is such a gifted photographer.  I was telling them that I think the secret to financial success is to stop obsessing about money or in our cases the lack of it.  We should just release it as an issue and not worry about it.  If we can focus on the joy that our craft brings and just continue to look for new ways to express our creativity, then I think the dollars will come.  Listen, I heard it on Oprah and she's got a little stash, so it must be the gospel.  So I am taking her advice.  And it's not just her.  It's a lesson that is hard learned, so it is a message that I read or hear from other successful people.  And I just need to live it.  I was born a winner.  I feel it in my soul.  And I know that all of you are winners, too.  Now that's what's up!  Check out some of the notices that we've gotten from some of my blogging divas by clicking on the following links:  The Curvy Fashionista, The Fat Apple, Madison Plus, The Fat Shopaholic, and The Bohemian Diva

Peace & Fashion!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Taking A Minute For Me

After this weekend, it's time for me to take a moment to recharge.  So I am hightailin' it to Maryland for a few days to hang with my boyfriend's daughter and her family.  But before I go, I am gonna fill you in on all the happenings in my world.  As you know, last week my Communications Director released a teaser for our upcoming September launch titled "Have You Heard About Wilbur?".  Using Diana Ross's classic I'm Coming Out as background music, we received some positive responses from many of you.  But we need all of you to get as excited as we are about this new venture and just start "biggin' us up", as they say in the 'hood, to all your friends.  I'm sure we each have a friend who happens to be a full-figured woman who we know can certainly benefit from wearing one of my fab dresses.  So tell her about me.

On Friday, Ashanti and I attended the opening night Meet & Greet of the Young, Fat, & Fabulous Bloggers Conference at Re/Dress boutique in Brooklyn where we met the faces behind some of the most influential blogs having to do with body confidence and fashion & beauty for the curvy fashionista. Alli McG, the supermodel, accompanied us wearing the premier look from the upcoming spring 2011 collection.  We were received with warmth and adulation by all the attendees who remarked that the dress I had conceived was awesome.   If we can continue this kind of momentum with retailers, then, who knows, I may be able to finally quit my job at the plantation.

On Saturday, I started my day as a guest on a radio program on blogtalkradio.com.  My friend, Marcia, made an introduction to Muriella whose show Muriella's Corner is about changing the narrative.  And she thought it was important to have me as a guest since my mission is to remove the stigma of ugly plus size clothing by creating wearable, classic, and modern dresses for the full-figured woman.  If you missed it, you can still catch it if you click on Changing the Narrartive.  Immediately following the broadcast, my team began to arrive for a photo shoot for the follow-up to the "Have You Heard About Wilbur?" video teaser with my sister-in-law driving up from Maryland to do the behind-the-camera honors. It was an awesome experience with all the ladies involved looking magazine cover ready.  My new make-up artist, Lakia McCoy, is beyond talented and really worked the ladies faces as if she was completing works of art. And she was.  Once the images have been selected they will be released for all of you to become witnesses to the magic of fashion.

On Sunday, Ashanti, Alli McG, and I were once again in the throes of another fashion happening as our friend Dhylles launched her new venture called Katwalk Katerers.  At a chic little spot down on the lower east side in Manhattan, we watched as she presented an informal runway presentation (with Alli McG donning my dress for the 3rd day in a row) and announced that she would be more democratic with her approach to fashion by including models no matter what their size or height in her cavalcade of  upcoming events.  I think this will be empowering for all those men and women who feel that they've been ignored by mainstream agencies.  I wish her much success and prosperity.

So now you know why my tank is on E.  And I am happy to get away.  I'll be back in a few days, but until then let's keep on movin' up to a place of fulfillment and enlightenment.

Peace & Fashion!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Have You Heard...?

We are revving up for the launch of The Superwoman in September.  We LOVE it and you should too!  Check out the teaser below...

Peace & Fashion!

video

Monday, July 5, 2010

Sex in New Jersey?


Before Sunday when the heatwave came crashing into the tri-state area like an uninvited barbecue guest, I visited the quaint resort town of Asbury Park, NJ for the opening of the eclectic art exhibit "Made Out Of Beautiful" at the Parlor Gallery.  I'd never been to the Jersey Shore despite the current rage in reality tv land and so my boyfriend and I piled into my friend Gillian's SUV along with my very dear model friend, Marcia and hit the GW Bridge.  I didn't really care if I saw any of those reality celebrities like The Situation or Snooki, I was going for purely personal reasons.  You see, my photographer friend Miles Ladin whom I've known for more years than I care to count was showing a batch of his vintage black & white prints at the gallery.  Miles has worked for The New York Times and turned his lens on everyone from Rihanna to Steven Spielberg.  He has also turned his lens on some of my career's biggest moments.  When I staged the unsanctioned renegade sidewalk fashion show using masks of the characters from Sex and the City during New York Fashion Week almost a decade ago, Miles was there documenting my watershed moment.  One of the photos that was on display was the image from that hot day in September 2000 that was published in Women's Wear Daily.  It was also the image used to promote the exhibit and I felt extremely honored.  Marcia is featured prominently in the foreground and was equally excited to join me on my trip down memory lane.  Sometimes I forget how important some of these moments have been to me and how they've validated my decision to pursue a career in fashion design.  And it was just a pleasant experience to recall how I skyrocketed from obscurity to become an ALMOST celebrity myself for just a little while.  Thank you Miles for showing the fashion world that a black man from humble beginnings has a voice.

Peace & Fashion!