It's been awhile since I've written and posted anything here. I am not neglecting you. I swear! It's just that I've been swamped with all the work it takes to become a fashion phenom. After 13 years of pursuing my dream, maybe I am finally reaching the pinnacle that has been heretofore unattainable: OVERNIGHT SUCCESS. If you have been following my odyssey, and I hope you have, then you know I was preparing my collection for New York Fashion Week. It was with steely determination, focus, and a lot of help from my angels who inhabit the universe that I was able to present a small installation of 10 looks on Tuesday, September 14 at The Alexandre Gertsman Contemporary Art Gallery. The story for this inaugural collection that has the curvy fashionista in mind was based on an American woman's journey around the globe with stops in exotic locales like Indonesia, Africa, and Latin America and how she collects pieces to accessorize her wardrobe. Drawing inspiration from the recent Julia Roberts movie EAT, PRAY, LOVE with an added shopping subtext, I used classic sportswear fabrics like indigo denim, crisp men's cotton shirting, and tan khaki for the dresses. My milliner, Otis Damo'n Holley, and I created linen fedora hats swirling with fabrics like taffeta, zebra print cotton, and organza that complimented some of the looks. Individualizing each chapeau, I dyed and accessorized them with feathers and painted wood brooches that I crafted from items I purchased at Michael's. It gave the men's style hats a more artisanal and feminine feel. I designed and sewed 6 handbag styles out of everything from denim to a vibrant cotton ikat to a tribal print linen I discovered at Mood Fabrics. And the shoes were graciously supplied by Sergio Zelcer with me "filling in the blanks" with more styles that I "tricked-out" myself by adding suede fringe. It was all time consuming to be sure, but I was so pleased with the head-to-toe looks, that I've been considering adding handbags to my repertoire. And each look conveyed exactly what I wanted - a world traveler who, with accessories piled on, was the picture of chic sophistication. The newest addition to my creative cluster is Steffany Allen who styled the ladies with fabulous jewelry. She's a keeper because each piece told a story of a far-flung destination. Victoria did a fine job on the dresses, although I had to keep the growing crowd at bay as the final pieces were late getting to the showspace. But all's well that ends well. And I think everybody who attended thought I really honored the ladies with tailored dresses that inspire curvy confidence. Next step: Convince retailers that my dresses are must-have items that their customer will be clamoring for. The merry-go-round never stops and if it did, I wouldn't want to get off for anything. I live for this stuff!