Archive for November, 2010|Monthly archive page

The many faces of Nicki Minaj

In Fashion, Fashion Heat, Trend, Trend Report on November 24, 2010 at 6:47 pm

Call her Nicki, Onika, Roman, Harajuku Barbie – you name it, she is it. But regardless of her monikers,  Nicki Minaj – the new music sensation on the block –  is getting cheques, international acclaim, and a new makeover about every 10 seconds. As to whether the new look is better than the last, well, that’s questionable. But her asymmetrical bob (super long in the front with thick, blunt-cut bangs) is probably the most intriguing part of her trendsetting quest.

Nicki Minaj is New York Ghetto-glam – something to marvel over. She’s not your typical girl next door: No Jenny from the block here. And gone is the hypersexual image she once donned before becoming the almost household name she is now. She wears a lot of pink and makeup, and her ass(plants) pulls off body-con well. Indeed. GOD knows she’s got the body for it, but not only that, she’s not your typical pretty-girl-gone-clubbing, or is she rip-the-runway wannabe. She’s over-the-top. But at this point, her style isn’t sexy anymore than it is whimsical.

It’s hard to really say whether Minaj hits or misses the mark with her looks, because it seems she embraces the negative comment. If you don’t like what she wears, it’s a source of inspiration. She’s not finding her style – she’s a chameleon. She takes inspiration from many different sources and amalgamates them into what you see today. She doesn’t always make a lot of sense, and how she dresses is a strong reflection of that. I don’t think she’s fake; she’s more like an extension of herself. And for that, I’ll give her credit.

But she is a fashion plate; one of those artists that will look out-of-place past 40. Lady Gaga is another prime example. They’re great in their 20s, even 30s, but odd anytime after that. And as much as we’re in awe of her right now, it’s important to understand this. Sade has aged very gracefully because her style is timeless. So did Tina Turner. Grace Jones did it too, and even she treads on this ice with that one.

I’ll admit, I bit the Nicki Minaj bob. But I’ve been into tight-dresses way before she “started eatin’ bitches,” as she likes to say. On me, the bob looks a bit more accessible. And I don’t do thick bangs, or colours.  I am intrigued with bright pink, and I’d wear it as a super cut, super short dress, but I’d tone it down – big time – with something black, and über -elegant. Unlike Miss Minaj, I’m past 6Feet, thin – the quintessential Barbie. So everything she does has a different appeal on me.

In terms of her overall look, it’s highly cosmetic, but that’s nothing new. Look at her predecessors Lil’ Kim, Eve. Blonde, orange, green and dipped in an array of eye shadows and bright – preferably pink – lipstick.
Going green in American terms means chasing money. In Canada, it means $20 bills. I don’t think money is green around the rest of the world, though.
Pink – or red – on the other hand is a bit more cute, playful.

The only thing to be cautious of, though, is when an artist goes blonde. For the true blonde songstress, this is okay. But let’s look back to Shakira, Jennifer Lopez and the ubiquitous Beyoncé. Non-blonds that become bottle blonds to gain international appeal. Selling something? Perhaps selling out?

Nicki Minaj may be a woman of many hats (or wigs) but the blonde one could mean more changes to come to appeal to a bigger audience. Is that a good thing? We’ll have to wait and see.

Fashion Icon: Rihanna

In Fashion, Fashion Heat, star, Trend, Trend Report, why don't you on November 24, 2010 at 4:37 pm

There’s that girl, again. Rihanna. I was in awe with her dominatrix phase, but these days she seems in synch with where I am stylistically right now. Wanting to go back to her roots. As you can see, Rihanna’s playing with patterns and boisterous colours while adding a touch of street in the process. Marc Jacobs took it there for Spring – as did a lot of designers – Mossino included. But if you decided to go the tribal pattern route it can’t be strategic. It’s got to be grimy, or else what’s the point?

I need somewhere to sport some super short-shorts and combat boots. Red hair not included. I already did the big jewellery, but I don’t mind bringing it back – for the right purpose.

So, I’m pulling together a look that reminds me of this ferocious outfit Rihanna wore during her MTV “The Seven” visit. I like it.

Paul Smith Tailored Tux Jacket

Friend of Mine Black Silk Sonic Tank available at Bunnyhug

Tibi Cockatoo printed cotton shorts available at Net-A-Porter

Proenza Schouler -Suede Lace-Up Bootie available at La Garconne

Assorted skinny bangles by Alexis Bittar available at Charm & Chain

Faithful Leather Glove Clutch by Alexander McQueen. Available at Saks Fifth Avenue

Trend spotting: Wooded chains

In Accessory, Fashion, Fashion Heat, Good Look, Wish List on November 22, 2010 at 8:43 pm

This fashion post is a bit more gritty than usual. But that’s because it’s reflective of the place I’m in with fashion. When I lived in London, UK, I was inspired by the street side of fashion. I wore brighter colours, statement tees and sneakers, and lots of gold chains. These days, I’m not really into the chains as before, but I still, like Jean-Paul Gaultier, take inspiration from the street. I haven’t had a chance to view any runway shows in a while, but I’ll see if we’re in synch.

A few weeks ago I was store browsing for a winter jacket. I walked into one called Lavish & Squalor – a place I’ve never bought from, but am keen on. To my delight, I came across a really beautiful and snug-fitting winter jacket that was too good to be true. But I also came across an even more intriguing vision – the Sales Associate, Omari. Well, more like, I zoomed in on this absolutely fabulous beaded necklace he was wearing and the non-chalance in how he wore it. A couple weeks later I saw him again, hoody, jacket, combat boots and that marvelous necklace. Then, I met with a friend of mine – a guy, who also sported the chain with this reckless abandon. But his was embellished with a large cross. Thuggish, but oh so captivating! When I asked him about it, he simply said “This is the days of Tribe Called Quest.” And it got me thinking.

I remember in the early `90s when hip hop was bright. Florescent Malcolm X attire, statement accessories, oversized clothing. Fashion in the urban world was coming out of the mess that was stonewash jeans, bad haircuts and jheri curls (well, Ice Cube carried that into the `90s). But we were finding ways to incorporate our roots into our sense of individuality. And that necklace, during the times of the 5% nation, nuwabians and Zulu Nation as it was called, was a very bold and opposing statement to that of the bling.

I have to have this necklace. By the looks of it, I can make it myself.

Another note to self: I think Kanye West is my dream man.

Back with love

In blogger, Canadian, why don't you on November 22, 2010 at 8:01 pm

I haven’t forgotten you. I just had to prioritize. I was out doing what it was I thought I wanted to do. Giving a lot of me into something that inevitably couldn’t reciprocate. But I’ve been pressured by my beloved friends and fans alike (don’t ask me where the fans came from), and I’ve been getting questions on where to buy some of the items I’ve talked about. I promise you, I’ll come harder than even (eeeww, no pun intended).  And I won’t let any person (manager), place (circumstance), or thing (job) get in the way of this thing that’s all too real. I mean, as we all know, you are your own keeper, and what you OWN will remain even when that other shit is gone.

Admittedly, I’ve lost touch with fashion. Despite being in fashion for the last little while. I think that’s because when you’re in it from a certain perspective, you loose the passion. I haven’t lost it, by any means, but I do have to get back into the fire.
OK. So here we go.