Tag Archives: fashion show

Faces of Royalty Annual Fashion Show

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“The Faces of Royalty is a benefit Designers and Fashion show to support our youth initiatives. It combines multi-levels of cultural creativity that represent our richness in the areas of the arts, spoken language, poetry, music and clothing designs.”


I’m such a sucker for fashion. From the music to the lights to the atmosphere. This particular show happened to have an amazing cause behind it. Brie Merritt, event planner & fashion blogger, partnered with an organization called Beyond Differences.  Beyond Differences is an organization in Greenville, SC that helps high schoolers transform their lives. Photo and video production was done by NELSONMERRITT PRODUCTIONS. If you’d like to check out their work, I’ll leave the link here!

Huge shout out to the host Breylan Jones; not just because he made me belch out an R. Kelly song haha. It was so exciting sitting across from fashion blogger, Janerio. Her outfit was gorgeous, and faux fur is always a plus 😉 Last but not least Tre Chapman of Sheen Magazine was in the building! I’ll post his outfit below. In case you didn’t know, he and Brie were the power couple of the evening <3 The poet was amazing, the clothes were amazing, the drinks were amazing, and the fact that it was all for a good cause puts the icing on the cake. PLUS THERE WAS AN AFTER PARTY.

I took a few photos of my favorite looks of the night. As always, I’ll save the best for last!

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This was one of my FAVORITE models of the night. Her sophisticated looks had everyone starstruck. The casual tie-dye top clashed with the heels in the best way possible.

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Brie Merritt

Best for last: Brie’s look! It’s the same one Ericka Mena (star from “Love and Hip Hop New York”) owns! You can pick it up atinterwinecollection.com, as well as her gold ornament holiday bag. The jumpsuit was $215 and the bag was $50. She ROCKED it. The diamond choker completely pieced the entire thing together. If you wanna check out her fashion blog I’ll leave the link here. She’s absolutely incredible & such kind person. I had BLAST covering this event & I hope to do it again soon!

Sheen Magazine’s Legendary Weekend

During April 29th through May 1st, Sheen Magazine had their Legendary Weekend Event “Celebrating A Decade of Beauty Cultivation.” First off, I’d like to thank Sheen for letting me cover the event while being so accommodating to my aunt Ivy & I. I’d also like to thank Uber for getting us through Atlanta safely! If you don’t know what Uber is: download their safe app. No matter where you are, you can get a ride completely cashless. In fact, Joe Jones is an Uber driver in LA! Sign up with my invite code {mikaylah263ue} to get your first ride completely free!

Kim Chapman and Sammy Haynes

Ivy & I arrived to the Atlanta Marriott Marquis during the Women’s Panel. The popular hotel was packed! We pulled up to valet. Since there were so many people, the valet wasn’t able to accommodate us so we had to find a parking garage near the hotel. I’d done some research the night before and as it turns out, Mockingjay Part 1 & 2 were filmed right in the middle of the Atlanta Marriott Marquis. Anyway, when we walked in the panel was being hosted by Kim Chapman. Mrs. Chapman is the sole publisher of Sheen Magazine. There were some truly inspiring panelists, my favorite being Mushiya. If you haven’t heard of her, I STRONGLY encourage you to look her up. I recorded her entire speech word for word. To paraphrase, she has a TV show called Cutting it in the Atl. She brought out how she started her salon “The Damn Salon” with a comb, a chair, and a goal. her goal was to make natural hair beautiful. As she cleverly put it, don’t waste your time having a dream when you should be having a GOAL. The fashion icon definitely made her mark. I promise you this, she left everyone in that room inspired.

After the women’s panel came the men’s panel. Between the two, this one had the most celebrities. I had the priveledge of sitting front row. “What a Man Wants” was hosted by Sammi Haynes the editor & chief of Sheen. The panelists consisted of Christian Keyes (Saints & Sinners, Beauty and the Beast, Madea Goes to Jail, Diary of a Mad Black Women, etc), T.W. Dawson (motivational speaker, author), Pastor Adrian Davis, Tre Chapman (Chapman Founder Chair as well as Mrs. Chapman’s son) and Andre Braxton (Braxton Family Values, author). When I saw the pictures of the panelists I did an instant double take. I KNEW TRE CHAPMAN. I work at Banana Republic where he and his gorgeous girlfriend are two of our favorite customers. I had planned to go up to him after his panel, but I was surprised to see him appear right beside me! “You work at Banana Republic right?” I couldn’t believe he’d never brought up that his mother owned a magazine, but I realized that I never brought up I was a blogger. I’m always nervous when covering events, but the fact that I knew a familiar face settled my stomach. After the men’s panel I got to meet the rest of the panelists. All the women seemed to make a beeline for Christian Hayes. The highlight of that panel was after my selfie with Mr. Braxton. He asked for one of my business cards. While my aunt & I mingled, I received a few business cards myself. The creator of Lyne Cosmetics from lynecosmetics.com was so intriguing. She makes her own cosmetics and hires her own models. Her products have made celebrity appearances on Nickelodeon, participated in Ryan Seacreast giveaways, and were featured in the Water Mercedes Benz Fashion Show. A portion of each purchase is donated to end violence against women. Then, the CEO of Wrighteous Entertainment offered me his card. He manages not only his daughter, but many young actors/singers in the Atlanta area. Last but not least, Nelson-Merritt Productions. They’re an incredible photography & videography business that I encourage everyone to look in to. Especially since it’s wedding/graduation season.

The Men’s Panel

We called an Uber & headed to Lenox Square since we had a few hours before the Black Tie Gala started. The shopping mall was packed, but we managed to find everything we needed. I picked up a few graduation gifts & Ivy threw herself into the clothes. As I walked into Urban Outfitters, I checked my phone to find multiple text messages from a friend in Atlanta. I had known Beyonce was in the area because she had a concert at the Philips Arena the next day. Thanks to her, I discovered that it was rumored Beyonce was in Lenox at that exact moment. So I did what any fan would do. I got on Twitter… & as it turned out, the term “Lenox” was trending #1 worldwide because of the superstar. I still don’t know for sure if Beyonce was there while I was, but the fact that we shared the same city that day made all the difference.

As we Ubered back to the hotel, our driver passed the hotel drop off spot twice. I was so frustrated because the Gala was supposed to be the main event. Thankfully when we got to the red carpet, none of the honorees had arrived yet. I quickly found a spot in the mob of press. I was probably the only one who wasn’t from the Atlanta area. As the honorees started arriving, the commotion started getting bigger. Security was perched at each door while pressed workers rushed to get everyone in their seats. The honorees & special guests were Kelly Price (six time Grammy nominated singer), Margaret Avery (American actress & singer), Judge Glenda Hatchett (featured on The Tyra Banks Show, The View, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, CNN, etc), Renee Lawless (Tyler Perry’s The Have and the Have Nots), Angela Robinson (Tyler Perry’s The Have and Have Nots, Law and Order: SVU), Cocoa Brown (Ted 2, The People v. O.J. Simpson, Breaking Bad, The Single Moms Club, ER, Austin & Ally, The Arsenio Hall Show, etc), Towanda Braxton (Braxton Family Values, The Wendy Williams Show, BET Awards 2001, etc), Joseline Hernandez (Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta, BET Awards 2015), Jasmine Burke (Saints & Sinners, Ride Along, TVD, Meet the Browns, etc), and many more. The neat thing is, a couple days before the event, Margaret Avery commented on my Instagram picture. We had a small conversation, so when she arrived at the end of the red carpet I was so pumped to tell her who I was. Unfortunately, her manager whisked her away.


Most if not all of the special guests were located in Atlanta, although Sheen Magazine is located in Fountain Inn. The entire Gala was amazing. Under the dim of the lights and the shimmer of the dresses, I felt like I was under the stars. I’ll leave Sheen’s website here. They have events like fashion shows so often & I definitely encourage you guys to check them out. Until next time Atlanta!

“Fashion fades, only style remains the same.” – Coco Chanel

 

Charleston Fashion Week: I sat across from Fern Mallis??

CHARLESTON FASHION WEEK WAS ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE. Huge thank you to the staff for providing our passes. On Saturday March 19th, I had the honor of covering this event with upcoming designer/close friend Makaila. You can check out her shop here and I’ll put her social media here. She’s also an upcoming photographer from Atlanta who kindly agreed to come along and photograph the event.

First of all, just being in Charleston was fascinating. Although it wasn’t my first trip, getting to explore on our own time was such a breathe of air. The palm trees gently brushed against a nearby Urban Outfitters, while the smell of food intoxicated the air. For those who don’t know, most of the movie The Notebook was actually filmed on King Street in Charleston. Plus, even though the fashion show was in Marion Square, we were walking distance from Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Passing the church where so many innocent people were killed was eery, but inspiring. Just another addition to a life changing night.

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The Youngest Models of the Night

 

On arrival of the event, we headed to the media section to pick up our press passes. I was literally shaking with excitement. Fern Mallis was the lead judge of the show, who traveled all the way from New York. As Creator of New York Fashion week, she leads fashion shows worldwide including Miami, Los Angeles, and Moscow. Fern was a host of 92Y Fashion Icon series with guest such as Tom Ford, Marc Jacobs, and Dian von Furstenberg. She appeared on Project Runway, America’s Next Top Model, She’s Got the Look, and The Fashion Show. I actually read an article before the show from September. Fern was offered a front row seat at Kanye’s Yeezy Season 2 collection but Kanye was a little upset that she didn’t show up. You can read the article here.

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Makaila (right) and I

The lavishly furnished tents reeked of preparation for what lie ahead. Security guards and policeman surrounded the tents. There wasn’t a model in sight, just eager guests waiting to see what the designers had in store. (You can watch my video of the BELK tent here.) I arrived to my seat early. Sparking VOSS waters comfortably sat on each chair. The seats on my row were all labeled media. I was seated on the second row mid stage.

During the show countdown, I noticed a lot of commotion on the other side of the runway. It turned out, all the designers and special guests were right across from me. Including Andrea Serrano. She arrived in a stunning red dress, gracefully greeting the guests around her. Andrea wasn’t only a weekly judge, she’s a popular fashion blogger in the Charleston area. Not only did she do the costume shopping for Army Wives, she also worked with national brands such as Refinery 29, Williams Sonoma, Macy’s, QVC, Maybelline, Sony Records, and more. You can check out her blog here.

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Fern Mallis (middle) acting as Lead Judge

I was fortunate enough to acquire press passes to the Emerging Designer Competition. (You can watch my videos of the other lines hereherehere, and here.) Everyone’s lines were so unique but the one that really stood out to me, and apparently the judges as well, was Destani Hoffman’s line. She expressed her emotions in her pieces which were dark, leaving everyone hopelessly mesmerized. As the winner, she received $10,000 as well as an internship. You can see the clip of her line I got here.

After the show we skipped the after party and headed back to the hotel. Some locals informed us that even at such a late hour, most of the restaurants on King Street were still open. So we headed into a taco shop. Thankfully they had a vegetarian menu. On our way back to our car, I noticed there was a women behind us trying to get through. I moved to the side and she noticed my swag bag from the fashion show. “Were you guys at the show?” she asked. We explained that we were press and she introduced herself as ONE OF THE JUDGES. There we were. Walking down King Street with Karen Lee Grybowski. She served as the director of scouting for Wilhelmina, Pauline, and Elite Model Management, as well as traveled the globe looking for new faces. In 2009 she started the Karen Lee Group, a scouting firm that places models with amor agencies around the world. (You can check out her website here.)

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Andrea Serrano (left) and Karen Lee Grybowski (right)

As we walked down the dimly lit street, I jokingly asked her if Makaila and I had any chances at becoming models. She stopped in her tracks and immediately studied us. Although Makaila didn’t reach the height limit, she said that I had an interesting look but I needed to get in shape. She proceeded to give me her phone number and encouraged me to shoot her an email. I was dumbfounded.

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The BELK Tent

As we made our way to the car, tacos in one hand and swag bags in the other, we both silently knew that what we experienced that night was so rare. Everyone on that runway was stunning and I’ll never forget how fortunate I was to be in attendance.

“Clothes mean nothing until someone lives in them.” -Marc Jacobs