Archive for December, 2010

Hottest NYE 2011 Parties in DC

2011 New Years Eve Hottest NYE 2011 Parties in DC

New Year’s Eve 2011 is only 2 days away and  many of you are waiting until the last minute to decide where you want to go. For some, it all depends on cost and what your friends want to do. Others just don’t know what parties to consider.

To make your job easier, I’ve created a list of a few of the hottest parities going on this Friday night at the not so “typical” party venues in DC.  If you haven’t figured out where you want to go, hopefully this list will help!!

“The Transition Begins” at MIO

The Transition Begins is hosted by The DDM Group, The Sejour Experience and Anwaa Kong from Elite DC Mag. All guests will enjoy a complimentary champagne toast at midnight.  VIP ticket holders will enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres and Ciroc open bar beginning at 8pm.  Tickets start at $30. PURCHASE TICKETS  (I’ll be attending this party on Friday)

“Date with Destiny” at Teatro

Dave & Ray Entertainment, The Standard Events and TeamBBC bring you a Black Tie Gala featuring VIP Open Bar in the Ciroc VIP Lounge. Open bar is from 8-10pm. Tickets start at $35. PURCHASE TICKETS

“The Resolution: No Strings Attached” at The Estate

J&K Productions, Talk of DC, Dani D, A.C.T. Productions & Geovizion are all coming together to bring you THE RESOLUTION || No Strings Attached. Away from the clubs and lounges, this group is taking their talents to the Navy Museum.  $50 tickets are available. PURCHASE TICKETS

“The Pavilion” at Old Post Office Pavilion

Hypnotik Entertainment brings you an event at an above ordinary location! General Admission is $75 and includes premium open bar ALL NIGHT.  Couples admission is $140.  PURCHASE TICKETS

“The Countdown” at Ozios

Enjoy 4 floors, 3 VIP rooms, 2 Amazing DJs and 1 Countdown. I attended Ozios last year and had a great time.  If you’re looking for a VIP package, this venue offers one of the more reasonable table packages. PURCHASE TICKETS

For the slightly older crowd:

New Year’s Eve Gala at L’Enfant Plaza Hotel

BK Entertainment, Inner Caucus and WHUR 96.3 host this extravagant party featuring 5 themed rooms (Live Jazz/Neo Soul, 70s & 80s, R&B/Hip Hop, Reggae, Salsa/Meringue).  Guests will enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres featuring Asian, Southern & American Cuisines, split bottle of champagne and party favors. PURCHASE TICKETS

I know many of you plan on partying like it’s 1999 this Friday; please take advantage of SoberRide. The service provides a FREE taxi ride home (up to $30) running from 10pm to 6am. 

Whatever you decide to do this New Year’s Eve, I hope you all have a safe and wonderful time.  I’ll see you in 2011.  HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

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Diva Spotlight: The Women of Haiti

women of haiti1 Diva Spotlight: The Women of Haiti

Marie Lucie Mentor

January will mark the one year anniversary of the devastating earthquake that shattered Haiti.  Since then, the road to recovery has been extremely slow.   Thousands of people are still living in tent cities where violence and rape against women is unfortunately very common.

I was moved by the January 2011 ESSENCE article titled “Fighting Back” that discussed the women of the camps and how they are helping each other fight back against violence and rape; honestly it made me uncomfortable to read these women’s stories. It was also unsettling to know that many times, courts would negotiate financial agreements between rapist and the victim’s family instead of the criminal going to jail.

One woman who is making a difference in the lives of these women is Marie Lucie Mentor. She is the founder of KALMI (creole acronym for Haitian Committee for a Better Life) and provides financial, medical and other assistance to other 2,000 people infected with HIV.  While she does the best she can to support women and children of Haiti, her resources are incredibly limited.

The women of Haiti are the focus of this month’s Diva Spotlight because they are survivors. They have not allowed the horror they experience to define them and stop them from living their lives.  Marie Lucie Mentor and other women organizations are vocal and present in their community, changing the way women cope with the aftermath of violence.

Many people made donations to Haiti after the earthquake, but those who need it the most have yet to receive the resources.  ESSENCE magazine list three ways YOU can help numerous women like Marie Lucie Mentor who are doing the best they can to help the women of Haiti:

1. FONKOZE USA:  501(c)3 organization offering microloans and educational services to rural Haitian women. Go to DONATE NOW at fonkoze.org and in the restriction box type “Marie Lucie Mentor’s program, KALMI” to send make a donation.

2. MADRE: An organization focusing on saving women in Haiti by providing humanitarian aid, whistles and flashlights through its Helping Hands program and other resources to support those who are victims of violence.  Log on to madre.org to donate.

 3. PARTNERS IN HEALTH:  Provides medical supplies required for cholera, HIV/AIDS, and other illnesses to those in need on a consistent basis. Visit pih.org to donate.

I know many of you made a donation last January to help the country, but please think about helping these women. Through the organizations listed above, your generous donations will reach the hands of those who are in desperate need of help while the country continues to wait for recovery efforts to begin.

The January 2011 issue of ESSENCE is on stands today.

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Answer or Ignore: The Art of Screening Calls

art of ignoring calls Answer or Ignore: The Art of Screening CallsOne of my friends posted this article on my Facebook page. I thought it was hilarious, but so on point!  Austin Weatherington from The Smugger breaks down the art of screening calls. Enjoy!

From The Smugger –

What is the one thing that you do to others that you can’t stand being done to you? I realize that for some this is a loaded question, however, I don’t have to look any further than my phone to locate my pet- peeve contradiction. In fact my issue sticks out like the hind parts of Serena Williams (fellas enjoy that NFW).

I hate it when people screen my calls. I happen to think that I’m a pretty interesting guy with a lot of cool things to say (I’m a tad egotistical), and can’t seem to think of any reason why people I call wouldn’t be eager to speak to me when I buzz them. In fact, I’ll take it a step further and say that when I’m screened, I internalize it and get pissy. So much so that continual screening may be grounds to end the friendship/associateship.

I say all that to say…. I screen more calls than a little bit. I mean I set more screens than Karl Malone. I get it in with the ignore button. Call too early? Ignore. Call too late? Screen. Call on time? Bust. It’s not that people don’t be talking bout nothing—but people don’t be talking bout nothing.

That said, I am here to talk about change. They say admittance is the first step to recovery and in the New Year I am turning a new leaf and attempting to be more considerate, consistent, and courteous with the ones who call me.

I’ve picked up a few things over the years and would like to share them with you; the screener, or you, the screenee.

The Ignore Game
Have you ever found yourself in a back and forth battle of ” You didn’t pick up mine so I be damned if I pick up yours?”. Although it may sound trivial there is a much deeper meaning. You see, if you pick up the phone after somebody has already ignored you, you’re giving them a pass to ignore your calls for life, with the notion that when they’re ready they will talk to you. My answer to that is a 2010 version of Newton’s third law: To every action there is an unequal and opposite reaction. I see your ignore button and raise you three–shit you’ll be lucky if you get a hold of me for the rest of the week.

Nobody Is That Busy
My momma told me as a young boy that people make time for what they wanna make time for. I believe in that whole-heartedly. When somebody calls you back anymore than a day later, and they give you the tired excuse ” I was busy” or “I didn’t see it” they’re flat-out lying. No matter what the excuse, they can get back to you in some form of communication if they choose to. Case in point. Barack Obama is quite possibly the busiest man on earth. Although he comes off as a bit whipped, I have a sneaky suspicion that when Michelle calls… Homie picks up the phone, or gets back to her in some way. Because he understands that she ain’t trying to hear no bullshit. So if somebody feeds you that “busy” stuff politely tell them to kick rocks with no shoes.

Screening Etiquette
I learn this joint the hard way. If you want the intentional screen to come off as authentic do not push the ignore button. When you push “ignore” the person knows they are getting the button. So gracefully let it ring. To ease the tension, once the call is ignored hit them with a quick witted: “in a meeting”, “in the movies” or my personal favorite ” too loud in here, what’s up?” text or bbm.

Lil Wayne–Haha and my girl acting like a brat
So when she call I don’t answer, I just write her back

Caller Categories
First and foremost you must have a category for each person in your head ranging from “must pick up” to “they can wait”. If your having a hard time differentiating the two here’s some help:

MUST PICK UP
Grandparents
Immediate family
Boss
Friends who you don’t hear from often
Doctor’s Office (Self Explanatory)
Wife

THEY CAN WAIT
Everybody else

Now before you jump down my throat (pause), if you’re anything like me you should know your caller clientele. You know there needs and wants before you even have the conversation. Allowing you to cut through frivolous rhetoric.

(Continue Reading at The Smugger…)

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Diva Must Haves: Sam Edelman Shoes

As much as I love them, I hate searching for boots. I have really narrow feet and legs, so it’s a struggle to find boots that fit my leg without all of the extra room.

I don’t even remember where I began online, but I was in need of some over-the-knee boots for the Fall/Winter season.  The plan was to purchase heeled boots, but I came across some FABULOUS Sam Edelman flat over-the-knee boots and I’ve been in love with the designer shoes ever since!  The craftsmanship of the shoes if flawless!

Due to the fabulousness of my boots, Sam Edelman is now one of my favorite designer shoes.  You can definitely expect to see me rocking some more Sam Edelman shoes in the near future. icon smile Diva Must Haves: Sam Edelman Shoes

Check out some of my favorites from the Fall 2010 Collection below!

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Zoyla

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Belmont

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Pierce

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Torin

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Vancouver

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Vesey

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Yalene

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Me rocking my Pierce boots at work!

To purchase your own pair of fabulous Sam Edelman shoes, check out Amazon, Endless, Shoes.com, Nordstrom

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Rihanna’s New Perfume Launches February 2011

Rihanna Perfume Packaging Rihannas New Perfume Launches February 2011

While catching up on my Google Reader, I came across news about Rihanna’s new perfume. It looks like she is following in the footsteps of other celebrities (Beyonce and Mariah Carey) by launching her own perfume, Reb’l Fleur. The official launch is in February 2011, but the perfume is currently available at Macy’s.  The bottle is reminiscent of an upside down high heel and the scent is influenced by Rihanna’s childhood in Barbados featuring notes of tuberose, violet, hibiscus, and coconut water. I’m not surprised she has a new perfume coming out in a couple months; she’s an international entertainer so it was only a matter of time before she began to expand her brand.

I currently own Beyonce’s Heat and Mariah Carey’s first fragrance and I absolutely love them! I’m anxious to get my hands on Rihanna’s new fragrance. Will you try it when it comes out in February? Looks like this may be a great Valentine’s Day gift for the ladies.

rihanna perfume rebl fleur 500x356 Rihannas New Perfume Launches February 2011

 

Source: Bella Suga, The Style and Beauty Doctor

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Event Recap: Monarch Magazine Styling Event at J. Crew

Monarch Event 4 Event Recap: Monarch Magazine Styling Event at J. Crew

Fashion Guru Paul Wharton

I had the pleasure of attending the Monarch Magazine shopping and styling event at J. Crew last week in Georgetown. Hosted by fashion guru Paul Wharton, the event brought together some fabulous young professionals in DC for a chance to receive free branding and styling advice, enjoy hors d’ oeuvres and receive 25% off their J. Crew purchase.

Author and Branding Authority Melissa Dawn Johnson spoke to the ladies and style consultant Grant Harris, of Image Granted, talked to the fellas, about how to discover their personal style.   They also demonstrated how one can easily transition their look from corporate to evening.

The event not only served as a great styling lesson, but it provided a setting for networking.  I had the chance to personally meet manicurist Titilayo Bankole, Paul Wharton, Melissa Dawn Johnson, a few fashion stylists from New York and Monarch Magazine Social Media Director Tomara Watkins. I definitely look forward to attending the next event in the spring.

Monarch Event 1 Event Recap: Monarch Magazine Styling Event at J. Crew

 

Monarch Event 2 Event Recap: Monarch Magazine Styling Event at J. Crew

Author & Branding Authority Melissa Dawn Johnson

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Monarch Magazine is dedicated to reflecting affluent African American professionals and their lifestyles.  The magazine is designed to embody the thoughts, vision and intellect of today’s black urban professional.

You can pick up the latest copy of Monarch Magazine today!

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2010 Holiday Party Outfit Ideas

We’re in the middle of the holiday season which means family time, gifts and parties, parties and more parties!!  With so many parties going on, one may have some trouble trying to figure out what to wear (I know I do!).

Last year I shared with you (ladies) 5 holiday essentials that will help you make it through the holiday party season. Along with those essentials, below are a few outfit ideas (other than cocktail dresses) that will help you look fabulous this holiday season!

BQcDAAAAAwoDanBnAAAABC5vdXQKFmFPNnhvSm9NNEJHdUJLemhONHRmdUEAAAACaWQKAWUAAAAEc2l6ZQ 2010 Holiday Party Outfit Ideas

This is a great outfit if you’re attending an after work happy hour or office party. The dress is classic and the ruffles add a little flair without being too over the top.  The metallic jacket will have you turning heads when you enter a room. After removing the jacket, the classic dress silhouette with the BAD YSL shoes will speak volumes!

BQcDAAAAAwoDanBnAAAABC5vdXQKFl9uMGVKcUFNNEJHMHBnR2VKdzRDSVEAAAACaWQKAWUAAAAEc2l6ZQ 2010 Holiday Party Outfit Ideas
Sequins are always in during the holidays, but shorts are a new trend this season. Sequin shorts or skirts look great with a plain tee or a collar shirt and a boyfriend jacket. During the winter months, PLEASE wear these shorts with tights; bare legs in 30 degree weather is not cute. I repeat, bare legs in 30 degree weather is not cute!!!
BQcDAAAAAwoDanBnAAAABC5vdXQKFjhHV1pvcWNNNEJHbzEzWDNONHRmdUEAAAACaWQKAWUAAAAEc2l6ZQ 2010 Holiday Party Outfit Ideas
Finally, if you’re attending casual parties and a dress or skirt is not required, pull out your favorite pair of skinny jeans and dress them up with a sequin jacket.  Let the jacket speak for itself, so your top should be simple.  Step it up a notch by pairing with colorful accessories.
If you’re interested in learning more about where you can purchase any of the items shown above, please contact me at adivastatofmind {at} gmail.com
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William Rast Collaborates With Target

william rast target 01 William Rast Collaborates With Target

Designer collaborations are becoming very popular these days. One of the most memorable collaborations this year was the Lanvin for H&M Collection. That collection boosted H&M sales by 8%!!
 
With that type of success, I can understand why mainstream retailers and designers are joining forces. The next duo to release a collection is William Rast and Target. That’s right, William Rast, the clothing line started by Justin Target Timberlake and Trace Ayala in 2005, is teaming up with Target for an exclusive collection that will debut in Target stores December 19th through January 22, 2011; just in time for the holidays. Prices range from $17 to $200.
 
The collection is inspired by classic American style, featuring jeans, tees, button ups and a gorgeous camel leather jacket I think needs to be added to my wardrobe; I love the color!! 

Below are pictures from the lookbook; you can expect to see these items in stores this weekend!   
 

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Will you be shopping at Target to get your hands on the new William Rast Collection? After all, I’m sure many of you will have Target gift cards you’ll need to use after December 25th!

Pictures courtesy of Total Life Prosperity and The Budget Babe

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New To You: A Chic Twist To Consignment Shops

logo med border New To You: A Chic Twist To Consignment ShopsWhen most people think of a consignment shop, they think of a thrift store; most thrift stores don’t specialize in selling vintage and designer labels. 
 
New To You: The Chic Boutique is not your typical consignment shop.  The boutique is very particular about the pieces they will accept. Instead of brands like GAP and Old Navy, New To You sells high end labels like Roberto Cavalli, Prada and Tahari along with vintage pieces.
 
The shop is located in Falls Church, just a few miles from Tysons Galleria.  Although it’s small, it’s filled with designer clothes, shoes, jewelry, scarves and handbags. I’ve seen prices range from $20 to $850; reasonable prices for high end designer labels.
 
I stopped by the store a few weeks ago and I’ve featured a few of my favorite pieces below.  I’m in LOVE with the Prada bag. Sigh….

This Prada bag is gorgeous!! An ideal everyday bag that can be worn all year round.

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Prada Bag $820

You’ll definitely be the center of attention in this dress. It’s fabulous! The length of the dress makes it work appropriate if you work in a more casual environment; don’t be afraid to wear prints to work!  This is a great option for happy hour events too.
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Black & Gold Paisley Roberto Cavalli Dress $117.50

This scarf will look great over an all black ensemble (for example a black turtleneck dress or black wide leg pants and a black fitted top). It can also be worn with other color tops and dresses including teal, fuchsia, grey and purple.
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Moschino Black & White Scarf $48.50

I love this pearl bracelet. It’s a great option for any occasion.
bracelet New To You: A Chic Twist To Consignment Shops

Bracelet $23.50

If you’re one who enjoys shopping at vintage stores and boutiques, definitely take some time and visit the ladies at New To You.I guarantee you’ll find at least one piece, whether it’s a handbag, scarf, or dress, you’ll love!

To learn more about New To You: The Chic Boutique visit www.newtoyou.net. You can follow the boutique’s blog at http://www.newtoyou-thechicboutique.blogspot.com/ and follow the boutique on twitter @NewToYouInc

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Do Artists Need To Use Sex To Sell Records?

There was a lot of talk a few weeks ago regarding the new music videos released by Raheem DeVaughn and Keri Hilson.  They are featured below for you to check out if you haven’t seen them.  (Warning, you may not want to watch on your work computer).

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=njkvkD-L6WA

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUAl1H9_-G0

These artists didn’t leave much to the imagination which caused the blogosphere to go crazy; I’m assuming this is the reaction they were hoping for since one has a mixtape and the other has an album coming out soon.  I mean, all publicity is good publicity right?

Has music these days become overly sexualized? Are artist that desperate to sell records that they’ll lose themselves artistically to do so? I’m not saying that I know who Raheem DeVaughn and Keri Hilson are artistically, but “She Single” is definitely not the Raheem DeVaughn the world became accustomed to when he first appeared on the music scene.  He was introduced as the R&B singer that could use words to have your imagination run wild; visual representation wasn’t really necessary. He reminded us of the 90s R&B music that we are oh so definitely missing these days.  This latest attempt to catch our attention was a little much. It wasn’t a trashy video, but I’m not interested in seeing Raheem DeVaughn literally have sex with a chick in a video.  I’m just sayin….

And then there’s Keri Hilson.  I’m not sure she knows her identity as a musical artist.  I know I know, she should be able to express herself anyway she wants, but has she not taken any notes from other artist? Artists who have changed their image over time slowly transitioned. For example, Rihanna was the long haired girl from Barbados singing “If It’s Lovin That You Want” and “S.O.S.”  She slowly transitioned to a “bad girl;” her hair cut kept getting shorter and shorter and over time the music became edgier and edgier.  She didn’t just throw her rockstyle lifestyle at us. The transition allowed fans to transition with her so her new style and music became acceptable.

I also think Keri Hilson’s timing was just WRONG! How do you go from Black Girls Rock and “Pretty Girls Rock” to talking about your goodies will keep your man at home?! *Side eye* There’s a way to be sexual and confident without literally throwing your goodies at the screen (although, I know the fellas watching the video didn’t’ mind).

Are artist afraid these days that their natural talent will keep them from selling records or is their natural talent not good enough to attract and keep our attention?  Has the need to sell sex a reflection of our society?  For me personally, a sex music video is not going to make me want to go out and purchase an album.  If the music is horrible, there’s nothing the artist can do to would convince me to purchase their music!

I’m going to need artist like Avant, Tamia, Brian McKnight, Babyface (90s R&B artists) to come out of retirement so we can go back to some real R&B music!  These artists didn’t need to sell sex in videos to have people pay attention to their music.

pixel Do Artists Need To Use Sex To Sell Records?
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