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LBS Runway Report: Tadashi Shoji Fall 2013

New York Fashion Week is upon us again lovelies! Quick, huh? It seems like we were just recapping Spring/Summer collections last week. 

Anywhoo, pressure is always high on the first day of NYFW. The first designers set the bar for everyone that follows. Tadashi Shoji stepped up to the challenge and scorched it! Listen, Tadashi brought the heat – or rather the cold to this collection. The celeb fave channeled the elegance of Russian winter with killer gowns in heavier fabrics than we’re used to.

I’ve never read “Anna Karenina” and I haven’t watched the film. Historical period movies aren’t really my steelo. But after seeing pre-revolutionary Russia descend on Tadashi’s catwalk, I’m renting it from Redbox ASAP.

Three words: Tadashi killed it. His collection has a very wintery feel with the black, blood red and ivory palette and the use of heavy fabrics. If Dracula were real and he had a wife, she would be donning a Tadashi Shoji masterpiece. That’s how elegant and retro this collection is.

Octavia Spencer’s go-to designer used loose silhouettes and square shoulders to really capture the daintiness of women from the 1870s. There were gorge gowns flowing with feathers, sheer and lace, which is an odd combo. But the Japan-native nailed it.

I live for chic pink cape-style jacket with three-fourth sleeves. It screams Victorian-era class and sophistication. Tadashi Shoji’s collection gives us permission to be dainty and graceful, which is always a plus. The models minimal makeup and “just rolled-out-of-bed” ponytails were the perfect contrast to the high-end classiness of their gowns. I’m taking that messy-meets-chic cue into fall and winter.

So here’s what I know now: Simple makeup is in. Lace has survived another season. And I must rent Anna Karenina stat.

Did Tadashi Shoji nail this collection? 
– Evette Dionne
Photo Credit: The Associated Press

LBS Runway Report: BCBGMAXAZRIA Fall 2013

New York Fashion Week started off with a bang, the Theatre full to the brim with an audience eagerly anticipating the start of the BCBGMAXAZRIA show. The Turkish-inspired collection was full of textures, layering and leather.

I must say I was in awe of this collection as every single look screamed out to me; it was as if Max and Lubov Azria had designed this collection with me in mind. As a hat lover, I was enchanted by the cashmere beanies that adorned each look. 

The pimp-daddy furs that were ever present in this Fall 2013 collection made my toes curl. I fell in love with every single look – from the patchwork fur vests to the jackets and power woman separates, for once I’m excited for Fall!

The rich blues, neutrals like blacks and white, and burgundy mixed with contrasting textures created a luxurious feel.  Flowy skirts and dresses paired with furs for gypsy-inspired layering. Contrasting sleeved boyfriend coats, baseball jackets, laser-cut leathers, and super-sexy thigh-high cut-out leather boots abound. The beauty look was bone-straight hair and dewy satin-finish makeup. The jury is still out on the leather leg warmers…

The Fall 2013 embodies a woman-in-charge, grungy yet bohemian with a sporty essence. Sounds complicated but BCBGMAXAZRIA made it look effortless.     
Will you be emulating any of BCBG’s looks?

                                -Kaila Baptiste

                                                                                 Photo Credit: The Associated Press

My Instaweek: 9.17.12

New York Fashion Week has finally come to a close and as such, I spent this entire weekend doing absolutely nothing. And it felt great! I went for a hot stone massage, had brunch and slept. Yes, quite the uneventful weekend but here’s a snapshot of all I got into last week:

– Huge shoutout to the folks at Birchbox and the manicurist from Color Club for starting my week off right last Monday. LOVED my manicure and all the special treats I went home with from the Birchbox Sample Stop lounge

– Three shows I adored last week: Rachel Roy (which I gushed about here), Gerlan Jeans (Minnie Mouse theme? I’m all in), and Rachel Zoe (gotta love the Zoe)

– I had the outstanding pleasure of attending the NY screening dinner for Iyanla Vanzant’s new show on OWN called “Fix My Life”. Hostess Demetria Lucas of A Belle In Brooklyn interviewed Iyanla all about the premiere episode featuring Evelyn Lozada and it was a night I will never forget. I even got the opportunity to meet and chat with Iyanla – I LOVE her! If you’ haven’t already, lock the show times into your calendar. Iyanla “Fix My Life” airs on Saturdays at 10/9c.

How was your weekend? Fill me in!

Follow me on Instagram! Username: LoveBrownSugar

LBS Runway Report: DKNY Spring 2013

I’ll admit it: I haven’t anticipated a DKNY collection in ages. Their designs scream “prepubescent preteen with no fashion direction” and I matured out of the juniors department almost a decade ago. But I tackled this recap because nothing tests passion more than perseverance. That’s my positive message of the day. 
Moving on … if there’s something we can take from this collection in the distant spring and summer seasons, it’s the need to find our inner inhibitions and unleash them in our wardrobe. That seems to be Donna Karan’s goal. She’s reminding us that fashion is joyous and we should be entertained when we open our closets in the morning. 
DKNY aimed to redefine the traditional New York uniform for the street, work and sport, with a monochrome color scheme accented by yellows and silvers. The Spring 2013 collection is hip, fresh and perfect for the college student who wants to blend youth with professionalism. DKNY struck an excellent chord with the adorbs sneaker wedges gracing each model’s feet, the offbeat leather jackets and bathing suits worn as shirts. 
DKNY paired basics, like denim skirts, with versatile pieces that could easily transition from the office to a late night Thai dinner. There was mesh, nylon and fanny packs galore. Even camouflage made a guest appearance on the runway. This collection reminded me of how amazingly fun fashion can be when you stop following rules. 
A-listers present in the first row included Louise Roe (who was also at Herve Leger), Kelsey Chow and Lianne La Havas decked in chic onyx digs. I won’t be rushing to the racks for a DKNY blouse, but I’ve developed a fresh regard for the brand.

Has DKNY “wowed” you with this collection?

– Evette Dionne

LoveBrownSugar Chic: NYFW S/S 2013 Day 1

Sigh. This week has been so busy I haven’t even had a chance to take outfit photos. The horror! Here’s a quick glimpse of my outfit if choice for Day 1 of NYFW:

I rocked this outfit because A) It was functional (chunky wedges are NECESSARY during NYFW and especially during Fashion’s Night Out) and b) I don’t normally mix prints. So instead of playing it safe, I thought I would set the bar high for day one and try something new. At the prodding of my buddy Jessica of Glamazons Blog, I decided to pair polka dots, lace, leopard and quilted leather “at the same damn time.” C) I LOVE this backpack. I live in it. Shoutout to my school days!

Top: Forever 21 (only $20!) | Shorts: H&M (similar here) | Shoes: Forever 21 | Bag: Forever 21 | Necklace c/o Stella & Dot | Snake Cuff: H&M | Ring: Street Vendor

Thoughts? Would you try mixing prints?

Get The Look:

LoveBrownSugar Feature: ESSENCE October Issue

Happy Monday loves! I’m back after a quick posting hiatus (needed a break after the NYFW madness). I hope you all enjoyed your weekend. I want to give a great big hug and THANK YOU to all the lovely folks who have been tweeting me and posting to my Facebook wall about my big news! In case you haven’t seen it, here it is!

I had the honor of contributing a fashion piece to the October issue of Essence Magazine! (Yes! The Power Issue with Michelle Obama on the cover!) 
 This is such a huge accomplishment for me and I have to thank you all, my loyal followers (old & new) for your continued support. I’ve always dreamed that my face would grace the print pages of Essence and now they have! And close to Michelle Obama’s at that! *faints*

In my advertorial, I wrote about how to pull off fall’s trends in style if you’re full figured.

For the full spread, please go out and pick up a copy on newsstands now! I would so appreciate the support! And if you see me, feel free to give me a shout @LoveBrownSugar on Twitter!

Before I end this post, I must say that having attainable goals in mind and putting them down on paper is one of the best things you can do to be successful. I wrote a post about this (“My Resolution: Not To Have Any”) at the beginning of the year, and also created a vision board for my bedroom, and that was the best thing I could’ve ever done. I have a post brewing up about my process and what I’ve learned from all this so far. Coming soon!
What are some goals you have left for 2011?