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Friday, June 30, 2017

Tuesday Was National Sunglasses Day!

Tuesday was National Sunglasses Day! A day to raise awareness about the dangers associated with UV rays, and to emphasize the importance of protecting your eyes. And what better and more fashionable way to protect your eyes than to throw on a stylish pair of shades?

I don't typically wear shades because all of my prescription glasses have transition lenses, which darken when I get out in the sun. However, I did recently cop of pair of bold and bodacious Prada shades from my friends at Omega Optical.

And to sweeten the deal, I got the opportunity to sport my shades on Fox 29 Philly's morning show for their segment on National Sunglasses Day, featuring Steve and Tracy Davis from Omega Optical. To check out the segment, click here.

Here are a couple of shots of me during the segment.

Yes, I was hamming it up for the camera...

Monday, June 26, 2017

I've Been Shepped!

I’ve been working in Center City Philadelphia for over a decade, and I’m a fashion-lover...but I never stepped into Joan Shepp until last week. For those of you who know about Joan Shepp, I’m sure you just let out an audible gasp. For years, people have talked to me about the legendary Joan Shepp and urged me to pay a visit. A colleague even noted that you shouldn’t even step into the store if your fashion game wasn’t on point. I steered clear! Not that my fashion game isn't up to par, but I knew there were some hidden dangers associated with me entering "The World of Shepp." 

Growing up in Sheepshead Brooklyn, I lived close to a number of European boutiques and shoe stores. In most cases, the price points were waaaaaaay out of reach for a girl who was working in fast food restaurants and supermarkets. Despite that, I would somehow wind up in the stores periodically, just to look around, and every once in a while, splurge on the unique and exquisite merchandise. I remember how I felt each and every time I shopped in one those stores. Thoughts like: “I shouldn’t be in here” and “I can’t afford this stuff!” would enter my mind, but my love of style and fashion would make me suppress my doubts and fears.

Fast forward to 2017. I started following Joan Shepp on Instagram several months ago, and I would marvel at the works of art that were showcased in their feed. I heard about their Summer Solstice Garden Party on June 21st, and I said to myself – “Lauren, you need to just man up and go see what Joan Shepp is all about.” So I did.

As June 21st approached, my colleague’s words haunted me, and I knew that I would have to "get cute" when I showed up. I gave some thought to my outfit, but there has been so much going on lately that I never came up with a final game plan. Initially, I was going to wear my “work outfit” during the day, and change into something avant-garde and fabulous for the Joan Shepp event, but I never got my act together. On the “morning of” I said to myself, "I’m just going to throw on a little black dress. You can’t go wrong with that." My black Calvin Klein number with the asymmetrical ruching is a great “go-to” piece and fits me well. I topped it off with simple jewelry and a pair of statement pumps.

The LBD to the rescue...

Sunday, June 25, 2017

I Got A Chance to Talk Style and Trends on Live TV!

Last Tuesday, I had the opportunity to appear on "Your Best You," the weekly live streaming show of the amazing Barbara Gee. Barbara and I worked together, and she's a mentor and a friend. When it was time for Barb to embark on the next chapter of her journey, she followed her passion and started an image consulting and consignment business, called PositiveLee For You.

Barbara's most recent endeavor, "Your Best You," is a live streaming show that airs every Tuesday at 11:00 a.m. ET on Barbara and her guests discuss a range of topics to provide you with the tools and information you need to be your best you. I was honored to be invited to speak about style and trends.

It was an amazing experience. The show is a half-hour long and it flew by, especially since I was just sitting there chatting with a friend. If you missed the broadcast, you can check it out here.

The phenomenal Barbara Gee!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Athleisure - The Fearless Fashionista Way

There is a difference between fashion and style. Fashion is ever-changing and can be purchased at any retailer. Style is like a fingerprint. It's something that is unique and personal - and no two interpretations are alike. Over time, my style and tastes have evolved, but one thing has remained pretty consistent - I tend to gravitate towards glamour, elegance, and the concept of being "dressed up."

There was a period of time when my friends questioned whether or not I even owned a pair of sneakers. And a former boyfriend and I got into a MAJOR argument because he wanted to buy me a pair of sneakers, but I wanted him to buy me a pair of shoes. For the record, I do wear sneakers, although if you let me loose in a shoe store, I'd run straight to the stilettos...

So I was recently announced as a Philadelphia "Daily News Single." (fka "Daily News Sexy Singles") This honor is bestowed upon eligible singles in the Philadelphia area, which includes a photo shoot, a party and other potential mentions and appearances. AWESOME!!!

The photo shoot took place last week at Life Time Athetic and there was an athleisure theme. Ok, that's cool. I can do sweats and a t-shirt, but this wasn't a "sweat and a t-shirt" kind of shoot. I had to look cute while working out. Now typically when I work out, I'm more focused on the activity and not the attire - which is totally contradictory to what "The Fearless Fashionista" is all about. But I knew I had to "bring it" for this photo shoot.

Now, as I mentioned previously, I like to get glammed up, and I knew I wanted to get a little "fancy" for my shoot. Yes, we were at a gym, and yes, I was supposed to look like I was working out, but I needed to throw a little glam into the mix. I consulted with celebrity stylist and creative director of the shoot, Anthony Henderson, on my ideas, and he was all in. I mentioned the possibility of rockin' heels, and he recalled Mariah Carey's recent look in the gym, where she wore a pair of sexy sneaker high heels from Rihanna's Fenty Puma Fall 2016 collection.

Mariah Carey Rihanna Fenty Puma Shoes

Stilettos on a stair-climber???

Saturday, June 10, 2017

It's a Wrap!

Over the Memorial Day Weekend, I attended the Dance Africa dance festival and street bazaar in my hometown, Brooklyn, New York. Dance Africa showcases the talents of African and Black dance troops from all over the world, and the street bazaar includes the art, crafts, clothing, food, accessories and much more, of over 150 vendors. 2017 marks the 40th anniversary of Dance Africa, which was founded by Chuck Davis, affectionately known as "Baba Chuck." Baba Chuck" sadly passed away only weeks prior to this milestone performance.

Attending the Dance Africa performances always makes me so proud to be of African ancestry. African culture and its derivatives are so beautiful and impactful. As a Black American in the United States, I have to actively seek out African and Black history in order to get a more comprehensive and realistic depiction of the contributions my people have made to this society. I also recently visited the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in D.C., and despite the horrors of slavery, I was elated to learn more about the talents and gifts that we brought to America.

But I digress.

Prior to the Dance Africa performance, I browsed through items at the bazaar, and was immediately captivated by the dresses that were on display by His Inspiration WrapsYou know that camouflage is one my favorite patterns, so the dress on the left initially caught my eye.