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Talking Fashion with Celebrity Designer Maria Harper

This spring Maria launched her new Women’s wear line “Pink Glam”.  This line was birthed from the idea that women need classic fashions that are available to them in any and every basic silhouette & color that will never be thrown out of the closet! Pieces that can be worn in any season and with…

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This spring Maria launched her new Women’s wear line “Pink Glam”.  This line was birthed from the idea that women need classic fashions that are available to them in any and every basic silhouette & color that will never be thrown out of the closet! Pieces that can be worn in any season and with endless options to accessorize (and layer with other pieces you already own), for a different look every time! Pink Glam is constructed using classic yet modern designs, high-end quality stretch fabrics, and is available in a variety of sizes & solid colors.

Since its launch, Pink Glam has been worn by some of your favorite celebrity entertainers: Fantasia Barrino, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Tamela Mann, KeKe Wyatt, Gladys Knight, & Demetria McKinney.  

 

 

For those that aren’t familiar with you; Tell us who is Maria Harper?

 

I am a woman who loves and trust God.  I am passionate about people and especially children, because they are our future.  I love fashion design, it is my passion and I wouldn’t have chosen any other career.  Most of my designs come to me in my dreams; therefore it is a thrill to see them come to life. Once I see the designs in my mind, it grows as I start putting the designs together.

 

What does fashion mean to you?

 

Fashion is everything.  If a person looks great they feel great about themselves.  I enjoy creating designs that can express a personal style, giving a person that extra boost of confidence they may need to take on the world.

 

What was the first article of clothing you ever designed?

 

I remember it like it was yesterday, I made a jumper dress with a blouse for myself at age 8, with the assistance of my mother who taught me how to sew, of course.

 

What are some of your accomplishments as a designer?

 

I have had the pleasure of working with many celebrities across the country on several personal, film, TV, theater, & film projects; creating everything from clothing to interiors to costumes (including the shocking bird costume worn by CeeLo Green for the Grammy’s in 2011).  Many people are surprised to know that my brand has grown significantly without advertising; projects that have come my way have been solely based on word-of-mouth, which is, I think, a great accomplishment!

Who are some of the celebrities you have designed for and tell us how you feel when you see them wearing one of your designs, whether it be on the Red Carpet or at other prestigious events?

 

Some of the wonderful clients that I have had the honor to work with are Tamela Mann, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia Barrino, & CeeLo Green to name a small few.  I still get emotional when I see something I’ve done at an event.  First of all, I still can’t believe it’s & second of all it makes me feel great that THEY feel great about the way they look; and to know that they trusted me to get the job done for such important appearances means the world to me.

 

Who are some of your favorite designers that inspired you and why?

 

My favorite designers are Vera Wang and Versace.  Their eye for detail and creativity are inspiring.

Do you prefer sketching designs or actually constructing them?

 

I prefer to construct the design as it is mapped out in my mind. I like to do sketching when working with a client one on one.

 

What advice do you have for aspiring fashion designers?

 

If it is your craft of choice, stay focused and never worry about the judgment of others when you are creating.

 

How do you define your personal style and what your designs exemplifies?

 

My personal style would be categorized as “Classy, Chic, & Timeless”.  You can never go wrong with a Maria Harper design, because they never go out of style.

 

Where can readers view and purchase your designs?

They can check out my websites at:

www.pinkglambrand.com

www.mariaharper.com

 

And for updated news visit: www.facebook.com/mariaharperdesigns

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Alabama News & Entertainment

Kenyetta “Sway” Smiley: “Allure of Style” VI Review

The “AOS6: Affair To Remember” Review The opening of Allure lured you in with a collection slideshow of prominent icons and history makers such as the first African-American Olympic Gymnast to become the individual all-around champion, Gabrielle Douglas, The President and First Lady Obama, and the creator of “Allure of Style” Kenyetta Sway Smiley. Partnering…

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The “AOS6: Affair To Remember” Review

The opening of Allure lured you in with a collection slideshow of prominent icons and history makers such as the first African-American Olympic Gymnast to become the individual all-around champion, Gabrielle Douglas, The President and First Lady Obama, and the creator of “Allure of Style” Kenyetta Sway Smiley. Partnering with The Children’s District, the night was sure to be the “Affair” that you couldn’t help but remember. All the fashion and the glam intertwined with elegance and sensuality. The Children’s District is an organization that educates and prepare our youth for life’s experiences while teaching them the core values of honor, respect, discipline, and integrity.

The first collection to amaze the crowd was Keshia Maroney’s J’Norreh Collection. Flirty, sexy, and classy. Sheer halter dresses, tailed sleeves and high splits were the highlight of the collection. The colors ranged from white, black, and red. Men ensembles included a bright yellow shirt, paired with pair of black pants and matching bow-tie. My favorite piece from the line, a beautiful black halter that connected from the back to a black skirt and a gorgeous black dress with one-sided peekaboo and high split.

Bramer Leon Stevens, Bramer Leon Contour, highlight of the collection was blue-jean skirt pieces, flared sleeves, sheer shirts, and tailed sleeves dresses. Blue jean and print ensembles, one shoulder, off the shoulder pieces. The colors ranged from black, brown, green, gold, beige, white and blue. My favorite piece from the collection would have to be a beige one-shoulder dress with a black bottom and tailed sleeves and a simple beige dress with tailed sleeves as well.

Chic & Sleek Boutique featured vintage, yet classy ensembles. Colors ranging from orange, metallic gold, black, yellow, white, and blue. The collection was simple but edgy. From leather pants to the timeless dresses that not only young adults could wear but older women as well. I have three favorites was a beautiful white dress with a deep V neck, a black halter cut-out dress similar to the one Kelly Rowland had her famous nip slip in, and a black top with a ruched skirt.

ShaLaJa Swimwear featured sexy and fun swimwear ignited the crowd. From leopard print one & and 2-pieces, cotton candy and a floral one-piece, to stripped black & white one-piece. A wide collection of swim trunks and speedos. Favorite for the Men were a black and grey trunks. My favorite Women’s swimsuit from the collection would have to be a gorgeous white one-piece with sheer peekaboo sides and a sheer brown high waist 2-piece.

Tonya Terry’s Over Abundance Collection was amazing. Her collection varied in colors from purple, red, white, yellow, pink, purple, and sheer black. A teal blue halter dress with a high split, sheer black pieces, leopard print shirt with black tights, a black and white stripped dress with an accented red belt. What was my favorite from Over Abundance? A black dress with white flared sleeves and an looped black and white belt.

Bramer Leon Contour next sequence featured elegant and sophisticated ensembles. The line consisted of many metallic chromed pieces, one-shoulder ensembles, zebra print, tailed sleeves and flared sleeves. All ranging from white, pink, metallic black, metallic grey, red, and blue. So what was my favorite piece from the line? Well, I have three. [chuckles] A beautiful white dress with tailed sleeves, a pink one-shouldered sparkly dress with flared sleeves, and metallic black and grey dress with tailed sleeves.

Please visit The Children’s District website, www.thechildrensdistrict.org, for more information on the organization and how to donate. To stay updated with some of the designers, models, musical artists, and Kenyetta Sway’s upcoming events, visit their websites or email below.

swaysmodeling@hotmail.com
www.RadarMen.com
www.shalajaswimwear.com
www.ClintonBabersMusic.com
www.TonyaTerry.com  or www.facebook.com/tonyaterry  or www.twitter/TonyaTerry
chicsleekboutique@yahoo.com
http://bramerleoncouture.wix.com/bramerleoncouture

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Fashion

Hit or Diss: The BET Awards Recap

By Jasmine CeCelia The show marked the last time we would see “106 and Park” hosts Terrence J and Rosci on the red carpet as hosts of the show and the first time for “The Braxtons” star Tamar Braxton as an correspondent. The BET Pre-Show displayed all the glitz and glam of celebrity style or…

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By Jasmine CeCelia

The show marked the last time we would see “106 and Park” hosts Terrence J and Rosci on the red carpet as hosts of the show and the first time for “The Braxtons” star Tamar Braxton as an correspondent. The BET Pre-Show displayed all the glitz and glam of celebrity style or at least, aimed to. As far as fashion, there weren’t many best dressed ensembles. There were a lot of “What were they thinking?” which included Rosci, Tamar Braxton, Big Sean, 2 Chainz, The OMG Girlz, Lala Anthony and Willow. Our Editor-in-Chief’s choice for worst dressed was Jermaine Dupree, Porscha Coleman, and Swizz Beatz.
My list for best dressed females are Tamia, Letoya Luckett, Michelle Williams from Destiny’s Child, Kerry Washington, Shaun Lourie from KIA, Deborah Lee, Chaka Khan and Melanie Fiona. Between them, the ABC “Scandal” star Kerry Washington was the ultimate best dressed female at the awards show. The Editor-in-Chief’s best dressed is Lola Monroe and Kenya Moore. My list for best dressed males are Terrence J, Tigger, Boris Kodjoe, Young Jeezy, and TGT (Tyrese, Ginuwine, and Tank). I don’t have a best dressed male for the show because they all looked yummy and handsome. Also, Mindless Behavior looked very mature and suave. Now the award for Worst Dressed Female would definitely have to go *drum roll, pleases* to Mrs. Lala Anthony. She had an ensemble of a purple, lavender pantsuit that looked like the shower curtain in my grandmother’s bathroom. Worst Dressed Male Award have to go to Big Sean. He looked like he was lost in the wilderness or something but glad, he got it together for the actual show.
The Pre-Show featured performances from MGK, Future, 2 Chainz, Driicky Graham, Elle Varner, and Slaughterhouse. The award for Best Performance at the Pre-show would have to go to Elle Varner. Though I’m not a fan of her single “Refill,” she happened to sound better singing it live than the actual track.
Now on to the actual BET Awards show…my analysis grade for Samuel L. Jackson as the host would be a B+. I loved the SLJ and Spike Lee skit, their hilarious cover of Jay-Z and Kanye West’s “N****s In Paris,” that ended Spike in a skirt. I think that should have been the way to open the show besides Kanye West’s GOOD Music artists Big Sean, Pusha T, and 2 Chainz. Maybe it would have been better for just Kanye to perform. West has held the title for many absurd things but you can’t deny that he is a phenomenal performer. The miss of the night was the repetitive obscenities that ‘slipped’ during some of the performances, which was a very big turn-off.
Jay-Z and West happened to be the big winners of the night, taking home the awards for Best Group and Video of the Year. A classic moment as they accepted the award from Video of the Year was when Jay gave Kanye a little taste of his own medicine and interrupted Kanye’s speech, which Kanye had done to Taylor Swift at the MTV Video Awards a couple years ago.
Going head to head with her husband in the Video of the Year category and lost, BeYonce took home the award for Best Female R&B Artist and Video Director of the Year. She also elegantly quipped the jab made about Lauryn Hill’s tax problems from Mindless Behavior, who presented the award alongside “Sparkle” actor and comedian Mike Epps. Chris Brown won two awards for Best Male R&B Artist and Entertainer of the Year. Yolanda Adams took home the award for Best Gospel Artist. Her speech was to all artists to use their talents responsibly because they were being watched. Her performance alongside with Sunday Best’s contestants Amber Bullock, Y’anna Crowley, and Jessica Reedy took me to church.
There were many highlights and performances of the night—the Frankie Beverly & Maze performance, Melanie Fiona, and the long and anticipated return of D’Angelo. Aside from his physical appearance, D’Angelo’s voice and music is still bumping. Still anticipating his comeback album and his physique. Can you think “Untitled” video without thinking of D’Angelo’s sculpted toned abs? No. Hopefully, we’ll be able to see that again.
Nicki Minaj won Best Female Hip-Hop Artist and her performance was the best I’ve ever seen from her, along with her fashion style. But my highlight of the night and tearjerker was the tribute to the late Whitney Houston who passed away this past February. Mariah Carey, Monica, Brandy, and the beloved Cissy Houston. Cissy had tremendous strength and courage. And because of that, the 2012 BET Awards was a definite HIT!

 

A full list of winners:

Centric Award: Common
Youngstars Award: Diggy
Best Actress: Viola Davis for The Help
Best Actor: Kevin Hart for “Think Like A Man”
Best Movie: The Help
Best Group: Jay-Z and Kanye West for The Throne
Subway Sportswoman of the Year: Serena Williams
Subway Sportsman of the Year: Kevin Durant
Best New Artist: Big Sean
Best Female R&B Artist: BeYonce
Best Male R&B Artist: Chris Brown
Best Collaboration: Wale featuring Miguel for “Lotus Flower Bomb”
Best Gospel Artist: Yolanda Adams
Best Female Hip-Hop Artist: Nicki Minaj
Best Male Hip-Hop Artist: Drake
Lifetime Achievement Award: Maze featuring Frankie Beverly
Humanitarian Award: Reverend Al. Sharpton
Video of the Year: Jay-Z and Kanye West for “Otis” featuring Otis Redding
Viewers’ Choice Award: Mindless Behavior
Video Director of the Year: BeYonce and Alan Ferguson
Best International Act UK: Sarkodie (Ghana) and Wizkid (Nigeria)
Best International Act Africa: Wretch 32

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