Imported Blog: Black Super Models

Hey folks!

I have just imported some older blog content from a different blog I run called Black Super Models. Most of the posts date back to 2007 and the reason behind the blog was to draw attention to the SHORTAGE of black supermodels. Sure there is a few out there, but I wanted to draw attention to the fact that there is no shortage of African models out there worthy of being paid more for what they do.

Amongst the posts imported are collections of photos of:

Tyra Banks and Naomi Campbell (obvious choices because they're more well known)

Tyson Beckford (a male supermodel you will probably recognize)

Ajuma Nasenyana (much less well known, but no less worthy)

See my post on Black Supermodels being Left Behind.

I will add more to this post later, I am off to the beach now...

Guide to Fashion Sketches

FASHION - The intense competition in the fashion industry makes it important for any fashion designer to showcase the designs to a larger audience. This can be done by creating fashion sketches and displaying them on the Internet.

The sketches give an insight to the fashion fraternity and also to the common audience on the concept behind a particular fashion design. It is a way of communicating the theme to the people associated with the apparel industry. Hence, they are extremely important for any fashion designer.

Fashion sketches are illustrations made by professional artists and designed in a way that they can be easily displayed on the Internet. They portray the true creative genius of the designer. These can be considered a blue print of the final product.

The perfection in making sketches is a prerequisite as they serve as the main marketing tool of the fashion professionals. The sketches reflect trends and the value added features of the design. They can also be used to evaluate the various patters used by different designers.

Fashion sketches are important, since they are the preliminary designs that have to be taken to the different apparel manufacturers in the market. The sketches are then used to select the different fabric samples from the wide range on offer.

Computers are increasingly being used for the purpose of making fashion design sketches. Several software are now available that assist the designers in making the drawings. While some still prefer the traditional hand-drawn sketches, others choose to opt for the speed and convenience of computer-aided designing. Hand-drawn sketches can also be fed into the computer with the help of a scanner.

The art of making fashion design sketches is important for creating a niche in the highly competitive fashion industry. Fashion designers can make their presence felt only if their sketches are different and original. Good quality sketches are the only means of establishing a firm foothold in the fashion industry.

Is Fashion Design an Art Form?

The question of what constitutes "Art" with a capital T has been around for a long time. People pretty much agree that making a good cup of coffee is not an art form but there is still a lot of dissent about certain modes of expression like writing, movie making and fashion.

There is the idea that fashion cannot be an art because it evolved from sewing and tailoring which is a craft even though tailoring has been referred to as "architecture" and the draping of fabric across the body as being "sculptural".

Many designers make references to art and artistic theories and concepts in their work yet are nevertheless relegated to the ranks of the frivolous where haute couture is viewed as the fetish of the financially well-to-do. And once haute couture and runway collections have been watered down for consumption by the general public then they are seen as nothing more than financial commodities and functional apparel in the marketplace.

Another reason why fashion is not considered to be art is because, as with film making, a number of people performing different functions take part in the creation of a garment, such as the designer, fabric producer, pattern cutter and seamstress to name but a few. Because designers often don't work alone to produce a garment, they don't fit with the traditional view of the artist as a solitary genius and are therefore not considered artists even though their vision of what the garment will look like is their own.

In short, there is no clear-cut answer as to whether fashion is Art or not because there are so many ways to interpret and use an individual garment. It can be seen as protection from the elements, an expression of belonging to a particular socio-cultural group, as a personal form of expression when it is worn, or in its purest sense, as the embodiment of the vision of its creator, the designer. Because fashion is so fluid and open to interpretation, it fits in with the theories of many disciplines and forms of expression, of which Art is only one.

Cruelty-Free Clothes

Fashion for Vegetarians, Vegans and the Animal Friendly

If vegan fashion is all about living a more eco-conscious lifestyle, then you may be wondering how it can possibly go hand-in-hand with stylish living. Can the two co-exist? Today's vegan designers prove that this is certainly the case, by refusing to sacrifice aesthetics to create an earth-friendly look. If anything, the inclusion of eco-friendly materials adds to the appeal of the fashion.

Sample Site:

Cruelty-free fashions come in the same wide array of styles and current trends you'd find in the mainstream market. From clothing to handbags and shoes and more, there is no shortage of great items to buy. Vegan fashions are made from plant materials, such as hemp, or synthetic fibers, such as rayon. Many of them also include recycled materials such as rubber and plastic. The dyes used are organic. No one will be able to tell the difference between vegan styles and mainstream looks, unless you let them know. Vegan fashions are durable, comfortable, stylish and even biodegradable, though they are also beautifully crafted to withstand many years of use.

The stylish look of Vegan fashions could easily fool those who still are not aware of this trend into thinking you are wearing real leather, suede, or velvet. They offer rich colors and textures and a bold fashion statement without the harm to animals or the earth. Any eco-conscious, animal loving individual will want to check this out and take advantage of the great range of vegan fashions that is quickly taking over the fashion world.

Sample Site:

You won't have to sacrifice looks or quality or spend a fortune to find beautiful, well-made vegan clothing and accessories. Take a stand against animal cruelty and environmental sacrifice by purchasing vegan fashions, and you'll know you are doing your part to promote a green and eco-friendly way of life.

Whether you are a vegan or simply recognize that wearing clothing made of leather or fur is not kind to the animals, you can make the switch to vegan clothing rather easily. Beautiful vegan fashions can be found in more and more retail stores, and of course a great selection can be found online. Many major brands and up and coming labels make vegan fashions these days, some for their own ethical reasons, and others because they recognize the changing trends and the importance of buying "green" products.

Sample Site:

We all talk about going green, but what exactly does that mean? Many people see it as recycling and using organic products. Is it really all that simple? To go completely green means to recognize all of nature, including the other creatures inhabiting the earth. Do they deserve to be abused and mistreated just so someone can look good? No way. If you truly want to live as green as can be, take things up a notch and go for vegan fashions.

If you love vegan food I recommend

See Also
The Rise of Eco-Fashion
European EcoFashion

Sexy Sweaters

FASHION - Its chilly during the Spring sometimes and if you wanna stay warm without having to carry a jacket everywhere I find sweaters and cardigans work quite well.

And better yet, sweaters can be quite sexy if you know what to look for that will accentuate your figure.

Evidently you need to exercise some brains when picking a sweater... the one below may look interesting on the catwalk, but is certainly not practical.

The one below may be good for showing off cleavage, but its lack of shoulders makes it look slutty.

I really like this one with the matching skirt and grey hat. See Fedora Femme.

Who says stripes and a turtleneck can't be sexy?

Nothing complicated here. Its not even tight fitting. The long length makes you look taller and thinner.

Try to avoid grabbing yourself. Yes. You're sexy. No need to brag about it.

Cowboy Hats back in fashion

FASHION - My friends and I think cowboy hats are coming back into style. We think its because of the film True Grit but maybe its just a cyclical thing. (We also think the film 'Country Strong' might have something to do with it, even though we HATE that film.)

Shown here is a Stetson black cowboy hat. Stetson was the inventor of the cowboy hat and is still considered the best company when it comes to making cowboy hats. (Like Levis inventing jeans.)

The thing about cowboy hats is that they can be quite stylish, while simultaneously looking adventurous.

To show you what I mean about how cowboy hats being stylish I've collected some images of various celebrities, athletes, supermodels and fashion models wearing cowboy hats.

I think the mere fact Emma Watson is wearing a cowboy hat signifies it has gained a wider acceptance as a fashion item, similar to how fedoras, swisses and hamburgs are so popular right now. See Mens Hats.

The Tuxedo Hoodie

FASHION - A friend of mine in Toronto, a guy, wants to make tuxedo with a hoodie so he can wear it to art galleries and be (without a doubt) the kewlest dressed person in the room.

I admit, fashion conscious heterosexual men are a rarity, but I can say "You go man! You da man!"

The Fairies Pyjamas

FASHION - The Fairies Pyjamas is a cute little boutique shop in Toronto's Kensington Market (its easy to find in the alley of fashion shops) which sells a wide array of handmade clothing... and my favourite, arm and leg warmers!

For those that don't know, Kensington Market is just west of Chinatown and just north of the Queen Street West fashion district.

The Fairies Pyjamas
29 Kensington Avenue
Toronto, ON M5T2J8
(647) 343-1876

Check out and don't forget to visit the other great shops in Kensington Market to check out great local fashion.

Afterwards I recommend stopping for espresso, tea (33+ flavours), coffee or whatever you fancy at "Espresso Etc" at 350 Dundas Street West, directly across from the Art Gallery of Ontario (just east of Chinatown).

Hungry? I recommend the Rol San Restaurant, north of Dundas on Spadina, or the Furama Bakery, south of Dundas on Spadina. Don't forget to check out the local shops in Chinatown for great bargains and items you won't find anywhere else.

If you want to make a day of it I recommend going on a Wednesday because it will be less crowded and the AGO is free on Wednesday nights.

Love Art History? The AGO is the largest art gallery in Canada and one of the top five in North America.