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Meeting of the Minds :: LA's Finest

Like something out of comic book pages, 7 of the most influential African American fashionistos in Los Angeles met up this week to discuss everything from style to education and ultimately possibly combining our powers (in true Captain Planet form). I'm guessing if you don't know me, then you most definitely know one of the other six. I can't express how much I enjoyed being in the company of like-minded individuals, who are just as creative, knowledgeable and ambitious as I am. We all knew at least 2 people in the group and it felt like the collective was bound to happen sooner or later. I'm very anxious to see what comes of association.

We shall see. Stay tuned, true believers...

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SB Custom Bag :: Happy Birthday Pants!

My "Super" friend Aminah, who's a grad student at the University of California at Berkeley, came down to LA this past week to celebrate her birthday with us. Amongst my numerous responsibilities as a host, I figured a quick trip to the thrift was only appropriate on our long list of things to do. And as always the thrift yielded some great finds!

Aminah and I both came across this awesome vintage, pale-blue hat box from the 1950s that even still included the original price tag. I figured what better birthday gift than to give her something custom-made, from the heart.

The photos you see throughout this post are of the piece before and after I put my spin on it. I was happy that she loved the finished product; which I completed like 5 minutes before I dropped her off at the airport. These things are not easy! Haha!

I still have a few more pieces I'm working on for people that'll be up in the coming weeks! I'll keep you guys posted.

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LAFW :: Destination 1610

LA Fashion Week is officially a wrap! The last event I attended was an event hosted by Destination 1610. The show included “The Viewing” (a runway presentation by Religious Adoption), “The Installment” (a collection by Jerell Scott), and “A Glimpse” (which consisted of metal couture pieces by LaureLuxe), eye wear by SB Shades, jewelry by Micha Design, and swimwear by Cherry Pie. Also in attendance were event host and actress Tanika Ray (pictured above), stylists Mr. Bradshaw and Joe Exclusive, singer/producer Malcolm Harvest, and singer Lloyd.

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My Sartorial Roots :: The Report Card

The other day during a visit home I went through the mountains of old photos and documents from my childhood that my mother keeps buried deep in her closet. The funny thing is I was looking for a specific photo to add to the Sartorial Roots series and ended up finding something even better! As mentioned before, I love the in depth exploration into what makes me, me.

While rummaging through countless old photos, certificates, awards, and tests, I came across this report card from kindergarten. Of course my grades were on point, so that's not what gripped me. It was my teacher's comments that jumped off the page. In case you can't read it (below), it says, "His writing is dropping, because he has developed his own style." I mean, wow! That just about sums up who I am. It's not that I didn't know how to write properly because I did, and very well and neatly for a 1st grader I might add. The problem is once I got the gist of how to write I began to form the letters the way I wanted. Even now I can still remember hating the way to properly write cursive Fs, Ts and Ws. So...I made up my own.

It's this spirit to do things my way, I feel that make me...Seth.

Innovator. Imaginative. Rebellious. Since kindergarten, apparently.

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Style Investment :: Clippers & Trimmers

I'd assume that I don't have to pull out my soapbox and tell you how important it is to get your hair cut and keep yourself well groomed regularly. I have a set appointment with my barber with my barber Aharon (pictured above) every 2 weeks like clockwork. What I like most about the services AB provides, besides the fact that fact that he's an excellent barber, is the fact that he will come to you. I don't have to worry about the hassle of going to a barbershop and waiting for 10 of minutes or hours at a time. He's flexible and I get my hair cut when I want, the way I want, for a very reasonable price. His base starts at $10 and any additional costs depend on how far he has to travel to get to you.

Between those times when I have an appointment with AB (or your own personal barber) is where the investment comes in. No matter how great your barber is, hair grows back relatively fast and no one can afford to run back to their barber every time a new whisker pops back up. So, every man should invest in a quality pair of clippers and trimmers. Even though you may not be a professional, pretty much anyone is capable of holding these tools steady enough to keep everything tamed before your next appointment. Making these purchases ensure that you won't look like Wolfman the next time you sit down in your barber's chair. I personally think Andis is a great brand to go with. I got my Andis trimmers for around $50 and the clippers for $30, and I've owned them for going on 4 years now. I take great care of them; making sure to take all the hair off with a toothbrush when I'm done, oiling them every couple of months and realigning them when necessary. I don't see myself needing to buy another set anytime soon. I use mine every few days to edge my hairline & beard and keep it all trim.

Click here to check out Andis products.

Click here to contact my barber AB! I guarantee his services are unparalleled!

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Ill Narative :: Miranda Priestly & Nigel

The Devil Wears Prada is one of my favorite films! You know, one of those flicks you could watch a million and one times and never get tired of it. I purchased it the first week it came out on DVD and have been watching it habitually, at least once a month, since. Beyond all the great fashion and glamorous nature of it all, it serves as constant motivator to continue to pursue my dreams in this industry and always be true who I am. Below are my 2 favorite quotes from the movie. Powerful stuff...

The Devil Wears Prada - words from Miranda Presley

This... 'stuff'? Oh... ok. I see, you think this has nothing to do with you. You go to your closet and you select out, oh I don't know, that lumpy blue sweater, for instance, because you're trying to tell the world that you take yourself too seriously to care about what you put on your back. But what you don't know is that that sweater is not just blue, it's not turquoise, it's not lapis, it's actually cerulean. You're also blithely unaware of the fact that in 2002, Oscar De La Renta did a collection of cerulean gowns. And then I think it was Yves St Laurent, wasn't it, who showed cerulean military jackets? I think we need a jacket here. And then cerulean quickly showed up in the collections of 8 different designers. Then it filtered down through the department stores and then trickled on down into some tragic casual corner where you, no doubt, fished it out of some clearance bin. However, that blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs and so it's sort of comical how you think that you've made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you're wearing the sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room. From a pile of stuff.

The Devil Wears Prada - words from Nigel

Andy, be serious. You are not trying. You are whining. What is it that you want me to say to you, huh? Do you want me to say, "Poor you. Miranda's picking on you. Poor you. Poor Andy"? Hmm? Wake up, six. She's just doing her job. Don't you know that you are working at the place that published some of the greatest artists of the century? Halston, Lagerfeld, de la Renta. And what they did, what they created was greater than art because you live your life in it. Well, not you, obviously, but some people. You think this is just a magazine, hmm? This is not just a magazine. This is a shining beacon of hope for... oh, I don't know... let's say a young boy growing up in Rhode Island with six brothers pretending to go to soccer practice when he was really going to sewing class and reading Runway under the covers at night with a flashlight. You have no idea how many legends have walked these halls. And what's worse, you don't care. Because this place, where so many people would die to work you only deign to work. And you want to know why she doesn't kiss you on the forehead and give you a gold star on your homework at the end of the day. Wake up, sweetheart.
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Bullets & Bows Spring 2010 Shoot

All my female readers are always getting on my case for not posting anything for you them. Ummm...read the banner. Haha! But seriously, I hear you loud and clear, and although women's fashion is not my specialty, I still have a great appreciation and passion for it and I promise I'm following designers and trends much more intently to meet your needs and develop my talents. Anyway, this is especially for all of you!

I was recently invited by designer Danni Rouge to shoot the Summer Lookbook for her accessories collection Bullets&Bows. The line boasts custom jewelry pieces that "bridge the gap between streetwear and high fashion" mixing various metals with patterned fabric bows - pretty interestly sick contrast!

As evident by the photos below the shoot went really well. The models Rouge selected brought a strong, positive energy to set; ready to work...and they did!

Ladies, click here to see more from Bullets&Bows and order your own custom pieces today!

You're welcome!

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LAFW :: Concept at Spring Arts Tower

Concept, a new group of L.A. runway shows, was hosted at the Spring Arts Tower in Downtown Los Angeles. Sponsored by Smashbox Studios and Toni&Guy, the shows are meant to capitalize on both L.A. Fashion Week and the local market week (when retailers from all over come to L.A. to check out the new collections from brands). Their strategy is ingenious because L.A. Fashion Week hasn’t historically targeted buyers–the people who actually put collections into all your major retailers.

The roster of brands showing at the 3 day event is pretty eclectic; a mix of familiar and new names: martinMARTIN, Skingraft, Elmer Ave, The Battalion, Valerj Pobega, Mike Vensel (co-organizer for the event with downtown advocate Brady Westwater), Chelsea Rebelle, Farm Tactics, Otto Gates, Jen Awad and John Sakalis. I caught the show Monday night in time for collections by designers B. Scott and Fremont (pictured below). I was very fortunate cause I happened to catch shows that both featured menswear! Extremely dope collections by parties!

I also had an opportunity to meet and network with Fashion Specialist and designer Emore'J Couture (pictured above). Great guy. Awesome personality.

In between each show they had an assortment of installations for guests to observe and an amazing band called Jeffertities Nile (sp?) that I can't seem to find any information on...

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Style Investment :: GQ, April 2010 Issue

Gentlemen, I strongly urge you to go out and purchase the latest issue of GQ Magazine (April 2010). This is probably my favorite issue in years cause it has everything to do with thrifty shopping - namely the article titled "The Penny-Pincher's Guide to Better Style."

This feature includes 25 tips with everything from the best low-cost, high style stores (via Street Etiquette's Joshua Kissi and Travis Gumbs) to salvaging your relatives' timeless pieces and even a do-it-yourself section on how to make your own shorts for this coming Spring/Summer.

The only thing this issue was missing was a quick feature on thrifting from yours truly! GQ, holler at me!
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LAFW :: EM & Co x Angela Dean

I absolutely loved the intimate, invite only event that I attended last week! EM & Co Presents 'UP NEXT: L.A. DESIGNERS: BRAVE NEW WORLD' was great! The event was a fashion installation featuring collections from designer Angela Dean and EM Reconstruct (upcycled army gear reconstructed by Krys & Jack and EM). DJ Gabriel Diggs set the mood for the evening. Event Sponsors & Partners included Agenda Magazine, HONEST Beverages, Cinema Makeup School, Habibi Bath & Body.

About Angela Dean/Deanzign:
With critically-acclaimed designs, celebrity designer, Angela Dean, has a loyal following of Hollywood's top celebrities, and her fashion design powerhouse has evolved into one of the hottest 'best-kept fashion secrets' in the music and entertainment industry. Founded in the 80s, Deanzign's statement-making creations made the wearer look and feel like a star. Angela Dean's gowns have been worn by Paris Hilton, Oprah Winfrey, Katy Perry, and Queen Latifah, to name just a few. Angela was asked to design for Hollywood's eight leading ladies, Halle Berry, Jada Pinkett Smith, Queen Latifah, Vivica A. Fox, Michael Michelle, Elise Neal, Lorretta Devine, and Regina King, featured on the Collector's Edition of the 30th Anniversary Essence cover, the highest-selling issue in the history of Essence magazine. Angela's beautiful, red silk taffeta ball gown in the 2007 fall collection, was featured in Paris Hilton's perfume ad campaign "Can Can." For more information, please visit: Deanzign.

About EM Reconstruct:
EM Reconstruct represents the latest trend in eco-conscious fashion: Up-cycling of garments. Combining edgy trend-setting style with eco-friendly practices, existing garments are re-fashioned and modified, sometimes beyond recognition, into new garments. Each garment is individually created and is generally unique; no two are alike. The EM Reconstruct line, first introduced in 2005, releases a number of mini-collections per year, sometimes grouped around a theme, exclusively available at EM & Co. The March 2010 mini-collection is a collaboration from designers Krys-N-Jack and Eveline Morel. More information on EM Reconstruct is available at: emandco@sbcglobal.net.
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LAFW :: Project Ethos

Since this past Fall I've anxiously awaited Project ETHOS this Spring! Friend and designer Jenny P, once again hooked me up for the show at The Music Box in Hollywood , this past Friday, March 19th. Project ETHOS, known as the “incubator for emerging artists in fashion, music and art,” is a quarterly, red carpet event in Los Angeles that showcases all emerging Millennial Generation forms of creativity in one house, on one night. By merging fashion, music and art into one giant display of genius, Project ETHOS creates an innovative form of exposure for artists, a new scouting location for talent representatives, and a fresh outing for event goers. Project ETHOS is on a mission to bridge the gap between the Indie and Mainstream worlds and provide opportunity for previously unrecognized talent. With a potent ear to the street, the ETHOS team seeks out extraordinarily talented fresh faces, creating a link to decision makers and industry professionals. Project ETHOS is the next generation of exposing all artistry to the media, public and industry.

I enjoyed this show as much as I did last season! It was so well coordinated and even bigger with even more attendees boasting a packed house! The show featured 10 fashion lines, 80 models, live music performances by Bruno Mars ("Nothing on You") & Love Grenades, DJ Sets from Mando Fresko of Power 106, 12 visual artists, and 5 fashion vendors. I was most delighted with the fact that this season's show featured a menswear line ironically called Seth Wellington, III! Awesome collection of minimalistic basics, well tailored and designed.

Great night!