Thursday, April 1, 2010

Vintage Vamp: Josephine Baker

Flapper fever has officially swept the offices. From super-short, spit-curled haircuts to wide-eyed, heavily lashed eyes, we're so into the hair and beauty trends made popular by 1920s-era jazz babies. Needless to say, we're obsessed with the original Jazz Baby herself, Josephine Baker (or "Le Baker," as she was christened by her fawning French fans).

Born Freda Josephine McDonald in 1906, the beautiful teen made her way from the St. Louis slums to New York City, where she began dancing on Broadway and at The Plantation club. She definitely drew a crowd with her vaudeville antics and saucy choreography, but it wasn't until she moved to Paris in 1925 that she became a legend. As a headliner at Folies Bergères, Baker performed her wildly risque Danse Sauvage, wearing no more than a skirt made of bananas--and European audiences fell in love, declaring her the most beautiful woman in Paris (the sad irony is that, in her home country, Blacks were barely considered worthy of basic human rights, let alone considered beautiful).

Josephine Baker broke barriers, made her own rules, and set trends. In the '20s, there wasn't a woman alive--Black or White--who didn't want to copy her glossy, spit-curled crop. Back then, spit curls were created by, literally, applying spit to a section of hair, winding it into a pin curl, and then allowing it to dry.

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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Precious, Precious and Precious

Gabourey "Gabby" Sidibe (born May 6, 1983) is an American actress who made her acting debut in the 2009 film Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire, a role that has garnered her a nomination for a Best Actress Academy Award.   Born in Brooklyn, New York, was raised by her mother in Harlem.  Her mother, Alice Tan Ridley, is an R&B and gospel singer, and her Senegal-born father, Ibnou Sidibe, is a cab driver.[2] She has attended several New York City area colleges: Borough of Manhattan Community College, City College of New York, and Mercy College.

In Precious, Sidibe plays the title character, a physically and sexually abused sixteen-year old, with a four year old child by her own father and with another child on the way. The film won numerous awards, including a Golden Globe Award and Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Award.

She has finished shooting her next film, Yelling to the Sky, a Sundance Lab project directed by Victoria Mahoney and starring Zoe Kravitz, in which she plays a bully.  On December 15, 2009 she was nominated for a Golden Globe in the category of Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture Drama for her performance in Precious. On February 2, 2010, Sidibe was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.

She's fat—and that's not bad. Mo'Nique, a size 20 and loving it, says she sees herself more like, "Fabulous and thick. Full and tasty. Fluffy and tender. When you say fat, you have to smile." Not only that, the 39-year-old comedian-actress is out to prove big girls have more fun—and her success would seem to prove her point. She hosts a plus-size beauty pageant called Mo'Nique's F.A.T. Chance, whose third season premiered July 28 on Oxygen, and taught etiquette on VH1's recent Flavor of Love Girls: Charm School. She's got movie deals, a stand-up tour, two bestselling books and an upcoming workout DVD. At home, she's plenty busy raising three kids and enjoying a decidedly unconventional marriage.

Mariah Carey is a philanthropist who has donated time and money to organizations such as the Fresh Air Fund. She became associated with the Fund in the early 1990s, and is the co-founder of a camp located in Fishkill, New York, that enables inner-city youth to embrace the arts and introduces them to career opportunities. The camp was called Camp Mariah "for her generous support and dedication to Fresh Air children" and she received a Congressional Horizon Award for her youth-related charity work. She is well-known nationally for her work with the Make-a-Wish Foundation in granting the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses, and in November 2006 she was awarded the Foundation's Wish Idol for her "extraordinary generosity and her many wish granting achievements". Carey has volunteered for the New York City Police Athletic League and contributed to the obstetrics department of New York Presbyterian Hospital Cornell Medical Center. A percentage of the sales of MTV Unplugged was donated to various other charities. In 2008, Carey was named Hunger Ambassador of the World Hunger Relief Movement. She is giving a free download of her song, "Love Story", to customers who donate to the organization at participating restaurants.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Love to Zazzle

Blackionista anyone loving zazzle,  weavy hair, pretty nails, unique clothing, and being black, kinetic and perfect.

A Blackionista loves to zazzle!  I don't mean just wearing diamonds and a lot of bling bling.  I'm talking about actually zazzling.  Setting a style and making it zazzle means being unique and looking like everyone else wish they could from head to toe.  Thus all of the hair weaving, nail designs and those perfect fitting every curve outfits.

Famous Blackionistas include, but are not limited to:

Beyonce, MaryJ, Monique, Brianna, Lady O, Ophra, and yours truly.  Just to name a few.