Monthly Archives: August 2012

Wax Print Moments: Solange’s Wax Print Dottman + Vlisco’s Funky Grooves Collection

These are just a few fashion worthy wax print obsessions that caught my attention. Inspired by Bola Obileye’s self-proclaimation Ankaranista, here are a few of my favorite things that I’m loving right now.

1. Solange Knowles’ wax print ottoman, napkins + matching pillows

Solange’s personal style is very much own and it reflected in her home decor as well. She invited Elle magazine into her Brooklyn home where I fell in love with her wax print napkins, pillows, and equally, irresistable ottoman. Her lastest modeling for Madewell Fall 2012 catalog is very chic and very much HER! #Obsessed! (See Solange’s Brooklyn style home over at ELLE!)

2. Vlisco Funky Grooves Collection


There is a reason why Vlisco continues to be the leader in wax print craftsmanship. Their recently released Funky Grooves collection oozes style, class and versatility! #Obsessed (See the full collection over at Munaluchi Bride magazine!)

Honorable mentions goes to

Dannijo “Cocoki Bleu”

Have. Want. Need. Wishlist. Piggy Bank Worthy!

Zoe Saldana’s Jonathan Saunder dress!

Zoe Saldana’s Jonathan Saunders dress at the 2012 Teen Choice Awards
Everything about this look is win, win, win from head to toe! Love the prints!

Liya Kebede for Donna Karan Woman

The stunning Ethiopian model & LemLem founder is one of Donna Karan’s newly release fragrance – Woman brand spokes-models. She shares the gig with Christy Turlington & Karoliina Kurkova. #Obsessed

Liya Kebede brings traditional Ethiopian weavers and her brand LemLem to New York’s hottest boutiques!

Liya in her own words describes bringing traditional Ethiopian craftsmanship to New York. Great video. #Obsessed

Check out this LemLem suit (pictured on the left) featured in a Harper’s Bazaar September 2012 editorial.

image credits – Getty Images, Vlisco, Dannijo, Donna Karan, Madewell, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, & Fashionista

Cultural Wax Print Moments is a feature focus on ankara, wax print fashionable items that I’m currently obsessed with!

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Carmen Ejogo Steals The Show in Sparkle!

British-Nigerian actress Carmen Ejogo completely stole the show in the 1976 remake of Sparkle. From her brilliant acting performance to her overall “A Star is Born” swagger, Carmen definitely won me over with her portrayal of Sister Anderson. What I also enjoy about Carmen’s Sparkle gig was her voice! This woman CAN sing! A favorite scene of mine from Sparkle was the emotional interaction Sister had with her mom Emma over her man, Satin. There was not a dry eye in the theater. Carmen also did a great job playing the sultry vixen who wanted more out of her life than a $96 paycheck from her department store job! She wanted her own piece of paradise at any cost which I think was a true lesson that the film wanted to illustrated. Going to see Sparkle during opening weekend definitely made it worthwhile because the theater I went to was filled with die-hard Whitney Houston fans. When Whitney made her on camera debut you could hear a pin dropped. Everyone was eager to see Whitney. When Whitney sang “His Eye is On The Sparrow”, the audience stood up and clapped! (It felt like I attended a church service with the positive feedback Whitney’s performance received!) The audience and I also embrace Carmen for her electrifying performances of “Hooked On Your Love” and “Yes I Do.”

Hooked On Your Love

Yes I Do

Did you also know that Carmen’s married to actor Jeffery Wright and that they have two children?! If Sparkle doesn’t re-get Hollywood signing her onto major starring roles, I don’t know what to say. Carmen Ejogo is definitely one actress to watch in the future. On that note, CulturalToast.com proudly presents a new feature called Cultural Cinema. This feature is focused on all things Carmen Ejogo on and off the red carpet promoting Sparkle.

Carmen Ejogo at the NY premiere of Sparkle

Carmen at the LA premiere of Sparkle


Carmen on the September 2012 cover of Ebony with Jordin Sparks & Tika Sumpter

Next up for Carmen is the Tyler Perry thriller, Alex Cross and the TV showZero Hour. Sparkle will hopefully get film directors to recognize Carmen’s star power. Onwards and upwards for Carmen! I’ll leave you all with this great clip of Carmen talking about Sister Anderson and how she prepared for the role. If this feature didn’t convinced to see Sparkle, go see it! It’s a great feel good film. 

Carmen Ejogo Online: Wikipedia//Twitter//IMDB

image credits – getty images x ebony magazine

Cultural Cinema showcases influential Africans directing, producing, and acting in Hollywood, Nollywood and on the global market!

Angela Simmons Wears Virgos Lounge Bee Clutch to Vanessa Simmons’ 29th BDay Bash

Angela Simmons attended her older sister Vanessa’s 29th birthday bash rocking a lime green mustard, gold and black Virgos Lounge “Bee” beaded clutch. Vanessa’s birthday celebration was held at the Sugar Factory in Las Vegas! Virgos Lounge needs to seriously consider making Angela Simmons a.) their spokesmodel for their new collection or b.) named one of their style items after her. Angela simply adores Virgos Lounge and CulturalToast.com is eager to see what Virgos Lounge red carpet worthy style item that her Nigerian-American stylist Kanayo Ebi*  will pick out for her next!

*Kanayo Ebi with her clients and close friends Angela and Vanessa

Unfortunately for the fashion-forward shopaholics who aspired to have this yummy accessory in their closet out there this clutch is currently sold out! (Damn it! There goes my birthday wish from me to me, lol!) Angela’s love for Virgos Lounge continues to grow. Love this support of celebrities embracing African fashion labels!

Angela’s ensemble consists of a white sheer lace Edwing D’Angelo dress and black Christian Louboutin daffodil pumps! Work it out, Angela!

Cultural Presence looks at how celebrities and everyday people wear African fashion straight from the runway.

Image credits – Adore Angela. Virgos Lounge. Getty Images

Congrats to Olympic Gold Medalist Champion Gabby Douglas!

Gabby Douglas became the first African-American woman to win a gold medal for Women’s Gymnastics-Artistic Individual All Around on Thursday at the 2012 Olympics London. This is Gabby’s second Olympic Gold but it is also the first time she won one solo! She won her first with the Fab 5 and Thursday August 2nd marks her 1st solo Gold win! Because of this, Gabby is also the first American gymnast ever to win both the team and individual all-around gold at the same Olympics! She’s the first woman of color and first American gymnast to achieve both historic Olympic Gold medals! Keeping getting those Olympic Gold medals, Gabby! What an inspiration!

“Someone mentioned that I was the first black American (to win the all-around gold), and I said, ‘Oh yeah, I forgot about that!’ I feel so honored,” she said with a laugh.

Competing in a predominantly white sport, Douglas said, “I hope that I inspire people. I want to inspire people. My mother said you can inspire a nation.”

In her final event, the floor, Douglas began her routine to cheers of “Go Gabby!” As her techno music played, she soon turned North Greenwich Arena into Club Gabby.

When Douglas stood in the center of the arena to accept her medal, she said it felt as if she were at a concert. “All those flashes,” Douglas said.

Douglas put on a show, leading from start to finish, beating Russia’s Victoria Komova by .259 of a point. Russia’s Aliya Mustafina took the bronze. American Aly Raisman finished with the same score as Mustafina, but missed the bronze due to a tie-breaker rule that adds the top three of four event scores.

“I’m really happy for Gabby,” said Raisman, the team captain. “She’s been working really hard so I’m really excited for her, but it’s definitely really frustrating because we (Mustafina) tied for third place. I was so close.” (USA Today)

Gabby also lead the US Team to gold with a third of the team’s points too. The US Women’s Gymnastics team (or the Fab Five as they are also known as) includes Mc Kayla Maroney, Kyla Ross, Alexandra Raisman, and Jordyn Wieber.

At age 14, Virgina Beach-native Gabby moved to Des Moines, Iowa to train with coach Liang Chow. A move that was hard on her and her family (mom Natalie Hawkins, two older sisters Arielle & Joyelle Hawkins and brother Jonathan Douglas). Natalie raised her four children as a single mom and spoke with the the media about the sacrifices she made to raise a gold medal gymnast. It was her older sister Arielle that pushed her to go into gymnastics. Arielle taught Gabby how to do a perfect cartwheel which pushed Gabby to begin gymnastics in 2003. Gabby’s family is so proud of her Olympian achievement…

Natalie Hawkins (@livlonglivstrng) – Congratulations to my BabyGirl Gymnast @gabrielledoug 2012 USA OLYMPIAN #Blessed
Thank u everyone for all of the beautiful tweets of congratulations to me, my family & @gabrielledoug !!! We r simply floating rite now!!!

Arielle Hawkins – (@ArieHawk) – Still tryna grasp the fact that my baby sis @gabrielledoug and her teammates are Olympic Gold Champions!!! #SOFREAKINAWESOME!!! #fiercefive!

John Douglas (@dougieFfresh25) – My sis @gabrielledoug was the first African American to win gold in 2012 At London Olympic games
We DID IT @gabrielledoug YOU DID IT sooooo proud of you

Joyelle Douglas – (@DJoybells) – My little sister @gabrielledoug won AllAround today!!! I’m speechless right now!!!! Congrats Brie!!! Love u so much and so proud!! 🙂 xoxoxo

Celebrities congratulated Gabby on her historic win too including the President of the United States of America Barack Obama!

Barack Obama – (@BarackObama) – @Jordyn_Wieber@GabrielleDoug@Aly_Raisman,@McKaylaMaroney@Kyla_Ross96: Congratulations! You’ve made us all proud. #TeamUSA

Kelly Rowland – (@KellyRowland) -SO proud of @gabrielledoug @McKaylaMaroney @jordynmarie2013@kyla_ross96 @Aly_Raisman on your GOLD MEDAL!! The Fab Five!!!!! #USA

Oprah Winfrey  – (@Oprah) – @gabrielledoug I’m so proud of you I’m beaming! May God forever bless your sweet heart.

Trey Songz – (@TreySongz) – Gabby!!!! Virginia reppppin

Taraji P. Henson – (@TheRealTaraji) – EVERYONE in the DMV should follow @gabrielledoug. She’s GREATNESS from the area! So proud of her! #Olympics2012

Nicki Minaj – (@NickiMinaj)  *kisses to Gabby* what an amazing little firecracker. #USA #Olympics

Beverly Johnson – (@BeverlyJohnson1) Congrats to Gabby Gold Medalist at the Olympics! #allthingsbeverly@JoshEstrin @BeverlyJohnson1

Sanaa Lathan – (@JustSanaa) All I have to say is @gabrielledoug!!! Yesssss baby! #olympics#teamusa #winning #gymnastics

Beyonce wrote a note for Gabby on her official website – beyonce.com –

A HUGE CONGRATULATIONS TO 16 YEAR OLD OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALIST GABBY DOUGLAS – WOW – WHAT A THRILL TO WATCH YOU TAKE THIS GOLD!

I CAN TELL YOU’VE BEEN WORKING HARD FOR SO LONG – ENJOY THIS MOMENT, ITS YOURS.

THANK YOU FOR INSPIRING ALL OF US!

LOVE,

B

What a talented, determined class act she is!

May I also add that I do NOT understand the obsession with her hair nor do I care much for the nickname Flying Squirrel! Can we call her Golden Gabby!! Firecracker Gabby! Lightening Gabby! She is NOT her hair nor is that nickname the business! It’s a non-factor! to her hard work, skills, and talent!

What I do know that we can all expect to see Gabby on your local newsstand quite soon. If you thought her Sports Illustrated and Time magazine covers were amazing, I predict that this is just the start of beautiful things for Gabby. I got this cute tweet from Twitter – If you take Gabby’s last name Douglas last name and rearrange the letters, it spells USAGold! Here’s another one – 2012 is the new black – a Black POTUS, a Black Miss Universe, a Black Miss Teen USA & a Black all around woman’s gymnastics gold medalist. From CulturalToast.com, congratulations to Gabrielle Douglas – 2012 Olympian Gold Women’s Gymnastics All-Around Champion!

Follow Gabrielle Douglas on Twitter: twitter.com/gabrielledoug
Website: gabrielledouglas.com
Facebook: facebook.com/GabrielleDouglasUSA

image credits – Getty Images, NBC/Yahoo Sports/Associated Press, The New York Times, & AP

Cultural Spot highlights outstanding, influential Africans in the media showcasing positive images of the Diaspora!

Cultural Loop: Angela & Vanessa Simmons in Virgos Lounge, Eve wears African Wax Print Jumpsuit, Christie Brown’s New Xutra LookBook & NBA Mavericks Player Dirk & girlfriend Jessica Weds in Traditional Kenyan Wedding

Plenty of newsworthy buzz has heated up the African fashion & entertainment blogosphere. From two Virgos Lounge sighting to a NBA All-Star wedding, CulturalToast.com presents Cultural Loop!

The Simmons sisters Angela and Vanessa were photographed wearing Virgos Lounge on and off the red carpet recently at the Art for Life Benefit event. Angela was seen in this Zaina dress with a funky fringe beaded bottom which you can purchase here.

Angela’s big sister Vanessa was also seen in Virgos Lounge at the launch of her new business venture Rose by Vanessa Jean clothing line at Miami Beach Fashion Week. Vanessa wore a stunning floral printed “Mollie Coral” wrap Skirt which you can purchase here.

I’m definitely loving the support the Simmons sisters is giving to Virgos Lounge. Angela’s a HUGE fan of the London-based Nigerian-run fashion line and I love the fact that Angela’s Virgos Lounge support is rubbing off on Vanessa. If you’re wondering about the Simmons sisters’ obsession with Virgos Lounge, credit goes to Angela’s Nigerian-American stylist Kanayo Ebi for hooking Angela up with Virgos Lounge yet again! I can definitely see Angela wearing this orange Virgos Lounge Tanya gown next on or off the red carpet next time…

I couldn’t help but fall in love with Eve’s wax print jumpsuit that she wore to the Intimately You Summit event in Philly. I also couldn’t help but notice that this jumpsuit is quite similar to the one Nadia Buari wore recently. It’s a cute look especially thanks to the lace detailing on the shoulder. Isn’t this a daring Aso Ebi inspiration, anyone?

Ghanaian fashion designer Christie Brown recently unveiled her latest lookbook – Xutra with chic wax print motifs. Christie debuted her collection at ARISE Fashion Week in Lagos earlier this year to great fan appreciation and rave. Shot by C.Asara Photography with hair and makeup by Maamess, model Amanda Hilaire definitely bought Christie Brown’s Xutra from design to stunning imagery! Connect with Christie Brown Online – facebook.com/ChristieBrownGH & christiebrownonline.com

 

CulturalToast.com is sending a huge congratulations to Dallas Mavericks NBA star Dirk Nowitzki and his new wife Jessica Olsson who got married over the July 15th weekend in a traditional Kenyan wedding! Dirk’s wife Jessica Olsson is of Kenyan and Swedish descent and Dirk is German professional basketball player! How cute and amazing are their traditional wedding outfits?!

Here’s Dirk & Jessica’s wedding details via Jambon News Sport:

It was a traditional kikuyu wedding ceremony commonly referred to as Ngurario.

The short version of the Kikuyu wedding, that is meant to announce to the community that the daughter is engaged, provided relatives from both sides with an opportunity to get to know each other and conclude ruracio (dowry payments) discussions.

When a couple goes through the ruracio phase, their wedding is officially recognized by customary laws.

There was plenty of fun and and plenty to eat and drink. The bride, Jessica was wearing a traditional Kikuyu garment and Dirk was in a dark brown traditional outfit with orange hues. Jessica was also presented with a kiondo by elederly kikuyu women. She had to demonstrate how she would go to the market and shop for her husband.

The NBA Star and Jessica Olsson held the ceremony over the July15th  weekend.  Jessica is born of a Kenyan mother and a Swedish father.

Munaluchi Bride magazine has the scoop on why Dirk and Jessica decided to have a traditional Kenyan wedding ceremony! Love that Dirk and Jessica are embracing their multicultural heritage!

image credits – Virgos Lounge Facebook. Getty Images. Jambon News Sports

Cultural Loop is a must-read news rundown within the fashion & entertainment industry!