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Jewel By Lisa Heats Up New York Fashion Week Fall 2012 Thanks to June Ambrose & Angela Simmons!

Jewel By Lisa has officially taken over New York Fashion Week Fall 2012 catwalk scene thanks to June Ambrose and Angela Simmons. February has seen LaLa Vasquez, Tai Beauchamp, and Joy Adeze photographed in stunning handcrafted jeweled JBL designs. CulturalToast.com shares the joy of the label’s founder/designer Lisa Folawiyo and her publicist Zara Okpara! Angela and June both paired their Jewel By Lisa designs with black. Would we see another celebrity wearing Jewel By Lisa again before February wraps up?! In the meantime, it’s safe to say that Jewel By Lisa is in-demand for this NYFW season!

Celebrity stylist June Ambrose shared her Jewel By Lisa fashion moment with her Twitter followers (@juneambrose). She paired her bejeweled pink, white, and black printed Jewel By Lisa Spring/Summer 2011 shirt with a black origami-like Ferre Skirt, a matching pink Adrienne Landau coat, and her style staple – blush pink Yves Saint Laurent pumps at Kim Hicks Couture Fall 2012 runway presentation. June’s handcrafted shirt made its runway debut last season during Arise Made in Africa fashion show. Just the idea of June – someone who has styled Alicia Keys, Jay-Z, and countless others supporting African fashion is simply amazing! I think she became a Jewelette when she saw Jewel By Lisa’s Spring/Summer 2011 Vintage Love collection last season. Gotta.love.it!

Pastry co-founder Angela Simmons was styled by her good friend Nigerian-American stylist Kanayo Ebi for her New York Fashion Week Fall 2012 appearances. Angela was seen in not one but three Jewel By Lisa style pieces. She’s also one of the first celebrities to wear Jewel By Lisa Spring/Summer 2011 beaded clutches. For her front row appearance at the Bebe Black Collection Fall 2012 fashion show, she wore a velvet Jewel By Lisa Autumn/Winter 2011 printed jacket. I love the way Angela made her Jewel By Lisa style items her statement piece by wearing all black each time. Kudos to Kanayo!

Angela Simmons in Jewel By Lisa NYFW

Also we recommend visiting the official Jewel By Lisa website to check out the new print AD campaign – http://jewelbylisa.com.ng

image credits – twitter. jewel by lisa. getty.

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

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Cultural Pulse: Adepero Oduye

Introducing a new segment on CulturalToast.com – Cultural Pulse. This new segment is a weekly feature celebrating talented influential African-Americans in the entertainment and fashion industry. 33 year-old Nigerian actress Adepero Oduye is someone all CulturalToast.com should admire for her pure talent! This week we’re celebrating Pariah breakthrough star Adepero!

Pariah trailer

Quick Facts about Adepero Oduye

  • Pariah, a film Spike Lee produced and a 2011 Sundance Film Festival participant, is Adepero’s feature debut.
  • Adepero on the lesson she hopes Pariah viewers will get: “It’s a great time for the film to come out, to make people a little bit more aware of the issues that’s been happening for a while but many people haven’t been paying attention to,” she said. “Here we have this story that’s really specific, but it’s so universal. You take away race, you take away sexuality by identity and at the end of the day when you watch it I feel like you realize, ‘Wow, we’re all more similar then we are different.” –Huffington Post Black Voices
  • She was a pre-med student prior to turning to acting.
  • She’s a Cornell University graduate.
  • She was raised in Brooklyn, NY to Nigerian immigrants. Her father’s death pushed her into acting. “He had a master’s. He had a Ph.D. Eventually, he got an M.D. but passed away before he could really pursue that. He died young. He died suddenly. When he passed away, I realized why I was in school. Why I wanted to be a doctor. It was because of him. When he passed away it propelled me to really figure out what really I wanted to be.”- Denver Post
  • Her mother didn’t understand her acting career choice: “She didn’t see it as a profession. Acting was not for people like us. For her, movies were not for African or black people. I remember thinking, ‘Yes, mom, I know I am black but I still want to act.’ She knew instinctively it was going to be a hard road.” –Daily Beast
  • Pariah’s story touched Adepero’s mother’s heart.After Sundance, my mother was in Nigeria and she called me and said ‘Pariah needs to come to Africa because they are killing people here because they are gay,’” said Oduye, smiling broadly. “She never talks about LGBT issues anywhere. But my participation in this film opened her mind up a little more. If that can happen to my mother, anything is possible.” -Daily Beast
  • Her biggest nod came from Vanity Fair magazine which crowned her as one of Hollywood’s fresh young stars of 2012! 

Pariah film star and Cornell University graduate Adepero Oduye appeared on the Mario Testino-shot cover of the coveted 18th annual Hollywood Issue for Vanity Fair Magazine. Each year the publication annouces their picks for Hollywood’s next generation of it girls. The shining recognition comes fresh off the heels of critically-acclaimed buzz the young Nigerian actress has received for her starring role in Pariah! When asked about the praise surrounding her performance in Pariah, Adepero said, “This is the beginning of a dream come true. It’s been so surreal and overwhelming, but in a good way.”

From the Vanity Fair Hollywood Issue:

January 2012: Adepero Oduye

Provenance: Brooklyn, New York. Age: 33. Is there a doctor in the house? The daughter of Nigerian immigrants, Oduye, who had always planned to be a doctor, graduated pre-med from Cornell. A convert to acting: After seeing Robert Duvall in The Apostle, her new path was decided. “I remember thinking to myself, This is why I want to be an actor. I want to be able to tell stories that mean something to people. I definitely feel like this is my purpose in life.” Try telling that to her mom: When Oduye told her mother about her career plans, “it was as if I was talking a foreign language. She was like, ‘Something happened to you—you’re crazy!’ But as long as I’m happy, she’s happy.” Plenty to be happy about: Last year’s Sundance Film Festival saw Oduye’s latest film, Pariah, become the critics’ darling. “This is the beginning of a dream come true,” she says. “It’s been so surreal and overwhelming, but in a good way.” And with Pariah’s release scheduled for December, more good things are sure to come.

Photograph by Ben Hassett.

Oduye wears a dress by Donna Karan New York; earrings by De Beers. See complete credits. VANITY FAIR

Judging by all the well-deserved praise Pariah has received and her recent Vanity Fair magazine cover, we predict more roles for Adepero in 2012. Maybe famed novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie might cast her in her next book-to-film adaptation? Hint, hint! 

Cultural Pulse is a weekly feature celebrating talented influential African-Americans in the entertainment and fashion industry. 

African Fashion at New York Fashion Spring 2012

New York Fashion Week saw plenty of African fashion designs lifted straight from the runway to the coveted front row. African fashion was worn on notable fashionable mavens like Georgie Badiel, Angela Simmons, Lisa Folawiyo, Joy Adaeze, Zara Okpara, and Mimi Plange during New York Fashion Week. CulturalToast.com takes a look back at how the runway looks were translated on our favorite celebrities and designers.

Georgie Badiel, one of the African fashion industry’s favorite IT girl, was seen in this avant-garde spiked ombre Pierre Antoine Veterello SS 2012 dress.

Georgie Badiel in Pierre Antoine Veterello SS 2012

To attend the Betsey Johnson NYFW show, Angela Simmons, co-owner of footwear and apparel line Pastrywas styled by Nigerian celebrity stylist Kanayo Ebi in this gorgeous yellow and turquoise beaded, silk dress from Virgos Lounge’s newly release Resort 2012 collection.

Angela Simmons in Virgos Lounge Resort 2012

Buy Angela’s “Opal” dress, virgoslounge.com

To present her A Flower in The Desert Spring/Summer 2012 collection, Mimi Plange of Ghana wore a hot pink Victorian-inspired button blouse with a pair of Manolo Blahnik for Mimi Plange booties.

Mimi Plange in Mimi Plange SS 2012

Mimi’s draped bloouse with folded collar and pearl buttons shirt is look #17 from the collection named “Norah.” 

Lisa Folawiyo wore a modifed silk printed Jewel By Lisa Spring/Summer 2012 shirt dress to unveil her Arise Made in Africa runway collection.

Lisa Folawiyo in Jewel By Lisa SS 2012

Publicist to Jewel By Lisa, Zara Okpara wore a multi-printed silk blouse (worn backwards) with a black feather skirt from JBL’s newly release Spring/Summer 2012 collection. We love her Chanel flap bag!

Zara Okpara in Jewel By Lisa SS 2012

Executive assistant to Essence Magazine’s Online Editor-in-Chief and celebrity stylist Joy Adaeze wore a Jewel By Lisa Spring 2011 dress with floral printed Topshop platform heels and Me Char chain bag to attend the Arise Made in Africa SS 2012 show.

Joy Adaeze in Jewel By Lisa Spring 2011

Vote for your favorite African Fashion Look at NYFW below…


getty. culturaltoast.com. elle

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

This or That: Kimora Lee Simmons vs. Annie Ilonzeh

The one shoulder ruffle dress look as seen on Kimora Lee Simmons and Annie Ilonzeh marks Cultural Toast’s first This or That Edition.

This irresistable look was first worn by Kimora Lee Simmons who opted for the classy black look at the 39th Annual AFI Life Achievement Awards.

In late July Annie Ilonzeh of the upcoming Charlie’s Angels TV series was seen in a tangerine orange look with a gold waist-cinch belt at the 2011 Comic-Con event for a panel discussion with co-stars Rachael Taylor and Minka Kelly. Gotta love Annie’s Yves Saint Laurent Tribute sandals.

Cultural This or That: Do you prefer Kimora’s black or Annie’s orange? Discuss!

Cultural Toast’s This Or That Recommends: Parker Ruffle Dress//Glitterati Dress

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This Or That examines style trends on and off the red carpet. Sometimes it’s a fashion face-off or two looks that’s quite similar.

Tori Famuyiwa Introduces Age of Decadence

Famed Nigerian, New York-based fashion designer and stylist Tori Famuyiwa has just release a sneak preview of his upcoming collection, Age of Decadence.

The six glamorous snapshots showcases Tori’s true aesthetic to African prints and elegance. We love the stitching and bold use of prints!

Accessories used in the photo shoot was by upcoming Ghanaian accessories it girl Designs by U.

Tori just wrapped up Africa Fashion Week New York where he worked as the executive stylist. He also can be found as a stylist for Munaluchi Bridal Magazine. We salute Tori Famuyiwa!


Tori Famuyiwa on Facebook//Designs by U on Facebook

photo credit: Tori Famuyiwa

Cultural statement is a feature celebrating positive imagery of African professionals which includes fashion photo shoots and print AD campaigns.