Carnival Prep Part 2

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Feathers! Gems! Trims! Oh My!

Though we had a long Carnival season this year, Carnival week still managed to sneak up on me. As I mentioned before, I  I had purchased all my materials in January, but by the Sunday before Carnival I had a completely sheer monokini as my costume base and nothing attached to it.

Instead, I was busy working on a friend's Monday wear. Thank God for Featheration Motif. The new trim store  opened in the middle of February on Bournes Road in St. James. It stocks a great selection of trims and a SUPER extensive variety of gems in a spectrum of colours and styles that will either render you completely inspired or completely overwhelmed. Luckily the store also boasts great organization in a clean space and helpful and friendly staff, led by proprietor Tisha Neilson, who never complain about their painstaking efforts counting out gems for you (me). They're open year round but definitely keep them in mind for Carnival 2015.

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A lot of my costume work was done at the Liilah Workshop, which was bustling out Monday Wear and bathing suits throughout the Carnival season. Designer Lisa Marie Henry, sewed my monokini out of a nude sheer mesh that she hand dyed to match my skin tone. I was so impressed with Lisa this season and how she was able to not only bring together my monokini from a handful of disparate images that I gave to her, but do the same for countless other clients, and manage her time to make sure it was all complete by Carnival Sunday night. Big up to her assistants Vanessa, Ornella and Aquila who all kept me laughing throughout the entire process.

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The colours of my costume were inspired by the pastel peaches, pinks and purples of the gorgeous foil fabric used in Anya Ayoung Chee's Cheyenne costume. I played off of this with peach and rose gold trims and chains and lots of fantastic gems. Lisa and Anya both helped me mastermind construction of the costume with extremely helpful hints along the way  ("I need to add another ring here for support", "Sew the feathers to this seam for the angle you want" etc.) to help me bring the design ideas to life.

And all praises are due to Gem-Tac, the new glue specifically for gems that I just discovered. Basically, throughout this entire process I didn't pick up a glue gun ONCE. Gem-Tac (also available at Featheration btw), delivered the cleanest look I have ever achieved when applying gems to fabric and it lasted. I was super nervous all of Carnival Tuesday because I only used gems to cover my sheer-fabric-ed ass but literally I only lost one gem during the whole day, and honestly I don't even know from where.

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And then, just like that it was Carnival Tuesday morning. As usual I commissioned my father to help with tying of straps, spraying of sunscreen, and, yes, last minute trim sewing lol. After a quick photoshoot with Kyle at the house, I was ready!

The only issue I had with the costume was that my collar trim dug into my neck leaving some great Ash Wednesday battle scars, but of course, I have noone to blame for that but myself!

I missed Carnival last year but 2014 was an amazing return to the road for me. I had literally no complaints (okay except that the big men monopolizing the bars with their height and breadth really annoy me. Next year can we have a girls only bar truck TRIBE??). I can't wait for Carnival 2015 and I hope everyone had an amazing, safe and enjoyable Carnival season as well.

Photography: Kyle Walcott

Makeup: Natalie Simone Miles of Miles of Beauty

Truck on D (Side of D) Road

IMG_3477-2 IMG_3479 IMG_3481 IMG_3484 IMG_3486 IMG_3489 IMG_3491 IMG_3495 IMG_3504 IMG_3509 IMG_3518 IMG_3522 IMG_3526 IMG_3527 IMG_3532 So there are two empty trailer trucks parked on the side of the Diego Martin Highway and I was super excited to shoot in them. Why? I see these trucks as a metaphor for my current Carnival situation. For those who don't know, the trailer truck is really the heart of contemporary Trinidad Carnival. As controversial as the number of trucks on the road during Carnival Monday and Tuesday is (they cause massive congestion in our narrow streets), the speaker boxes that they carry and the music that they pump is really what gives you the drive to walk, chip, wine, dance throughout the streets of Port of Spain every year and not wonder ... what the hell am I really doing? These trucks ARE Carnival.

But these two lonely music trucks are so removed from the action currently. Don't get me wrong. Dey READY. Their painted and primed up and all they need is to be hooked up to a truck, speakers'd up and banners'd out, and they ready to go. But they're not there yet.

This is how I feel right now. I do feel deep down that Carnival is a huge part of me as I am of it, but as of today, Carnival Wednesday, I feel like it is happening without me. I am not ready. My costume is not complete (thought it WILL be). I've been to like a fete and a half for the season. And because of my current job I feel completely removed from the building hubbub of Carnival that continues around me.

All that ends tomorrow though...


Photography: Kyle Walcott

Tank: Express (old). Pants: River Island. Wedges: Qupid (similar here). Sunglasses: Nastygal. Lace Bra: Calzedonia.

Carnival Prep Part 1

IMG_2715IMG_2714IMG_2707 IMG_2708IMG_2717 IMG_2722 This year, I'm doing a little something special for my Carnival Tuesday costume. Let's just say I'm taking the excitement I used to have for masterminding Monday Wear kits (which has recently dissipated due to the commodification of Monday Wear design lol) and applying it to my Tuesday costume. Here's a sneak peek of what I'm up to.

Photography: Kyle Walcott

The Girl Who Was Never Satisfied
























Photography by BBS

Eyelet dress - Forever 21. Leopard flats - Steve Madden. Orange stone necklace at Fashion IS

Went down to the Savannah to take a few pics with those familiar clues that let us know Carnival soon approaches. I think my face shows the requisite combination of longing and "Lawd dis sun hot!" I'm now in Italy but after a beautiful three weeks at home I'm longing for the things I won't be a part of and the people I can't be with. One of the biggest lessons a spoil chile can learn is that you can't. Have. Everything.

Oh. Btw. I loved this outfit so much I wanted to wear it all day including to dinner that night. That is, until my father looked at me and said "Am girl please go an bathe an change your clothes. Ent u want to be in fashion??!" Shame.