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Cookie Lyon Will Rule Saks Fifth Avenue

#EmpirexSaks

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Saks Fifth Avenue goes to the hood. Or rather, Cookie brings the hood to Saks. I lol’d when I read that the bastion of luxury retail would curate a collection based on the hit ghetto-fabulous TV series Empire.  Saks’ edited narrative features the designs of Jimmy Choo, Alexis Bittar, Cushnie et Ochs and MCM to name a few. Not bad.

Now, we all know how Cookie dresses. It will be a feat of miracles that Saks can keep their windows from looking like an overwrought heap of knockoffs from Canal Street with a touch of 90’s era Lil Kim. The pieces look good from what I see in the press release. I only wish there was an Ode to BooBoo Kitty and Tiana, both opportunities to take advantage of Saks enviable contemporary collections. The windows will be up from September 10 through October 7 and coincides with the start of the new season for the show.

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Cookie’s edit

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Serena Williams. The Greatest.

If they want to market someone who is white and blond, that’s their choice. I have a lot of partners who are very happy to work with me. -Serena Williams on the endorsement preferences of her white counterparts

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Serena Williams, the greatest tennis player of all time, brushes the haters off in the latest New York Times Magazine. Because she is, the best at what she does, and there is no argument about that.

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Why Dr. Dre’s Apology is Not Enough

I’m doing everything I can so I never resemble that man again…I apologize to the women I’ve hurt. I deeply regret what I did and know that it has forever impacted all of our lives.” – Dr. Dre, apologizing for the physical abuse he inflicted upon numerous women

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How convenient that Dr. Dre would finally make a statement, now that his prior history of being physically violent towards women began taking away from Dre’s glowing aura of feeling himself with the release of Straight Outta Compton. This PR cleanup is to be expected, given the film’s huge success, and the internet’s major role in leaving no secret untold, and no legend untarnished.

When singer Michel’le, spoke sarcastically about her omission in the movie, it was a clear jab at the importance that such an experience would contribute to the music. I find it disturbing that violence of the domestic kind could be completely omitted from the film, and that music fans would deem that as entirely acceptable. It would be laughable, if it wasn’t so sad, considering that abuse against women, along with guns and drugs, was and continues to be, without a doubt, part of those young men’s lives.

The fact that women are constantly subjugated in the music of N.W.A. should give anyone with ears and a brain a clear understanding of these rappers’ apathy towards women. For anyone to dismiss the Dre’s violence against women as having nothing to do with the music, is entirely delusional. In fact, any trace of the violence was omitted from the movie because the movie “wasn’t about a lot of side stories” (sigh, in the words of the film’s director Gary Gray).

Fans have taken up for the members of N.W.A, labeling Dee Barnes, Michel’le, and Tairrie B as whores, attention-seekers, and money grubbers. A quick glance at the comments section of the videos detailing the accusations of violence place these women as useless in the grander picture of their beloved idols, their stories invalidated because of their lack of money and importance in the realm of celebrity importance. It’s eerily similar to the attacks against Bill Cosby’s rape victims; an inconvenient truth that rears it’s ugly head when the reputation of the subject of the accusations becomes less than legendary.

This has to stop. And it will stop when hip hop stops promoting the rape and violence culture against women. It stops when fans stop making excuses for their favorite artists when they exhibit bad behavior against women in our communities. And it stops when we stop shaming these victims of violence and let their stories be heard.

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Rest. Rejuvenation. Rock and Roll

#AfropunkFest

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From the festival front lines: @fvp_cpt

I took a brief digital vacation while I enjoyed the sun, city life, and some less-humid days in New York City. On Sunday, after dancing my way into the sunshine in Central Park with my long time African dance community, my daughter and I headed over to Brooklyn for the AfroPunk Festival to catch Lenny Kravitz close out the weekend show.

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I have to admit, I was a little turned off by the $50 entrance fee, although I understand that with unique, artistic events like these, the inevitable corporate control of branding comes into place, where the original influences become priced-out of a once unique event. With this new tier-pricing, I expect to see a lot more of the scene-y types in coming years, with spreads in the high fashion magazines that make anything underground instantly uncool. But, back to the scene. I enjoyed browsing the vendors and taking in beautiful, stylish black people. And most of all, the music, which is the whole point of it all. Here are some truly inspirational looks from the weekend:

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Afropunk takeover|| #AFROPUNK2015 #melanin #blackgirlmagic

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Lavish Body: Kerry Washington Covers Self Magazine

Where is my body today? What do I need today? -Kerry Washington

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When working out becomes just a daily chore, sometimes we fail to listen to where our body is at, in a dogged attempt to conquer our fitness goals. Listen to your body, then act accordingly.

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Oh, and on that fitness tip, I thought of this little meme from last winter.

A photo posted by Lavish (@lavishchic) on

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Lavish Beauty: JHud’s Buzz Cut

Who needs hair, when u serving face! – Jennifer Hudson

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Jennifer Hudson showed off her fresh chop. It’s a bold move, considering that hair is great at hiding flaws, contouring and framing a face, and changing your demeanor. It’s such a risk, chopping it all off. I’ve done it, years ago, and the upkeep is worse than having a head full of hair. One missed appointment, and you are fully on blast, with no ponytail as a saving grace. But Ms. Hudson looks amazing!

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Youtube Vlogger Sunshine Abuwi has a great video on on getting and maintaining a fabulous buzz cut:

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Lala Anthony. Goals.

Something to think about before you grab another hamburger off the grill, or knock back that oh so delicious sangria. Mrs. Carmelo Anthony.

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Anthony in T by Alexander Wang


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Trend: Alicia Keys Rocks A Septum Ring

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I have been contemplating a septum ring for some time. My lifestyle seems to fit into the look: bohemian, urban gardener, life seeker. But then I come back down to reality and wonder if I’m down for the permanence or the pain. This past weekend

Alicia Keys was spotted with a new nasal piercing by Meadow Lark Jewelry, and I couldn’t help but start to feel envious again. Alicia, Zoe Kravitz, and Kelis wear it to such perfect effect; maybe I’ll give a faux septum a try this weekend. Get inspired by a few sisters beauties rocking the septum ring look.

HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 07:  Actress Zoe Kravitz arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere "Mad Max: Fury Road" at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on May 7, 2015 in Hollywood, California.  (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)

HOLLYWOOD, CA – MAY 07: Actress Zoe Kravitz arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere “Mad Max: Fury Road” at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on May 7, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)

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This Is Why I Love Janelle Monae

Because she’s not only a fashion ingenue. Because she’s not just a quirky Black pop star. Because she stands for something.

Won’t you say their names? Can we say their names right now? Can we speak their names, as long as we have breath in our bodies? -Janelle Monae

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After helping to lead a #BlackLivesMatter march in Philadelphia on Wednesday in remembrance of the anniversary of Michael Brown’s death and all the other black lives lost senselessly to police brutality, the artist, along with her Wonderland label mates released Hell You Talmbout. The song is urgent, pleading, angry, and emotional. Have a listen here. And say their names.

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Beyonce. Vogue.

#BeyonceVogue

Mario Testino photographed the songstress to flawless effect in the September issue. Indulge.

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