fashion + beauty + insider interviews + est 2006

Sunday, May 06, 2007


big knip beach in curacao.

...okay,maybe not haute. but the island of curacao (pronounced kyur-o-saw) definitely has lots of mainstream couture. (i know that term is an oxymoron, but it's catchy, aint it!?) i just got back from curacao this morning. i was on the island for five days reporting on - what else!?- people, places and products for two publications and the blayreport. there was lots of substance to see (check out the slaverly museum pics), but there was also tons of style. as you can see from the pics, the bright, pastels they use to paint their buildings...

bustling streets of downtown, willemsted, the capital of curacao.

...are breathtaking, as is the natural terrain of the island. but nothing surprised, or impressed, me more than the number of american brands and stores there. i checked out lacoste, polo ralph lauren, timberland, and athlete's foot among other stores.

store front of the polo store

athletes foot, also downtown.

lesportsac, which had a super chic staff.

although i neglected to take pics of curacaons for the blog, take my word for it when i say there were a stylish bunch. the mix of over 150 nationalities on this tiny island off the coast of venezuela has created an eclectic, island chic style of dress. most of the pieces i saw were uber colorful, relaxed, and flowing. and ofcourse, as with any place with a massive influx of african culture the people were charming, friendly and absolutely beautiful. (i mean, i should know. i am a proud african girl myself.)

and speaking of africa, the island was once a major stop for dutch business men who traded in african slaves. to remember, and learn from this history, dutch millionaire jacab dekker, launched the largest slavery museum in the world. it is called museum kuara hualanda. more than any beach, store, or hotel - this is the number one reason to visit the island. the museum's artifacts are incredibly vast. below is very small sample of some of the pieces they have.

authentic kkk costumes, purchased for $2000 a piece from new york.

note the blood stains still on them.

this statue called "mama africa" greets visitors when they enter the museum.

proud slave owners used to place this in front of their offices to let others know their trade.

me and leo helm, director and curator of the museum.

zandile blay: reporting for duty. reporting in fashion.

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