fashion + beauty + insider interviews + est 2006

Thursday, June 28, 2007


honestly, this needs no introduction. the style tips and grooming wisdom rapper jim jones offers is priceless. he goes off on his top eight turnoffs in a recent issue of vibe magazine. thanks to style correspondent, zeba blay for sending this over!

would you let this man give you fashion advice?

"Chicks think they're fly, and the heel of their shoes is leaning -- Leaning Tower of Pisa and all that. The front of their shoe is all scuffed up. And don't walk around like you just left Africa barefoot, wearing small-ass sandals with your toes crawling out the front."

"Don't be coming outside in the wintertime with them ugly-ass UGGS on -- I don't care how comfortable they feel. Who wants to roll out the bed and see a pair of UGGs? There's no sex appeal with a pair of UGGS at the bottom of the bed!"

"There's a difference between bloomers and boy shorts. Don't be having no bloomers talking about, 'They're boy shorts.' Them ain't boy shorts -- them big ass panties!"

"Most ladies, they have their tracks showing, then the weave looks hella dirty and dusty like they slept on one side for the whole month. Got one side patted down, trying to get the wild Beyonce look."

"If you're over 200 pounds, don't put that bikini on, baby. Them spandexes are not calling your name. Big girls need to look at Mo'Nique and how she dresses. She doesn't ever play herself."


do it ! do it! do it down b! i love these gold link tights! (

never let it be said that the "beautiful b" doesn't work hard for her money. even strippers trying to pay their way through college don't put that much effort in. the weave was flawless (finally), the body was tight (did you see that stomach?!), and the performance was superb (so was that really cute boy she was dancing with!) p.s those gold tights she had on? $100,0000 by balenciaga. (and as usual, despite a very fab and humble introduction, she still sunned kelly rowland. ms. kelly, try harder.)

a runway model at balenciaga's last show, wearing the tights beyonce danced in at the b.e.t awards!


blaynista's, what do i love more than life itself? mens clothing! okay, maybe i am being dramatic. but you get the point. i live for fabulous, colorful, sexy, body flattering mens pieces. which is why i am ferklempt at not being in milan to check out the menswears collections being debuted by all the designers we love (fendi, calvin klein, marni, etc.) luckily, one of my favorite fashion news services, has provided extensive reviews of each show. i selected a few of my favorite ones to share with you. if you read them, then close your eyes and imagine the pieces. you'll almost feel like you were there. trust me! i tried!



"Italo Zucchelli produced one of the best collections seen so far this week in Milan. The designer managed to infuse the season's lightness of being with a slick modernity that moves menswear in a totally new direction. Drawing on those iconic images from Bruce Weber's Calvin Klein 80s ad campaigns, the collection was imbued with a sense of sparse athleticism, fro m the clean greys, taupes and white of the palette, to the taut, minimal silhouettes.
There was all the comfort of the tracksuit, second-skin cycle shorts and classic vest tops; an easy SB suit worked in the comfort of marled grey sweatshirting; the effortless simplicity of a jumpsuit crafted from a crisp shirt and matching pant; and the futuristic shim mer of a silvery blouson. And in among all the testosterone-laden athleticism, beautiful aquarelles of sunrise pinks and a flash of cornflower blue, adding a softer tactile appeal."


get into these man bags son! i live for them! (

"Fendi's spring/summer collection was a beautiful, fresh take on the modern man's wardrobe. Not simply casualising formalwear but also melding it into co mfortable and functional pieces with an ease of style that is truly rare.Silv ia Venturini told WGSN: "I wanted to work on the concept of lightness. I wanted to use very lightweight fabrics that I would normally use on shirts - but on su its. The idea was to create 'tracksuit-formal suits', where it was all about comfort." The colour palette continued this lightness with outfits all in the s ame very subtle tones - nuances of white, mint, buttercup and st one.The finest long-sleeve knits were worn over shirts and ties - all of the same colour tone - creating a beautiful sheer touch. And a fresh silhouette was seen in the form of beautiful, very wide trousers in a liquid metallic Lurex nylon."

these look sorta awkward to me.....(

"The season's emerging trends for lightness and colour bypassed Consuelo Castiglioni, whose spring/summer showing was a lesson in quiet sobriety. The palette of greys, black and inky blue spoke more of storm-tossed skies than sun-filled summer days. That sombre mood reinforced with the flat planes of colour that worked across short-sleeved jackets and shirts, thigh-cropped lightweight macs and the boyish knee-length shorts.The clouds parted however, to reveal a flash of intense sky blue for an easy shirt or when the house's signature prints took shape in the form of broad black-and-white brush strokes and a graphic pixelated chequerboard pattern. Minimal detailing and technical fabric finishes evoked a modernist feel, with clean fly-fronts, minuscule curved collars on crisp shirts and the plastic zip splicing the centre front of a simple grey knit."


liz claiborne with her husband of over thirty years, and business partner, arthur ortenberg.

trail blazing fashion designer liz claiborne died yesterday. according to the new york times, her death was caused by "complications " from cancer. she was 78 years old. she started her company in 1976, specializing in "affordable, professional-looking clothes" for women in the corporate world. that was a fitting demographic since claiborne herself was a corporate giant. by the time she retired from her company in 1990 it was the largest womens brand in america, making over 1 billion in sales. today the company owns juicy couture, ellen tracy, lucky brand jeans and dana buchman. liz claiborne, inc was the first company by a woman to enter the fourtune 500.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

leaving on a jet plane....

blaynista's, i am on my way to las vegas this afternoon. come back later for my thoughts on the FABULOUS BET AWARDS and more fab fashion news! xo, zb



legendary designer, gianfranco ferre, who died earlier this month was burried last week in milan. the 62 year old, "architect of fashion," was was known for his fashion forward designs at christian dior died of a massive brain hemorage. the funeral was held at san marco church. his gianfranco ferre menswear show debuted to rave reviews this past sunday.

FASHION FIX: mandalay bay hotel

while a hotel is not fashion, it certainly can be fashionable. that's why today's fashion fix is the mandalay bay hotel (yes! it rhymes with my name: zandile blay!). this legendary hotel is renowned for it's ultra posh and luxurious digs like the 550 DR suite is also the place i will be blogging from for the next five days. yes! momma is on her way to vegas for a travel story. look forward to some very interesting pics and stories.

what: 550 DR Deluxe Suite at the Mandalay Bay
where: Mandalay Hotel
why: do you love luxurious living!? well, you will love this: beautiful pool and mountain views, imported granite sinks, flat screen t.v's, and the most heavenly bed you will ever lay on.
co$t: $140 a night (pretty darn affordable, don't ya think!?)

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


chapman with her boyfriend, weinstein. (

georgina chapman, co-designer of young hollywood's favorite brand, marchessa, and girlfriend of harvey weinstein, just turned down a major deal. according to, a major "as-yet-unnamed" french fashion house approached her to become it's new "creative directer" apparently she wanted to dedicate all her time to the growing brand. plus with a major brand and a filthy rich boyfriend, who needs all the hassle of working for someone else?


an interior shot of charles de gaulle airport. (

next time you are making your way through charles de gaulle airport in paris, please note that you are near the best airport shopping experience on earth. the aeroports de paris, which governs airports in paris (naturally), has upgraded the retail area at the airport, to include airport includes several large shopping areas, the largest of which is a 3,200 square foot area dedicated to a mix of restaurants and luxury shopping areas, including armani.


the designer looking as dapper as his white label does. (

i'm not a calvinista, so i had no idea about his "white label." but apparently, a lot of people do. the label is doing so well that calvin kline plans on opening five white label stores across the country. shoppers in the following locations can delight: los angeles (the beverly center), denver, (cherry creek), bloomfield hills( the mall at partrigde creek), natik (natick collection) and atlanta (lenox square).


elie tahari is serious about his cash. (

do you love theory? do you love elie tahari? then you'll love the drama between these two brands. a new york supreme court has thrown out a case by tahari against in his former partner in the theory brand, andrew rosen. in the case, tahari claimed that partner, rosen, had encouraged him to sell his company for less than it's value. but at least there's still some good news: the court kept another case in which he is asking for $2 million in royalties. here's the lesson blaynista's: next time read the contract, and read it well.


besides her momma, nobody, but nobody loves jaslene gonzales, winner of this years america's next top model,more than me. but darn, how the mighty have fallen - or in this case - shrunken (i know it's not a word.) this photo of a skeletal looking jaslene at a party in miami this past weekend looks very disturbing. even more (if not even worse) this outfit does nothing for her body and vice versa. by itself the dress is okay -just okay. but paired with those tacky white shoes, it looks like a really cheap outfit from your neighborhood joyce leslie. didn't she get some sort of cash award as the winner? jaslene, do better!

guess whose bizak!

omg blaynista's! it's me! it's me! i am blogging right keep reading for fresh,fabulous, fassipp!

Friday, June 22, 2007


blaynista's, you know the deal: i am on deadline right now and so......please forgive me. and furthermore please check back for more fab fassip! love you like a brand new stella mccartney summer dress, and ysl block heels, and botega vennetta woven tote.....but i digress.....

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


considering today's wonderful news, we thought we'd pay homage to h+m's new guest designer by featuring one of his items for today's fashion fix. cocktail rings are a must for fashionista's who love bold, distinctive pieces. a perfect pick in this catageory would be this cavalli ring....

what: wooden serpent ring by roberto cavalli
why: attention to detail makes this pieace an absolute must-have! check out the swarovski crystals and gold settings. using wood as the main material in a ring, is an unexpected - yet strangely decadent choice. this is ideal for those days where you want your accessories to do double duty as conversation pieces.
co$t: $290


naomi doing what she does best: be beautiful.

she's really the last person you would peg for this - but she was the right pick. naomi campbell hosted the launch of the omnipeace by sinorelli t-shirt launch at scoop in new york city this past monday. the stunning runway diva mixed and mingled with guests (really, just the designer of the collection, mary fanaro, since she declined all press.) although she spent only 25 minutes - she made every minute a fabulous one with her amazing hair, gorgeous smile and super tight jeans and alaia heels. but enough about what she wore, let's talk about why she was there: this event is meant to shine the spotlight on Millennium Promise, a non-profit agency which aims to end poverty in subsaharan africa (good luck.) proceeds from sales of the shirt, which retail for $62, go towards this purpose. fabulous host + fabulous cause = fabulous evening. we truly wish we were there for this one.


i am passionate about the where: alicia keys at new york cities cipriani's restaurant in a fundraising effort for her charity. many kudos on that. but i am very dispassionate about the what: this black spaghetti strap dress. it's really just okay. and doesn't have as much punch, power, or pizazz as the celebrity who wheres it or the cause she wears it to. alicia: do better.


signature cavali dress: full of sex appeal and color.

this has been posted as breaking news all over - and at the blayreport, we will call it the bombshell of the season: roberto cavalli will serve as guest designer for h+m's autumn collection. the designer, who is adored by young fashionista's like beyonce and christina aguilera is scheduled to create menswear, womenswear, as well as lingerie and accessories. according to wgsn, the pieces will be available in around 200 stores world wide. he follows in the footsteps of designers such as stella mccartney and viktor and rolf, both of him have launched (very profitable) collections under h&m. this means two things for us blaynistas, 1) get ready for the fiercest, sexiest, most colorful clothes have ever seen at h&m. 2)get ready for the fiercest battle of your life! i guarantee that when the collection hits clothing stores, lines will start forming at 6 a.m, girls will show up in sneakers and sweatpants, and my especially thugged out readers will come with their hair braided and face greased up in case something other than price tags pops off.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


guys and dolls, even "uptown" girls will go crazy for this downtown tote. like my other fave ysl bag, the muse, this tote is both fashionable and functional.....

what: yves saint laurent large downtown tote Large Downtown Tote
why: ideal for daily errands, a busy work day or a leisurely weekend. this bag can take you through your day - or week - in style!
co$t: $1,795


the man. the myth. the legend: gianni versace. (
can you believe it's been ten years since gianni versace, the original designer/creater of versace and brother of donatella, died? july 15th marks the actual day of his death and his home country of milan is pulling out all the stops to commemorate his death. they have revealed plans to name a street after the legendary designer in milan. the street will be called, via versace. in addition, there are plans to unveil a show called, "thanks gianni, with love" at the la scala opera house in milan, also taking place on july 15th. "gianni was a great man and a great artist. a genius who deserved all this," said his little sister and current versace designer, donatella on


mr. jones is set to cash in on his name and his brand.
so blaynistas...guess who has a new "lifestyle" line coming up? quincy jones! according to, the music mogul is in talks to "launch a licensing program to create a lifestyle brand around his name." it is set to debut at a licensing show in new york city today. i live for quincy jones, who is turning 75 soon. the man and the music are legendary. but my question is, what lifestyle?


daisy fuentes at a kohl's launch for her line. (
i've always loved daisy fuentes for her beautiful looks and equally beautiful personality. but this, yall? this is ugly! according to, a sweatshop in guatamela claims that clothes from fuentes' clothing collection , which is sold exclusively at kohl's, are manufactured there. charles kernaghan, executive director of new york's national labor committee says conditions at the sweatshop are "abusive and illegal." allegedly, workers are paid $0.25 for each shirt daisy sells (these are valued between $22 and $38), and workers are forced to work 60 hour weeks. the name of the factory is fribo sa apparel factory in santiago sacatepequez, and also produced clothing sold at wet seal and the dress barn.


sorry if this offends you... dog fur, just skinned off the dog. (
do you own this!? so many of us have coats like this and the trim is dog fur! (

i can't even believe i'm blogging on this. was it naive of me to think that cat and dog fur are a thing of the past? according to the european union, it is very much a present and prevalent problem. the coalition of european nations claim that the fur originates mainly from china, where clothing manufacturers mislabel the fur. arlene mccarthy, president of europe's consumer affairs committee told, "many european citizens are unwittingly deceived into buying garments made out of cat and dog fur due to mislabelling. this law will put an end to these deceptive practices." wow so does this mean that there's some truth to dog meat being sold as chicken!? damn!


the vest that stella designed. (
leave it to my girl stella mccartney (in case you didn't know i am obsessed with her line!) to make a fashionable case for charity. during london's annual glastonbury music festival, she has designed a colorful racer back tank. the limited edition shirt is not available on any site or store, and will only be sold on site at the event. proceeds from the sale of the 5,000 shirts will go to oxfam. the festival which will feature amy winehouse (she scares me, i don't get the hype) the killers, and dirty pretty things is slowly becoming a fashionista's paradise. in the past british fashion icon kate moss has turned up in some cute gear (a bold caftans and denim hot pants.) if you can afford to stop by the event (it takes place from june 22nd to the 24th) log on to


the devil wore a bad haircut and a scruffy five o'clock shadow. he is also going to jail. (
no dearies, we are not talking about wintours perennial blunt bob. (will i get blacklisted for saying that!) we are talking about peter braunstein, former womens wear daily staffer, and current jailbird. he's been convicted of several crimes, including torturing a fashion journalist for hours and making death threats on anna wintour's life. according to, he said he would like to send wintour to "a hell filled with rats." ultimately, and not surprisingly, he pled insanity. but the jury didn't buy it. it took them only four hours to convict.


timbaland looking a hot-hood-mess in paris.

a pet peeve of mine is people with money who dress like they don't even have access to the local goodwill. case in point, timbaland walking around on a "shopping" trip in paris. (didn't he hear oprah's story with hermes!?). timbaland's outfit doesn't reflect his wealth, let alone a love for himself or his appearance. the sweatpants are too big and too sloppy. the white-t looks dir-t. and the uggs? ugh! i don't mean to be harsh - i am a fashion lover not a critic. but timbaland: do better.

luxury shopping in kuwait? believe it.

an overview of kuwait. (

who says luxury shopping only exists on 5th ave? the middle eastern nation of kuwait is getting into the mix with a luxury boutique called "109." the retail concept, which is being opened by the middle east luxury group, and will feature "specially selected" brands according to womens wear daily. these include galliano, just cavalli, versace jeans couture and gf ferre. this luxury retail set-up has already been opened in lebanon, where it's received a lot of success.

Monday, June 18, 2007


raquel zimmerman modeling in the new gucci by gucci ads. (fashion week daily)

frida giannini, tom fords successor at gucci, just debuted her first fragrance under the house of gucci. it is called, appropriately, gucci by gucci, and is described by fashion week daily "marvelous scent." the fragrance will be sold in gucci boutiques and selected department stores starting in late october and early november. it is a blend of guava, pear and the tahitian tiare flower.


a denim sales man at the hinoya plus mart (new york times)

style correspondent omar abdullah sent this in from the new york times: japan already the mecca for all things fierce - is now stepping up it's game even more on the denim tip. according to a recent feature in the new york times, the hinoya plus mart is fast becoming the denim mecca of the region. and their most popular denims at the moment? sugar cane jeans. for $450 you too can cop a pair of these jeans which have developed a cult following not just in japan, but abroad. and what's so new about these denims? that they are old. ounce for ounce, cut for cut, and zipper for zipper, these jeans are near exact replicas of levi strauss jeans from 1955.


oh just to be the cooking staff on this yacht

money makes the world - and romance - go round...

fresh off a mini-vacay of my own, i feel compelled to critique another couple on vacation: the legendary jay-z and beyonce. i have mixed feelings on these two at times, but today i am loving the vacation chic. in the top photo some might say beyonce looks a straight mess. but i love that this glamour queen can show such a casual side of herself. and jay-z shows us "how to do this son" in that plush, white cotton robe. i live for the second picture above. the flowing hair (or weave), the bold blue dress, the cuban cigar, the cocky pose. ain't love grand? (especially when you got grands!?)


ferre taking a bow at a show.

if you are an eighties baby like myself, the gianfranco ferre was probably before your time. but this legendary italian designer has touched or influenced nearly every luxury label we love. yesteray, at the age of 62 he died of a massive brain hemorrhage. before turning his attention to his own label, ferre had a long and legendary career at christian dior. he was the first designer of non-french origin to design for the house and his last collection for them bowed a little over ten years agoo. since then he was been focused on reviveing his namesake label and has a mens collection scheduled to be presented on june 24.


fergie rocking candies clothing at a shoot. (fashion week daily)

life is good in fergie-land. the black eyed pee - i am sorry - pea, will star in a series of print, televison and online ad campaigns for the candie's brand. instead of shooting brand new ads, candie's is actually pulling video clips, and using candid shots from fergie's recently released video, "big girls don't cry." the video, is actually already an ad for candies, since everything from clothing, to jewelry, to sleepwear is all by the company. according to fashion week daily, the ads will launch in september. i am not mad at fergies business hustle. (i also don't know a single soul who wears candies apparel. but i digress...)


female of the species: giles deacon's "she" print for intel computers. (fashion week daily)

tired of boring black or white computers? well, british designer, giles deacon has a fix for you. he just debuted his "tribal-inspired" prints for intel computer's "asus" notebooks. the laptops will come in either in pink prints (theoretically for girls) or blue prints (theoretically for boys.) according to fashion week daily, only 150 of these will be produced and they are available exclusively at selfridges in london. sorry u.s blaynistas!

Sunday, June 17, 2007


that's how i define these two fabulous ladies below. on a recent family stroll, (i had to drag them kicking and screaming) my mother, agnes, and my auntie, akwele, strike a pose by the water front. the new york city skyline behind them is stunning, sure. but not half as stunning as these two girls. my auntie akwele, and my mommabear, agnes, flash their signature smiles while giving you effortless chic. they are my two favorite women (after oprah and gayle).


blaynistas, as you can tell, this weekend is all about the personal photos. while in washington d.c i am staying at the fabulous hotel palorma. and i do mean fabulous. frette sheets, sleek furniture, a gorgeous pool, impeccable bathroom, awesome location. and are you ready for the kicker? a wine reception every evening between 5-6. loves it! but i digress, franklin and i came out here to check out all the wonderful (and free admission) smithsonian museums in d.c. check out the sites we saw below. oh, and what exactly is frandile? franklin+zandile=frandile. hey, i know what you are thinking. but don't blame me. my little sister, zeba, made the name up!

frandile sitting fountain side at a park between museums stops.

a close -up of the amazing textiles on display at the african art museum.

anyone living in the continental u.s has seen shots of the capitol building a thousand times. here is one thousand and one.

this striking piece was on display at the african art museum.

more textiles at you know where.....

upclose of me in front of some art (again) at the african art museum. get into that cleavage i'm showing! mom + auntie, don't be mad!


that's a life size giraffe dipping down for some water (or my cleavage?) at an exhibit at the natural history museum.

regal. this shot was taken at the national gallery of art.

frandile on the venerable steps of the national gallery of art. thanks to the dad pushing his kid in a stroller who stopped to take this shot of us.

giving much body in front of the gallery art. notice my trusty notebook? blaynista's, i am always reporting for you all. even on vacay. don't you love me!?

Saturday, June 16, 2007


remember that fabulous dinner party i mentioned a while back? well i am finally blogging about it! it was held in the south bronx at the ultra sophisticated, fabulous, and urbane home of celebrity stylist: dhalimu robinson. the food was superb readers, i am talking honeyed sweet potatoes wrapped in warm phylo dough; lump crab meat mixed with fresh veggies and lightly fried; kielba sausages steeped in liquor and honey for days then grilled and the best cocktails in town. wait, did i mention the honey wine that dhali served? the most fabulous part of the evening though? the fabulous host and the fabulous guests! see below.

host, dhalium robinson strikes a pose in front of chocolate brown walls in a burberry jacket, yves saint laurent button up shirt, fendi pants and a smile by god.

me, debuting my new hairstyle (which is now different) in a bright yellow cocktail dress by h&m.

william, a juliard dance school grad, is rocking a very chic outfit. i love the fresh flower on his lapel. it was grown in south africa.

isn't she gorgeous? she is dhali's childhood friend and a wonderfully gifted singer. she sang a powerful gospel song for everyone.

don't you love this outfit? the striped piece underneath the blazer is actually a tie that he left hanging loose.

dhali and his close friend, and ridiculously talented dancer, william having a bite of those sweet potatoe phylo pastries i mentioned.

haven't heard of this fly diva? well get ready! her name is talia coles and she is getting ready to debut a new brand of music called "couture pop."i just did an article on her for jewel magazine.
ofcourse, i had to get a close up pic of her "brand new louis," also the name of her single. she copped this louis vuitton bag in japan.

my two favorite men: kareem angln, of the meerak group and host, dhali share a laugh.

let's get into this fly vintage ensemble kareem put together. i loves it. especially the bright yellow button up. an upclose of the j linbergh belt kareem has on.
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