Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Dress Flip and You!

The Dress Flip and Ultra Chic Boutique are events sponsored by Max I. Walker. The ultimate goal of both events is to raise money for transitional housing for women and their children.  I was chosen as 1 of 10 designers to participate in The Dress Flip challenge. What is the challenge; to create one dress from 4 different dresses. Whomever creates the "best" dress wins that challenge. All of our final pieces will be put into the Ultra Chic Boutique as thousands of women race against time to find their perfect dress! All of the proceeds from sales at the Boutique go to the transitional housing.
I almost did not apply for this event because "I don't have time", "This is not a part of my 2016 plan" All the while giving these reasons, I kept looking at the application because....I really wanted to apply! I finally said, "Ok. What the hell. I'll apply", in that order. Only after I was selected, I realized how special of an event this is. Part of my plan is to connect my business with non-profit organizations that help women. Before I applied for challenge, I had been trying to come up with ways that I can start the connection now instead of waiting for my business to be known. Although this event is an indirect way, it's a start. I'm happy to be a part of it.
 So what is Tamu's unsolicited advice to you? Allow yourself to be "un-rigid" in your plans. I'm not saying to ignore your plans and just say "yes" to anything. I am saying try giving five extra minutes of thought to an opportunity that was not a part of "The Plan". If you look beyond it's surface, it could be the opportunity or the boost you need, it could be the answer to a question you've had, it could be the direction you've been looking for. Now, I have to stop writing. I have dresses to flip and two weeks to do it! Bye! (Wait. Don't leave yet. I've posted the four dresses I have to work with. I will post the final dress in two weeks!)
Turn these dresses into one?? It will be interesting!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Studio Session

So who is the young woman that sings with Stevie Wonder in the Christmas commercial?! You know the commercial where you imagine that you are the third singer! (I know I can't be the only one!) In case you didn't know, her name is Andra Day. I love her voice. Her entire album "Cheers to the Fall" is a jewel. I listened to it over and over again yesterday while I was working. It gave me life, especially that lyric, "I don't know how to never try at all" It made me think of the things that I tried this year that were aka fails, aka "no-go's", aka "wtf's", aka "do-overs". If you are with me, for 2016, let's do-over, try again, but differently. In the meantime, turn your volume all the way up and play your life song, your album, your playlist and get ready to put a lid on 2015 and welcome 2016 with open arms.  Please share your life song with me!
"...We gonna walk it out...and move mountains"~ Rise Up by Andra Day.   

Monday, November 16, 2015

Camouflaged Fashion Corner

This post wasn't a "planned" one, but I got so many compliments off of my outfit the other day, I thought I should blog about it. (Sure, go ahead, call me vain for blogging about my compliments!)  I paired a camouflage jacket with a purple knit, strapless dress.  One of the comments I kept getting was, "I would never think to wear those two together, it looks really cool." Well, camouflage is a print that can be paired with anything...well almost anything. Pairing the print with any solid color works. You an also pair with another pattern that has neutral colors and layer with a solid. Did I post some pics of how camouflage can be worn? Of course I did! Only for YOU. Enjoy.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

A November Upgrade

Hello, again, my fellow bosses. Here's a short one, straight and to the point, just for you and me!
Stop diminishing your ambitions with soft words. "I'm trying to build...I'm trying to start a business...I'm trying to get this (whatever "this" is) off of the ground. Upgrade your ambitions with "I AM building..I HAVE a business.." Stop diminishing your talents with soft words. "I have some experience with...I do a little bit of that (whatever "that" is)." Upgrade your talents with "I KNOW how to do ....I AM experienced in..." Outside elements will try to chip away at your ambitions and talents; don't help them!
Take your November.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

What's in Your Closet?

If you are lucky enough (and I use lucky loosely) to live in a city that gets to experience all 4 seasons, then you know how iffy the weather can be between seasons, especially between Summer and Fall. One day it will be 75 and sunny with red leaves falling, the next day it can be 55 and windy...with red leaves still falling! Some transitional pieces are fabulous to have to get you through the "wishy-washy" seasonal change. Check out this gem that can either be worn as part of your look or worn just as outer wear. It's a pink fleece jacket that has satin sleeves, with extra fabric that can be fastened at the neck, in place of a scarf,  for added flare. The satin and fleece lining will give you just enough warmth without being too bulky. Even when you are traveling between warm and cold climates, this is a great piece to have. It's heavy enough to keep you warm but light enough to throw in a travel bag when you land on your beach! Here are some looks of how you can add this Blush Cozy Gem to your closet....
Easy to pair with a any black and white print

Or any grey print

Have fun pairing with multi-color prints!

How about pink, blue, and green!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

A Rocky Start

There is nothing wrong with stepping away from your business, from your projects, or from whatever has you overwhelmed. (If you are starting October smooth sailing with a free, refreshed mind, congratulations. Maybe you should be writing this blog post and not I!) If you are like me, you have a hard time stepping away, but sometimes you have to push pause to get refreshed. (S/N: To step away does not mean to ignore. Tamu is not telling you to ignore.) Perhaps you can find your refresher in doing/starting something this month that has nothing to do with work or whatever else has your focus 120% of the time.  For me, I've been wanting to support events that I care about. I've been wanting to spend time with family and friends consistently and not so sporadically. This month a friend of mine is holding an event to recognize the importance of mental health awareness. I will be there live and in color. My sisters and I had a plan (last year!) to meet every month for dinner. We did not stay true to our plan. So today, through gliding and texting, starting this month, we've made a plan to stick with our plan! Disrupting that 120% focus and put yourself into a position to focus on other people or other things, can be the refresher that you need to receive direction and be inspired all over again. 
Happy October!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

They told you NO? So What?!

I don't care how tough a person may appear, no one, and I mean no one, likes to hear NO. No one likes to be on rejection's receiving end. Raise your hand if the bank said NO to your business line of credit request?! Raise your hand if you weren't chosen to be in the top ten because your product wasn't good enough?! Raise your hand if the manufacturer told you NO because you were too new?! Yep! If you look real close, both of my hands are raised. Even the strongest person will have to admit, after so many times of hearing NO, that she'll start to ask herself, "What am I doing? Maybe I'm just crazy for pursuing this (whatever "this" may be)!" But it's what you do with the rejection that makes the difference. When my rejections starting coming in, it would piss me off. I would rush to throw the emails and letters out. My voice tone would change when I was speaking with someone. I guess you could call this an "emotional reaction." (Insert a smirk here.) I've decided now to keep all of my rejection memories; I'm keeping all letters and emails. I'm making note of conversations. Why?!, You ask. Because those memories force me to keep my eyes on my vision. Those memories force me to keep working and to keep preparing even when it seems like nothing is happening. Those memories force me to celebrate what's already been accomplished. Now, let's make a toast to NO...and go ask someone else!
For your viewing pleasure, check out this link from my Spring/Summer 2016 showcase.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Makeup Bliss

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of being the makeup artist for the most beautiful wedding I've ever been too! Since each bridesmaid had their own dress style and hairstyle, I chose different looks for each bridesmaids. Although each look was different, I kept the color schemes very natural to create a beautiful sun-kissed glow to complement the coral dresses. I mixed neutral eye shadows with gold and rosy shadows. For blush, I used pink and gold tones, while using bronzer to contour the cheek bones. For the lips, instead of a matte finish, I opted for rose, pink, and maroon glosses. Keep scrolling for pictures of the products and a few of the bridesmaids, including the Mother of the Bride!

Mother of the Bride!
From left to right: Rosy #19 Sephora gloss, Almay Rosy Lipped, Almay Pink

Makeup Forever Color #804 and #728. Available at Sephora. Can be used as eye shadow and blush!
Makeup Forever Palette 9 Shadow Palette. Available at Sephora. Can create smoky eyes, natural, and chic looks!
Espresso Eyeliner by Loreal for the lash line and brows. Origins GinZing eye cream magically "depuffs" and brightens eyes..magically! really!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

A Makeup Younique!

If you are a makeup buff like me, you jump at the chance to try new makeup. For the first time I tried cream eye shadow. The makeup brand, Younique, is making its way around the world, with it's release of Dreamy Splurge cream eye shadow. It is a true cream; very different from the cream to powder eye shadows. This product is silky to the touch, rich in color, with an easy-no mess application. I found applying with a makeup sponge and then blending with my fingers helps to control how dramatic you plan on being for that day. Dreamy Splurge can be worn by itself with some cat-eye action using black eyeliner. When you're feeling adventurous, use it as a base and mix with another color! This "Dream" can be purchased on
Here's a simple look I did for myself.......

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Who Has Time to Burn Out?!

You took the plunge and started your own business. You were exhilarated. You were proud of your fearless self for pursuing your idea. So where is the exhilaration now? Why are feelings of "burn out" creeping in and you are JUST getting started?! Don't second guess yourself. Read the 6 techniques below that will help you get your groove back.

*Take breaks throughout the day.  Instead of waiting weeks and weeks to take several days of vacation, allow yourself, also, shorter breaks throughout the day. That break could included leaving the cell phone at the office while taking a quiet drive. If the thought of being more than 5 inches away from your cell phone, is sending you into cardiac arrest, then take the phone! But remember, taking a break does not include checking emails, social media accounts, gossip on TMZ, or checking your dashboard for your blog earnings.

*Exercise. Yes. I'm saying this again. Working out has a way of making you feel mentally "light". Even if it's for a short while, exercising can make you feel like you no longer have the weight of world hanging on you! It can put you in a good mood. It can energize you. If you are still one of those people who says of exercise, "I don't have time", well...Bless your heart! For those of you that are not saying that and you are ready to incorporate exercise into your life, start out with 15 minutes of walking. (Side note: There are some days when working out is the only thing I feel I have control over.)

*Re-evaluate your deadlines. Are they realistic? Do you need to push out dates to buy more time? Maybe consider hiring a temp or part time assistant. If you are like me, you do not have the extra income to start hiring...yet. That's where you have to get creative. Maybe partner with a local university to snag an intern.

*Start surrounding yourself with what you love. This can be the simplest thing. Music gives me life. It also has a calming effect.  Maybe you need more color in your work space to brighten things up a little bit. Maybe it's pictures you need. I have this small picture that highlights Paris- the picture makes me smile. Keep it simple people.

*Focus on the task at hand. It's easy to start thinking ahead on your to-do list. Many times the tasks overlap, so it can be a challenge to stay focused on task #6, when task #8 is dependent on it. Guess what? You still have only 2 hands! When you find yourself drifting off, ask yourself "Is my drift giving me special, superhuman powers to complete #6 and #8, simultaneously?" If the answer is "No", then focus!

*Write a Blog Post- That's all.

I use these techniques from day to day. Will these techniques completely rid you of burn out? I don't know, but I do know it will keep burn out at a long distance.  No matter where you are in the process of building your business, you want to benefit from the fruits of your labor; you want those around you to benefit from the fruits of your labor.  You want to be able to enjoy your progress; kind of hard to do when "burn out" has you..out!

Monday, June 15, 2015


Hey Readers! Life stays busy, so thank you for stopping by to say hi! This post is more of a continuation of my last post. If you remember, I mentioned that I'll be posting each of my sample garments for the Summer/Spring 2016 collection as I finish them. Take a peak at the 2nd piece.  6 more to go in 6 weeks. The countdown and the work continues......

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Polka Dot Martini

8 looks need to be done in 8 weeks; One down, only 7 more to go. To share my progress, I'm going to post my samples as I finish them. I have my selfish reasons for doing this,  but I'd also like to give people a peek into the new Spring/Summer collection for Iconic by Tamu. I may even model a sample myself, just not today. (Side note: The title of this post is NOT what this Spring/Summer collection is called. I just thought it was clever.)

Monday, June 1, 2015


There's a reason why you throw stuff out when you are packing to move....Because everything can't go. You want to hold onto the stuff because it's familiar, it brings comfort. There may even be an emotional attachment. The only thing it's doing is taking up room; it's not even an accessory anymore. You feel bad about getting rid of it. You know as soon as you see it go, you'll have to deal with an emotional flood. But... you know in your heart of hearts, it has to go because it could slow down the move. The move has to take place; move equals growth. "The stuff", "It", can be anything...can be anyone! (ouch!) You know who/what you have to let go for growth. You don't need anyone to tell you this. You don't even need 21 days of silence, solitude, alone-time, or whatever else you want to call it, to figure it out. Letting "the stuff" or "It" go may not always come at the most convenient time but it will always be the RIGHT time.

Friday, May 1, 2015

May Wrecking Ball

So, April showers bring May flowers? That's what they say. You've been working hard and doing everything humanly possible to bring your visions to life. But you don't see your field of beautiful flowers. Instead you see an enormous wall, maybe several. That wall is not there to stop you. I choose to believe walls appear only to confirm that our visions are real. May our dedication to our visions be the bulldozer and the wrecking ball that will demolish those walls to visions fulfilled.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A Real G

Sometimes it is the simplest advice that sticks. Right before meeting with the panelist in hopes of showcasing my Spring/Summer 2016 collection, I got a huge nervous knot in my stomach. For real?! 30 minutes before?! Why not the day before?! Of course, I knew this day was approaching but I didn't make a big deal of it. I had no nervous thoughts about, not even throughout today. What got me through those few minutes? Advice from Grandma. I'll share Grandma's advice with you this one time, but this is my Grandma, you'll need to get your own.
"Don't look at what you don't have. Look at what IS. Go in with confidence. You.Are.It!"

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Trench Piece

So, just in case you were wondering, my birthday weekend was great, spent much needed quality time with my family with some pampering, shopping, good food, and drinks. I didn't want that weekend to end. Side note: gifts are still being accepted. Where did March go anyway?!! Anyway, I'm glad it's April because that means My Summer is just around the corner. In the meantime, that Winter to Spring transition gets tricky. You know those days where it's 30 degrees in the morning and then 65 degrees later on in the day: days like these make it hard to dress. One wardrobe staple that helps make dressing easier is that Spring trench coat. Get one! In a bright color! Wear one over your outfit, wear as a shirt with leggings, or wear it as a dress. Let me see how you wear your Spring trench. Happy shopping. 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Number 38

 I had this genius idea to do a photo shoot for my 38th birthday. I was going to be in one of my own modern Iconic by Tamu creations, surrounded by a clean, relaxed background mixed with modern props and hints of vintage with a sassy edge. This photo shoot was going to be fun, but your girl ran out of time. Then I realized, I didn't actually plan anything for my birthday. Usually, I start sending out "save the dates" for my birthday celebration at least 6 months in advance. I didn't do that for number 38. I would have loved to have planned a party or a vacation near a beach and some palm trees. I started to feel some disappointment for a few moments, until I heard a story of a woman who was diagnosed with cancer some years back. The cancer went into remission, but she recently found out that not only is the cancer back, but it has spread. Shame on me for feeling disappointed! Shame on me for losing sight of the gifts in front of me! No, I haven't spent my birthday weekend on a beach, sipping on one of those drink with the little umbrella on the side. But I have been spending my birthday weekend with some VIPs and Bosses....sipping. However you identify what/who those blessings are, celebrate them because they are there, now, in front of you.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

ALL-STAR B!+c#es

If you are fortunate enough to have your life anniversary in March or know someone who does, then you know how special today is. Don't worry. This post won't highlight how fabulous March babies are, or the fact that my birthday is in 21 days, or that you don't have to wait until the 22nd to send gifts. So, allow me to highlight this.
Lately, I've had conversations with people who are absolutely themselves! What am I talking about?  "Of course you'll have to help me, I can be stupid sometimes", "I have such an ugly shape", "I don't like how my voice sounds", "Why do I have to be so picky, I'm such a freak", "I'm such an idiot for doing this"; The negative words that people used to describe themselves was so overwhelming. By the way, these words weren't spoken by kids, they were coming from grown-ups, the "mature I don't get carded anymore" adults! I'm all for a coke, a smile, a good joke, and a laugh, but ...DAMN.  Doesn't anyone believe in the power words have? Doesn't anyone consider that life can have a way of bringing you what you speak? As adults, aren't we to become more accepting of ourselves? Shouldn't the words we speak about ourselves be filled with life, authority, and confidence? Shouldn't we look in the mirror and see a fearless warrior, a survivor, a VIP, an All-Star?

Thursday, February 12, 2015

V'day is cancelled

If Valentine's Day disappeared off of our calendars, hopefully no one would lose their mind questioning why or spend their time organizing a rally to get the holiday put back on the calendars. A few days ago, someone said to me, "I don't believe in Valentine's Day." I didn't ask for elaboration so I still don't know what that means. You don't have to be married, hitched, tied down, or spoken for to celebrate the day. Some of you have a romantic-50 Shades-like evening planned (Side note: I still haven't read the book, which means I won't be seeing the movie until I read the book). Some of you are going out just like it is another Saturday night. Whatever your plans are, step outside of the red box, and go for a fitted dress with a loud, animal print, like the one below.
(Although I think Valentine's Day is cute, the real purpose of this post was to show off an Iconic by Tamu creation.)

Sunday, February 1, 2015

31 Days

It took me a "New York Minute" to write this post. Since I'm all about keeping this blog light, not too philosophical or emotional, I found myself struggling to find the "right" words. So, I started typing. Here's what happened:
It's amazing how so much can happen in 31 days. "31 days": Saying it; doesn't sound like much, but that's plenty of time for LIFE to happen. Some R&R time is in order: some regroup and recover time! I hope that you took that R&R time for yourself today.  Maybe you wrote in your journal, maybe you just sat in the quiet and looked out of the window (hopefully, you had a beach view!), or had a massage. As we continue to walk into this Love and History month, I applaud you, My Reader, for doing just that... continuing to walk.
"An no matter what I do I can't stop walking no
I know its the only way to go
And if I keep walking I'mma be ok
Its not always about knowing why
Sometimes its all about knowing what
And that's enough to keep you walking everyday"

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Show and Tell

Alert: The tone of this post is slightly starchy. It's good to talk about your plans and your expertise. It's a way of networking. No one really cares about the words you speak. What you have done and what you can show means more. I've ran into people who like to talk about (or have other people do the talking) their expertise and what they can do, but turn out to be flakes. #Not interested
I believe planning, with deadlines, is the best way to plan! Let me venture out and say, however, you can plan too much. At some point action is necessary. After awhile you just have to trust that the current plan, with adjustments, is going to work...after you do.
Tell less. Show more.