Jazz to Miami! Recap

This past week, I was blessed to be able to spend it in Miami, FL; from the road trip there, to swimming in the clear blue ocean, I was literally in paradise! Although I might add, driving there was quite interesting, it took about 18 hours (including rest stops) to drive there especially since our destination was literally at the bottom of the map, I HIGHLY recommend flying if you can. Nonetheless this trip was needed, I was able to truly relax, spend some time soaking up the sun and immerse myself into the mix of cultures there.

In preparation for my vacation, I packed one big duffle bag and my favorite black tote that works for any occasion. I packed 2 swim tops, 1 “sexy” swim suit and 2 bottoms that were easily interchangeable. As well I had 4 cover ups, 1 pair of nude sandals, 2 pairs of canvas shoes, 4 dresses and one pair of blue jean shorts. Since the group I was with rented a condo, we brought towels and other household items needed for the week. I must say the place we were staying at wasn’t that amazing, but suited our needs because we were barely there and it was a 10 minute walk from the beach! The first night there, we all were a little tired and went to Wal-Mart to get a few last minute items, I ended up getting some cute nude sandals from there too! Once we got settled in and freshened up, I forgot about all my worries; I made it to Miami yall!

Walking up and down the renowned “Collins Ave” and “Ocean Drive”, it felt so good to just be in the midst of everything; fresh seafood cooking, Latin Caribbean music blasting, and palm trees sending heavenly breezes throughout the city. And of course the amazing night life and delicious drinks!

Even though we bought some food for our condo, we also ate out too. My favorite restaurant was called “The Place” (yes the Place) , they had great 2 for 1 special drinks and tasty food. Most of the restaurants on the beach all had different deals, so  you are bound to find some places to eat. Also if you’re into daiquiris and slushy “adult” drinks go to Wet Willies and Fat Tuesday’s, they won’t disappoint, and you can drink on the beach too!

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Strolling along Ocean Drive

 

Oh, Hello!

Oh, Hello!

I used the opportunity to play with loud and bold colors from my make-up to my actual outfits, why not? I was also precautious in lathering my body in bronzer lotion and sunscreen, I wanted to be sparkly and safe too. The sunglasses pretty much stole the show, especially since I wore my natural hair, I had a whole 70s vintage, glam style going on.

First Swim Suit

 

Ok so the first swim suit wasn’t geared towards plus-size women, but I made it work. The stringy 1-pc definitely was more risque than what I normally wear, but I was in MIA, I had to show out just a tad. I first saw it on another curvy lady and was inspired to get it (only cost me $15)! Of course I didn’t want everything showing so I wore a sheer cover up top that pulled the whole look together.

The Second Swim Suit

So this style was also my favorite, it was bold, colorful and comfortable. I felt super confident in the high-waist bottoms and the floral top, both were a size 2x so I could have some wiggle room and comfort while strolling the beach.

Definitely feeling myself

 

The Third Swim Suit

I would like to deem this look “African Queen Slayage” because that’s exactly how I felt. This leopard print wrap scarf was so clutch, I wear it on my head mostly but decided to give it a try around my waist. Just looking at the water makes me miss the beach even more!

I didn’t just spend time beaching around, but did some exploring too, Miami has a real charm about it and I tried to capture as much as I could. Collins Ave was the main shopping area while Ocean Drive had more of the restaurants and clubs. My favorite was the Clevander, it was a lounge, restaurant and bar at night with an amazing D.J. Also, did I mention that I might have met Zach Galifianakis (or his look-a-like) ? That place was packed with all types of people and I fit in just fine.

 

The Clevelander

 

Here are more of my exploration pictures:

The Colony Hotel

Jewish Museum of Florida

 

Beautiful Sunset

Love the Vintage style cars!

I love how intricate their buildings are

Las Olas Cafe, has the best Cuban Coffee!

Las Olas Cafe, has the best Cuban Coffee!

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Well lovlies, I know this was quite a lengthy post, but I wanted to make sure you all got the full effect of what I experienced. I hope you’re able to visit Miami one day, it really is an amazing place to just get away and relax. Have a fabulous week!

-Jazz

 

 

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Spring, Baby!

As of now you all should know that I am intensely obsessed with pencil skirts and I take any chance to wear one no matter the weather. In today’s style post, I’m wearing one of my favorite skirts from a local, Houston retailer, Ntroverted Xpressions. The floral print of this skirt makes me giddy just looking at it, the print is perfect for the upcoming spring season and practically goes with anything. I paired my skirt with a white v-neck T-shirt, sparkly gold pumpsflower necklace and nude clutch ( I love my clutch, it goes with EVERYTHING).

JasmineBerry-12FBWM

 

JasmineBerry-14FBWM

 

This style is perfect for a lovely Sunday brunch with friends, date night or going to an art gallery viewing! As well, everything that I wear has to stretch, I have a big butt in case you didn’t know. The skirt is roomy and is a size 1X, my shirt is a size large, because I’m smaller in the bust area so usually my they have to fit smaller than my bottoms.

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JasmineBerry-9 FBWM

For me it’s always fun to dress up a basic white t-shirt, they are truly classics that you need in your closet. You could try this look, or maybe dress it up more with a bigger statement necklace and brighter heels. I hope you enjoyed this style! And don’t forget to show me how you dress up your white t-shirt!

-Love Jazz

Top: White V-Neck, Forever 21; Bottom: Floral Pencil Skirt, Ntroverted Xpressions Shoes: Gold Pumps, ATRS Recylcing Accessories: Nude Clutch, Blue Elephant Boutique Jewelry: Flower Necklace, Forever 21

Guest Photographer: Tomayia Colvin

Make-Up: Kolour Theory Artistry

 

Where are You Shopping?

 

 

Happy Hump Day lovelies, you’re almost to the weekend, I know I’m excited! Anyway, in today’s post, I will be sharing with you 3 retailers that are now carrying plus sizes. The list includes Target’s Ava & Viv, Charlotte Russe Plus Sizes + and H&M +. First, I just want to say that I am thrilled that there are more brick and mortar stores carrying plus sizes, we have options now! I know for me being a college student loving to shop, it can sometimes be overwhelming especially with my humble budget. I mean I love looking cute too, so of course I had to share this list with you all!

Let’s start with Charlotte Russe!

This week they recently just launched their plus line and I was more than thrilled, because I love shopping there. I mainly just buy shoes and accessories, but now I have the opportunity to actually buy clothes! I haven’t had the chance to visit my location for their plus line, but they are online as well. Below are some of my favorite pieces that I can’t wait to snag! I chose these looks because they are perfect for the spring/summer season. And…they have a few discounts too!

Price Range: $15-$45

Size Range: XS-L; XL-3X

 Plus Size Daisy Lace Crop Top Price:  $16.99


Plus Size Daisy Lace Crop Top
 

 

 Plus Size Neon Laser-Cut Scalloped Shorts Price:  $21.99


Plus Size Neon Laser-Cut Scalloped Shorts

 

 Plus Size Scalloped V-Neck Skater Dress Price:  $29.99


Plus Size Scalloped V-Neck Skater Dress

 

Next is H&M Plus:

So I’m officially in love with their newly updated line and can’t wait to get my hands everything. Just glancing at their clothes I notice they have more refined and casual looks that you can dress up or down. I also like to shop here for their business casual clothes which can be transitioned from day to night. So if you’re going for the “young professional and chic” look, this is your place to shop. They also have my favorite chino pants too, who doesn’t love chinos? Below are some of my go to looks. I chose these looks based on this amazing bi-polar weather (sarcasm at its best) we’re having in Texas, because you never know what the weather will be like.

Price Range: $25-$70

Size Range: 14-24

H&M+ Patterned Pants

H&M+ Patterned Pants

 

H&M+ Coat, Powder Pink ( I need this!)

H&M+ Coat, Powder Pink ( I need this!)

 

H&M+ Slim Regular Jeans

H&M+ Slim Regular Jeans

 

Last, but not least Target’s Ava & Viv:

Fellow plus size bloggers Nicole Mason, GabiFresh and GarnerStyle had a lot to do with getting this line to Target and I am very grateful that they did. This line is the epitome of cool, fresh and comfy. The fabric is breathable and stretchy, as well as affordable for the ladies shopping on a budget. I am excited about this line because it has the potential for growth and gives us bigger women another option to find clothes. I don’t know about you, but this is a huge step towards improving clothes for plus size women, we are no longer subjected to blowsy moo moo tops or shapeless jeans, there are clothes out there for us! Now get out and go shop! (whoa, sorry I got a little excited, but you get where I’m going).

 

Women's Plus Size Sleeveless Maxi Dress-Ava & Viv

Women’s Plus Size Sleeveless Maxi Dress-Ava & Viv (GarnerStyle)

 

Women's Plus Size Jogger Pants Gray-Ava & Viv , 9Nicole Mason)

Women’s Plus Size Jogger Pants Gray-Ava & Viv , (Nicole Mason)

 

Women's Plus Size Woven Blouse Black-Ava & Viv  Women's Plus Size Palazzo Pant Black/Cream -Ava & Viv

Women’s Plus Size Woven Blouse Black-Ava & Viv
Women’s Plus Size Palazzo Pant Black/Cream -Ava & Viv (GabiFresh)

Price Range: $7-$50

Size Range: Tops X-4X; Bottoms 14X-30X

I’m so glad that I was able to share with you all these 3 retailers, and will continuously update you on more plus size fashion news! Have a great rest of your week!

-Jazz

 

*I do not own the rights to these pictures, they have their original link*

The Transition Phase

Whoa…it’s seriously March already?! Can 2015 slow down just a tad please? I swear this year is going by way too fast for me, it’s almost spring time. Which happens to be my favorite time, I’m so over this nasty cold weather Texas keeps getting. Honestly, it hasn’t even been that consistent; one day it’s a chilly 30 degrees out and a couple HOURS later, I could literally walk around in flip flops. *sigh*

Well this weather/life transition is teaching me a few lessons; I can’t control the weather and some aspects of my life I can’t control either. Meaning, things just happen, sometimes for the best or worst. I’m not going to allow this weird transition to cloud my vision though, I mean what’s a little struggle going to hurt? My ego? My pride? Yes, those things are definitely being chopped down, but other things are building up; I’ve become more independent, I have tunnel vision on my goals, my stress level has somewhat decreased and I keep pushing no matter what’s going on.

I found this style to be perfect for this crazy weather Texas has been having, it’s also easy to wear for my unpredictable life.

TP 3

This grey, midi dress practically jumped in my face and I knew I had to get it. The fabric is stretchy cotton, breathable and goes with any season. That printed half jacket you see there, I bought a year ago from Value Village thrift. I had been waiting to find something to wear it with, and  here is the finished product. I also paired my favorite strappy heels from this place called Shoe Mall, they were only $15 too! Oh and can’t forget the hat, that’s resting on my fro, it sealed the look. I would wear this style for both spring/summer and fall/winter, except for when it’s cooler try it with ankle boots.

TP 2

The reason I picked my location to be at Project Row Houses, was that its character really appealed to me. The “shotgun” style houses are small and humble, but represent the “dignity and simplicity” of this 3rd Ward neighborhood. You could see children outside playing, a few folks talking inside the PRH Community center; there was a certain charm about this area that just made me feel great. I plan on coming back to PRH, to hopefully volunteer and spend more time looking at the art inside the houses.

Love the black and white look

Love the black and white look

I hope you all enjoyed this look and remember to keep pushing, even when there’s a weird transition going on. You never know what the outcome may be! Also I would like to thank Tomayia Colvin for capturing my vision, the whole experience was great with her team!

 

1426 Curves Swim Week: Featured Designer GiGi Jorié

 

 

 

 

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Good afternoon my lovelies! Hope the start to your week is going well, I know I’m glad I made it through Monday! Now off to the good stuff, today I have for you an exclusive interview with designer, Gigi Jorié. This particular designer will be showcasing her spring/summer line at the LS 1426 Curves Swim Week this coming June. I was truly excited to review the interview, as she gave honest and thought provoking answers, I hope you feel the same way too! And her swim suit line is pretty fabulous too!

 

Gigi Jorie

Gigi Jorie

 

Enjoy!

JB: First, could you please tell us a little about yourself and your clothing line?

GJ: “GiGi Jorié is made up of the daughter/mother team of Georgia and Marjorie Greenwood “hence our name”, we specialize in swim/resort wear. Wearable Luxury Defined (WLD) is the only way to describe a GiGi Jorié garment, the woman who is welcomed into the illustrious club of GiGi Jorié is confident enough to be noticed and secure in her sexuality. We create clothing that distinguishes a woman in a crowd and fully captures the essence of femininity and creates an immediate transformation for whoever wears it. I was surrounded by fashion growing up, my mom is a an amazing seamstress and was on the team that sewed for the Rex Nettleford Dance Company back in our home island of Jamaica so I was always in that world of bright colours, drama, and theatrics, its’ engrained in my blood.   We migrated to Canada in the early 90’s and in 2008 we created our first lingerie line and debuted it at the International Fuller Woman Expo www.thefullerwomanexpo.com. The Expo was extremely well received and since then we have just been perfecting our craft.

 

When we officially decided to take it to the next level, we chose a swimwear line based on our heritage; the sight, sound, smells of the islands; the sea, sun and sand; it was an easy and obvious choice. I love colors, swim and resort/cruise wear is such a fun area that you can unleash your creativity in.”

JB: When did you start designing and what inspired you to design?

GJ: Because my mom is a seamstress, the majority of my clothing is made by her. I never really saw anything in the stores that would fit my style and personality so I would come up with a concept/idea/style and she would bring it to life. People started to comment on my style and from there we started getting clients for custom made orders.  I loved watching the Victoria Secret Fashion Show, but never saw anyone who looked like me being represented on the runway. It was quite disheartening to be made to feel like if you were not a particular size, you weren’t beautiful or sexy enough to wear such garments. So in 2008 I wanted to prove a point, and I created a plus size lingerie line and it just evolved from there.

JB: Do you believe there has been improvement in the plus-size fashion industry?

GJ: Most definitely! From when I started in 2008, I have seen tremendous changes. More and more designers are opening their eyes to what the average woman really looks like, and not what they have illustrated in their sketch books. The access to more fashionable clothing choices has more than doubled and the ability to shop online now provides more options to shoppers and suppliers far and wide allowing you the opportunity to find what you need at the click of a button.

JB: What is your opinion on the improvement of the plus size fashion industry?

GJ: It has been a long journey and yes there have been amazing strides that we should all be proud of. We are seeing more sizes of 6-10 in the media, movies and a few fashion shows, but we still have such a long way to go. There needs to be more of a true representation in the media and on the runway showcasing the average woman in North America.  Where are the sizes 14 to 20? We need to see us represented in the main stream media and not just in the targeted plus size community.  We need to be on the front cover of major magazines like Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, etc.  We need to be gracing the runways in London, Paris, New York and Toronto Fashion Weeks and not having to create our own “fashion week” to fit in.  It’s still an uphill battle but if we have enough voices screaming for this change we can make it happen; we won’t all like each other and that’s just life, but what we do need to understand, is that we all have a common denominator and that is the decimation we face as plus sized women.  When we say “#unityinthepluscommunity” this statement should not be taken lightly, people tend to use this statement for only those they believe belong in “their circle”; but this is a worldwide issue and we all need to be in a space where we are celebrated. Once we develop, cultivate, and execute that “ant colony” philosophy and “unity in the plus community” we will be valued and we can start moving the mountains of change.

JB: How does your clothing line represent the plus size woman?

GJ: The vision of GiGi Jorié is simple, to not just to create a garment to sell, but to release a feeling of power, control, femininity and sensuality to any woman that wears our clothing. Being an Image Consultant, far too often I encounter too many women with extremely low self-esteem and low self-confidence. This is mainly because they have never seen themselves in a positive light, and my line represents that. My line pushes you to a new level of self-acceptance and love; allowing you to come alive ready to reclaim your power and affirm your femininity.

JB: Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?

GJ: That’s an amazing question and I don’t even know where to start answering it.  We have huge plans for GiGi Jorié over the next five years; we will be focusing on developing our brand, perfecting our designs, formulating effective marketing strategies and getting our products into the right hands.

JB: How do you stay motivated in the constantly changing, fashion industry?

GJ: My clients keep me motivated. I get emails of gratitude constantly. The fashion industry is a fickle one and can be very daunting at times so to keep grounded, I try not to follow trends; I just base my designs on my mood, environment and get inspiration from existing couture designs.

JB: What advice do you have for those wanting to be in this industry?  Any specific suggestions?

GJ: Preparation is the key. In this business you have to be fully aware of what you’re getting into, it’s a tough, unforgiving industry with an abundance of negativity, criticism and judgment so you have to know who you are and be strong enough to go against the status quo to make your mark and stand out. If there is one advice I can give, it is to do your research, don’t always take what others say to you as gospel, and come to any situation with the ammunition of information.

JB: What will be your involvement with “LS 1426 Curves Swim Week”?

GJ: Linda Scott is such an amazing individual and I am blessed to know her; she has given me the wonderful opportunity to showcase our Spring/Summer collection and I am overjoyed and extremely honoured to be named the Featured Designer for the first ever 1426 Curves Swim Week.

JB: Anything else you would like to share about yourself?

GJ: Well, I’m pretty much an open book and an easy going person. What you see is what you get. I am not “everybody’s taste”; not everyone can handle my personality, but what you can count on with me, if I consider you a friend and not just an acquaintance, is honesty and loyalty.

Thank you Gigi Jorie, I enjoyed this interview and can’t wait for everyone to see your work! Below are a few swim designs.

 

I LOVE everything about this swimsuit!

“The Hathor”

"The Isis Goddess"

“The Isis Goddess”

"The Cheerleader"

“The Cheerleader”

Thanks for reading! If you would like to connect more with Gigi Jorie, please follow their social media below.

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