Happy Birthday Hov!

fashion, fun, music

Happy 45th Birthday Shawn C. Carter!  Now is a perfect time for that Party Life DIY!

I love Jay-Z, Jay, Jigga, S Dot, Jayhova, Hova, Hovie, Hovito, Mr. Carter, Lucky Lefty, Iceberg Slim… I think I covered them all. It’s always bittersweet when Jay Day rolls around because of the inevitable, but I will always cherish Hov’s music and admire his ability to express himself lyrically. Happy Birthday Hov!

Here are some perfect Jay Day gifts to celebrate Mr. Carter.

Jay and Bey You're the Jay-Z to my Beyonce Card Rap Rapper Pop Culture Birthday Valentines AnniversaryYou’re the Jay-Z to My Beyonce greeting cards [$5.42]

Jay Z  Accent Pillow, Pillow Throw Decor, Pillow Cushion, Cushion Cover, Decorative Throw Pillow Throw

Jay-Z Accent Pillow [$69.00]

Jay Z Canvas Print

Jay-Z Canvas Print [$53.00]

Empire State of Mind Lyrics Blank Cards [$4.79]

beyonce & jay-z collar clips // pinbacks

Beyonce and Jay-Z Collar Clips [$6.00]

Just Blaze

fashion

Nike Zebra High Top Blazer Trainers   £100

The Blazer. The blazer is an iconic garment that every person has somewhere in her closet. Whether it’s patterned, tuxedo, crushed velvet, double breasted, cuffed or 3/4 length a well paired blazer can transform a plain tee and your favorite pair of jeans to an intriguing mix of smart casual.

As with clothing, The Nike Blazer is also an iconic piece of footwear that can effortlessly pair with any of your blazers. The Nike Blazer features limitless colors, patterns, materials and you can even visit NIKEID to customize your own 1 of 1s.

Do you have somewhere to go, but want to give the “I’m trying but not really trying” feel? Pair a blazer with some blazers and give them something to talk about.

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Bloom in the Winter with this Floral Front Blazer [$113.70] paired with Nike Blazer Mid Leather Premium [$100].
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Perfect the punk with Nike Blazer in red black plaid tag [$110] paired with red double breasted tuxedo blazer [$85.28].
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Mix it up with this Donatella Metallic Bronze Blazer [$68] paired with Liberty x Nike’s Holiday 2014 Belmont Burgundy Ivy Collection Blazers [$100].
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Be preppy and polished and prep with these Mid Suede Vintage blazers [$100] and Zara’s Moleskin Blazer with elbow patches [$99].
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Steal the spotlight in this Cream Ruched Sleeve Blazer with gold buttons and closure [$110] and these Bronze Snake Pack Nike Blazers [$84.97].

Which “Just Blaze” pairing is your fave?

11.14.14 Sole DXB Review

fashion, kulture, music, opinion, travel

DSC01148Yesterday, I spent the day exploring the local street culture here in Dubai courtesy of Sole DXB. I know you’re probably thinking, wheeet? Street culture where? Personally, one of the most influential parts of being a transport to a young country like the UAE, is depositing some of your culture into what is already there.

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As a result of millions of people transitioning in and out of the UAE for employment and/or tourism, and the recent influx of research through social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter, an appreciation of street culture’s fashion, music and brands has emerged and is continuing to grow.

IMG_0872Sole Dubai attracted many expats and locals; some interested in exploring the origins of Dubai’s own street culture, others as fans of fashion, sneakers, music, and/or breakdancing.

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Neoprene sweatshirts from Nomad

Located at Dubai’s Design District, Sole DXB featured streetwear vendors in a literal “trunk show,” utilizing the hatch of Mini Cooper’s to showcase garments from Juniors be Junior and Nomad [pictured above] among five other streetwear labels.

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Melody Ehsani for Reebok

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Face Stockholm for Reebok

Sponsored by Pepsi, Mini Cooper and Gatorade the event also featured a basketball tournament, graffiti artists, djs, breakdancing, exhibits from anchor brands, Early Retirement, PUMA, Reebok and Level Shoe District.

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alife for PUMA

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Reebok Pumps and Kamikazes

There were also selected private sneaker vendors showcasing popular Jordan and Nike brands available for swap or sale. I always gravitate toward Jordan brand, but there were also lots of KD’s, Lebron’s, AirForce1s and Air Max to delight any sneaker enthusiast.

shoes

Surrounding the perimeter of the event were exhibits from over 15 participating brands like Ray Ban, Vans, G-Shock, and Corcel with merchandise available for purchase.

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Sole also invited guests to attend panel discussions such as Hip Hop and Your Neighborhood, featuring notable influences in Dubai’s street culture including hip-hop group The Recipe and Origins: A Panel with Kish Kash.

DSC01108Overall, Sole Dubai provided me evidence to believe that street culture is developing among the UAE streets. In my day to day when I’m running errands in Air Max 95s or grocery shopping in Jordan 10s, I’ve gotten varied reactions. As with anything different, I think there are some negative perceptions, which ultimately breed a curiosity within the local community.

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[A few take aways] Outside of the newest releases and high end sneaker collabs, rarely have I seen, met or heard any other females here with what sneaker enthusiasts would describe as “heat.” I did see a few at Sole Dubai which was refreshing, but because of this I am interested in seeing how street culture and this event continues to grow each year because it provides the reinforcement of a familiar comfort zone for some expats, especially.

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The surface level of street culture is becoming easier to participate in for example sneakers and fashion, but the depth of street culture and street fashion originated from necessity [a conversation I’m def willing to have with anyone] So, the next challenge is how do you invite others, especially local citizens to actively participate in order to grow the streetwear movement here in Dubai so that it becomes not just something to see or do on the weekends, but a way of life?

[DIY] Party Life

fashion, fun, music

Who decided that adult parties can’t be just as thoughtful, creative and entertaining as kid’s parties? Most of us have either attended or had our share of themed kid’s celebrations, with plates and napkins emblazoned with popular cartoon characters or a cake shaped like your favorite sports equipment. A little thought and creativity can go a long way. The fun doesn’t have to stop earlier in life! Plan an adult themed party like this one for instance…

Jay-Z Themed Celebration

[Invitations]

Use your favorite artist’s album covers or themes to invite your guests. One of my favorite Jay albums is The Blueprint. What better way to inform your guests about your celebration than to create a special “blueprint” detailing all the who, what, where, when and why. You can also print actual outlines in blue on tracing paper to layer inside your paper contents.

[Attire]

blue

[“My favorite hue is Jay-Z Blue.”] Did you know Jay really has his own color? Have your guests join you in their favorite touches of blue in honor of your Mr. Carter themed celebration. Though I love Jay, blue S. Dot’s need not apply!

[Decor]Vibrant Gold and Rich Blues!

Create tablescapes using shades that will complement your guests’ touches of blue. Name each of your tables after a favorite song from any album. Some of my faves include “Reasonable Doubt,” “Politics As Usual,” “Allure,” “Sunshine,” and “Forever Young.” Don’t forget to include menu cards detailing some of the creative food and drink choices available.

[Food and Drinks]

Ty Ty Mai Tai

Say what up to Ty Ty…Still sippin’ Mai Tais. You don’t need a best friend named Ty Ty to enjoy Mai Tais with your guest. Pay homage to a lifelong friend with a signature drink, the “Ty Ty Mai Tai.”

Sweet drinks not your thing? Other acceptable options from Mr. Carter himself, “That D’usse is the ish if I do say so myself”…. “Gold bottles of the Ace of Spades“…. and if you really want to throw it back, “Armadale poppin now, only bring a jigga more”

Banana Pudding Cups
Uncle Bobby's Banana Pudding // I don't know who "Uncle Bobby" is, but he makes a mean pudding, apparently.
….Plus she fed me…banana puddin’ was in the hood then. Spark up some Shawn Carter nostalgia for your guests by including this classic dessert in a miniature serving size. Bonus points for which guest can rap the verses to Momma Loves Me and eat the banana pudding at the same time.

Queen Bey Cake Pops

Bee cake balls. Bzzzzz...

Watch out for the BeyHive. What’s a Jay function without his leading lady? Give your guests some of Jay’s honey by featuring a “Bey” Cake Pop option.

Empire State Pizza

Deep Dish Pizza Cupcakes - great for a quick lunch or dinner! Also makes great football food! #tailgating

A bite from the Big Apple. Although, NY pizza is usually foldable and comes in a large slice, these bite sized pizza cupcakes will have your guests with an “Empire State of Mind.”

[Favors]

I think this goes without saying but, MAKE A PLAYLIST! The best part of this party will be the tracks you self select for your guests to enjoy. Create a special playlist using a site like spotify and send it to all of your guests as a thank you for a memorable night. Also feel free to give out special gifts like copies of “Carlito’s Way, “Streets is Watching,” or “Reasonable Doubt” for the best touch of blue ensemble and the guest who could finish the most Jay lyrics. If you really want to impress, deliver a Cohiba to a few privileged guests.

Lastly, invite me and have fun! Remember, “When you’re blue, you got nothin’ to do…head into the party life.”

nike col[lab]

fashion

The influence that athletic wear is having on fashion, particularly the sneaker world, is really exciting to me. Nike has recently dropped sneaker collabs in their NikeLab line with major forces in fashion including Ricardo Tisci and, on 10.30.14 Nike will drop new sneaker releases with Jun Takahashi x UNDERCOVER.

Selling out quickly in most venues, including online, these collabs feature unique materials and colorways including premium leather, suede, faux ponyhair and animal patterns. Nike describes the Tisci collab as featuring “vibrant colors” and “bold patterns” blended with a familiar classic, Nike AirForce1.

The preview of Nike x UNDERCOVER collab seems promising as well. The collab will feature a mash up of distinct, yet alluring materials in three monochromatic colorways in the popular Nike Sky Hi Dunk with concealed wedge. To be honest, Nike won me over with “faux pony hair,” and of course the black colorway is my personal fave. Check out more of the UNDERCOVER Sky Hi collection at [nike.com]

Will you be adding any of these fashion collabs to your sneaker collection?

crew love

fashion
With the weather changing to cooler temps, few things are as comfortable as the inside of a sweatshirt. Crewnecks are a must have for any fall and winter wardrobe.They are great layering pieces and can effortlessly be worn with sneakers to achieve a casual look, or can create a sporty and yet chic nighttime look anchored with a pair of pumps. Whether you prefer an athletic, ultra-feminine or textured look, crewnecks have you covered.

 [Mixed Media]

 
[Mixed Media]

[Mixed Media] Sweatshirts featuring a mix of contrasting materials

Steal the spotlight, wearing any one of these mixed media sweatshirts that contain a blend of edge and femininity.
[Field Day]
Athletic Inspired

[Fresh off the field] Athletic Inspired Sweatshirts

 From the field to the streets, these athletic inspired sweatshirts provide a fun athletic look.
 [Floral and Flirty]
[Floral and Flirty] Floral Inspired Sweatshirts

[Floral and Flirty] Floral Inspired Sweatshirts

Spring forward, Fall back. These crewnecks bring a flirty and floral pop to your fall and winter wardrobe looks.
Any of these choices will have them “loving the crew” in no time. x kennie

cold weather dreams

fashion

It’s averaging about 100 degrees F in Abu Dhabi around this time of year. But just like anyone who loves the summer/winter garment swap, I long for the days to wear crewnecks, boots, bombers, leathers, sweaters… so, I think you understand my frustrations of having to delay my jacket and scarf hopes for cooler temperatures.

When the time does come, these pieces will definitely inspire my fashion repertoire.

[Faux|Real] Whether you prefer faux or genuine materials, this leather bomber from Front Row Inc. combines fur and leather for a perfect cold weather look.

pom beanie with detachable veil via asos.com

[Girly Grunge] This beanie mixes a familiar winter staple, wool beanie, with an ultra feminine veil and furry pom.

leather gloves with gold hardware via asos.com

[Golden Touch] It’s all in the small details. Classic leather glove with gold side zipper and cool touch screen phone feature enables you to use your phone while facing the cold weather.

Junior 6-Inch Premium Waterproof Boots - Timberland

Junior 6-Inch Premium Waterproof Boots – Timberland

[Cold Feet] Timberland Wheat Nubuck boots will easily update your cold weather wardrobe. Definitely a must have for any casual, athletic inspired looks for all.

What do you guys think? How are you planning to brave the colder months? x kennie