I took a few months off from blogging and I wanted to be honest and transparent about the reason(s) and why it has taken me so long to get back in the game. I actually stopped around the same time that I did my September Fashion Month Cleveland/Challenge. It was a lot of fun, but took a lot out of me cause I was literally doing something and interacting with people everyday- from creating daily themed outfits to wear, to posting to several social media sites everyday sometimes multiple times a day, managing a FB group for the challenge, planning and attending activities for the month etc. It was fun but draining! And then professionally I took on three totally different challenges!
Styling the Death, Jail or Change Play and Fashion Show
Every year since 2017, I have been a part of my good friend and playwright Angela Lane's play and fashion show, "Death, Jail or Change" an entertaining play/fashion show hybrid that explores domestic violence in relationships from different points of views.
This year the story "Crazy in Love" centered around a young couple whose small problems turned major when the guy fell out of love and started cheating. The women he cheats on turns ends up harming herself and others in the process, proving that love stories can end so tragically and domestic violence isn't as black and white as you think. The show is high energy with fast paced fashion scenes in between and it is awesome! I started out as just a fashion stylist with one scene in the show, then I moved my way up to styling a scene in the show AND styling the main characters in the play. This year I did all that and was also in charge of helping out with props and assisted in set design, and yes it was fun but lots of prep work before the production even begins.
I had to get a copy of the script, break down the characters and their descriptions, decide how to dress the characters, get final approval from Angela, meet up with the actors to see what they owned that could fit into their characters wardrobe, scout local boutiques and designers who would let me borrow pieces, find out what supplemental props would be needed for specific scenes and more.
In order to do all that I had to attend practices and rehearsals, spend time communicating to the actors and models through text, videos and social media and constantly keep in contact with Angela to make sure things were running smoothly.
I styled an all white scene and a lingerie scene for the production as well as styled the main characters in the play
On the actual day of the play it's total chaos, but it is always worth it to see how the production ends up- which I actually never even got to see because I was too busy dressing people, wheeling out props and answering questions backstage. Angela has these shows every year and they are highly entertaining! If you are in Cleveland, you do not want to miss the next one, so be sure to keep up and find video recaps and photos from previous shows here!
Wardrobe Styling for Credence the Movie
One day I was on Facebook when I saw a repost from one of my friends, friends, friends (you know how that goes lol) asking for crew members for an independent film that was about to be shot in Cleveland. They did not request a wardrobe stylist/costumer, but since I'm a firm believer of giving the people what they don't even know they need, I immediately inboxed the person (Director Kelvin 'Deuce' Rice) and offered my styling services for the film that I found out was called Credence.
Credence is a dark drama that examines two cops in the middle of a high profile case and are on a quest to find the truth beyond social media. It is a timely film that involves a local rapper, hot girl groupies and the city as a backdrop. Set in Cleveland and written, directed, produced and starring young Cleveland (and a few OGs) this film was by far one of the best experiences I've had on set in a long time! A labor of love, the whole cast and crew pitched in and did a million jobs each to get it done, there were some hiccups, but the energy on set was amazing and I can't wait to see the final outcome!
Styling a movie is totally different from styling a play or fashion show because for one- continuity. Like you could shoot one scene on a Tuesday in October and then have to shoot another part of that same scene on a Saturday in November and the hair, makeup, clothing and accessories have to all be the same or it will look crazy! Another thing is the fact that the clothes can't be too trendy, the colors have to mesh, no national brands can be shown and lots of other little nuances that only make sense in film. The call times were early AF- sometimes starting at 6 am and the day would not end until one, two or three in the morning. The prep is similar though- I still had to break down the scenes by page, give main characters distinct looks, and even dress extras in several scenes while watching out for small things that the camera would pick up.
Pre production of the film overlapped the play so there were days when I left set early to go to a rehearsal and vice versa and a lot of that time is a blur cause I honestly wasn't sure if I was coming or going. Thank goodness for notes and calendars! But, I could not complain because even though it was a loooot of work, I had a blast and met a whole new set of talented young people from Cleveland that I still follow and keep up with- half of the cast are rappers, singers, social media stars and radio personalities and in between the scenes is when we had the most fun. Somebody should have made a movie about us making a movie cause boy I tell ya the behind the scenes action is something that you would have had to witness to understand lol.
S/O to Zurri, owner of Everything Lethal Boutique that provided clothes for the main characters in the play and the movie!
When you spend so much time with the same amount of people each day for a month and a half you become extremely close, and being on set like that I can understand why there are so many Hollywood romances and hookups while the film is being made lol. I honestly can't wait to see the end result and will keep ya'll posted on the premier, in the meantime follow Credence the movie here.
Stitch Fix Stylist
While all that was going on, I also got hired to work at Stitch Fix! Stitch Fix is an online personal styling company that sends monthly boxes of personalized clothing to women, men and children. So basically it is a clothing subscription service and as a stylist I virtually meet a client, use the information they provide (body type, size, style, budget) and shop for them. It's a little more to it than that, but that's the gist.
I had my interview back in June or July but did not actually get hired until the end of September and was in training during the time of the play and the movie, so I had to carve out time for onboarding and training to learn how everything worked behind the scenes while actively styling clients. It was a lot ya'll, I can't lie. I don't know that I slept much during that time, but it was everything that I ever asked for- to make it in Cleveland as a stylist- so I could not and will not ever complain!
With all that going on, not to mention making sure that my (now 17 year old) son was on track for graduation, volunteering and participating in a few speaking engagements, something had to give- and that was blogging. I also had to put writing my fashion column for the Plain Press on hold for a few months because I just did not have the time or energy to sit down and write. So I took a few months off to give my brain a rest and replenish my energy and to make sure that blogging is something that I still wanted to do in my now sixth year, turns out it is lol! I missed it and now that I have settled in to my role as a stylist at Stitch Fix, I am slowly getting back to all the things that I had to put on hold.
If you are reading this, I appreciate you for not giving up on me! I appreciate EVERYBODY who checked up on me (my online family and friends and those in RL) and all I can say is I'm back and better than ever cause I'm changing it up a little by including a lifestyle section to the blog (coming soon). Cause I do fly things and they don't always involve fashion, so stay tuned...
About the Blog
The main goal of this blog is to connect my readers to everything dope, fresh and stylish- All the Fly Things.
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