Janelle Monáe is the New Covergirl!

I’m so happy that Janelle Monáe is the new Covergirl! I remember listening to her first album when it was underground thinking, “This woman is beyond beautiful” She is ahead of her time, fresh to death, easy, breezy, beautiful, and the new face of Covergirl!

Fashion Pick of the Week

At the 7th Annual Council of Fashion Designers of America/ Vogue Fashion Fund I found my Fashion Pick of the Week. Many fashion divas came out for the event such as the Olsen Twins, Blake Lively, Leighton Meister, Georgina Chapman, Diane Von Furstenburg and the infamous Anna Wintour. But my favorite outfit of the night has to go to Yaya DaCosta. The event was held October 16th in New York City. The designer of Yaya’s dress, Christian Cota, was a finalist for the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award and was also Yaya’s date for the evening. The light blue floral printed gauze tiered gown, taken from Cota’s S/S’ 2011 line, is a perfect match for Yaya’s tall frame and dark skin tone. I love it when people look better than the model who wore the dress on the runway (Look at the comparison picture)! The up-do look, the tear-drop earrings, and the clutch handbag all just work with this outfit perfectly.

Yaya, who since her first runner-up stint on the third cycle of America’s Next Top Model in 2003 (she lost to Eva “The Diva” Marcille Pigford), has become in actress. Being seen in several movies like Take the Lead and The Kids Are Alright . She also did a supporting actress role on the ABC sitcom Ugly Betty and the soap opera All My Children. The model at heart still hasn’t given up on her roots, appearing in several commercial advertisements for brands like RadioShack, Sephora, Dr. Scholl’s, and Oil of Olay. Who knew that a person with actual talent and style could come from America’s Next Top Model?

Future MILF Thy Name is Miranda

Remember you heard it right here first!! Didn’t I say months ago that Miranda Kerr and Orlando Bloom had a shotgun wedding? For reference information please click on the link to my article Miranda Kerr and Orlando Bloom Had Shotgun Wedding:


She finally confirmed to Spanish Vogue in AUGUST that she was four months pregnant, but I called it on this blog in JULY; you’re welcome.

The Fendis (from left) Guilio Cesare, Leonetta Fendi, Anna Fendi, Silvia Venturini Fendi (standing),Delfina,and Emma (in lap)

The 27-year old Australian took everything off for the world see her 6 1/2 month pregnancy belly in the December issue of W Magazine. Kerr and husband Orlando Bloom are expecting their first child before the new year; they have chosen not to know the baby’s sex and to wait with the rest of the world on pins and needles. Kerr isn’t the only one shown as never before. Former porn star Jenna Jameson, world music phenomenon Usher, the famous Fendi family that started the legendary Italian fashion collection, and a host of others all bring their children and pets out for show. It’s kind of nice to see most of the families not posing at all; just sitting together laughing and enjoying each other’s company. Of course Madonna and Lourdes had to do the opposite of everyone else and not talk about their family life but to promote their less than fashionable Material Girl line exclusively sold at Macy’s..we’ll get to all of that at another time.

Everyone keeps comparing this picture to the one that was taken of Demi Moore when she was seven months pregnant with her daughter Scout LaRue, shot by world-famous photographer Annie Leibovitz. I think the two photos are completely different. Yes, they are both naked and pregnant, but Moore’s pregnancy shot was more of a regal-gorgeous-yes-I’m-sexy-and-yes-I’m-pregnant pose. In Kerr’s photo it looks as if she could care less about the camera being there, all of her focus and attention is drawn to her future child growing inside her belly.

Which is probably why she’s in no hurry to get her modeling career back on track. Models like Iman and Heidi Klum sent shock waves around the world when they worked into their third trimester of pregnancy and started working the runways again only weeks after giving birth (with killer bodies I might add). Now, it’s not that weird to see a model back in the 0-5 size range and walking the runways less than 8 weeks after giving birth. Kerr isn’t one of them. In the December issue of W, Kerr says that her family is her life. Even though modeling has been a great part of her life, Kerr said, it is not her life. Kerr right now is the lead model in three fashion campaigns; for Victoria’s Secret, Jill Sander, and Prada. Most models will never see campaigns like that in their lifetime but Kerr is putting her fashion career on hold indefinitely; at least for a while. Kerr has realized that some things are just more important.

Just one question; how does she still look hot when she’s 6 1/2 months pregnant?! Gorgeous!

Read more: http://www.wmagazine.com/celebrities/2010/12/family_issue_portfolio_ss#slide=1

Model of the Week

Believe it or not I was researching another male to be this Model of the Week when I decided to take a quick look at model.com’s Top 50 Male Models of the Week. When I saw this guy’s face everyone else was put out of the running and I knew I had to choose him. I know it’s bad to think sexy thoughts when you’re trying to choose a Model of the Week (You’re supposed to admire them for their talent), but good Lord! Have you seen those lips? I couldn’t stop myself from thinking about chocolate and whipped cream when I looked into his eyes…..ahem, excuse me. This Model of the Week, the gorgeous and smart, Nate Gill.

Nate Gill at 21 years old is all-American. He was born April 3, 1989 in San Fransisco. During his freshman year of college, while working at Starbucks, Gill decided to attend in open casting call in his hometown. He was signed with City Models in San Fransisco. In an interview I found, Gill says that his first modeling gig was with the store Mervyn’s and he made $500….I think Mervyn’s definitely could’ve coughed up some more dough for those abs.

Beyoncé (center) Nate Gill far right

In 2008, Gill also signed with Major Model Management in New York City. His first job might’ve been sub par but his second and third jobs in the modeling industry are unheard of for a first time model. His second job was an advertisement campaign for Polo; and his third job was a spread in the November 2008 issue of V Magazine with Beyoncé shot by world-famous photographer Bruce Weber. Gill did such a good job on that spread that Weber hand selected the model to do a campaign that same year for Abercrombie & Fitch. Talk about a good start…

January 2009 was the first time the fashion world saw Nate Gill work it on the runway. I would say he did a pretty good job, considering that he debuted as an exclusive model for two major fashion brands; the Calvin Klein show in Milan and the Givenchy show in Paris. In a Best New Designers editorial piece for GQ magazine in the February 2009 issue, Gill is modeling the sportswear of a soon-to-be big name on the red carpets of the world, Yigal Azrouël. He got his second stint in a GQ editorial four months later in the June 2009 issue, shot by photographer Paola Kudacki.Gill also modeled for the spring issue of GQ Style that year. Then came the advertisement campaigns; Gill will be able to look back and say, “Remember when I did my first advertisement campaign spread for Ralph Lauren Rugby?” Yeah, real small time. In between the advertisements Gill walked the S/S’ runways in June for such brands as Dolce & Gabbana, Etro, Versace, and Vivienne Westwood in Milan. At the end of 2009, Gill posed in the advertisement campaign that catapulted his career even further than before, for the F/W’ 2009 DKNY Jeans Collection.

Nate Gill F/W' 2009 DKNY Jeans

2010 started off extremely well for Gill, he became one of the faces of Tommy Hilfiger S/S’ 2010 clothing line. Considering the fact that Tommy Hilfiger has blatantly stated in the past that “I don’t design my clothes for urban people” (people of color), it’s nice to see that since the brand was sold in 2006 people of color are popping up on the runway and in the advertisement campaigns more often. Gill is definitely not a ritzy model, in an interview with Giant Magazine Gill talked about how the lines of color were definitely changing slowly but surely, and how he was happy to be a part of it. 2010 seems to be the year of two for Gill. He did two campaigns for Esprit (Summer, F/W’ 2010), he did two advertisement campaigns for Y-3 ( S/S’, F/W’ 2010), and he walked down the runway twice for Tommy Hilfiger. Not to mention his Vogue shoot, his MaxMara F/W’ 2010 shoot, and his editorial spreads for Flaunt and L’Optimum. Nate Gill definitely has arrived.

One of the things that attracted me the most to Gill was his intelligence and his need to keep his life humble. It was so refreshing to see a guy who continuously praises God for each and every one of the blessings that he has received through modeling; a guy who realizes that no success comes without a strong foundation. In my research for Gill, I found several articles where he talked about the importance of eating right,staying active, and having strong faith. Gill makes no point to hide that he is a christian, and he hopes that through his success from modeling he can become an advocate for christian youth.

I can say honestly, I am proud to be able to write a piece about Nate Gill for this blog. Gill is one of those guys that you know could literally do anything that they put their minds to. He is one of the top male models in the leauge and after reading so much about him, I would expect nothing less. It makes me proud to know that there are smart, intelligent black men for young black boys to look up to that have their heads on straight. Someone to show young colored boys, from the brightest of yellows to the darkest of browns, that you don’t have to automatically become a rapper and talk about tricks and whores (excuse let’s use the ebonics term, ‘ho) and all the dope you smoked growing up in the ‘hood. There are other paths that lead to success and Gill has taken his path to success and run on it. Yes, Gill is an amazing commercial model, but my favorite shots of him that I found were the Polaroids and the moments caught behind-the-scenes; in those photos you see such an innocence and light flowing from him that I hope won’t fade with the bourgeois demeanor of the fashion industry. Even though Gill’s supermodel rap sheet is a bit short right now, I definitely know it won’t be this short next year; this guy is way too talented and too damn good looking.




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Model of the Week

I realized this week that I have never picked a model of Asian decent. What?! How could I do this? After all, I’m learning Mandarin Chinese and Asian models are the fastest growing race category in the modeling industry. So I decided to choose the Chinese ground breaker herself, Liu Wen. She’s one of the few models that can transition to and from The Three C’s of posing (Commercial, Catalog, and Couture). Which means, as my queens would say, she’s a beast. This Model of the Week is none other than Liu Wen.

Liu Wen was born in Yongzhou in the Hunan Province of China on January 27, 1988. In 2005, while working as a tour guide, she decided to enter the New Silk Road World Model Contest. Famous faces like Du Juan have gotten their spotlight due to this annual model search. Wen wasn’t in it for the fame and the pictures, she was in the contest to win one of its grand prizes; a laptop! Wen didn’t win the contest, but as one of the finalist she did receive a lot of local exposure. Good bye laptop, hello model. Due to her new-found fame Wen decided to move to Beijing and pursue her fashion career in the editorial market.

In 2007 Wen received a boost, she was chosen to be the May 2007 cover model for the Chinese version of FHM. Three months later in July 2007 she got editorials for the Chinese versions of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. Wen started to become known among the elite in the fashion industry and was chosen for an editorial in the September 2007 Chinese version of Cosmopolitan where she was styled by fashion heavyweights like Karl Lagerfeld and Viktor & Rolf. She ended 2007 by gracing the December 2007 issue of Chinese Marie Claire, wearing nothing with only a handbag covering her long frame.

It was no surprise that 2008 started off with Wen signing with Marilyn Agency in Paris. Marilyn Agency works with models such as the legendary Kate Moss and Adriana Lima. By signing with Marilyn Agency Wen put herself in the international market. Wen made her European debut for the Fall/Winter 2008 fashion lines of Chanel, Hermès, Jean Paul Gaultier, Kenzo, and Maison Martin Margiela shows in Paris. She was chosen to close the Fall/Winter 2008 Trussardi show in Milan. March 2008 gave Wen another cover under her belt, for the Chinese version of Elle along with Emma Pei. In September 2008 Wen made her American debut walking for the Spring/Summer 2009 runways of Ralph Lauren. That next month Wen was named one of Style.com’s Top Ten Newcomers of the Season; a list that has consistently predicted which models to watch. That same month she signed a contract with Calvin Klein to be one of the faces for their new fragrance called One. Her Calvin Klein spread was photographed by model maker and trendsetter Steven Meisel.

Spring 2009 Ready-to-Wear 3.1 Phillip Lim-Beauty

Unlike 2008 when Wen was growing into her own as a model and just coming onto the scene, 2009 was the year for Wen to solidify her place in the fashion industry. Which is probably why New York Look featured Wen as a rising star in early 2009. In February, Wen was already on the runways of New York, Paris, and Milan for some of fashion’s leading designers such as Anna Sui, Dolce & Gabbana, Alexander McQueen, Chloé, Lanvin, Chanel and Jean Paul Gaultier. That spring she appeared in an editorial for one of my favorite magazines, Teen Vogue, as well as Chinese Vogue, Italian Flair, the British version of Harper’s Bazaar, and i-D. DKNY called up Wen to appear in advertisements that spring, too and decided to use Nathaniel Goldberg as the photographer.

In the fall of 2009 Liu Wen became a legend. For the Spring/Summer 2010 runway Wen became the second booked model of the season with seventy shows. She also became the first model of Asian decent ever to walk the Victoria Secret Runway Show. 2010 started off with Wen becoming the new face of the Calvin Klein fragrance, CK. She not only appeared in the January issue of Chinese Vogue, but the February issue too. In April Wen received what is considered by most models to be a never-ending golden ticket; a cosmetics modeling contract with Estee Lauder, being the first Asian model to do so.

Fall 2010 Couture Elie Saab-Runway

2010 isn’t even over yet, and already Wen is breaking new ground. I love writing about models like Liu Wen. Whether consciously or not, they change the world and prove to others that it shouldn’t matter what color we are or where we came from. If you can do the job it should be yours. Karl Lagerfeld and Jean Paul Gautier predicted it and we should’ve listened; this girl is a star. Liu Wen’s career is on the up and up, and I can’t wait to see what she does next.

Model of the Week

You see an advertisement in the magazine; you glance at the cute clothes, think the prices are too outrageous for even you, and you keep on flipping the pages. But then you flip back, because that model’s energy speaks to you. Even after 2 million copies of her face have been pasted everywhere, the eyes still pull you in like a magnet. What is it about this girl? That’s this Model of the Week, Ataui Deng.

Ataui Deng. The name kind of gives it away; right off the bat you know she’s not American. Deng was born in Khartoum, Sudan, Africa on November 3, 1991.In 2004 Deng and her family fled the wars in Sudan. They immigrated to the United States and found a home in San Antonio, Texas. I have to say out of all the models that I’ve chosen for Model of the Week, Deng had the easiest way of getting into the fashion business; family connections. Her aunt is the famous Alek Wek, the first Sudan model to really make it big in the United States and worldwide.

With that kind of power backing you up, it’s no wonder that at the age of sixteen Trump Model Management was fighting tooth and nail to get a contract with her. Deng did sign with Trump in 2008. The ink on the contract didn’t even have time to dry, because in a matter of days Deng made her debut on the S/S’ 2009 runway for designers such as Proenza Schouler, and Zac Posen during New York Fashion Week.

Believe it or not Deng missed out on Paris Fashion Week that year. It’s not because she wasn’t in high demand; after her grand debut and a viral video shot by Jeremy Kost showing Deng backstage at the Zac Posen S/S’ 2009 show everyone wanted to see what Deng was about. Deng, however was more focused on school, and chose to not let her grades suffer at Tom Clark High School in San Antonio, Texas. The runways of Paris and Milan could wait.

But they didn’t wait too long. So many models wish fashion designers would come to them, soon enough Deng became one of those models who have designers fall at her feet. Within weeks Steven Meisel made a request that the model come to his studio. For the big New York Fashion Week held in February 2009 Deng walked for Christian Siriano and the African Fashion Collective show. She has also modeled for two of my favorite fashionistas in the world, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, for their line The Row. In September 2009 Deng started off a new year of high school with an editorial spread in Teen Vogue, which is when Deng got the attention of yours truly (I know I find a lot of my Models of the Week in Vogue and Teen Vogue, but you can’t deny, they do know how to pick a model!). By the end of 2009 Deng had walked in the F/W’ 2009 runway for designers like Malandrino, Rosa Cha, and Sophie Theallet in New York. She also got her first cover, for fall edition of Lurve. She started off 2010 right with an editorial in V for March.

While searching for pictures to place on this article I kept thinking, “Wow, can this chick pose any better?” With each and every picture I was spellbound, amazed, and excited about choosing her as this Model of the Week. After a while I had to stop researching for Deng’s pictures because the list kept growing from one eye-catching picture to the next. She’s that good. With so many nay-sayers in the fashion industry who don’t see a need for color, I am so happy that girls have someone like Deng to look up to. I’m glad to see that even though the family name got her in the door Deng has created her own path and shined without her famous aunt by her side. She is a proud beautiful African woman and I hope to see her much more in the future.