September rolled in swiftly and smoothly, and so did My favorite day of the year, September 16th. I’m especially grateful when I see this day because it means I’ve successfully took another trip around the sun. And that was fine with Me, since I couldn’t take a trip anywhere this year, due to the COVID-19 2020 pandemic.
Nonetheless, the week of 9.16 was eventful. The night before, I went LIVE on Instagram for My new virtual talk show called “What’s Tea?”. The day of I had a photo shoot on the beach. And, the night of, My sweetest loves surprised Me at dinner. In true Virgo fashion, I had outfits on standby for each occasion. Coincidentally, they were all bought locally, in the Bahamas, from Bahamian clothing boutiques or Bahamian brands.
Have You ever bought a Piece (of Fashion) and based Your entire outfit around it? Maybe a particular earring, a certain shoe or a unique hat?
Well in this outfit of the day, it was the headband for Me! A few days before the Bahamas’s 47th Independence Day, I cam across a sponsored ad for a local Bahamian designer who was making Androsia Print headbands. Androsia Print is a fabric that’s native to the Bahamas.
No celebration necessary. I didn’t purchase the headband to celebrate Independence. It was simply “that piece”! The one that you lock eyes with at a boutique and have to have it for your wardrobe collection. That one single piece that You center an entire outfit around. That is what the Androsian Print Braided Headband was for Me. Paired with a straw handled clutch (straw bags and straw work are also native to the Bahamas) I curated an outfit fit for a modern day Bahama Mama!
Its about 10:35pm Saturday, June 17th and my heels aren’t as forgiving as they were two hours ago as I tipped across the street from the Melia Nassau Beach hotel to my car.
The interesting thing is… as long as I was in the hotel foyer and ballroom amongst so many Bahamian icons (some nominated, some not nominated) I didn’t feel any pain! The energy was captivating, the excitement was high and the fashion…oh baby… the fashion was ICONIC!
It was the 2017 Bahamian Icon Awards that was sponsored by the nation’s newest telecommunication company, ALIV and it was one of the most anticipated events of the summer.
Everyone who attended was definitely concerned about their look! And I was no different. I called upon sewing wizard, Bahamian Designer Brittney Tamika to work her magic for me. After two days only, she whipped up a custom-made wine colored, mermaid style gown with hand sewn lace details. It fit perfectly and is still getting compliments up to this day.
The Bahamian Icon Awards, is a ceremony geared to celebrate and recognize Bahamians doing an extraordinary job in the fields of Media, Recorded Entertainment, Entrepreneurship, Live Entertainment, Health, Entertainment, Education, Music, Fine Arts, Commerce, Youth Development, Tourism, and Sports. Two additional nominations were Rising Star and People’s Choice.
The Red Carpet opened at 5:30 pm and I was there to take pictures of and interview the nominees and guest.
Mr. David Burrows, the Vice President of Cable Bahamas was the first person to walk the red carpet, giving me a chance to ask him a few questions.
When asked his take on the Bahamian Icon Awards, he replied: “I think it’s Fantastic!” He went on to say, “that when you think of an Icon, you think of Sir Sidney Poitier” – a Bahamian Legend and internationally recognized actor for his iconic performances in film. Mr. Burrows ended our interview by saying that the Bahamian Icon Awards is good for the “psyche of the Bahamian people” as it gives us something to aspire to and I couldn’t agree with him more.
Hints of red seemed to be the color of the night, and I was fascinated by a nominee of Youth Development, Mrs. Phyllis Gararway’s red number.
She was nominated for her phenomenal work with the Yodephy Dance and Modeling Academy. Mrs. Garaway revealed that her dress was made by Bahamian Designer Javotte Bethel & her little straw purse by Joshua Designs. When asked ‘why she chose to wear red to the event’, she replied: “its My favorite color and much like my personality, blooming, vibrant and fiery.”
Nominees and guest were rolling in one by one, and everyone was posing for the cameras.
I got the chance to chat with two more Bahamian Icon Nominees, Al Francis and Sabria Thompson, who were nominated for different categories.
Mr. Francis was nominated for Entrepreneurship. He was being recognized for his business, The Home Center and mentioned that ‘it was an honor to be nominated.’
He went on to say, “I’m in good company and it’s good to be rewarded for all the hard work you’ve done over the years.” I asked Mr. Francis what is one tip he would like to give young, upcoming entrepreneurs and he gave me three:
Chose something you love doing.
Surround yourself with positive people.
Just have fun with it!
Sabria Thompson was a Rising Star nominee who also sported a red gown to the event. I was so impressed by her story and couldn’t believe she accomplished so much for only 21 years old. She studied at St. Leos University and got an A in her tax class. The IRS then invited her to take a series of exams which she passed with an A again! This landed her a job filing taxes and a Bahamian Icon Award nomination all before she turned 21. “I turned 21 after I got the nomination.”, she laughed.
It was soon time to find out who were the winners as the show was about to begin. But just before the red carpet spilled into the ballroom, I managed to interview Fine Arts nominee, Ryan Turnquest.
Like most of the nominees, Ryan felt “honored” to be recognized by The Bahamian Icon Awards that evening especially since he had only returned to his crafts 8 months prior. When asked what motivated him to return, he replied the death of his brother, Chris. It is amazing how a tragedy can turn into triumph in just a few months.
The show opened with a performance by Wendy Lewis, who also took home the Icon Award for the Music category. I didn’t get a chance to talk to Wendy after her win, but I did speak to a few other winners in the ALIV Media Room.
Allan Pachino Wallace won the Fine Arts category, which was his first win for the night. He later won again in the People Choice category as a member of the artistic group Trilogy.
After Alan, I caught up with Ramona Wells, the winner of the Education category.
Ramona was overwhelmed by her win and that she was being recognized for doing her everyday job as a Technology Teacher at C.H. Reeves Junior High School. Ramona revealed she always had a passion for teaching and is happy that “someone is taking recognition of it and highlighting educators.”
The Bahamian Icon Awards isn’t prejudiced to age! Anyone, excelling in their craft can be an Icon winner. Just ask 16-year-old Rising Star winner Jasper Thomas, better known as Dj OVADOSE.
Humbly, he gave “God and his family” credit for his win and mentioned that he’s inspired by Disc Jockeys from the Bahamas and other parts of the Caribbean.
The show continued with musical performances and comedic dialogue from the host. I would catch just snippets of the performances while waiting for the next winner to be announced.
It was truly an honor for me to speak to first-time winners such as Remardo Russell (Entertainment), Beverly Curry (Media) and two-time winner Kareem Mortimer (Recorded Entertainment).
At the end of the evening, right before the final performance, CEO of SIDDA Communications and the founder of The Bahamian Icon Awards Mr. Addis Huyler revealed that he wasn’t sure if he would’ve hosted the awards ceremony this year.
I thought about that for a moment. What if he didn’t put on the “Icon Awards” this year… how many people wouldn’t have had their glorious moment that night? How many Bahamians wouldn’t have had anything to aspire to for next year and years to come?
Then I smiled to myself, realizing I was actually there, another year, and Mr. Huyler did indeed put on an awards ceremony that created the most iconic moments The Bahamas would ever experience in one night this year, 2017!
See more pics from the 2017 ALIV Bahamian Icon Awards:
There is a new trend brewing in Paradise and this one is Personal to Me!
As a Fashion Girl, many would think my first love is clothes. But its actually shoes. And my second love is actually bags, and clutches! Then its clothes…
Well, I recently discovered my new favourite Bag and Clutch brand, Pursenal Paradiyse, and this is personal to Me because the designer and brand is all BAHAMIAN! Ya’ll know I love and represent the 242, My Bahamas!
D’Letha Nairn, caught my attention with her hand painted art, of some of my favourite “Bahamian Tings”, on contrasting coloured clutches on Instagram. A friend of mine had raved about the purses, but it wasn’t until I looked for myself that I was truly amazed. The purses reminded me of the Gucci Dionysus Bags and the Gucci Ghost Collection. You know the ones with the spray paint design that says “REAL Gucci”?! Yea… those! However, her design are more like art…wall paintings… on a purse!
The Flamingo Clutch was my first purchase. It’s a dark blue clutch with our national bird, The Pink Flamingo, painted on it. Soon as I got it, I was determined to wear it and I found it to be perfect for a causal night out outfit that weekend.
The clutches are so funky and artistic, they add so much personality to a simple outfit. Oh! and they’re big enough to fit your cell phone, wallet, make-up compact, lipstick, and sunglasses!
The next clutch I purchased was a white clutch with the Chain of Islands of The Bahamas painted in black! Black and White is a classy combination and the simplicity of the design is perfect for any outfit you may have in mind.
I wore my second clutch to dinner and it complimented my little black dress and scrappy heels perfectly! Visit my Instagram page to see more pics of me rocking my clutches.
I intend to purchase a few more clutches, for myself and my friends and family! I may also give one away to my subscribers! Comment below and let me know if you’d like to win one.
For more designs and prices from Pursenal ParaDiyse click here.
Its been rainy and cold lately here, in the 242, but it was a sweet happy day when the Sun came out last week Friday!
It’s time to transition from Fall/Winter fashion into Spring. Even though we haven’t had much of Fall/Winter in the Bahamas, I still respect the seasons and love to dress accordingly. So I was especially happy to break out my new sleeveless trench coat, that I bought in yellow (perfect for Spring and Summer). The style and colour of this coat made it the perfect transition piece between the seasons. Then I paired it with some ripped jeans and a small brim fedora I bought from Forever 21 at least 3 year ago and never wore!
Click HERE to see more pieces that I bought for Full but can wear during the Spring and Summer.
Its been a few weeks since the Miss Bahamas Organization crowned its three Queens – Miss Universe Bahamas, Miss World Bahamas, and Miss Earth Bahamas, but the competition isn’t over yet! Those young ladies are just beginning their reign and now have to compete on the international stages for their respective titles.
The pageant was just as you may have imagined it: introduction, entertainment, winner announcements, eliminations, final q and a, then the crowning. The norm. But it was the fashion of the attendees that made the night more interesting than who will be crowned Queen.
Showing their support was former Miss Universe Bahamas queens Celeste Marshall and Lexi Wilson. They both wore beautiful evening gowns that could compete on the stage that night rather than sit in the audience.
Celeste wore a coral red strapless gown with embellishments around the waist, and an exaggerated pleat at the back of the dress. Lexi wore a white long sleeve backless gown, with sequins above the hips and a subtle train.
Co-Host of the Miss World Bahamas Pageant Ianthia Smith shined on the red carpet and stage in a metallic sequined dress with a sweetheart neckline and side split.
Not to be outdone, the men attending the pageant also showed up in style.
Zhivon Young, Miss Bahamas Organization Director of Event Planning wore traditional black and white, however with an off black textured jacket and slim fit black pants. He added detail to his ensemble with an oversized flower as his lapel pin and a large black bowtie.
Mr. Manhunt International Bahamas 2014 Davin Johnson went for a black on black ensemble, adding a small leopard bowtie for detail and donning his title stole.
Most attendees wore gowns and formal wear, like myself, who wore a vintage Herc & Lisa Fall Collection gown by Bahamian designers Cardell McClam & Christopher John.
However, others opted to dress simpler.
Mr. Addis Huyler, CEO of SIDDA Communications Group opted for simple but classic, in white and black with a red pocket piece, no necktie, now bowtie.
While others opted for a more avant-garde look.
Take in this ensemble for example, who would’ve thought to wear fringe and a brim hat to the pageant. Very unconventional, but is this wrong? Or revolutionary?
Its been the norm for pageant attendees to dress formal: gowns and tuxedos. However, recently its becoming clear that the audience is leaving the formal to the queens and bringing the fashion to the red carpet.
Who cares about a Dress Code… when there is Personal Style!
It was finally here… the moment I fantasized about every time I would watch Giuliana Rancic host a Red Carpet Live at one of the award shows. The Grammy’s being my favourite.
With my long, black, backless, sequined gown gripped in my hand from my thighs, I practically ran across the street to the Melia Hotel for the Bahamian Icon Awards.
I made it!
The Bahamian Icon Awards, celebrates and recognises Bahamian citizens who’ve shown a spirit of excellence and made noteworthy achievements in their desired fields such as Entertainment, Fine Arts, Health, and Education. Just to name a few.
It is the premier award show of its kind in the Bahamas, and most simply desire to be a nominee, because just to be nominated already feels like a win!
The red carpet was buzzing with loud chatter, flashing cameras, hugs and handshakes. For a minute, or two…or five, I was frozen in awe. The carpet was really red like on tv, the back drop reminded me of where I was, saying “Bahamian Icon Awards 2015”, the guest was arriving in STYLE. It was time to live that moment I had only dreamed about…
After having her picture taken, the first person I interviewed was second time nominee Leah Eneas, who was nominated under Entertainment, for her role in The Cinemas.
I loved Leah’s dress. It was true to her afrocentric style, and clearly custom-made for her. So I asked… “ You look beautiful tonight Leah. Was your dress made? If so, who was it made by?”
She proudly replied, “Ria made this, from Ria Georgina!”
I was proud. The night truly belonged to Bahamians. Even the ones who weren’t there or weren’t nominated like Designer Kenria Smith, who still made an appearance by having her pieces shine on the red carpet!
More cars was pulling up to the red carpet entrance, and as the nominees and special guest arrived, I was scanning the crowd to see who I would interview next.
Aha! I spotted him…
Fine Arts Winner (he was just nominated at the time) Willicey Tynes and his beautiful wife. They matched in very simple but elegant black and white ensembles.
Willicey was nominated and won for his contribution and Virtuoso Man piece at the Coral Reef Sculpture Garden in Nassau, Bahamas. I asked Willicey, “How does it feel to be nominated? And what does it mean to Him to see Art be celebrated like this?” Humbly he replied, “I’m actually shocked that I’m nominated. I wasn’t expecting to even be nominated.” He also said, ‘that he remembered when his type Art wasn’t so recognised in the Bahamas. So it was great to see it evolve so much in the Bahamas.’ Finally I asked Willicey, ‘what he was looking for most out of the Bahamian Icon Awards tonight… besides winning?!’ At that moment we all laughed.
Amongst other power couples looking fabulous on the red carpet that evening was Fine Arts nominee Scharad Lightbourne and his lovely date. Scharad wore a slim fit ankle length black pants and a black textured tuxedo with a black and white pocket piece and a red lapel. His date wore a Lupita Nyong’o inspired red floor length cape sleeve dress that complimented Scharad perfectly.
Another one of my fashion favourite couples was Youth Development nominee Sammie “Sammie Star” Poitier and his beautiful wife. They went for a more gala look to their outfits with Sammie’s bowtie and lapel complimenting his wife’s purple sequined sweetheart neckline gown.
Before I knew it, it was time for the ceremony to begin. The nominees and special guest were ushered inside and the double glass door to the hotel was closed. The red carpet bonanza was over, but the show was about to begin…
The hosts were on the stage making the audience laugh before a high energy musical performance by two-time Bahamian Icon Awards nominee Julien Believe. Fortunately for me, I saw Julien in the lobby before his performance and he agreed to interview with me.
Humbly Julien admitted to me that he was “nervous” for the night. Expectantly so, because this was his second year nominated and in his first year nominated, he won! I asked Julien what he was looking for most from the awards that night besides winning and he said “seeing Bahamians celebrate one another.” Lastly, he exclusively told me about a new song he’s working on called “Party Ambassadors”. I like it already… and remember! You heard it here first!
The night was flowing smoothly, the winners were accepting their statues and their responses were almost all the same… “shock, grateful and honoured”.
Winner of the Youth Development category Nikita Shiel Rolle was extremely excited. She’s a marine biologist and was recognised for her non-profit organization, Young Marine Explores. I asked Nikita what inspired her look tonight as she looked like a true winner in an empire waist, v neck, ocean blue sleeveless gown. Easily she replied,“my love for the ocean, hence the blue and the silver appliqués on the sleeve was just a little added bling!” She looked fabulous!
Next, I interviewed Education winner Janelle Cambridge-Johnson. She was dazzling in my favourite color, purple! Her dress was especially made for the event by another Bahamian designer Marilyn Monroe. Purple is her favourite color as well “because it represents Royalty and the potential she sees in Education.” She also mentioned that the hand sewn beads ‘represented all the students she taught’, past and present.
As the media and press crew waited for more winners, we sipped champagne and took selfies.
Then rolled in the guys, one after the other. All winners!
Dr. Conville Brown of The Bahamas Heart Centre won the Health category. He was very dapper that night, and took all the credit for his look. He was wearing a John Adams suit and a bow tie.
I asked Dr. Brown what did he feel was his biggest accomplishment of his career thus far and he replied, “developing a health care model… of which we are celebrating our 25th anniversary as we speak, and being able to ensure that as many people as possible has access to health care particularly in the area of Cardiology…”.
Next was the Entrepreneurship winner, Steve Cancino who wore a suit from the late great designer Oscar De La Renta. Then the Live Entertainment winner, Philip Burrows and Humanitarianism winner, Dr. David Allen.
Surprisingly, the next person to enter the room wasn’t a winner or nominee but he is a Bahamian Icon in his own right. It was Sebas Bastian, CEO of Island Luck and he was open to interviews!
Right away I asked what he was wearing, and after joking that it was rented and had to be returned by 12am, ‘so I must speed up my interview’, he revealed that it was a J. Lindeberg suit and “sometimes he likes to dress a little European”. What can I say? The man has style and taste!
I asked Sebas, to share a tip for successful entrepreneurship, and after joking that “first off, if you have a dream by a number!” He said to tap into an unsaturated market. That meant so much to me, being one of the few Fashion Stylist in the Bahamas.
Breaking the streak of the guys was Tourism winner, Ava Burke-Thompson, who revealed to me that her dress was formally owned by her late sister and it was her way of having her sister with her to celebrate her nomination and later win.
Soon after, it was back to the reign of the men, as Kareem Mortimer who was dressed in a another Bahamian Designer Cardell McClam won the Recorded Entertainment category.
Next, Rick Carey won the Music category for his song No Ordinary Fling.
Then, Timico Sawyer won the Entertainment category for his comedic Sawyer Boy Tv. When asked, “what inspired his look?” He said, he “figured everyone would come in black… so he went with the Blue” and that his outfit came from Fine Threads, a Bahamian owned men’s wear boutique.
The Bahamian Icon Awards exceeded my expectations! The event was classy, glamorous, well organised and well supported. Throughout the evening I kept thinking about what next year would be like.
I finally got to live a dream that night, and now I’m longing to fulfil another dream… That of being nominated for and actually winning a Bahamian Icon Award for my accomplishments in the Fashion Industry.
I enjoyed my night thoroughly. See the proof in more pictures below:
I love dinners, traveling and new experiences. And guess what? I’m taking you with me wherever I can! So grab your ID (for the parties), your passport (for the travels) and your bestie (for the memories). You don’t want to miss any of the fun and exciting must do’s, especially here in the Bahamas! This is my “Lifestyle” page. My LIFE in STYLE!