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Fashion

HIGH Style: Spring’s Electric Hues

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Spring has just been bursting with all kinds of trends, from peplum to tribal prints to bold florals! But I think the best (and most colorful) trend for the upcoming season is the explosion of electric neon colors. Think back to the Day Glo highlighters from the 80s and early 90s. The bright, fluorescent colors mirror the fashion statement that will be made this season. However, to avoid looking like a walking hip hop video from that unforgettable time period, I would strongly suggest pairing the bright colors with a neutral such as white, black, or beige.

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Also, the key to pulling off this look is by wearing bold colors but in simple and classic silhouettes. If you’re feeling bold enough, you can even try color blocking with other neon hues. I still would suggest color blocking with neutral colors such as black. And don’t even think about over accessorizing: the color will be bold enough for you to stand out while wearing minimal accessories.

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A neon hued dress is very fun and eye catching to wear for spring and summer. On top of that, a dress is always the best thing that you can wear. It’s a one stop shop! For the summertime, pair the dress with a white bag and some cool open toe platforms or my personal favorite – wedges, for a chic and easy look. If you don’t feel comfortable wearing a neon yellow top or hot pink dress but still want to try this trend, try punching up your look with some accessories such as a bright yellow belt, a clutch with touches of neon or even shoes with a pop of color.

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Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa on Twitter for the latest in beauty, style and fashion trends!

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HIGH Fashion: Kanye West & Giuseppe Zanotti’s Shoe Debut

Kanye West has always shown a high interest in fashion. So much so that he debuted a fashion line and is planning to hit the Parisian runways again with his Fall/Winter 2012 collection. However, Kanye is still not well known for his clothing line, yet. When he first debuted his clothing line, DW by Kanye West during the Paris 2011 fashion week, his designs did not impress. What is catching people’s attention are his $5800 beaded and crocheted heels that he collaborated with Italian designer, Giuseppe Zanotti. The stilettos, which feature calf leather and elaborate detailing with pearls and beading, will be sold exclusively at French retailer, Colette. West’s Fall/Winter collection will be seen at Paris Fashion Week on March 5. How about it, fashionistas? Do you think Kanye will score with this one?

Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa on Twitter for the latest in beauty, style and fashion updates!


HIGH Style: He’s Back!

Well known for his quirky panda bear and teddy bear sneakers, Jeremy Scott is back once again for the Spring 2012 Jeremy ScottxAdidas Collection.  These Adidas are just as quirky as they are bold and fabulous with their crazy animal prints, extra large fonts, and of course, stuffed animals. The bold print on the leopard shoes below will look amazing once mixed with a playful combination of other bold prints to display a very fashion forward look for young women who like a little “spice” in their wardrobe. The white “big tongues” can be worn with shorts or jeans paired with a simple tee or tank. The Jeremy Scott adidas will definitely be the hottest shoes to wear this spring and summer!

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Bradley Maddox for The HIGH UP.


HIGH Fashion: Marni For H&M

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There was Missoni for Target, Versace for H&M, Jason Wu for Target and now H&M’s latest designer collaboration: Marni for H&M. This latest venture into affordable designer fashion for the masses is set to launch in H&M stores March 8th. The line features signature Marni prints, bold accessories, and something the other lines didn’t feature: menswear. Marni is not as well known as Versace or some of the other designer labels, which means you may have more opportunity to acquire some of the items before they are sold out. I must say, for me personally, the line doesn’t necessarily “wow” me but Marni doesn’t appeal to my personal fashion aesthetic, either. The lookbook is already available here so go ahead and check it out for yourself. So, fashionistas (including the fellas), what say you? Will you be at H&M on March 8th?

HuffingtonPost.com

Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa on Twitter for the latest in beauty, style and fashion updates!


HIGH Event: Fashion Uncorked 2012 A Sexy, Sassy Success!

Cotrice Addison (Project Accessory), Donna Davidson (President of Easter Seals North GA), Sidratu Maju (Fashion Uncorked 2012 Winner), Monica Pearson (WSB-TV), Norma Center (Development Coordinator for Easter Seals North Georgia). Photo: Aldridge Murrell Photography

On Saturday, February 11th 2012, Easter Seals held its second annual design competition, Fashion Uncorked, at the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center located 45 minutes outside of Atlanta. Fashion Uncorked is a design competition very similar to Project Runway, in which the designers were to come up with designs inspired by T. Howard Jewelry Collection. It was a stylish affair to remember! This beautiful and chic event benefits Easter Seals, an organization that assists individuals with special needs and disabilities to navigate through life and become more independent. According to the Easter Seals website, services and support are provided through a network of more than 550 sites in the U.S. and through Ability First Australia.

Fashion Uncorked 2012 designer Lakedra “Raquel” Reed and her models. Photo: Kun-Chan Chang Photography

Fashion Uncorked kicked off at 7 pm. Attendees were directed to a parking lot about two minutes away from the facility where shuttles were waiting to take event goers to the event while dropping them off right in front of the entrance. This was quite a plus for another reason other than not having to walk far – the temperature was a frosty 28 degrees!

Holly Firfer (right) wearing ADHC Designs by Fashion Uncorked 2011 winner Angelica Cuervo (left). Photo: Carla Pierre Photography

Upon walking inside, excited guests checked in at the front desk. From there, guests spotted several displays advertising the different sponsors such as Mary Kay, Chocolate Ink, James L. Young Photography, Nairobi Professional, and Girligirl. There was also a crepe maker on hand preparing tasty crepes for a small fee. Barefoot Wines was on hand for the wine tasting, featuring a variety of wines, including the crowd favorite, a pink sparkly citrus Moscato. While guests were mingling, they were also noshing on sushi, bite size cakes, and a delicious concoction of dressing topped with asparagus.

Theresa Howard’s (creator of T. Howard Jewelry) handmade jewelry was used as inspiration for each of the designers pieces. Photo: Carla Pierre Photography

Monica Pearson, Atlanta’s favorite news anchor from WSB-TV, hosted the fashion show and Jenine Cotrice Addison was the co-hostess. The fashion show was scheduled to begin at 8:15 PM but before it started, Monica Pearson announced the untimely passing of the incomparable Whitney Houston followed by a short prayer. After that, it was time for the show!

Photo: Baby Shopaholic

The finalists for Fashion Uncorked had to create four looks for the event. The first look featured child models, which the designers not only had to create outfits for the children, but for their stuffed animals as well! The kids were so cute! This very well may have even been the crowd favorite based on the various reactions I saw! After that, the designers had to create daywear and eveningwear looks. It appeared that even though everyone may have had their favorite picks, everyone seemed to fall in love with the white pin striped jumpsuit.

Fashion Uncorked 2012 desinger Annie Flynn and her models. Photo: Kun-Chan Chang Photography

After all of the looks were shown, the judges had the designers and models leave the stage while they deliberated, a move that has been seen on countless shows such as Project Runway and America’s Next Top Model. It should be noted that among those on the judging panel, Holly Firfer, a former CNN anchor, was a judge as well as Rafael Cox, a contestant on the current cast of Project Runway. Jessica Black, Miss United States 2010 was also a judge, as well as Courtney A. Hammonds, JaVaun Gorman (an instructor at the Art Institute of Atlanta), Marcus Jackson (CEO and owner of CALIBER Entertainment) and Dr. Melissa Manuel (the head of the department of Fashion and Retail Management at AIA). After the deliberation period, the judges brought the designers and models back to critique their collections as well as the individual looks.

Fashion Uncorked 2012 Judges: Marcus Jackson (Caliber Enterprises), Renee Knorr (19th Hole Magazine), Rafael Cox (Project Runway), Holly Firfer (CNN/Star 94), Jessica Black (Miss United States 2010), Dr. Melissa Manuel (Art Institute), Cotrice Addison (Project Accessory), JaVaun Gorman (Art Institute), Courtney Hammonds (Art Institute) Holly Firfer (Not Pictured) Photo: Carla Pierre Photography

After much deliberation and excited anticipation from the onlookers, Sidratu Maju was announced winner of the competition. The prize package included a spread in Sheen Magazine and a trip to LA fashion week! Sidratu hails from Sierra Leone and her collection featured beautiful and colorful African inspired looks.

Sidratu Maju was announced the Fashion Uncorked 2012 winner and presented with gifts. Photo: Carla Pierre Photography

Fashion Uncorked 2012 had an amazing turnout as it just so happened to be SOLD OUT! Everyone there appeared to have a fabulous time. The event was structured, well planned, and ran smoothly. Easter Seals and Fashion Uncorked are destined to continue to grow. And next year, the event will be even more monumental. Until then, stay fashionable!

Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa for the latest in fashion, style and beauty updates!


HIGH Fashion: I Got My Jason Wu!

My Jason Wu Dress!

Last Sunday, women woke early in the morning to shop online or head to a nearby Target store in an attempt to purchase items from the Jason Wu for Target line. I will be the first to tell you, if you were not one of the first ones in the store when it opened, you could hang it up in terms of obtaining ANYTHING. Target has announced that they will periodically have items on the website for sale but will not ship more items to brick and mortar stores. Or, if you really must have an item, you can search eBay but consider yourself warned. People are reselling Jason Wu for Target pieces for much higher prices than they were originally sold for. It’s funny to me how the collection is sold out online and in the stores, but at the time of this article, there are 10,077 Jason Wu for Target items actually for sell.

Now, about a week ago, I wrote a post in which I stated that I was going to attempt to purchase one of the Jason Wu dresses, in particular, the navy a-line dress with red and tan stripes. So, upon waking on Sunday morning (after staying up late refreshing my browser on Target’s website), I checked the site and noticed EVERYTHING was sold out so I trekked to Target on Cobb Parkway outside of Atlanta. Upon arriving 10 minutes before the store opened, there was a crowd of about 20 women. When the doors opened, we quickly hightailed it to the clothes and all I heard were hangers clicking together and clothes shuffling! Within 5 minutes, all of the popular sizes and items were gone and all of us were in dressing rooms trying on our designer finds.

The highlight – I was able to get what I came for (SCORE!) and it seemed that everyone who came in that particular crowd did too! I did see some latecomers who looked simultaneously disappointed and ready to pounce on everyone who had a Jason Wu item. The early bird gets the worm, right?

I’m very pleased with the dress. Its very “Audrey Hepburn-esque” and American girl in Paris because of the fitted bodice and the full skirt. The fit was a bit off for me in the shoulders but nothing a tailor can’t fix. The navy frock is versatile as it can be worn in cooler weather with tights and a blazer, or in warmer weather with a variety of shoes such as sandals, open toe heels, pumps, or wedges and a thin belt. Thank you, Jason Wu! 🙂

Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa on Twitter for the latest in beauty, style and fashion trends!


HIGH Event: Fashion Uncorked Kicks Off At Barami In Phipps Plaza

Photo by James L. Young Photography

On Friday night, BARAMI inside of Phipps Plaza hosted the kickoff party/pre-event for Fashion Uncorked, a jewelry-inspired design competition. As soon as I walked in, I was greeted by Norma Center, Development Coordinator for Easter Seals Disability Services. She was very kind and gracious and answered any questions I had about the event and the organization. I was also greeted by two lovely ladies offering wine, bottled water, and hors d’oeuvres. There was also a table at the front with a representative from the Easter Seals organization who was selling tickets and offering information about Easter Seals.

Photo by James L. Young Photography

A live DJ spun great music while attendants browsed the store and shopped while mingling with the other guests. It was a great turnout of fashionable individuals from all walks of life.

I was pleased to see that while BARAMI is located in Phipps, which is known for catering to high-end clientele, the store offers chic business casual attire and beautiful accessories that are actually affordable. I spoke with the store manager, Marguerite Bobkin, who informed me that BARAMI is approaching its 3 year anniversary of being inside Phipps Plaza yet the store is based out of New York and has been around since the late 70s! Wow!

While I was there, the trendy store also offered a giveaway for everyone who submitted a business card. I won’t name any names but some lucky person won that lovely handbag I had my eye on!  My personal highlight of the evening: being able to not only meet the competing designers but also talk with the judges and Mrs. Theresa Howard, the creator of the bold jewelry pieces that will be featured in the competition.

Anastasia Southwick, The High Up's Karissa Parker (Center) and Theresa Howard Photo by James L. Young Photography

All in all, it was a great event and a great way to kick off Fashion Uncorked, which will be held this Saturday, February 11th at the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center located 40 minutes outside of Atlanta. The proceeds from Fashion Uncorked go to the Easter Seals Disability Services so its great to see an event like this benefit such an amazing cause. I definitely encourage people to purchase a ticket and lend your support.

See more highlights from the Fashion Uncorked pre-event and fashion show in the new issue of The IMPRINT by Aspire Online Media on February 20th! Subscribe here.

Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa on Twitter for the latest in style, fashion and beauty updates!


HIGH Fashion: Jason Wu Is Coming To Target!

TeenVogue.com

If you don’t know by now, on February 5th, the Jason Wu for Target Collection will be sold online and in stores. Hopefully, Target has prepared for the onslaught of excited fashionistas that are sure to hit up the stores and the site (me included) while avoiding the crisis that happened when the Missoni for Target collection was in stores a few months ago. The demand was so huge that Target’s web site crashed in a matter of HOURS and Target stores were selling out of pieces in an almost equal short period of time.

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Well, on to the good news! The Jason Wu line features dresses, fun accessories and chic mix-and-match separates. The pieces are sophisticated yet playful, and equally chic. The line actually looks as though it was designed based on nautical inspiration such as heavy splashes of navy and red and some mustard yellow thrown in, which I love!  I see myself wearing the items anywhere from work to brunch to cocktail parties and happy hour. Another great, AMAZING plus: the prices are most fabulous! Items range from $19.99 to $59.99 for clothes and $19.99 to $49.99 for accessories.

The lookbook was already posted online a few weeks ago. I am already prepared for this exciting shopping experience – there are a few pieces I have my eye on that I plan to get February 5th! This limited edition collection will only be in stores from February 5th to March 6th.

To check out the lookbook (and select which pieces you want ahead of time), click here. Make sure to check back in with us later on next week to find out if I was able to get my hands on some of the goodies!

Reference: Huffington Post

Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa on Twitter for the latest in fashion, beauty and style updates!


HIGH Fashion: The Sky’s The Limit!

As most people know, I’m a shoe lover (I actually prefer a different, less PC term but for the sake of our readers, I’ll just say “shoe lover”). The smell of a brand spanking pair of shoes fresh out of the box just makes my heart skip a beat. So, on one of my biweekly online window shopping excursions, I came across the striking geometric stunner – the peep toe Marcie platform wedge. When I saw them, my inner shoe-diva screamed and I knew I had to have them. They actually resemble the Guiseppe Zanotti wedge that came out last summer and were seen on Eva “The Diva” Marcille and Keri Hilson. (seen here) The kid suede shoe has a sky high 5.5 inch wedge with a 1.9 inch platform so it’s perfect for all of the “vertically challenged” girls as well as the chicas that are blessed with long legs already!

The eclectic shoes come in 3 colors: black, camel and blue violet.  I wanted the blue ones but they were sold out so I opted for the camel ones because I felt it would actually be more versatile than black and I wanted a nude look for a leg lengthening effect. Also, I knew the shoes could be paired several different options such as shorts in the summer, above knee length dresses, and cropped and skinny jeans. Basically any style that showed off the beauty of the shoe. The Marcie wedge is a versatile shoe that could be worn spring, summer, and early fall.

I ordered the shoe on a Friday and received them the following Wednesday so, excluding the weekend, shipping was relatively quick. When I opened the box, the shoes were stuffed with paper and a shoe horn to hold the shape and surrounded in plastic, ensuring NO damage while en route to your home. The shoes. were. AMAZING! The shoes that the Jessica Simpson Collection sell are well constructed and beautifully designed. There were no loose threads, the suede felt soft and most of all, when I slipped them on, they were extremely comfortable.  I practically skipped around my house in those shoes and the best part, I went from 5’4” to about 5’9”. Score!

The shoes retail for $110 and can be found on other sites other than jessicasimpsoncollection.com but at the time I purchased my pair, I got 20% off due to a promotion that was going on. But I’m sure that if you search online, some coupon code should pop up or the site may even be running a promotion. I highly suggest that you grab a pair. So, divas…stop reading and go shopping!

➟Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa on Twitter for the latest in style, beauty and fashion updates!


HIGH Maintenance: Let’s Get Naked…Again!

Urban Decay recently debuted their NAKED2 eyeshadow palette, the sequel to the famous NAKED palette! The new palette has 12 GORGEOUS, neutral shades like its predecessor with 5 new ones and a repeat of the shimmery gold shadow, HALF BAKED, except this one comes with the LIP JUNKIE lip gloss. The chic and modern packaging features a gray metal with a hinged top that’s reminiscent of an art school case with NAKED2 in bold, brown, embossed letters compared to the NAKED palette, which features a beautiful chocolate suede case with the word, NAKED, in big, bold gold letters. Both cases have a very luxurious look and feel to them – a bit different from Urban Decay’s “beauty with an edge” aesthetic.

 The NAKED palette contains 12 x 0.05 oz. eyeshadows and a miniature-sized Primer Potion of 0.13 fl. oz. However, the most exciting thing is that Urban Decay provides you with twelve full-size eyeshadows, which are normally sold at $17 and it includes the Good Karma Shadow Brush, which retails at $26, so, excluding the travel size primer potion, this palette has a value of $230!

Both palettes allow you to experiment with varying looks such as the classic “office appropriate”, a seductive, smoky look or sexy, summertime bronze. The shadows look stunning on everyone and you really get a bang for your buck with both palettes. The shades are high quality, highly pigmented and smooth going on the lids. Do you really need both? Not really. But for the makeup junkies out there, you may want to add both to your collection. What say you?

See NAKED here and NAKED2 here.

➟Karissa J. Parker for The HIGH UP. Follow @CurlyRissa for the latest in beauty, fashion and style trends!