Mr. President... Yes We Did!!!

Ladies & Gentlemen of the free world... we are witnessing history in the making. It was only 1-short-week ago when millions of voters turned out in record numbers in America, to elect the 44th President of the United States... and this time we got it right!

We didn't settle for a presidential candidate who wanted to continue the same lopsided politics of the last eight years, and we didn't settle for a candidate who promised to pull tricks out of a hat, come 2009.

Instead, we thought long and hard on our voting decision... and we chose a man (an educated and highly-qualified man), who has shared some of the same struggles as the ordinary American: student loans and being a child of single parentage, among other things. We chose a man who not only talks the talk, but walks the walk... we chose a man who we can finally recognize as being FOR THE PEOPLE...
We chose Barack Obama!
(America's new President-elect)

Barack Obama is a man of character and a man of diligence... and as I think back to a television interview of Congressman Elijah Cummings (Maryland), where he gave full detail of a phone conversation he had with Obama announcing his candidacy for President, I'm reminded that Barack Obama is also a man of faith.

Cummings recalled that Obama was driving during their conversation and that his voice was calm but excited over the phone, and he went on to say how Barack had pulled over his car and asked Cummings to pray with him so that God's grace and mercy could be with him during the presidential process. To me, right there in Obama's gesture of faith, he shows us a raw humility and reverence to a higher-power that can truly solve all of our problems, and when you put your trust and faith in God, all things will work out for the better, and I am so glad that this country now has a President who embodies that notion.

Moreover, looking beyond the brunneous complexion of Obama's skin, we must first see that he is a man of mixed heritage (of both African & European descent), who was raised in America. He represents the identity of this nation's vastly growing multi-cultural population, and I believe that's why so many people -all over the world- feel a connection with him, because he looks just like you and me. In looking at Obama, we are re-assured that we are all of the collective, human race and not just black and white.

And with his two, beautiful daughters and his wife (and soul-mate), Michelle Obama, the new First-family further symbolizes the diversity that makes up this world. Although Michelle's African-American heritage denotes a reflection of America's past cruelty towards dark-skinned people, we hold tight to the promise of America's future... knowing that men and women (in the words of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.), will continue to be judged by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin.

Mr. President, because of you, my faith in mankind has been restored and I am finally proud to be an American... I am at your service, sir. We are all, humbly, at your service.

May God Bless Us All!

Avon L. Dorsey II.
Publisher- STYLE 101 Magazine

Black & White...

by- Zaina Adamu

From bold prints to neutral palettes, the past few seasons have shown fashion designers opting for a “new look.” While peering through the current offering of sleek and sophisticated styles reminiscent of the late 90’s -I could not deny if I tried- I noticed something deeper than the clothing… in the collections, the models who strutted down the runways were predominately White, with an exotic, Black model gracing the stage every so often to add diversity to the mix. It struck my attention not because I am a Black woman, but it seemed to highlight certain collections by seeing the clothing differently- something kind of new, as some would say.

It is a triumph to see the inclusion of more Black models in designer shows, and to think it was only a couple of decades ago when the late fashion icon Yves Saint Laurent was one of the first major fashion designers to use Black models in his shows. Fast forward to the new millennium, and now more Black models grace the covers of major magazines such as Vogue and Bazaar, as well as the catwalks of fashion giants such as Prada, Oscar de la Renta and Gucci.
(Jourdan Dunn in Prada, Fall 2008)

Overall, just like the pages in a magazine, fashion catwalks may have blank, white backgrounds, but it is the black font that translates the creative work… helping to illustrate the ideas of the fashion designers into the minds of the public.

Mr. Obsessive

by- Reginald Larkin

Leaves are orange and reddish-blue, the cold weather is here… and fashion is too! I feel privileged to bear witness to so many changing colors and budding fashions –all happening at the same time this season. And with such an emphasis on style, the obsessions that I have right now (for both men and women), are for the abundance of rich textures and bountiful patterns in everything from shoes to jackets. Joelle Carter, a Morgan State University activities coordinator says, “It’s all about the accessories,” and she couldn’t be more right. Even if accessories aren’t your thing, there are still options –you can make a fashion statement by purchasing items that have a one-of-a-kind authenticity; things that will stand out amongst the milieu of everyday finds.

My Obsessions for Women: Showstopper

1) The Peep-Toe
(Shoe, Christian Louboutin)
• Whether it’s a pump or a boot, this heel is sophisticated and flirty all at the same time. The concept that you are showing a smidgen of skin leaves mystery, so why not make his mind wonder. A peep-toe has both class and sass that is effortless.

2) The Motorcycle Jacket
(Jacket, Rick Owens)
• This type of jacket is such an American icon and a timeless staple that one should be in every woman’s closet (picture James Dean with breast and a ponytail). The rugged yet chic style of this jacket is desired in cold weather atmospheres –either in leather or in piled fabric, and by pairing it with virtually anything (a dress or a shirt and jeans), it can make your outfit versatile and enviable in an instant.

3) The Cardigan
(Cardigan, Alex Gore Brown)
• With the brisk air, some extra coverage is needed when you leave the house… and that’s when a sweater comes into play. But not just any sweater, it’s more chic to layer with a cardigan (a thin sweater open at the front and which closes with buttons). These aren’t your grandmother’s sweaters, the new updated styles are textured and form fitting and pairing one with leggings or skinny jeans create a slimming effect for the body, and can add height to any form.

My Obsessions for Men: Renaissance

1) The Blazer
(Blazer, Dolce & Gabbana)
• Personally, I have dreaded wearing one this season, but I just recently found the blazer of my dreams! And, I believe that if you too can find the right fit then you have found the perfect blazer for you. These jackets (aka Sports coats), can add a hint of class to any wardrobe, and they have the versatility to go from work-to- play in one swoop. This is one trend that every gentleman should commit to (for any season, really). But don’t settle for just any random suit jacket, search and find the right blazer for you.

2) The Loafer
(Shoe, Yves Saint Laurent)
• Sneakers are fun, but there is something altogether unique and classic about loafers. Diversity in ones shoe collection is crucial, and this shoe not only adds diversity but it also gives a preppy edge to any outfit. The loafer (minus the penny), calls to mind that Harlem Renaissance man (picture Billy Dee Williams in Lady Sings the Blues), an era when style ran rampant.

3)The Denim Jacket
(Jacket, G-Star)
• Just like its relative (the motorcycle jacket), the denim version is another American icon, and is both fashionable and a great tool for layering underneath of your winter coat. The trick to finding a good denim jacket is to go for durability, quality and a great, streamlined fit.