With the pandemic looming over our heads.. (seems like forever), it's the perfect time to indulge in a lil' self care. I indulge in self care every darn chance I get. Whether it's devouring my fave snack (chocolate ganache cake), partaking in a at home ...
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"Très Chic Style " - 5 new articles

  1. In Chic Beauty: Skin Care 101- Answers Here
  2. In Chic Fashion: A Chic History Of Fur & The Significance For Black Women
  3. In Chic Film: Sylvie's Love Delivers Vintage Fashion & Chanel Vibes For The Holiday...
  4. 2020 Chic Happenings, Ramblings & Things....
  5. Holiday Style & What I'm Thankful For...
  6. More Recent Articles

In Chic Beauty: Skin Care 101- Answers Here

With the pandemic looming over our heads.. (seems like forever), it's the perfect time to indulge in a lil' self care. I indulge in self care every darn chance I get. Whether it's devouring my fave snack (chocolate ganache cake), partaking in a at home mani-pedi session or sashaying into Sephora and exhaling all the stresses of the world... I am so IN!

Treating yourself to a great skin care regimen isn't only self care - its is necessary! I'm always asked if I utilize filters on my 7,000+ Instagram posts or if I airbrush my professional head shots. The answers are No & No. I wasn't blessed with amazing skin. I suffered from acne break outs and hyper-pigmentation issues just like most women. The difference is I learned what works for my skin and what makes it GLOW!

Continue reading as I share my fave skin care go-to's....


Getting To The Surface: Cleansers, Scrubs & Peels I Adore...

    

In Chic Fashion: A Chic History Of Fur & The Significance For Black Women

There's a long history regarding black women and the fur industry. Often seen as a symbol of elegance and grandeur, fur played a significant role in the lives of many women - black women in particular. 

My personal love affair with fur began as a child in church watching the elders arrive clad in full length furs and matching hats. I can remember my paternal grandmother donning pillbox style mink hats and even having one stolen off her head one morning en route to church in Brooklyn.

Furs were coveted items in the black community and many saved for years to purchase one. Whether it was a stole, custom capelet or the natural floor length ranch mahogany mink style. Black celebrities also solidified the idea that furs were an "I made it moment". Diana Ross & The Supremes were always photographed in gorgeous fur looks, along with Marian Anderson and Billie Holiday to name a few. 

The Supremes arriving to a tour stop clad in fur.

Fur has long been the debate with animal activist and spearheaded by PETA, whom once referred to themselves as the "PR for animals". I was wearing fur during the days of being afraid to walk into Manhattan for fear of your coat being splashed with red paint. Activist were ruthless and aggressive during the early to late 90's in New York City. They would camp out in front of Saks, Bloomindales and other high-end department stores and harass women in fur coats. 


Fur has long been the debate with animal activist and spearheaded by PETA, whom once referred to themselves as the "PR for animals". I was wearing fur during the days of being afraid to walk into Manhattan for fear of your coat being splashed with red paint. Activist were ruthless and aggressive during the early to late 90's in New York City. They would camp out in front of Saks, Bloomindales and other high-end department stores and harass women in fur coats. 


What perplexes me the most is the insistence that wearing fur is inhumane, yet these same "lovers of humanity" are radio silent when black people are murdered in the street as a result of just being black. When PETA made the decision years ago to shame Aretha Franklin in an open letter regarding her love of fur, it was less than humane. The letter ridiculed her weight and mentioned "she looked like a clown". In true Aretha style, she never responded and continued to wear floor length sweeping fur designs at events. 

I can still remember being gifted my first fur on my 14th birthday by my Godmother Catherine. She was the epitome of black elegance and shared her penchant for style with me every chance she got. 25+ years later I still have the cinched waist blonde mink jacket in my winter rotation. It's special, it has an emotional meaning to me and will forever be one of my favorites.

In a way, passing down a fur coat is a modest gesture to prophesize a life of opulence and grandeur for a younger woman, said Tanisha C. Ford, an associate professor of Africana Studies and History at the University of Delaware and author of "Dressed in Dreams," a book that explores the politics of black fashion.

Fur has become a hot topic and debate for many in recent years with cities in California (Los Angeles & San Francisco) now banning the sale and New York attempting to follow suit. 

Wearing fur has now been considered unethical and politically incorrect within the fashion landscape. When top fashion designers like Gucci, Stella McCartney and Chanel made the decision to halt the use of real fur in their designs it sent a message to the industry and the fall out has led to a 50% decline in sales. 

Not everyone believes that the decline in the fur industry was the result of PETA and it's relentless attempt to shame fur lovers. I firmly believe race played an integral role in this new "awakening" and few are even comfortable to admit it. 

White women have been purveyors of fur for decades. Often seen as a rite of passage or introduction to high society. Furs were gifted for weddings, purchased by husband's and handed down for generations. It wasn't until black women began to purchase furs that it became an "issue". Black women were in financial positions to afford the same luxury items as white women and even doing so without husband's.

Paula Marie Seniors, a historian and professor of Africana studies at Virginia Tech, recalls her mother saying, "As soon as black women could afford to buy mink coats, white society and white women said fur was all wrong, verboten, passé."

To date I own about a dozen fur coats, ranging from full lengths, jackets, stoles, and a custom piece from Ketchikan, Alaska I gifted myself after a 3 month stay during a contractual opportunity in 2019. I financed my first fur purchase. A mahogany ranch mink with my initials and my signature "Tres Chic Style" embroidered in the lining. I was in my 20's, single with TWO babies and I was buying a mink. My family thought I was crazy and secretly envied my purchase AND my decision to do what I wanted with my money. 

Living in different regions of the country (as I have) you're met with varying experiences wearing your fur. As a black woman in Tennessee, my experiences have taken on a new meaning of "They Mad". I'm often met with stares, whispers of "Who does she think she is? ", the occasional eye roll to random conversations deeply rooted in racism and reminders that "they have one too at home".  I can even recall being at a media event when I lived in Vegas and questioned by a 80 year old Jewish woman who loudly and boldly asked "I didn't know Negroes wore fur".

My plans are to begin gifting my daughter some of my coats while instilling the rich tradition and history that was passed down to me by my Godmother. And yes... I plan to purchase more coats, (new & vintage) while sashaying all up and through Walmart, The Dollar Tree and anywhere else I damn well please. This "Negro" (as I was referred to) made a decision to wear, appreciate and love my furs and all it's opulent and passé grandeur.

    

In Chic Film: Sylvie's Love Delivers Vintage Fashion & Chanel Vibes For The Holiday...


Writer-director Eugene Ashe's Sylvie's Love gave the world an intricate look into Black stories and a majority-Black cast representation in the cinematic romance of Old Hollywood. Released on Amazon Prime on December 23rd, with the Harlem Renaissance as the backdrop, Sylvie (Tessa Thompson) dreams of becoming a television producer while embarking on a star-crossed romance with saxophonist Robert (Nnamdi Asomugha). 

The film touches on the Civil Rights movement and sexism in the home and workplace while detailing the classic story of a young woman finding herself, her goals, and true love with glamour and STYLE. 


We adore a film with amazing vintage fashion and costume designer Phoenix Mellow—whose résumé includes period pieces Hollywood and Mad Men delivered in a huge way. While tapping the creators and purveyors of fashion at The House of Chanel, Mellow re-created 50's - 60's fashion with a reported 50 costume changes for Tessa. 

The film was a welcome reminder of the history of black women in fashion. From Pat Cleveland (who's mother Lady Bird Cleveland was an actual fashion inspiration for the film) to Eunice Johnson's Ebony Fashion Fair... Black women have long been a force in the fashion industry. It's certainly time that Hollywood take notice. 
"The Supremes" personified Vintage Black Hollywood

Nina Simone delivering grace & style

    

2020 Chic Happenings, Ramblings & Things....

In a few short days we'll bid farewell to the year that will forever go down in history as 2020. The year swept in and shook us all in one fell swoop. 

Along with losing dear friends and loved ones as a resultof that disrespectful Covid, 2020 left me vulnerable, at times broken and afraid. It taught me the true meaning of gratitude and allowed me to shift my focus to what really matters.... Me!

Along with it's trials, 2020 also delivered a few triumphs, like....

• Holland Group PR transitioned into the Brand Strategy sector
•Tres Chic Tees was born and available in 9 U.S. airports 
•Pieces By Shana was picked up by 4 retailers 
•Holland Group PR will be opening a second location in Atlanta, GA 
•The Tres Chic Foundation assisted a record number of families on Christmas Eve. 

Zero Complaints.... Always Grateful! 

    

Holiday Style & What I'm Thankful For...

Thanksgiving reminds me of all the fabulous and stylish women that have graced my life with their wisdom, love and style. 
The holidays have always signified style for me. As a child I could always remember Thanksgiving being the day you pulled out your fur coat, fancy shoes and headed to your family with some sort of side dish or dessert in tow. 

The idea of showing up in anything less than glamorous was a definite no-no. I can remember planning my holiday look weeks in advance and always leaving room on Christmas for a new trinket or piece from Santa. 

As I embark on this holiday season in a new place without my family near, I give thanks for the gift of impeccable style and what a blessing it has been in my life. 

What are you thankful for?
And what will you be donning for the living room this year? 
    

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