Au Naturale ~OOTD

Shirt ~Gift | Jeans ~DIY Forever 21 via Goodwill | Sandals ~Off Broadway Shoes | Watch ~Claire’s | Earrings ~Charlotte Russe

I adore getting unexpected gifts! There’s just something special about when someone thinks of you out of the blue and gives you something for no reason at all. God has blessed me with so many people in my life who love me and know me well, and who will randomly give me something that makes my day. Recently one of my favorite former tutors gifted me a super fly natural hair t-shirt. The graphic is gorgeous with the hair in the shape of Africa and I couldn’t wait to style it! For a casual look I paired it with my favorite distressed jeans and white sandals. Rose gold jewelry elevated it from basic to chic and I further repped natural hair with a curly fro. I’ve actually worn this outfit multiple times and I’ve received so many compliments, it’s definitely a new favorite piece.

Stay fly,

~Akilah

Easter Fit ~ft. My sister

On Me: Dress ~Dillard’s | Sandals ~Off Broadway Shoes | Earrings ~Charlotte Russe | Bracelets ~Charming Charlie | Nails ~Sinful Colors Gold Medal + Sally Hansen Insta Dri Slick Slate

On My sister: Dress ~Dillard’s | Sandals ~Payless | Earrings ~Claire’s | Necklace ~Charming Charlie’s (borrowed from me) | Nails: Love & Beauty Rose/Gold

Happy Resurrection Day! I hope all of your Easter’s are amazing. The tomb is empty and the King is alive! Today my sister and I are doing our Easter OOTD. Every year our grandma takes my sister and I with our mom out to dress shop for Easter and Christmas. This semi-annual shopping excursion is an event I look forward too. It’s a day where I get to enjoy hanging out with my grandma, mom, and sister and get new clothes.This year I went for an olive green maxi dress and Anaya went for a pink lacey one.

This dress for my super tall sister is probably her last kids dress. It was the only one in the girls’ section that fit. Yet, it wasn’t just the fact that it fit, but the simplicity of this dress that drew her to it. She wore some of her favorite pearl earrings and a pearl necklace to bring out the pearls in the belt, and summery sandals.

When I saw my dress, I hoped so much that it would fit. The lace bodice and olive hue of the dress drew me to it. And once it fit me perfectly I knew it was mine. The style of it reads very Coachella to me also. Gold jewelry completes the look: gold hoops a blush and gold and a purple and gold bracelet. I pulled out the purple and gold in my bracelet with purple/gray and gold nail polish on my nails. And for my hair I did my new signature curly fro.

All in all I think we look pretty fly together. And thanks so much to our grandma for Easter dresses! Happy Easter fam!

Stay fly,

~Akilah (and Anaya)

The Hate U Give ~Angie Thomas

“The truth casts a shadow over the kitchen -people like us in situations like this become hashtags, but they rarely get justice. I think we all wait for that one time though, that one time when it ends right.” ~The Hate U Give

I’ve been waiting for so long to read this book. It’s one of the most hyped books of 2017 and shocker its a hyped YA contemporary that I actually wanted to read. The premise sounded interesting, I’m always searching for more “YA of color”, and Jason Reynolds, one of my favorite authors, acclaimed it, so it was a perfect fit. 

The Hate U Give is about sixteen-year-old Starr Carter who witnesses her best friend Khalil get murdered by police. I’m ecstatic that a book about hard topics like police brutality and race relations by a debut woman of color author is getting buzz. I hope that this will lead to more  authors of color getting the recognition they deserve, especially in YA. Also, as there’s a movie in the future (with the great Amandla Stenberg I might add) I hope that the movie will do it justice and expand the platform even further.

I love the cover, first of all. My book cover aesthetic is very clean and minimal and I love the white, black, red, and brown color scheme. I appreciate that it isn’t a photo, as I’m not a fan of photos on book covers, but that it features a WOC on the front (representation matters).

Starr is a wonderful character, multi-faceted and imperfect. Her obsession with Jordan’s and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air make her quite endearing. On a side-note I loved the descriptions of shoes in the book and hearing which J’s are Starr’s favorite.

Family is also a major part of this book, Starr’s parents and siblings are developed in a satisfying way and add to the book. Seven, Starr’s older brother is the epitome of cool and her younger brother Sekani adds bits of humor to the family. I also love how strong  her parent’s relationship is, even after a messy past. Starr’s Uncle Carlos is a police officer, which adds an interesting dynamic to this issue of police brutality, making her perception of police complex.

As far as friendships, Angie Thomas uses Starr’s relationships with her friends to deal with deeper issues, which is perfect. Also I admire her friend Maya, I would definitely hang out with her in real life. The only person close to Starr I did not like is her boyfriend Chris. I understand what Angie Thomas was trying to do with exploring interracial relationships (Chris is white) but I didn’t like his character. Their relationship seemed unnessecary and I wish I could just cut out his scenes.

I would love less Chris and more Khalil. I knew going in that Khalil was going to die, yet I still let myself love him so much. Why do I do myself like this?? I cried, physical tears when he was shot (and at other times during the book) because he was just so kind, funny, and he loved Starr. They grew up together and I would love to see a prequel of their childhood. Also, his love for his momma and grandma is so sweet, Angie Thomas did a fantastic job of revealing his character even after his death. Starr’s character development also continues throughout the whole book. It was amazing to see her growth over the course of the story.

My only other complaint aside from Chris is the language in this book. It’s like a PG-13 movie, but I find language even more bothersome in books. Therefore I wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone under 13, it also can be a little intense at times so be aware.

This book was bomb, and I’m glad it’s getting so much acclaim and I hope the movie delivers like the book did.

Stay fly

~Akilah

What did you think of The Hate U Give?

If you liked T.H.U.G. you might like…

  • When I Was the Greatest ~Jason Reynolds
  • Piecing Me Together ~Renee Watson
  • Scorpions ~Walter Dean Myers
  • Maizon At Blue Hill ~Jacqueline Woodson

Am I Wholly Consumed By Fashion?

Over the weekend I went to a homeschool convention (yes I’m homeschooled in case you were wondering), there were a host of inspiring seminars and speakers there. At the end of one of the sessions, the lead speaker mentioned the advice of a musician to those interested in pursuing the arts as a career. This musician said that if you don’t wake up thinking about your art, go to bed thinking about your art, and think about your art every chance in between, then you should not pursue it as a career. She said in order to make it in the arts you must be wholly consumed by your art.

This continually replayed in my mind over the last couple of days. As an aspiring fashion stylist and makeup artist, I’m entering an arts enviroment. Fashion is one of the toughest fields to enter, and hustle is mandatory. Sometimes I question if I have what it takes. Does fashion wholly consume me?

The answer is no. And it never will. I will always have other passions, other dreams, other loves. I don’t always wake up thinking about fashion, sometimes it’s a great book, or new idea that rolls around in my brain. Even this blog is not wholly dedicated to fashion; food and literature are huge parts too. I argue that the other interests and consuming thoughts a person has play a huge role in his or her success. The writing that I can bring to the table may eventually help my fashion career, but if I was wholly consumed by fashion I couldn’t improve my writing skills.

So, if we’re not to be wholly consumed by our art, then what should we be consumed with? The answer is God. More specifically the Holy Spirit. He should penetrate and illuminate every crevice of our being. Consumption by any worldly thing is dangerous, only God should be our complete obsession. As Hebrew 12:28-29 says: “Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.”

In short, I am not wholly consumed by fashion. I love fashion, I couldn’t imagine my life without fashion, style, and beauty, but I am wholly consumed by God. He is the reason I wake up, go to bed, and live in between.

Stay fly,

~Akilah

What do you think? Should we be wholly consumed by art?

A Week in My Wardrobe

Today I’m going to show you guys what I wear during a given week. I photographed outfits Friday through Thursday, some of these are new outfits I put together, so you can also see my style and how I build looks.

Friday:

I had a debate meeting today, and I just built this outfit around a sweater that I recently bought. I also played around with textures with the sequins and crushed velvet choker.

Sweater: Banana Republic via Goodwill | Button Down/Flannel: Gap via Goodwill | Jeans: JC Penny | Boots: Kenneth Cole via gift | Jacket: Dillard’s via gift | Choker: Charlotte Russe
Saturday:

Today we had brunch at our house, so I went for something comfy and simple, just a sweater and jeans.

Sweater: Rue 21 via Goodwill | Jeans: DIY Forever 21 via Goodwill
Sunday:

On Sunday for church I went with a clean simple look with sharp colors and gold jewelry. Because it was chilly and to add some edginess I wore a black denim jacket.

Sweater: Gap via Goodwill | Skirt: Macy’s via gift | Jacket: H&M via Goodwill | Shoes: Fergalicious by Fergie via Off Broadway Shoes | Necklace: Gift | Rings: Charming Charlie and Claire’s | Nail color: Sinful Colors Nice Stems
Monday:

Classes all day today, a baseball cap was in order. I went with a black and mint color pallette, most of my closet is mint, and it’s a color that I love to wear. I’m also wearing mint Converse high tops but I forgot to take a picture of them.


Tee: Goodwill | Jeans: TJ Maxx | Cardigan: Belk | Necklace: Gift | Baseball Cap: Charlotte Russe

Tuesday:

I went to play rehearsal today, and its always cold in there so I reached for my sweatshirt for effortless vibes. And yes, these are the same jeans from Saturday.


Sweatshirt: Aéropostale via gift | Jeans: DIY Forever 21 via Goodwill | Shoes: Converse Store via gift

Wednesday:

Edgy was my theme today, with my cold shoulder jacket and sparkly oxfords, this outfit is far from normal.


Jacket: DIY Loft via Goodwill* | Jeans: JC Penny via gift | Shoes: Goodwill | Choker: Charlotte Russe

Thursday:

More play rehearsal, then choir rehearsal for today. Another Gap sweater, which I apparently have a lot of and jeans. I love the way the flared jeans and loose cropped sweater balance each other out.


Sweater: Gap via Goodwill | Jeans: Hand-me-down from friend | Necklace: gift | Boots: Michael Shannon via Off Broadway Shoes

That’s all folks!

*I could do a tutorial of this jacket if you guys want to see it. Let me know in the commments.

Which outfit was your favorite?

Stay fly,

~Akilah


TBR Tour

There’s never a time when I don’t have a ton of books that I want to read, but at the moment I have a surplus that I wanted to share.

The Golden Compass ~Philip Pullman

A fantasy read that I’m trying to give a chance. I tried reading it and something didn’t click but I’m going to give it another go because the premise sounds good.

How to Get a Meeting with Anyone ~Stu Heinecke

A non-fiction book that’s on my radar, the title is really intriguing. I hope it actually tells me how to get a meeting with anyone.

American Street ~Ibi Zoboi

I love reading books with MCs of different cultures so this book about a Hatian immigrant sounds amazing. It’s also a very popular YA book that I actually want to read, plus it’s on order from the library so it should get here soon.

Design Your Life ~Rachel Roy

I’m hoping this personal style self-help book will have good tips. I saw it at Barnes and Noble as I was buying Steal Like an Artist and it looked interesting, plus I like Rachel Roy’s designs. As an aspiring fashion stylist I always want to keep learning about fashion and personal style.

Dear Martin ~Nic Stone

This book won’t be released until October and I can hardly contain myself. It’s the debut book for Nic Stone, who I hope will become a staple in YA lit. Advertised as similar to The Hate You Give, this book is about a boy who witnesses police brutality and starts a series of letters to Martin Luther King. I’m gonna get my life with this book!

This is no where near even half of by to be read list, but I hope some of these books looked interesting or inspired other books for you.

Stay fly,

~Akilah

Have you read any of these books? What’s on your TBR?

Green Hills Grille ~Review

A perfect place for upscale American fusion in a casual cafe-like setting, Green Hills Grille is quickly becoming a celebration go-to for my family. Most recently we went for my Grandma’s birthday and had a wonderful time.

I ordered the Chicken Pignoli: sautéed chicken, olive oil, basil pesto, red pepper flakes, cajun spice, artichoke hearts, pine nuts, goat cheese, parmesan cheese, tomatoes. 

Pasta is one of my favorite foods and anything pesto immediately grabs my attention so ordering this was a no-brainer. I’ll admit I was a bit skeptical because this isn’t an Italian restaurant, but this wasn’t my first time eating at GHG and I trusted the food. My trust wasn’t betrayed because the pasta was bomb! The pesto and parmesan cheese complimented each other nicely, the goat cheese added a nice creamy contrast, and the hint of cajun spice topped it off wonderfully. My only complaints are that the artichoke hearts were slightly tough and I could’ve used more chicken, but other than that it was a tasty meal. 

I also recommend the Pequeno Shrimp and Grits which is what I ordered my first time there. They’re probably the best shrimp and grits I’ve ever had, so favorful.

Definitely go visit Green Hills Grille, the food is delicious!

Stay fly,

~Akilah

On Sundays We Slay ~OOTD

We’ve been having winter weather in Nashville lately, which is fabulous for me since I just got a bunch of winter clothes from Goodwill. Almost all of the items in the outfit I wore to church today are from thrift stores. 

Shirt ~J Crew via Goodwill | Skirt ~H&M via Goodwill | Coat ~Old Navy via gift | Boots ~Goodwill | Necklace ~Charming Charlie | Boot Cuffs ~Target via gift
I built the ensemble around the wool skirt and went for a preppy vibe with a crisp white button down and leather boots. I found these boots at Goodwill for only $5, they were in perfect condition but then the first day I wore them the right boot began to split. It’s not that bad so I’m still going to wear them and I thought they coordinated with my look.

This red coat I recently received from a friend and it complimented this outfit perfectly. For jewelry I chose a purple statement necklace because I love the look of statement necklaces with collared shirts and the purple is perfect with the skirt. I also brought out the pale pink in the skirt with some boot cuffs I received from Christmas a couple of years ago.

I loved this outfit and I know it will be one that I wear again.

Stay fly,

~Akilah

Shooting From the Free Verse Line

“See when I play ball,

I’m on fire.

When I shoot,

I inspire.

The hoop’s for sale,

And I’m the buyer.”

The Crossover by Kwame Alexander is an epic mash-up of free verse and hip-hop poetry which creatively tells the story of Josh Bell, young basketball prodigy. The narrative revolves around Josh and his twin brother Jordan as they rule the court, but also as their relationship evolves.

I was tempted to title this post “Love and Basketball” but I’ll refrain since I haven’t seen the movie. Anyway, I enjoy watching basketball, and reading books about it so when I saw this book I was intrigued. Then, I found out it was written in verse and I couldn’t wait to read it.

The mixture of free verse, rhyming hip-hop poetry, and play-by-plays by Josh immediately hooked me. There are also short pieces called “Basketball Rules” which are similar to proverbs or life advice. All these pieces are organized into sections named with basketball terminology (1st quarter, overtime etc.) which I found very creative.

Sometimes in novels written in verse it becomes harder to connect with the characters, but in this story I immediately felt connected to the characters, especially Josh. His personality was quite distinct from Jordan’s and his voice came through clearly. I also loved his parents, instead of being faceless like in some books, they had personality and a real relationship.

Plot-wise this book was amazing, there’s an unexpected twist at the end, so definitely read it!

Stay fly

~Akilah

My Favorite Oscars 2017 Looks

Another Oscars has come and gone, and I watched from the opening of the red carpet all the way until the (true) Best Picture winner was named.
For me it was all about the fashion and the black girl magic, and this year they went hand in hand. I saw a lot of gorgeous looks, and my favorite designers and stylists really showed out.

All images are via Fashionista.com (they’re the real MVP.) These looks are in no particular order, except that my absolute favorite will be at the end.


Hailee stunned in Ralph & Russo Couture, which is one of my favorite brands. The watercolor bodice and sheer skirt emitted an angelic vibe.


Zuhair Murad had never made a strong impression on me until I saw this gown. The white and silver compliment each other so nicely and the sheer sparkles and cape add a little pizazz. Chrissy Teigen is gorgeous and her stylist deserves a round of applause for choosing  such complimentary jewelry and clutch.


It’s significantly harder for men’s red carpet ensembles since tuxedos are basically manditory. But David Oyewelo takes it up a notch with a Dolce & Gabbana white tux. I love the contrasting black shawl collar and while the bow tie style isn’t my favorite, I like the overall look.


Taraji is absolutely gorgeous, and her stylist: Jason Bolden does a good job complimenting her figure. The midnight blue velvet off the shoulder gown gives an old Hollywood sultry vibe, which is complimented by her hair style and diamonds. And props to makeup artist Jessica Smalls (one of my faves) for beating face.


Also the product of Jason Bolden’s expertise, did I mention I love his styling, is Ava Duvernay’s Ashi Studio ensemble. The always concious Ava wanted to wear a gown created by a Muslim brand, and she rocked her locs on the red carpet. *raises fist* The fullness of the gown accentuates her regality.


The Rock is really coming through with a blue velvet suit, and contrasting lapels. Blue velvet was a big red carpet trend this year and this suit is one of the best examples. Unfortunately, I couldn’t locate the designer, so if you know leave a comment.


I really love Armani Privé, and this red gown is perfect. The halter/off the shoulder top adds interest to an otherwise simple gown and the slightly orange red is beautiful. Viola’s hair frames her face perfectly, and the makeup gives her a gorgeous glow.


This is my favorite look of the night, and it’s no surprise because Janelle is one of my style stars, and Elie Saab is one of my favorite designers. The detailing on the bodice is beautiful and the color scheme compliments Janelle’s skintone nicely. The belt and the hoop skirt is unexpected and fun. The accessories are to die for, I need that gold headband in my life, and the makeup is poppin’. No question, this look takes the cake.

Stay fly,

~Akilah

What were your favorite Oscars looks?