The Must Have Coach Travel Accessories

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Traveling can be hectic, difficult, and include lots of walking so when traveling one must have the best travel bag, shoes, and wallet. I have picked the perfect travel accessories from Coach.com. These accessories are must haves for travel in large cities like New York City, Paris, or Milan. My picks are fashionable, versatile, provides convenience, and most importantly they provide comfort and ease when traveling.

For the bag, I picked the Chelsea Hobo 32 in Polished Leather. It is the perfect bag because you can carry it in two ways. You can wear it over the shoulder, close and snug to you or you can use the longer strap and carry it as a crossbody. Crossbody bags are great for travel because your hands are free to carry shopping bags, camera, and phone. The style is hobo chic and can go with casual or semi formal travel clothing. I chose black because the color will match many other colors. The bag is priced at $325, a great bargain for a high-end brand bag.

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I chose the comfortable classic sneakers for shoes called C101 Low Top Sneakers. They are the perfect travel shoes because they are great for walking long distances. The leather gives it a sophisticated look and it goes perfectly with the Chelsea Hobo bag. The shoes will go great with jeans or black slacks. The shoes are priced at an affordable $295.

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Now for the perfect wallet, I chose the Accordion Zip Wallet in Polished Pebble Leather with Willow Floral. I chose this wallet because it matches perfectly with the shoes and bag and it is an accordion zip meaning your things will not be in danger of falling out because it zips all the way around. It is a large wallet so it can contain your must haves for travel such as IDs and credit cards. The wallet can fit 12 credit cards and you can store your bills lengthwise. It also has a zipped coin compartment. Another feature of the wallet that you will love is it can fit an iPhone 7 or a Samsung S7 Edge. The wallet is priced at $275, a great buy.

Check out the Chelsea Hobo bag, C101 Top Sneakers, and Accordion Zip Wallet on Coach.com. These three picks will ensure your travel runs smoothly while you looking stylish. Coach also has other options for a crossbody bag, sneakers, and accordion zip wallet that you may fall in love with.

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Be the Pillar of Your Community Not The Woman From the Page of a Magazine

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Growing up I always read magazines. I started reading Seventeen magazines when I was in middle school. What I learned from all of these magazines was that I needed to look good to attract a boyfriend or be liked by my friends. At an early age of about 14 years old I started being very conscious about how I looked.

I spent my weekends at the mall with my friends shopping and going to every single store to find THE OUTFIT. I looked for the perfect outfits in Express, Wet Seal, Gap, and Old Navy. I saved the money I earned from babysitting and doing chores around the house to buy all of these clothes. I was proud of my clothes. I would wear them during days when we didn’t have to wear a uniform. I would strut around in school and flaunt my new brightly colored plaid skirt.

I also started wearing makeup in middle school. Yes, I know it was a very young age to start wearing makeup daily, but that’s what I learned from the Seventeen magazines I read. It basically said in bold letters all over its pages that if I did not wear makeup I was never going to get a boyfriend and my friends would think I was ugly so wear makeup it was.

High heels were another must have for me when I was in middle school. I used to wear chunky heeled loafers during uniform days and chunky heeled MIA sandals during non-uniform days. I envied girls that could afford brand name shoes. I remember during those days chunky heeled Guess sneakers were the end all and be all of all shoes, but they cost $100 and of course, I could not afford them.

Another must have during middle school that I did not own were Coach and Dooney and Bourke purses. I don’t know if you readers out there know, but Coach and Dooney and Bourke purses typically cost $200 and my parents refused to shell out the cash for either of those brands. So I begged and begged, but alas no Coach and Dooney and Bourke purses for me. I tried to save my money for the purses, but I did not make enough from babysitting or my chores so I never did get to own a Coach or Dooney and Bourke purse in middle school.

Why am I writing about this? Well I just wanted to let some of my readers out there especially young women that from a young age we are programmed by magazines to be conscious of our looks from clothes, to makeup, to shoes, and to purses and this is something that most girls go through in their formative years as a teenager and they carry it on to adulthood.

To this day I try to buy nice clothes, makeup, shoes, and purses. Yes, I now mostly shop at Walmart or Target and have let go of the high-end brand names, but still, I am very conscious about how I look because of the magazines I consumed and still do consume. From January 2015 to September 2016 I lived in the Philippines and did not have access to fashion magazines and I have to say I stopped caring so much about how I looked. I started dressing in comfortable t-shirts, boy shorts, and just plain old flip flops. I stopped wearing makeup and my purse was a hand me down purse my aunt in England sent me.

I noticed that without being bombarded daily by the media about how I must look I became a woman that took pride in not how she looked, but how her attitude and behavior affected others. I realized when I was in the Philippines that people didn’t like me so much for how I looked and that they liked me simply because I was nice, caring, funny, and giving.

I grew to be a stronger woman in the Philippines and I would have to thank my grandmother who served as a role model for me. My grandmother or Lola as I call her is a pillar for our village and not because she is the senora of the village who dresses in beautiful clothes, but because she cares about the people who live in our village. Many of our neighbors go to her when they have problems. Lola gives them advice and sometimes gives them help monetarily. Being around my Lola made me realize that the woman to be was not the woman from a page in a magazine. Lola was the woman I needed to become in order to be loved and truly make a change in people’s lives for the better.

Now I’m not trying to say stop wearing nice clothes, stop wearing makeup, just wear flip flops, and carry hand me down purses. That’s not it because actually soon I’ll be posting fashion type blog posts, but what I am saying is that material things do not make you the woman you want to be. Your attitude, behavior, and your empathy are what people care about. They don’t typically care that much about your looks, but how you are as a friend to them.

About the Colorful and Vibrant Trinidad Fashion

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Trinidad fashion is one of the most well-known fashion industry to blossom in the Caribbean. It has been flourishing for many years providing the masses and the elite with colorful, vibrant designs that will keep clientele coming back for more. Heather Jones and Meiling are some of the most popular names in the Trinidad clothing market. Heather Jones is the owner of HJD Ltd and has been a fashion designer for more than 30 years.

Under Fitz Blackman’s tutelage, Heather Jones learned garment construction. Heather Jones is not a one trick pony, she designs ladies fashion, has an office and uniform line, and of course, she designs beautiful wedding gowns. Heather’s style is not about just how a woman looks; it’s also about how a woman feels. Her designs’ clothing and patterns are developed in-house in Trinidad. Trinidad rhythm, passion, and the Caribbean are all fused to provide inspiration for Heather Jones’s designs.

Often times you can see nature within her designs whether it be waterfalls or the Caribbean flora like orchids and hibiscus. Painting, Batik, and tie dye are also used by Heather to create her fresh, clean, and different styles. Heather’s designs evoke tropical nights in the Caribbean, cool days, and the waters that soothe her Caribbean home. During 2009, Heather Jones won the National Awards of Trinidad and Tobago Chaconia Gold Medal because of all of her contributions to fashion. In 2008, she won Best Trinidad and Tobago Designer Award. She also won Woman of Great Esteem Award in 2005. It was awarded by New York’s Woman of Great Esteem Foundation.

Meiling, the other most notable Trinidad fashion designer studied at the Lucie Clayton School of Design in London in the 70s. Once Meiling returned to Trinidad after years abroad learning how to design clothes, she decided to open a studio in the garage she had renovated. It did not take long for the Meiling design to appear on the runway shows with their immaculate lines and minimalistic styles. Meiling is famous for her use of the finest linens and fabrics that are made naturally. Often times Meiling combines her fine linens and natural fabrics with impeccable craftsmanship and viola, she has just created a fashion masterpiece.

Meiling devotes her time carefully to the details of the couture pieces she creates and this watchful eye and intricate handiwork are ever present in all of her pieces such as the simple little black dress, a collared white shirt, or that extraordinary fit for a princess’ wedding dress. When you see a Meiling design, you will know it is a Meiling because of its precise stitching, classic cut, and unmistakable Meiling silhouette. Meiling’s designs materialize themselves as white tunics, a scoop neck, long sleeves, wooden buttons on an applique strip, and sometimes they appear as vests appliqued with flowers. Meiling’s designs come in a variety of ways sometimes they are white dresses that evoke feminine aesthetics or a long black dramatic gown with a splash of color. Her designs may resurrect themselves in many forms, but one thing is for sure, a Meiling design is impeccable.

With Heather Jones and Meiling leading the Trinidad fashion industry, one thing is for certain Trinidad Fashion will captivate the hearts and minds of the classy, stylish, and elegant women all over the world. With its Caribbean-inspired colors and designs or elegantly dramatic Meiling lines, Trinidad fashion has burgeoned into an industry that will be making its way to the wardrobe of the mainstream and the famous. With the masses now armed with social media at their fingertips, many will discover the beauty and the passion that lies in the heart of the Trinidad fashion industry.

Nigerian Clothing Market

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Nigeria is well known for their oil, but more recently Nigeria has become popular for its fashion and clothing market also. Michelle Obama, Lupita Nyong’o, Solange Knowles, and Issa Rae are some of the key celebrities that have popularized Nigerian fashion. All four recently wore Amaka Osakwe’s designs. Amaka Osakwe is a Nigerian fashion designer who is known to blend traditional features from her Nigerian heritage with a more modern Western style. Amaka Osakwe’s label called Maki Oh has a large following in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Amaka Osakwe is not the lone Nigerian designer to be brought up when stars are questioned who designed what you are wearing right now. Duro Olowu and Jewel by Lisa are the two other most popular Nigerian fashion icons to be mentioned. Duro Olowu was born in Nigeria, but currently, he has been designing in London. His style combines innovative patterns as well as textiles that are inspired by his Nigerian background. Duro Olowu was one of the lucky fashion designers to have dressed Michelle Obama as well as Solange Knowles and Iris Apfel. During the 2005 British Fashion Awards Olowu won the New Designer of the Year award.

Fashion designer Lisa Folawiyo founded Jewel and is the creative director. Jewel is a popular Nigerian fashion brand that cannot be ignored because it is unique due to its modern and eclectic style. Lisa Folawiyo was initially a law student who attended the University of Nigeria; however, Lisa veered tracks and began her fashion label at her homestead without any formal training. Lisa is very passionate about fashion and she has an uncanny sense of style that uses the embellishments of the Ankara fabric. The Ankara fabric is also known as African wax prints and is made of 100% cotton that has been styled with vibrant patterns. It is a very colorful fabric that is patterned with tribal patterns and motifs and has garnered the attention of fashion lovers all over the world.

Most recently, Nigerian designers have been promoting their brands during fashion weeks, print media, and online media. Due to the recent rise in popularity of the Nigerian style many boutiques and online stores are interested in carrying designs by Nigerian fashion designers. Nigeria has also been hosting fashion weeks called Lagos Fashion and Design Week that have been attended by large international retailers like Selfridges and Browns UK.

Another key factor in the rise of Nigerian fashion is the online retail spaces. The internet boasts 56 million subscribers and not to mention there are 120 million people with active cell phone lines so of course eCommerce has grown rapidly and Nigerian fashion has gained traction in that space. There are no signs of eCommerce’s growth stopping anytime soon so e-tailers such as Jumia and Konga have jumped on the Nigerian fashion bandwagon.

Nigeria has a population of 160 million so of course, it is at the center of the fashion scene in Africa. Nigeria has also seen a growth in its urban population and economically it has grown as well thereby providing some of its richer population with disposable incomes. The middle class also has a voracious appetite for Nigerian fashion that is gaining economic footing.

Lagos Fashion Design Week has been largely accredited to popularizing Nigerian fashion in these past years. It has been showcasing for many years now and have been highlighting key fashion designers and bringing the designers in the international sphere of fashion influence. Lagos Fashion and Design Week has also partnered with the British Council and Fashion Business Series. These partnerships are enabling designers to learn about topics such as raising funds and learning how to become better entrepreneurs.

Some might say Nigerian fashion is at the height of its popularity, but I say it has not reached its pinnacle. Nigerian fashion is here and it is ready to play in the closets of the many celebrities in America and the United Kingdom. We have just begun to see what Nigerian fashion has to offer and so far everyone is delighted that Nigerian fashion has finally arrived on the international scene.