Month: July 2015

The Really Forbidden Fruit

I can’t think of a better way to get me amped to try something than to tell me not to and with the No Durian signs populating the mass transit and hotels in Singapore, I was pretty curious about the fruit. I was excited when Iris, my guide said we were going to the Geylang area, Singapore’s red light district (which is as harmless of a red light district as I’ve ever seen), to try Durian from a roadside vendor.

Perfect Finds: Shopping Italian Blackamoor Jewelry

If you’ve ever been to Venice, you’ve seen blackamoor art. It’s pretty ubiquitous in hotels there although you might not have noticed them. They are the sculptures depicting African males (and sometimes females) decked out in jewels and/or regalia and holding a tray or some type of container at entrances. With jewelry and sculptures dating back to the Early Modern period of European art, blackamoor art has drawn controversy in recent times, most notably on the Dolce & Gabbana Spring 2013 runway. Much of the blackamoor jewelry on the market today are Venetian antiques carved from ebony or enamel and inlaid with gold and fine stones, like diamonds, rubies, pearls, turquoise etc. Famed Russian poet, Alexander Pushkin was said to keep a blackamoor figurine on his desk to remind him of his great-grandfather, black Russian nobleman Abram Petrovich Gannibal. This figure can be seen in his former St. Petersburg apartment, now turned into a museum. Diana Vreeland, Coco Chanel and Anita Pointer of the Pointer sisters are also collectors of blackamoor jewelry and furniture. I …

‘N’s Nomads: Dual Citizen Founder, Ola Abayomi

I honestly can’t tell you where or how I met our latest ‘Nomad, Ola Abayomi. Every time I see Ola’s bright smile, I think to myself, “I need to hang out with her more.” We cross paths a lot — from random events to working in the same building at one point — my crystal healer would say that Ola is definitely on my frequency map. Recently, I saw Ola’s instagram posts about a trip to Cuba. As Cuba is the number one place I’m dying to go, I knew I had to find out more. When I reached out, I was happy to hear that this renaissance, well-travelled woman was not just an ad exec by day: she had started an accessories line, Dual Citizen! Check it below, we dual citizens* 😉 dish on Cuba, being black while traveling and of course the label, Dual Citizen. ’N: Where are you from? Ola: I was born in Boston but grew up in Bethesda, Maryland. I’m first generation Nigerian-American. ’N: Where do you live now? Ola: I …

Perfect Fact from Dual Citizen – The Real Story Behind “African” Prints

I thought I’d share a super interesting fact I learned from Ola about African prints. I’m a big fan of prints and definitely cringe when I see one of my favorite brands, Stella Jean, lumped into a “tribal” trend story. But did you know that the term “African prints” isn’t that much better of a term to use?

Happy Tanabata!

I hope you’re having a great Tanabata! Tanabata is a Japanese festival also known as the Star Festival celebrated on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month. Legend has it that the Milky Way separates the stars Vega, deity, Orihime and Altair, Hikoboshi and they only meet once a year — sounds like most of my relationships. During Tanabata, it is customary to write a wish on a piece of paper called a tanzaku and hang it from a bamboo tree. The bamboo and decorations are sent afloat down a river or burned at the end of the festival. What are you wishing for this year?