Accessories, achievements, activities, adventures, Fashion, food, lifestyle, Photography

The Week of Corona

It has been a wild week, to be sure. I think we all know what I mean. EVERYTHING is different.

And maybe that needed to happen.

So the corona virus has rolled across the world and in addition to the possibility of sickness and death, you have the choice of going broke if things don’t get back to normal. I started a Roth IRA 7 years ago and it’s only in the last few years that I could make regular contributions. I’m watching that progress melt away second by second, which is both frightening and exciting. I never had money to lose before, so I’m kind of winning. I also read a book called Depression Era Economics by Paul Krugman and it’s keeping me calm to know that if you just wait, the market will regenerate itself. If people are selling and selling, someone is sitting around waiting for the prices to drop low enough and then it will be buy, buy, buy.

If things work out ok. Which they will.

Here in New York it’s like this:

Normally, you can’t shoot a train platform without a few people messing up your photo, but not so much now. It is not as much of a problem getting a seat on the train, and nobody pushes right up next to you. Part of that is that people are biking or uber pooling, and the other part is that businesses are slowly shutting down, so there’s not as much reason to go out. I just got told that the rest of my gigs for March are cancelled since department store shopping is considered nonessential. You can get restaurant delivery or shop online, though.

One thing that fell by the wayside was my styling class at Fashion Institute of Technology. I had signed up for a visual merchandising class where I would learn to build sets and style photoshoots (yeah, I was a photographer and did branch out into styling but that was ages ago). I really wanted to brush up my skills, work on updating my portfolio, maybe style on the side, and definitely try to get more visual merchandising jobs. But corona happened.

It threw the school into a tizzy about a month in. My class was very hands on, and all about group projects and suddenly they were like, all classes are online. I thought about it and decided not to continue because worrying about my economic survival is not good for my creative process. Guess what? Can’t get a refund. You either take the online class or die. So the photo above and one lecture just cost me $600.

At least I can write it off on my taxes.

I just got a Target Red Card, so just in time I had a large amount of money for emergency food shopping. I also shopped at Jacks and Dollar Tree. I got yogurt, fresh berries and fruit and as late as Thursday night Target was still stocked up. The Key Food near my place was completely out of toilet paper, but I got a few rolls at Dollar Tree. I usually stock up, because a grownup should know when they’re almost out, but I was down to my last five rolls and I started reading about how people were stockpiling. I also have napkins and paper towels, but still.

When I finally got to settle in and self quarantine, I roasted some pork belly chunks (super cheap) and had them with rice (put the rest in the fridge for another meal) and a spoonful of black beans from the massive can I bought. I live alone, so my food will last for awhile, but I’m already telling myself not to get crazy and overeat. The first uncertain days had me binge eating, but now, since I don’t know how long this will last, I’m sticking to four meals and rationed healthy snacking. I found some empty plastic bottles that I’d been saving for no reason, so I filled those with water and they’re in the freezer.

I’m not a survivalist, so I’m really just trying to catch up on my grocery shopping, which has been erratic for months since I went from unemployed, to javascript student, to employed, to double employed. I’m sorry that it took a pandemic to get me the time I needed to stop doing everything and figure out my life.

I had a gig at Home Depot merchandising for Carhartt, and I bought myself a money plant and a new succulent baby. It’s wild, but I’ve been collecting crystals and buying candles and oils and sage, and setting intentions for the last few months so now my apartment is a nicer place to be. I have a salt lamp going and stocked upon the little bulbs that make it glow. I got the cutest little clock. It’s been months since I could just sit in here and relax, and now I have things in here that are conducive to relaxation. I can see that progress that I’ve made and it’s calming me down. I feel really grateful that I have a place to live at a time like this.

I’m also going to have time to thoroughly clean this place and really get into the feng shui method that I started with and then ran out of energy to complete. I got Feng Shui for Dummies to start with, and now I can look at creating a floor plan and budget for remedies.

And I’ve been talking to my family. I started a group chat with my brothers. We don’t talk all day, but having this conversation on my phone to look at and engage with is amazing after years of estrangement. Talking to my mom is really precious now. All it took was the threat of human extinction to make me see that.

Last but not least, the pins I designed came in and I’m a little excited! Things got backed up because of the virus, so I don’t have them listed anywhere yet and I need to stay in the house so I can’t really be worried about selling them. BUT! It’s exciting to have made something from scratch like this. I really love this image, though. I think I want to make more things out of it, including tshirts. My online stores are closed right now while I figure out what I want to do, but this image will be a big thing in the coming months.

How are you holding up? Are you remembering to wash your hands and not touch your face? Are you making sure to stay in contact with people? Have you made plans for the what ifs of the situation? Did you get some toilet paper?

Stay safe, be well and I’ll see you next time,

Faith/SEBMarketBK

achievements, activities, Fashion, fashion photo, lifestyle, photo industry, Photography

The Breaks

I have not had one minute to spare the last few weeks. It’s super easy to get jobs in New York right now, and I managed to go from my fashion internship, to a temporary summer job to a regular (part-time) job and a freelance job doing visual merchandising and events. So for the first time in my adult life, I have two jobs.

I’m still shocked.

Over the course of the last month I got to use what I learned from umpteen retail jobs, visual merchandising class and my brief showroom experience to merchandise and dress mannequins. The best part is that I have already made back the money that I spent on the class.The worst part is knowing that I could have been doing this all along, if I hadn’t been so obsessed with making it as a photographer. I feel like I wasted a lot of time and caused myself a lot of suffering and unhappiness when I could have been working, building up my savings, gaining experience and making friends. And then I could still have branched out into styling and then photography.

Hindsight is a bitch.

The funny thing is that when I first set out to go to college, I did want to do visual merchandising and this or that happened and I got sidetracked and then jumped into photography. Had I known how sexist and racist that industry was, I would have saved my efforts and put them into something that would have benefited me a lot more. My life would have been completely different. I bet my student loans would be paid off, too.

It’s done now, but let that be a lesson to you.

Until next time,

Faith/SEB Market BK

beauty, beauty products, beauty tools, contact lenses, eyes, Fashion, fashion photo, makeup, makeup tips, photo, photo industry, photo shoot, Photography, summer beauty

The Beat

Spectacular beauty shot from the amazing Shoott Photos. Get your own free 30 minute shoot and 10% off of your image order using this link: https://shoott.com/?ref=LQAW9BC

I don’t love makeup, but I’m ok with wearing it. It’s more of a toy than a necessity, but if I buy anything I want it to be the best quality so that I can feel comfortable and confident while I have it on. If anything I want to forget it’s there and just go about my business. I had a birthday/rebranding photo shoot in May so of course I had to exercise the credit card at Sephora to update my makeup wardrobe. I wanted to amp it up for a sunkissed basic beat that put a frosted gloss on my usual naked face. It’s not perfect, but it was different.

It started with a change of eye color. While I was researching and watching makeup tutorials, I noticed that people were changing eye color like shoes. I felt like making a bold statement so I went for these Polar Ice Grey lenses that help show off the curves of my eye and make a striking contrast with my skin. It’s not better than my brown eyes, and it’s not worse, it’s just different. Also cheap, they were about $25 with free shipping. Get a 10% discount off your own TTD Eye lenses using this link. Use the code SEBMARKETBKEYES at checkout.

Pre-shoot skin prep.

I spent a month making sure I drank enough water, washing my face with Cetaphil and doing a weekly homemade bentonite clay mudmask. The day of the shoot I woke up early, took a long bath and gave myself a hydrating facial (they stopped making this mask and I only have one more left. I’m devastated.), then put these Tarte eye bag masks on while I toweled off and put lotion on my body. Once I had brushed my teeth and everything I applied Ancient Cosmetics Even Skin face cream. I use this cream morning and night, and I love how it just melts right into the skin without leaving a greasy feel.

Laying the foundation.

This is how this goes- I put a little of the Smashbox blurring primer in my palm and then I pump a little MUF HD foundation on top. I swirl it together with the beauty blender and then pat onto my skin. I use BlackUp concealer under my eyes and this Kat Von D powder to set the whole thing. I am not a contour person at all. I feel kind of annoyed at doing this much to begin with. If contouring became mandatory I’d prob just throw all this stuff in the garbage.

I mean this.

Glitter, glitz, glam!

I am a sucker for neutrals, nudes and shimmery metallic sparkles. I’m trying to break out of it? But if I see something like the Natasha Denona mini star palette in this photo I’m incapable of not buying it. I love how rich and pigmented the colors are. I could do stuff like carve out the eyelid with this. The other palette is from a drugstore brand, Black Radiance. Not the greatest, but I think I’ll try wetting the brush before using these colors. I got this Fenty highlighter along with a mini lipgloss. I’m still practicing highlighting techniques. I need to blend more and I have a tendency to forget.

Lashing out…

Once I got the eyeshadow situation sorted I had to finish the job. I use Anastasia brow pomade (previous pic), and today I went with eyeliner pen because I felt like a sharp outline was the best way to go. As you can see from this tube of eyelash glue, eyelashes are not my strong point. Normally I just use a lengthening mascara.

Buy this: Pat McGrath Lust Trance lipgloss in Bronze Divinity, $28. I love this lipgloss. LOVE. IT. It smells delicious and the shine is high fashion gloss without being sticky. It’s a substantial size, and the wand makes you want to stand in the mirror just gently putting on more and more candy smelling gloss while looking deeply into your own eyes. The smaller pencil is lipliner and I think I put the black eyeliner in the photo by mistake, forgetting that I was supposed to shoot my concealer.

What do you do to get ready for a big day? Do you find yourself obsessing over every little detail or do you just sleep like a baby? Do you lay out everything you’ll need before you go to bed or just get up and do whatever comes in your head? I’m usually paralyzed with anxiety the day before I do anything, thinking of all that could go wrong or how I might get laughed at.

It usually ends up fine, but even if things go horribly wrong I know I did my best and that’s all that anyone can reasonably ask from me.

See you next time!

Faith/SEB Market BK

Shop my look:

Upcycled grunge plaid shirt

Customized Mossimo Athletic Fit plaid button down shirt hand treated with bleach. Unisex. Decorated with stars, studs, and bleach treated denim stripe, then bleached again. Denim panel is hand painted. Soft, 100% cotton and machine washable. Measures 30 inches from shoulder to hem. 25 inches from armpit to armpit. 19 inches across back shoulders. Sleeves are 26.5 inches. *Shipping is included in the price. **United States only.

$175.00

Silver Love You More necklace

Love You More silver/zinc alloy block letter necklace. Chain is 9.5 inches long with 3 inch extension. Pendant is 1 inch square and rests on breastbone. Love all day long. Comes with gold lamé pouch. *Price includes shipping. **United States only.

$20.00

black women, blogging, body image, brooklyn, color, cooking, decorating, exercise, fitness, food, health, home, home decor, home furnishings, influencer, interior decorating, lifestyle, nutrition, personal style, Photography, self-care

The Salad Bowl

So yesterday I went to Soho because there was a sale I wanted to check out, and I ended up at Crate & Barrel. I just meant to browse or maybe get a planter for my homegrown lemon tree, but instead I got this stuff ($15 total, because I am cheap). And out of all of these things, the most important is the salad bowl.

See, I’m on a diet- or rather I’m going back on a diet, or really I’m doing everything I can to guide myself towards better food choices. I went to Dean & Deluca, which I always do when I’m in that neighborhood, and instead of coffee and pastry I did an iced chai with a banana. I am super proud because D&D makes fire baked goods and I did not waver. Which brings us to salads:

I love salad and while salad tastes good in anything, most of the time I’m eating one out of a plastic takeout bowl (recycling!) with a plastic fork (I re-use those, too). This salad was delicious, full of fresh greens, crispy carrots and cucumbers, perfectly boiled eggs and premium Tonnino’s tuna. It tasted amazing, too. But I know how I am and I need to stunt a little so when I saw the bowl, I knew that it was a match made in salad instagramming heaven.

This salad is just a pile of random stuff in a bowl- but look at the bowl! How can you not want to nom everything in it? And it was $2.57! Lightweight but sturdy melamine and looking like an egg yolk pouring out of blindingly white shell. It is pure salad motivation. Btw, this was actually tasty. Chopped salad greens, avocado slices, roasted sweet plantain, ground peanuts roasted with bbq sauce, and slivers of white onion. Topped with cheddar cheese, for color as well as taste. I think I enjoyed it more because it was nestled in bowl perfection.

I just blogged about my bowl to show off, and to show that no matter how you get there, eating good food makes you feel like your best self. Feel free to tell me about what motivates you to eat properly! (Or not, it’s all good).

See ya next time!

Faith/SEB Market BK

american made, art, black fashion designer, black women, blog, blogger, bloggers, brooklyn, clothes, clothing, coats, confidence, denim, designer, designers, diy, E commerce, eco friendly, ecofashion, ecommerce, entrepeneur, Entrepeneurs, entrepeneurship, Fashion, fashion designer, fashion photo, influencer, jeans, photo, photo shoot, Photography, pop culture, selling, streetstyle, Style, styling, stylist, wardrobe, woman boss

The PUNK Jacket

Photo by Shoottphotos (use this link for a 10% discount: https://shoott.com/?ref=LQAW9BC)

Handpainted PUNK denim jacket by SEB Market BK, $150

This adorable jacket went from worst to first with some handpainting, embroidered patches, safety pins and sweet punk rock stars. It's an extra small, and measures 20 inches from shoulder to hem, 17 inches from armpit to armpit. 14 inches across the back. Sleeves are 24.5 inches long. Jacket comes with a pouch of extra stars for you to play with. *Domestic, American shipping only.

$150.00

So while I was gone from blogging I started selling pre-loved and vintage clothes on platforms like ebay, depop and etsy. At first it was just straightforward selling, like I wasn’t altering the pieces, just posting them. Then one day I rescued a Coach bag that had worn patches on the front and a busted strap, but was perfect on the back and interior. I messed with it and it ended up selling on ebay. Then I played with a thrifted red leather vintage 80s crossbody that I had in my inventory for about 2 years. Then I sold a sweatshirt. So now I’m a fashion designer with my own label. Why fight fate?

The PUNK jacket started life as a mass produced item treated to look like an authentic punk rockers jacket. Soft, distressed lightwash denim with a screenprinted band poster on the back. Originally created by Bethany Mota, I saw it and knew that I could do better.

I decided to punch up the faded colors on the back panel with acrylic paint, and then adding a silver leather star I got at the fabric store. I used black paint to emphasize lines and to punk up the PUNK lettering. I used gold and black to create a frame, and then put a safety pin at each corner (because punk rock). I chose silver stars instead of pyramid studs for a girly touch. Recently I painted the arms and inside of the cuffs for more edge.

What I love about is that it reminds me of movies like She’s Gotta Have It and Desperately Seeking Susan, 80s films with cool downtown heroines that whipped up fashion frenzy in every scene. You can wear it with sparkles or dress it down with jorts. Layer it over a hoodie in the cooler months to keep that Nancy Spungeon look going.

Shop the look!

Jay x Jay Godfrey sequinned black dress, size 0

Halter style with spaghetti straps. Open back, side pockets in the skirt. Measures 34 inches from shoulder to hem, 16 from armpit to armpit, 14 across the waist. Brand new, never worn. *Domestic, American shipping only.

$120.00

Converse All Stars white low tops, women’s size 8

Classic low-tops, already broken in. Measures 10.75 inches from toe to heel, 3.5 inches across the widest part of the foot. Can fit men's size 6. Shipping included in price. *Domestic, American shipping only.

$27.00

HOB alligator embossed leather shoulder bag/clutch

Comes with detachable brass chain strap. Looks like vintage, some wear at top of flap. Measures 12.5 x 7, 19 in strap drop. *Domestic, American shipping only.

$47.00

Red tank top, size S

Ribbed cotton/poly. 24 inches from shoulder to hem, 13 inches from armpit to armpit. Brand new, never worn. *Domestic, American shipping only.

$10.00

SEB Market BK handpainted jorts, size 28″

Hand cut and handpainted denim shorts with one embroidered patch. They are folden in this photo to show the front and back paint colors (white, pastels). Super comfy premium cotton denim, perfect for summer days or wear with tights and combats in the cooler months. 28" waist, 12 inches ling from waist to hem in front, 13 in back. Waistband sits at waist. *Domestic, American shipping only.

$48.00

Manas Designs leather motorcycle boots, size 41

Soft Italian leather boots with zipper trim. Round toes, lug soles, chink heel and side zipper. The type of boot that looks incredible with a sundress. Fits women's US 9.5/10. Price includes shipping. *Domestic, American shipping only.

$109.00

See you soon!

Faith/SEB Market BK

Accessories, bags, black women, blogger, body image, clothes, clothing, coats, Fashion, fashion photo, florals, handbag, handbags, photo shoot, Photography

The Floral Raincoat

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So, hi! Hello! Bonjour! Wie gehts dir! Konnichiwa!

I meant to get back here sooner, but …life. And Polyvore, the app that I was using to post fashion content morphed into an e-commerce platform and I deleted all of my posts and was too busy trying to earn money like a real grown-up to write my blog posts again.

But I thought about it! A lot. I started blogging backwards (like everything else I do in life) so I actually started on Lucky Community and Examiner.com, both deceased sites now, before starting my wordpress blog. When those sites bombed out, I had the blog but I had lost interest in selfies and talking about myself. I felt kind of disassociated from regular life because I had made an existence out of being fake famous and getting free stuff that I didn’t deserve. A lot of free stuff. An embarrassing amount of free stuff. Enough to feel rotten because there are people who have no money, no home and can’t buy anything… like I used to be.I was homeless when I stared blogging, so that free stuff came in handy, but eventually I just felt weird about the whole thing.

Also a feeling like, what kind of weirdos randomly send out free stuff to strangers with no real qualifications? I literally got a random email to go to a party and get a free watch. Then they didn’t like me so I got the free watch but I never heard from them again. So that was another reason not to go places; they liked whatever I was posting but they didn’t like me. I started feeling like I wasn’t worth anything, so I just used polyvore, built up my online business and worked towards living a regular, buy what you want with money, life. Which helped a LOT. I love my life now. So of course I gave myself a photoshoot for my birthday.

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Photo by Shoottphotos (use this link for a 10% discount: https://shoott.com/?ref=LQAW9BC)

I decided that for once I wanted my own photoshoot instead of shooting other people or products. I’m still not the prettiest, tallest or richest; but I like myself more. I go to the gym, eat healthy food and pay my bills mostly on time. I get my taxes done. And I pay actual money for things instead of getting them from pr firms. Which brings us to this glorious grey floral Guess raincoat. I picked it because I hate windbreakers and regular tan trenches bore me. I wanted a spring coat that satisfied my love for pretty girly things while keeping me from getting soaked in the rain. I wore it with a plain linen shirt/dress with eyelet lace detail and a funky floral Sondra Robertson  clutch with a wooden handle. Those glasses are from The Children’s Place and I found them at Goodwill.

It’s good to be home…

 

See you soon, Faith/SEB Market BK

 

art, Fashion, fashion photo, photo, Photography, Style, styling

in which we remember how much we like making art

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I was attempting to clean up the desk I never work at and found this vision book that I started back in Chicago. I haven’t looked at it since I moved in here 3 years ago. I think I put it on the desk with the intention of working in it and then it just became a huge dust magnet.

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This was basically how I plotted for fashion shoots, styling, or just thinking what I would get if I had unlimited cash. Or at least a few hundred to throw away. On whatever.

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It was so weird to see these photo business cards I got from moo, to promote my fashion photography thing. I can never tell if I have talent or not. Sometimes I think I rock, and sometimes I worry that I’ll be flipping burgers at 65 years old.

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The visionbook makes a great photo backdrop. I went on a job interview Friday, and bought these sequinned notecards at Target to send a thank-you note. I went through the whole rack and these reminded me of champagne bubbles floating up in the glass and I’m hoping that sending this to the person that interviewed me will get me back into the creative arena IRL. Fingers crossed.

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The summer beach layout. I made this collage in 2010, and this page still pops. Sandals, bikini, see through coverups… timeless summer inspiration pages.

Memories…

 

xoxo, Faith/Sassy Ethnic Bohemian