Saturday, 21 December 2013

YEVU CLOTHING: Ethical Ghanaian/Australian Brand

This week, I went to support and check out an ethical brand inspired purely by Ghanaian prints, founded by Sydneysider Anna Robertson. To be honest, I wasn't completely knowledgeable of the brand prior to attending their pop-up store apart from seeing them on Instagram. However, the trip to the store left me nothing but inspired, informed and impressed. Anna began to know Ghana as she was there for volunteer work, and soon fell in love with the simple yet highly fashionable pieces of many Ghanaian designers. As time passed, Anna found the means to start her reputable line, Yevu clothing (which actually means 'white person' in Ewe-traditional dialect of Ghanaians in the Volta Region/Togo). She sources all the material from West Africa, predominately Ghana, and has them made by local tailors and seamstresses. This chain effect allows for a beneficial economic status to the hired team, as they hold shares in the growing business, giving them constant work. This simple, yet effective means of exchange is one I see and aspire for Coconsa Bags. On a larger scale, Coconsa hope to hire underprivileged Ghanaian women to use their skills knowing they will get fair working conditions, regular pay, education opportunities for themselves and their children. Lots of vision that will come to light by Gods will. Anything is possible! We are all here to make a difference in this world one way or another.

For my Sydney folks, you can check the Yevu collection for yourself:
YEVU 2.0 Pop-Up Store
302 Cleveland Street, Surry Hills


Daily 10am - 7pm

From December 18 - 24 or until stock sells out

-Posted by Vanessa

Thursday, 12 December 2013

The dangers of texting

I feel compelled to write a quick post about the car accident I got into this morning.

I live in Atlanta, GA and as all know who live here, the traffic can be terrible on the freeways to and from work.

On my commute this morning, I saw the car in front of me braking, so I put my foot on the brake. I looked in my rear view mirror at the car behind me and the woman driving was clearly texting and not paying attention to the road in front of her- with her small daughter in the back.

She hit me extremely hard which pushed my car into the large truck in front of me. My car is totaled but luckily and most importantly, my body is fine (although very sore).

Those of us with a long commute know how hard it is to sustain the focus needed to drive really well for that long of a period. We get restless sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic and find it tempting to text, surf the web on our phones, etc.

Today I realized that if one cannot sustain focus on their commute, they just shouldn't drive. If we were driving any faster, my life, the woman's life and her daughter's life would have been taken.

If anyone reads this, PLEASE resist the temptation of texting and driving. Listen to an audio book or some great music but DON'T take your eyes off the road! If your focus cannot be sustained then look into shorter commute options- carpooling or public transport. Hopefully it doesn't take something like what happened to me this morning to realize the importance of this.

- Posted by Olympia

Friday, 6 December 2013

Current Style Favorites

I've been caught up on Tumblr and fashion blogs on my lunch breaks recently and have compiled some of my favorite street-style images. It's pretty apparent that I am attracted to a simple, comfortable look that can be dressed up or down. And yes, I'm after some white wide-leg pants. Please share any great fashion blogs to look at!

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Feeling under the weather : Spiritual Healing

As of the past week, or so, I have been feeling completely under the weather. Every so often, I feel as if I have run in to a brick wall and in result experience a great sense of dullness in my life. I'm sure this is completely natural and I am not the only one that experiences this, but whenever this void enters my life it bothers me immensely. I know for a fact it is God talking to me, letting me know I need to make some changes in order for the empty space in my soul to feel nourished and whole again. The past few months has proven to be nothing but an unfortunate series of events, which has definitely caused a dampen in my high spirits. From losing a close school friend, being ill/hospitalised, having my cousin in a serious car accident, my mum also being ill, watching my dad grieve over losing a sister and other emotional battles have all contributed to my questioning of life. Am I fulfilling my purpose on this earth that God has set out for me? Personally, to my complete efforts, no.

Anyone that knows me really well, will know I have a new found obsession for Iyanla Vanzant. There is nobody that can fix what I'm feeling but myself and my trust in God. However, I found some really moving short videos (not necessarily new) that were in every way insightful, and in some way, therapeutic. For those possibly going through the same thing, or just need a reminder of some lifelong lessons, take the time to watch these videos! I wrote some personal notes underneath for my own reference later. ENJOY!

  • How you treat yourself is how you treat God
  • We represent God in all we do
  • You need to completely take care of yourself first before even thinking of taking care of others 

  • PAIN= Pay Attention Inward Now 
  • Don't mask your pain with physical items 
  • Feel, deal, heal 
  • Doubt = poison
  • Take a stand for yourself
  • Don't let go of your vision (even if you stand alone) 
-Posted by Vanessa 

Saturday, 30 November 2013

Twitter Talk: Kanye West

Kanye West has had an interesting round of radio interviews this week- namely first with The Breakfast Club here and later with Sway In The Morning here.
Whether you think Kanye is a musical genius, a philosophical mastermind, a political activist or absolutely none of the above, it is interesting to discuss his performances- both his artistic performance and his performance of his self, his identity.
Some would argue that Kanye West as a topic is 'old', redundant. Some would also argue that we are giving Kanye's mindlessness too much attention. But I think there are some wider issues involved in all this Kanye talk.

For a basically good, quick response to Kanye calling Kim Kardashian more influential than the First Lady, Michelle Obama, check out this piece.

I have compiled some of the interesting tweets I found concerning his interviews and performance. Although Kanye West's interviews should not be as important to us as, say, the current mass exodus of Syrian refugees or the US drone strikes in Pakistan and Afghanistan, they do provide us with an interesting look at current popular culture and an artist who has perhaps become a victim of the culture of which he is a part. See below- enjoy!

- Posted by Olympia

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Multi - Ethnicity Hair & Beauty Expo

Over the weekend, on the 16th of November, I went to the first ever Multi-Ethnicity Hair and Beauty Expo at the Parramatta Town Hall (Sydney). I was representing a new and unique bag line I collectively work on with my sister- Coconsa Bags. A vibrant blend of traditional West African fabrics and contemporary materials; it is something I am super proud of. This was the first time we  have had a stall at any expo or event, and boy, was it an experience! It was so interesting to see people's reaction to the creativity and effort that goes into the craftsmanship of the products. What I learned from the day is that consumers are very skeptical when it comes to spending their money on new products/brands that they are not familiar with. I have observed this especially in my generation who are brand-name obsessed, even for the most basic pieces. Trying new things is undoubtedly scary, but I guess I seek quality and a genuine love for whatever the product may be- new, old, brand-name or not. In any case, the expo was a great platform for emerging underground designers and brands. I have amazing dreams of the heights Coconsa will reach, God willing. 

You can check the bags out here.

Here are some pics of the bag line and some from the Expo (not the best,sorry) 

- Posted by Vanessa 

Sunday, 10 November 2013

All in the name of 'beauty' !

A few days ago my boyfriend showed me an article I couldn't scroll past. A man has sued his wife over ugly children and won, yes you read that right, WON ! Although I had pre perceived opinions on the story before I even read it, I soon came to slighty change my viewpoint halfway through reading. I feel like this story has some significance to the growing craze of Instagram and other social media outlets. Insta fame, how many likes you get, how many followers you have are some peoples reality. Social media has allowed the formation of an idealistic persona that is a totally opposite representation of the actual person. Don't get me wrong, we are all guilty of adding a filter that gives any picture the perfect touch. However, it's sad to see some people edit so much to the point it doesn't even resemble them in real life. In relation to the article, it's somewhat a sort of false advertisement. I would be pissed as hell too! Each to their own, but filters, photoshop and surgery doesn't change the REAL you. In this case, the characteristics your children are bound to inherit. I guess what I'm trying to say is I wish we could all embrace our individuality more despite society's definition of beauty. Though I half agree with the husbands points, the fact that he went out of his way to sue his wife of the time is beyond crazy. The $120 000 he won doesn't change the fact that those are his kids. Kids that are also human and will probably have a hard time breaking away from the 'ugly' label, inflicted by their own blood. Crazy. 

Read full article:

-Posted by Vanessa 

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

A California Beach Wedding

My brother got married in California on Labor Day at The Biltmore Santa Barbara. We just got the professional pictures back and I really think they perfectly captured the celebration. My now sister-in-law also asked me to be a bridesmaid which was incredibly exciting as I had never been to a wedding, let alone been a part of a wedding. The actual ceremony took place on the beach. Guests then walked to the grounds of the Biltmore to enjoy cocktails, lunch and speeches. The day ended with a cruise along the coast, watching the sunset and dancing. It was really beautiful. Below are some of the pictures from the day.

- Posted by Olympia