#blackout friday

picture it. it’s black friday 2003, and wal-mart has dvd players on sale for $20. these were the pre-netflix days so a dvd player priced under $75 was a huge steal.  like dedicated shoppers across america, i woke up at dawn to rush my local wal-mart.

all hell broke loose when somebody’s uncle jumped on a stack of boxes and started throwing dvd players to nearby customers. i caught one like odell beckham jr. and ran for my life. you would have thought i was carrying baby jesus.

fast forward to 2015. not only do i try to abstain from shopping at wal-mart due to it’s anti-worker practices, but i’m also working hard to align my spending with my principles. with the murders of so many black men, women and children, i’m in no mood to celebrate a capitalist system that devalues black life.

this holiday season, my mission is to support black-owned businesses who deserve love year round. on friday morning, i’ll be shopping online from the comfort of my bed while eating leftover sweet potato pie.


  1. nubian hueman
  2. ekineyo
  3. dopeciety
  4. nubian skin
  5. gloss rags
  6. nomad yard collectiv (dc area)


  1. peace images jewelry
  2. venus visuals
  3. rachel stewart jewelry
  4. lost queens


  1. coloured raine
  2. ginger + liz
  3. black up cosmetics

skin & haircare

  1. pooka pure & simple
  2. oyin handmade
  3. curlkit
  4. qhemet biologics


  1. andrea pippins
  2. thepairabirds

good reads & writes

  1. salt by nayirrah waheed
  2. teaching gold mah how to heal herself  by bilphena yahwon
  3. shapeshifters by aimee meredith cox
  4. vagabroad journals
  5. effie’s paper

health & well being

  1. little urban tea
  2. afro-vegan cookbook
  3. the spice suite (dc area)

check out quirky brown love for a list of over 200 black-owned businesses.


celebrate ori inu: in search of self

ori inu is a film about a young woman’s painful conflict with spirituality. written, directed and produced by chelsea odufu and her brother emann odufu, the movie explores the fractures between afro-brazilian religion and christianity.


chelsea calls herself an art activist who challenges the boundaries of gender, beauty and individuality. after watching her short film “the love below,” i’m definitely a fan. make sure to support black women filmmakers like chesea and the magic they produce.

philanthropy in action: why you should support open space

we all have the responsibility to give back to our communities and support causes we find valuable.  there aren’t nearly enough spaces aimed at connecting and cultivating artists of color, so when i saw folasade adeoso’s instagram post seeking support for her newest venture, open space, i jumped at the opportunity.


artist sharla hammond mixes patterns, prints & practicality


sharla hammond creates art that does more than just look pretty on a wall.  it’s both functional and political.sharla6sharla5sharla1

read more about sharla and her work over at a country called earth and look out for her wheat paste art throughout austin and new orleans.


photo credit: nakeya brown


mariane ibrahim-lenhardt: art curator

ml1she’s created a place to celebrate those who are under-represented. founder of the m.i.a. (missing in art) gallery in seattle, mariane ibrahim-lenhardt keeps culture and identity at the core of the works she curates. born to somali parents on a small french island, she established m.i.a in 2012 as a home for african artists who are often marginalized by mainstream circles. ml2 ml3 ml4 ml5

all pictures via win

game changer: hood by air

hood by air is not just a fashion label.  it’s a movement. this counter cultural artistic expression fearlessly emerged among new york’s most marginalized.  the tribe’s gender-bending street style is leading a call to break down the barriers between high and low fashion as well as calling forth a more androgynous aesthetic.  created by 26-year old shayne oliver, hood by air is closely linked to the ghe20 g0thik scene and has celebrity fans such as rihanna, kanye west and a$ap rocky.  the latest collection will be presented today at new york fashion week and will explore freud’s id, ego and superego.  heady stuff, definitely not for those who fail to see fashion as an art form.