Jacksonville Magazine ~2/14/16Read More
Blog: The Bandwagon Effect
Filtering by Tag: fashion
Join me at The New Year’s Eve Black & White Masquerade Gala at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. Now in its 5th year this is North Florida’s premiere New Year’s Eve event. Ring in the New Year with lavish cooking stations, dancing to the music by international rock band, Papa Sol, open bar and fireworks. This year’s Gala will include awards for best engaging masks and best The Total Black & White Masquerade Look for couples and individuals. Fashion stylist, Fitz Pullins will greet attendees and introduce winning looks. Masks are provided and guests are encouraged to make or purchase their own. Fitz is offering Black & White fashion insights and tips, this week, on how to personalize a Masquerade look on his website www.fitzpullins.com. Gala reservations are required. The event begins at 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.The price is $225 per adult and includes a service charge.
An Afternoon of Opulence with Bebe Deluxe!
Interview by Ari Laren | Photos by Josh Wessolowski
A large relief painting hangs in the living room of the Queen Bebe herself A matador with cape in his full display of power and grace is the perfect representation of the delicate line Bebe Deluxe walks in achieving her persona each time they dons their precious wigs and essential glitter. Strength and beauty are one in reference to Jacksonville’s most intriguing up-and-coming Drag Queen.
You haven’t experienced opulence until you’ve spent an afternoon with up-and-coming artist Bebe Deluxe in their dapper dwelling. Rife with vintage goodies hand-picked from their family antique store or flea finds discovered with hubby, Aiden. Pup Newman and Kitty Wolfie round out the cute and cuddly crew at their humble Avondale abode.
When the person you’re interviewing answers the door in a black silk robe it’s a good sign that things are about to get opulent. Alex Palmer aka Bebe Deluxe delivered in excess, exuding elegance and magnificent grandeur. During the interview Bebe eagerly dispensed their views on “[designing] looks of luxury, cheap make-up tips and tricks and [how to] try very hard not to talk shit. Read on to learn a little bit about the history of drag from the perspective of a Queen doing things her own way. Bebe also gives us an introspective view on the future of Drag culture and gender roles.
I am so excited to share this beautiful being with you through this inspiration filled interview! Once you’ve read Bebe Deluxe’s pearls of wisdom you will be dying to see a live show! Luckily you can catch the opulence of Bebe Deluxe and friends at a monthly drag night called GlitterBomb! hosted in the back room of Raindogs! The inaugural night begins on December 4th. With friends GeeXella , April Rition , Junie B. Jones , Dwight Robinson , Bebe Dee & Gerry Lee, and special guest DJ Alex E. of TOMBOi!
Interview with the Queen!
Important note: throughout the article you may notice that the pronouns used for BBD change from they/them to she/her. As a part of my interview process I ask people how they identify so that I can be respectful of the way they feel and want to be perceived. I encourage everyone to implement a practice of checking in with folks about how they wish to be perceived even if you think you already know. Bebe Deluxe /Alex Palmer Prefer they/them and she/her pronouns and Identify less with he/him but will accept he/him as identifiers even though the former terms are more accurate descriptors of how they feel and want to be portrayed. If you don’t get it, google it (Gender pro-nouns). More education = More love!
The interview opens with a little candid tet-a-tet as Bebe Deluxe sets up her make-up station in the front window of her home. Glorious bear chest and hair pulled back ready to do work to create the persona that is Bebe Dee!
BBD: I have never put my make-up on with the blinds wide open.
AL: What would you neighbors think?
BBD: I’m lettin’ Miss Avondale have it, Darlin’!
AL: How did you learn the steps you use when transforming from Alex to Bebe. Who were your influences? You don’t become a fashion icon overnight or without influence. Name style icons to whom you attribute your distinct mode of dress.
BBD: A majority of my education specifically on this brow cover came from YouTube. I would see a thing that I liked on a drag queen and would Google-search ways to do it online, and that’s kind of how I operated before I had a “Drag Mother”.
I always say that you have to look like shit ten to fifteen times before you look good in drag. I met Trinity Baker maybe the 3rd time I got in to drag. She gave me little tips here-and-there about matching my foundation and how to apply my eyelashes. She would give me little things. Then finally [two years] in to doing Drag she officially did my makeup for me. She taught me all about certain techniques. Where to apply your foundation and how to do it.
AL: You were talking about Trinity. Do you consider her your Drag Mama?
BBD: Absolutely! Absolutey! Trinity is a biological female. I met her through a friend of mine who knew her. She was running this gig called Art Friend’s Electric where a bunch of artists got together in San Marco, would sell art and it would be a function. [One time] she told me I should come and dress up. It was at Art Walk and I showed up. Oh! I was wearing some bookie drag! Oh, I looked so stupid! I looked a damn fool, but she really saw something interesting in it. She would just invite me to go out with her and chill with her.
AL: Bebe Dee is self-made but hails from the House of Deluxe. Describe the process of finding a home that helped nurture the growth of your inner Queen? Was it filled with all of the glitter and glory you dreamed it would be?
BBD: [Trinity] has been really good about teaching me not only technique about how to actually make my face look good. She’s taught me a lot about attitude. I think when a lot of Drag Queens start out they [feel they] must overcompensate. You have to let people know that you’re badass and you get lots of stares. You’re still getting used to people acting funny when they see you in Drag. You can get really defensive. She taught me to chill out and enjoy the moment and be the glamorous creature and not have to fight over it.
She also taught me I don’t have to follow a ‘Drag Queen kit’. Because lot’s of Drag Queens you see they all have the same look. It’s a sickening look but they all got the same eyebrows, the same cheeks, and the same porn-star lips. You start to loose a bit of yourself when you follow that mold too extensively. She taught me to do what worked for my face and she’s been a great guiding light for me.
AL: Tell me about your your extended Drag Family. I want to know more about how you developed the persona of Bebe Deluxe.
BBD: As for my extended family I have sisters that I roll with. There is my good friend Nick who is Miss Didi Boniva. She did Drag way-way-way-way-way-way long ago in the 90’s because she’s old, is the joke! She did club-kid Drag as Didi Seven. We were kiki-ing one day and I said Didi Seven? More like Didi Boniva! (Yes, like the bone supplement.) She loved it and now she plays this old lady character. She has encouraged me to appreciate Drag as a cultural heritage because Drag was a direct root to camp which is Queer Society making fun of upper echelon, high-end society and lampooning them.
AL: You live in a very stylish home with a super dapper husband and two ultra sweet fur babies. How does your personal life influence your style?
BBD: I consider Hayden, [my husband] a piece of my Drag Family. Not so much because of him getting in Drag because that’s not really what he does. He is very smart about these sorts of things and he helps me to be this persona. We bounce jokes off of each other, we kiki. I like to call him my manager.
AL: Let’s travel back in time to learn about your roots. A Jacksonville native, you attended Douglas Anderson School of the Arts in High School and grew up with a father who did stand-up as a road comic. How did this shape your progression as a performer? Were there any other influences you feel helped you develop your style?
BBD: My dad was a stand-up comedian for [about] twenty years. He was a theater major at Auburn University. He dicked around forever and realized he enjoyed telling jokes on stage. I always enjoyed telling jokes like my dad but stand-up comedy was always something (releases deep sigh). How do I say this without offending anyone? I always thought that stand-up was kind of gross and male dominated.
Getting to do comedy and jokes, crowd work with the audience is something that comes natural to me. I grew up in comedy clubs watching my dad. When you’re a comedian you have a set you do that’s 30-45 minutes. When it’s not working or the audience isn’t responding, you cut it and you do crowd work. A lot of comedians are going to say that’s not real stand-up. I think for road comics, which is what [my dad] was, crowd-work is how you get asked to come back. You make a good impression on the crowd [and] get them to like you.
AL: Most drag queens lipsync or cover popular music. Your act incorporates live vocals and even original songs that you wrote along with partner Gerry Lee. How did the two of you meet and How would you define your style of performance?
BBD: Sooooo! BebeDee and Gerry Lee is a project with myself and an astounding pianist from Tallahassee Florida named Gerry Nielson. We met at a day program for Adults with developmental disabilities. He taught music and I taught Theater darling! It was a stressful job. After work we would get in to a music room together. We’d stay for an extra half hour and jam out with music. Then I moved back to Jacksonville and these people I know were having a drag show and they offered a position to me to host and do musical performances. I asked Gerry if he could do some piano music for me. The rest just fell in to place. [Gerry and I worked a few drag shows where] the theme was soundtracks so we did a bunch of songs from movies. We had all these themes that we had to do together.We basically just try to go for an old Hollywood golden-age musical sound but with contemporary music thrown in.
AL: It can be a beautiful challenge to collaborate with other. You and Gerry seem to have a good thing going. How do you sustain your friendship while conquering musical feats.
BBD: Gerry Lee is such an amazing special piece of the puzzle because I was always of the school of sell it and he is of the school of do it right! Our rehearsals are more tense then you might imagine because what’s good for me isn’t always what’s good to Gerry. I’m sure that TOMBOi (Jacksonville-based Queer indie-electronica female trio) doesn’t always get along.
AL: TOMBOi are very much like sisters in that way. It’s very intense and personal.
BBD: That’s the thing about making music you don’t think about. You basically have a connection with someone that isn’t romantic and it isn’t sexual It’s very intense, Its very symbiotic. It is very personal. Music is one of those things that can make you cry, laugh , it can heal you. So, sharing that with someone I’m learning is a challenge and it’s different than just hanging out with your friend.
AL: At recent drag events i’ve noticed more families with young kids supporting the performers. I think one of the most heart-warming things to me is watching a child mesmerized by the glamor of a Queen! Do you think drag is becoming more family friendly? What do you hope is in store for the future of public opinion about drag culture?
BBD: My favorite part of it isn’t that I get to sing these songs, but the sense of community is great! I try to sing songs that I feel like the audience would have resonated with at [some] point. I try to do things that are personal like ‘Unpretty’ by TLC which everyone really felt. Basically just taking an era where we were most emotional. My era where I was most emotional was between 1998 and 2004 because it was the beginning of my plus sized queerdom. Lot’s of Brittney, Destiny’s Child, Kelis. Things that I grew up with at the time. We are doing some old school stuff too, like ‘True Colors’.
[The show] is basically a homage to people that helped us discover parts of who we are and people who laid the ground work for what we can be.We talk about history. My favorite part of the show is getting to tell little stories in-between each song. I am just surprised and tickled each time people sit and listen to what I have to say.
BBD: This has been Bebe Deluxe giving you looks and luxury, cheap make-up and tips and tricks and trying very hard not to talk shit. I hope you enjoyed it!
Remember! Don’t miss the debut night of GlitterBomb!on Dec. 4th to experience all of the OPULENCE Bebe Deluxe and their crew bring to the stage!
CANDID MOMENTS FROM THE FASHION SHOW OF THE SEASON!
THANK YOU TO ALL OF THOSE WHO MADE THE NIGHT SUCH A GREAT SUCCESS! TOMBOI ROCKED THE ATRIUM AND THE MODELS WERE FIERCE! BACKSTAGE WAS FILLED WITH TONS OF HELPING HANDS TOTALING NEARLY 50 FOLKS WHO MADE FITZ's VISION A REALITY! A SPECIAL THANK YOU GOES OUT TO LUIS S. RIVERA FOR CAPTURING THESE SPECIAL MOMENTS IN SUCH A BEAUTIFUL LIGHT!
THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS!!
HAIR & MAKEUP & STYLING
Fitz Pullins Inventory Room
The Celebration steams ahead as we inch closer to Next Wednesdays' Fashion Show at MOCA! Continuing on this visual journey Chloe may not be a Barista at Bold Bean but she represents a very important part of the coffee shop, CUSTOMERS!! Lookin' all fierce Chloe and a friend made their way to Bold Bean as the shoot progressed unbeknownst to them . I loved their style so much I asked Luis to snap a few pics. They agreed and WOW! what a magical result, this image screams fall! Netflix, chill and oogle over Chloe! Happy Sunday!
Q & A WITH CHLOE
What is your favorite BB beverage for fall?
It's typical, but there's nothing like a dirty chai, it tastes like Christmas. Luckily Bold Bean has the best one around, I started drinking it iced when I got sick of the heat and missed the comfort of the holidays.
What is one thing you will never wear again?
A padded bra.
What’s one thing you will never stop wearing?
A black skater skirt, I'm wearing one right now. It's simple so you can look as fancy or as casual as you want. It twirls when you spin and it's comfy enough to sleep in if you have to.
How does your life influence your style?
I'm a little scattered, so my style is constantly changing. But I try and dress according to the mood I want to be in. If I'm feeling down, I'll wear the brightest, bounciest dress
Bold Bean Fashion Week
Interviews by Ari Lauren | Photos by Luis S. Rivera
in celebration of
October 7th at 7pm
during Art Walk!!!
LIVE music by local legends TOMBOi
WATCH as models traverse the dynamic runway provided by the landscape of the Museum.
CURATE YOUR LIFE! Come to the Show! FREE TO ALL!
Curated by Fitz Pullins with the MOCA board of Contemporaries
Follow Ari.Read More
When we think about belts, the first thing that pops into our mind is "a belt is used to hold up our pants". The belt ensures that your pants won't fall down and accents your outfit. This comment holds true for the most part however, as we transition into Fall, belts are the new "it" accessory. Women may not need belts in the way that men do but that doesn't mean we should dismiss the accessory. In fact, a belt helps complete the outfit.
A belt can add a polished look when your blouse is tucked into your jeans. It can give you a waist and a beautiful figure when paired with a dress. A belt can also help dress up a cocktail dress or dress down a flowy dress depending on how you style it. Because of the high demand of this accessory, you can grab some great finds at your favorite stores (including Fitz Pullins Inventory Room!).
Some new styles for the Fall are rose gold chain belts, Gucci and Hermes leather belts with metal hardware, and slim belts with sleek buckles. When we shop, we tend to ask ourselves, "What else can I wear with this?" Luckily, these belts are transition pieces and can add a little extra any way you chose to style it.
Written by D. Jamal Felton (The Bandwagon Effect Content Contributor)
We all have those mornings where nothing is going as planned, time is fleeting and on top of all that we just can't muster up the energy to put any apparent effort into our outfit. Well thank God for basic tee's. Here are a couple tips and tricks to easily styling a basic tee without looking basic.
1. The Classic Way
Check out this girl's cheeky spin on the classic White Tee & Jeans look which never seems to go out of style. She offsets this great off-white, oversized tee with these fitted high-waisted denim shorts that are great for elongating the legs, which in this case, is necessary per her very tall, snake-skin boots that give this otherwise simple look that extra "umph". Notice how she opted for a nice and sleek ponytail which allows for her shoes to be main attraction of her outfit and eliminates any extra fuss.
2. The Casual & Care-Free Way
When you see the ever-trendy Pop-Culture Goddess, Beyonce, wearing something new you ask no questions. You just figure out how you can wear it too, and fortunately enough for you this ironic "Kale" tee is available right here courtesy of the Inventory Room. bey kept it pretty casual and care-free in this outfit with a beanie, her sleeves rolled up, and a well-fitted pair of jeans no doubt. Notice how (even though the pictures's in black and white) we can tell that she opted for a bold lip in order to refrain from looking like an ultra slouch.
3. The Creative Way
What I love most about this outfit is the creativity. This young lady takes a basic tan scoop-neck tee and tucks the front right half of the shirt into her pants for the illusion of an asymmetric hem line immediately transforming the otherwise basic shirt into something modern and chic. Continuing with the modern and chic theme, she then paired the shirt with these liquid-leather pants which steps the outfit up another level and makes it evening appropriate. Notice how she kept her makeup and shoes pretty demure taking into consideration the volume of her hair and the boldness of the rest of her outfit.
Jacksonville Magazine/ June 2015Read More
The Bandwagon Effect publishes a monthly interview featuring stylish people. These are people we just love to watch. This month we are focusing on Anthony Edwards, more commonly as Tony. Tony is a 20 something suit superstars in Jacksonville. 99% of the time you will see him walking the streets of downtown with a suit and his signature pocket square. We enjoy watching him and his confidence in what he wears and inspires others by taking a stand on men's fashion.
Tony is passionate about his drinks and is an amazing mixologist if you ever get a chance to taste one of his cocktails. Tony is a business development leader at Hi. Innovation Group. www.innovatewith.us He is responsible for brining innovative solutions to businesses needing digital signage and content through a strategic process. – This Jacksonville millennial man is one to watch.
Photoshoot for Jeff Whipple, Artist www.jeffwhipple.com
What is a trend? A trend is a social process in which style changes. A good example of this is how we dress, of course my first obsession. If a change is short lived its known as a fad. Trends typically last long term. A lot of fashion changes are fads because they do not stick around for longer than 2 seasons. A good example of a trend would be pleats. They lasted a LONG time and then gone, some people are thankful.
Trends are created by, you guessed it, TRENDSETTERS. Think Madonna, Michael Jackson even Miley Cyrus, Chanel ahhh and of course J.Crew. This may sound simple but for some it is not easy. Trendsetters COVET change from time to time and in fact, often. They are open to new originative styles and ideas embracing the new. Personally, I find most trendsetters to be fascinating and can be found within the creative class.
Most wide spread trends are, of course, started in large cities like New York, Los Angeles and my beloved, Atlanta. On a more international scale, Paris, Tokyo, Milan and London are filled with trendsetters, trendsetting.
This important anthropological phenomenon is why I started the Bandwagon Effect. Here in the southeast we have to embrace and not be afraid of TREND and become more bold with our style and how we approach everything we do. Let's try new things, adopting an attitude of change is good. Here at the Bandwagon Effect we are looking for those who embrace this spirit. In the next few days I will post my second feature Jacksonville style "One to Watch".
I would love to hear from you with your ideas of what is hot, what is now and what is on TREND here in Jacksonville and all over the southeast.
Stay tuned for more fashion as we continue to roll this Bandwagon down the streets and pick up more momentum on our goal to inspire and feature those who inspire through their bold trendsetting nature.
KEEP UP THE TRENDS AND KEEP FASHION NEW AND BOLD
It is official, color is here to stay. I always like to say, “Just add a pop of color” but I do not say it lightly. Using color to put a stamp on your look is not only easy, but it’s on trend and at the same time become a classic solution to creating personal style.
Color blocking, pattern mixing and just being smart about color are sometimes hard during our busy week. We are thinking about meetings, and children and what is the next mean going to be but I am here to tell you that simplifying and adding color with confidence doesn’t have to end you up on the floor of your closet crying.
HERE ARE SOME TIPS TO SIMPLIFY YOUR STYLE AND ADD COLOR LIKE A PRO
- DO NOT OVER DO IT. Adding a colorful jacket to a simple outfit that is more neutral can give you a powerful piece that everyone will take notice. If you are a woman, try an all-neutral look (tan, black or gray) and then add a big bold colorful necklace. If you are a man, do the same with a tie. A unique piece to make you own the runway of your life.
- MIX AND MATCH. Color can come in a solid bold or even in patterns that can be mixed in a unique way to help your personal brand be creative and unique. Maybe think about a polka dot tie on top of a striped shirt. Or for a woman, add a striped blouse with a skirt that is striped in another direction complimenting each other for a show stopping head turning color blowout.
3. TIGHTS TIGHTS TIGHTS. Oh and SOCKS. SOCKS. SOCKS. I would never advocate for too much of over the top color. It has to be a perfect mix and sometimes that means just going a bit below the radar. Add some tights to a tired plain look or for men, a pair of signature socks. An all black soon with a neutral tie that incorporates a nice red polka dot can be perfectly paired with a pair of red socks. Come on guys don’t be scared put them on. The only time anyone might notice is if you are in a meeting, on the bus or sitting on the skyway heading downtown. And GIRLS you know how to do this. A pair of wonderful tights under that favorite plain skirt or dress. Adding a “pop of color” can be fun and invigorate any tired old look.
4. REFERENCE. I know you ladies like to pinterest. Now here is your assignment and for the guys too, get on Pinterest and type in “color trends in fashion” and you wont believe your eyes. GREAT ideas for every day. Look at reference when you are losing inspiration. It helps you think about what is in your closet closest to the looks that are on trend. Don’t be scared guys looking at this stuff is fun and only takes 10 minutes the night before your important meeting, or a high school reunion, you know you want to look good and you CAN DO IT. Also Pinterest is a great social media tool you can use to help set your own personal brand.
5. HAVE FUN. No one wants to cry in the closet and usually when you make it hard getting dressed, people will cry when they see you on the street. Make it fun, make it light and do something different. That’s why it’s called FASHION. OWN IT, WORK IT and everyone around you will take notice. You will probably land that job you have been looking for, meet that special someone you have longed for or even make a great impression on your current boss.
So all of that said, I hope I see you running around town in your stripes on plaids, bright colors on top of neutrals or something totally unexpected.
ADD COLOR LIKE YOU MEAN IT and you will LOOK LIKE A PRO.
I am in Atlanta for, of course, the apparel mart. You know, fashion shows, new lines to check out and beautiful people everywhere (more on that later). I have been waking up each day and running about 3 to 6 miles. In the past I have always used the phrase "I'm on vacation" to eat whatever I want (you all know exactly what I'm talking about). Once I return home, I am wondering why I can not fit into my favorite jeans. Did they shrink in the wash? Did I grab the wrong pair? Did Mel (one of my BFF) pack up mine instead of hers during one of our wine nights? NOPE... I packed on some extra cushion. I have always preached about "Keeping it Right and Tight". I am here to tell you that I have slipped a bit.I am not going to take this anymore and throughout the trip committed to run or exercise each day no matter what. I made it a priority to do this each day. I feel FANTASTIC, who knew? I wasn't listening to my own advice and take it from me, a little work makes the day more fun because you feel like you have actually accomplished something , your head is in right place, and best of all... you can keep rocking your FAVORITE JEANS!!So, like I said, Keep it Right and Keep it Tight
Owner of Empty Nest Boutique Events. Loving wife, Mother of 3 grown sons (I know, right?). From Western PA. Majored in Fashion Merchandising. Jacksonville Native for 16 years.Read More