Hello, lovelies! It is Month 19 of my freeform locs. I finally re-dyed them and they look 100% better. They’re also getting longer and I’m definitely pleased with that. I’ve added some things to my office decor and I’m very happy with the results. New hair color, new office.
Here are few pics of my office, with the office light on. It looks cool, but it looks a lot snazzier with the office light turned off, and the colorful lights turned on. The skull lamp, bony hand candelabra, and “lightening ball” were purchased on Amazon. The rest of the items were purchased at CVS. These purchases were made last year during Halloween season, so these items were bought at a reduced price. The battery-operated candles were purchased online.
Here’s the progress of my dreadlocks. Thanks to the hair dye, you’ll see a dramatic difference between Months 17 and 19:
That’s it for now. Be sure to check out my office decor video below. You’ll see how my office looks when it’s darkened and lit up by my spooky lights. TTFN!
Hello, lovelies! Today is the last day of November, so today’s look is inspired by the Chrysanthemum, November’s birth flower. “Mums” are one of the most cultivated flowers around the world, beginning in China in 15th century B.C. Chrysanthemums are a diverse flower, ranging from “puffy poms to the spindly spiders and quill flowers”. Chrysanthemums are a member of the daisy family and are related to zinnias, dahlias, marigolds, and sunflowers.
The word “chrysanthemum” comes from the Greek words chrysos, meaning “gold” and anthemon, meaning “flower”. Chrysanthemums are next to the most popular flower, second to roses. “Mums” are traditionally given on Mother’s Day, which symbolize optimism and joy. Many of us Americans call our mothers “Mom”, whereas some of the British call their mothers, “Mum”. I’m pretty sure there’s a connection there.
Chrysanthemums have a great deal of symbolism in Asia, especially in China and Japan. The Chrysanthemum is considered one of the Four Gentlemen in Chinese art and “The Festival of Happiness” in Japan is a celebration of the “mum”. But in France, Belgium, Spain, and Italy, chrysanthemums symbolize death and are often placed on graves and used in funerals.
CHRYSANTHEMUM INFO & SYMBOLISM
TITLE: Gold Flower
TYPES: Poms, Thistle (or Brush), Spoon, and Quill
ORIGIN: Asia and Northeastern Europe
TYPE: Mostly Perennials, but there are also Annual varieties
COLORS: Pink, red, yellow, white and green
ZODIAC SIGN: Scorpio (October 23 – November 21)
USES: Mainly used as a tea to assist in eyestrain, dizziness, and to lower cholesterol, and adds flavor to Korean rice wine. The leaves are boiled and steamed to be eaten. Also helps to reduce indoor air pollution.
Here’s what I wore. This look would of been perfect with the long skirt I was going to wear, but it decided to rain. So I changed gears and wore a knee-length skirt, leggings, and flat shoes.
I wore my eyeglasses, so makeup was basic. The bone necklace and large mums were the highlight of this look. I did go heavy on the blush, though.
That’s all for now, lovelies. Last day of November and I manage to squeak out the birth flower post. For a short month, this month felt like it would never end. Strange.
Love & Shimmies,
ATS® dance move (fast): Shoulder Shimmy w/ Hip Bumps
Hello, lovelies! We recently celebrated Thanksgiving here in the US, and I thought it was a perfect day to honor Topaz, November’s birthstone. The main colors for topaz are yellow and amber gold, matching the dying leaves of Fall. Topaz can also be found in a full range of colors including blue, pink, and wine red. November’s second birthstone, Citrine, looks similar to topaz in color, ranging for lemon-yellow to orange-brown. Citrine is the French word for “lemon”.
The Imperial Topaz was discovered in Russia during the 19th century. With its orange with pink undertones, the Imperial Topaz is the most prized topaz. While blue is the most popular color for topaz, this is due to the man-made dying process. Blue topazes that occur naturally are rare. The ancient Egyptians and Romans believed that topaz represented the sun, and believed that topazes held healing and protective powers. Topazes also symbolize love and good fortune. Blue topazes represent the moon.
TOPAZ INFO & SYMBOLISM
TITLE: The Crystal of Potency
COLORS: Amber gold, yellow, orange, pink, wine red, brown, blue, and also colorless
MOHS SCALE HARDNESS: 8.0
TYPES: See Colors above. Colorless topazes are without impurities and are considered “pure”
ZODIAC SIGN: Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21)
DEITY: Demeter, Greek goddess of abundance and the harvest. She brings an end to the barren winter land, filling it with life-giving grain. Also honors Sekhmet, Egyptian goddess of war and Amaterasu, the Japanese Sun Goddess.
DIVINATIONS:Clear topaz: “It is time to see the real truth. Listen to your inner voice to tell right from wrong.”
Imperial/Golden topaz: “You have as much right to aim high as anyone else.”
Blue topaz: “Speak the truth with confidence and you can take control of the situation and turn matters to your advantage.”
CHAKRAS:Imperial/Golden topaz: Root (1), Sacral (2), and Solar Plexus (3); Pink topaz: Heart (4); Blue topaz: Throat (5) and Third Eye (6); Colorless topaz: Crown (7);
HEALING PROPERTIES: Heals diseases of the eye and helps with dimness of eyesight, restores the sense of taste, lessens cardiac pains, and reduces snoring.
SECONDARY BIRTHSTONE: Citrine
Here’s what I wore. We had Thanksgiving dinner at a friend’s house, so I went for a casual look. I wore my black velvet pants with two t-shirts. The layered t-shirts dressed down the velvet pants, giving my look a more relaxed feel.
Here’s my Thanksgiving face. Makeup is somewhat heavy with bronze glitter on my eyes. Since I was feeling casual, I decided to skip the false eyelashes.
That is all for today. November is just about over, so after December we’ll be starting a new year. Personally, I am ready for 2016 to end. It was a very depressing and trying year.
Black, female, and atheist. It’s a rarity to be all three here in the United States world and I decided to tell my story on video. We atheists are a lone breed – especially if you’re black; especially if you’re black AND female. I had already posted my story back in 2014, but I decided to make a video about it.
Seven years ago in 2009, I “came out” as an atheist before heading over to my mother’s house for Thanksgiving. Every year prior, each member of the family would say what they were thankful for and then, say a small prayer to thank God for everything in our lives. I didn’t want to spring this news over Thanksgiving dinner, so it was time to call my mother – a sweet woman, but VERY Christian. Her faith gave her joy and comfort, and she took it very seriously. I was really nervous, but I knew I had to tell her.
She wasn’t too happy about it. She was quite concerned, and worried about my “soul”. After much discussion and prayer, she finally accepted my atheism. But even before she died, my mother was convinced that God was real. “But he’s taking you away from us”, I said. “No, no, no. He’s not taking me away. You will see me again when Jesus comes to take us home.” I smiled at her and left it at that.
So, here’s a video of my story: how it feels to be black, female and atheist in a world of believers. I hope you enjoy hearing my story. TTFN!
Hello, lovelies! I’m back with another Outfits of the Week post. In this post I’m sharing what I wore during the week of Halloween, which was on a Monday this year. I’m just now posting this video since I’ve been a bit depressed, lately. But I promise you I will, slowly but surely, get back to my normal posting schedule.
Here’s what I wore on Halloween. It’s not exactly a costume, but the nice thing about being a goth is that I can wear my normal clothes and still look spooky. After all, every day is Halloween for us goths! All I did was add a large, witch’s hat and I was all set for the holiday.
Here’s my makeup for Halloween. I wore all-black makeup, including black lipstick. While the green contacts I wore are subtle, they really do show up nicely when surrounded by black eye makeup:
This is the first time I’ve worn my new top hat. I used to wear top hats about 20 years ago, and I’m happy to be able to wear hats again. It took a little adjusting to (I kept crashing into low-hanging branches), but it was fun to wear. I felt like Stevie Nicks in this outfit!
Day Two’s makeup was pretty subtle: just lipstick, eyeliner, and false eyelashes. I wore a small bindi under the corner of each eye for a little dazzle:
Day Three had the simplest outfit: a long dress, arm warmers, and ankle boots. I wore a pin in my scarf and further accessorized this outfit with an onyx ring and cabochon necklace:
Here’s Day Three’s makeup. It’s pretty much my usual with glitter added to my eyelids. The glitter doesn’t show up well in these pictures, but it does accentuate my eyes:
This month has been depressing, to say the least. I am working on more content, but I’m also taking things one day at a time. We’re already in mid-November, so I will try to have November’s birthstone and birth flower posts out soon. Stay tuned.
Hello, dear lovelies. This post will show 2 months of my loc progression, since I forgot to post last month’s loc report (whoops). Not only that, but since the election of Donald Trump, I’ve been feeling helpless, hopeless, angry, and downright sad. (Can you tell from the pics?)
I posted my first live video (via Facebook) a couple of days ago. It’s a video expressing my feelings and offering encouragement to others who are also frightened and feeling hopeless. For many of us who are worried about the new President-elect (and also the new Vice-President-elect: Yikes!), this election goes beyond Republican vs. Democrat, liberal vs. conservative. It’s not about Hillary Clinton losing.
With the endorsement of the KKK and other white suprematist groups, we’re fearful for our humanity. We are rightfully angry about the lack of respect for Americans who aren’t white, male, heterosexual, and Christian. Hate crimes across the country have already begun. Many of these crimes have even occurred in elementary- and high schools.
So, I had to take a short break from blogging and posting videos. I needed time to process my feelings and muster the strength to move forward. Outfits of the day, makeup, and looking fabulous had to take a backseat while I get myself together. That includes my lackluster dreadlocks.
Here’s the status on my locs so far:
There will be new posts this week. They’re a bit late (just like this dreadlock post), but better late than never. Many people (especially those of us who are more vulnerable to white supremacist groups) are trying heal and make sense of the message that our fellow Americans are sending. We are not valued. We are nothing. We’re blamed for all of America’s ills, but are never given credit for our contributions to this country.
We will stay strong and move forward. That’s really all we can do at this point. I hope the future will not be as dire as it seems. We will have to wait and see.
A couple of weeks ago, I posted a video on YouTube discussing cultural appropriation and dreadlocks. Around Halloween, the subject of cultural appropriation becomes a hot topic. Some people leave their brains at the door, and show up to parties wearing blackface, yellowface, Native American war bonnets, and all sorts of foolishness. Are these examples of cultural appropriation? You bet it is! At the very least, it’s highly offensive.
But are dreadlocks considered cultural appropriation? Should dreadlocks only be worn by black people? Many people think that dreadlocks come from black culture, but this is not the case. In this video, I share my thoughts on cultural appropriation and dreadlocks.
Do you think cultural appropriation exists? Should dreadlocks only be worn by black people? Please share in the comments.
Happy Halloween, lovelies! My outfit for the last day of October is its birth flower, the Marigold. Native to Mexico, marigolds were discovered by the Portuguese in the 16th century. Marigolds were used by the Roman, Ancient Greek, Indian, and Middle Eastern cultures for a number of uses including dying fabrics, making cosmetics, and seasoning food. They are also used medicinally and as a natural insect repellent. There are two genera of marigolds: Calendula which are edible, and Tysetes which are poisonous.
With it’s bold yellow and orange colors, marigold symbolize passion and creativity. Marigolds also symbolize the sun, and they’re used to adorn graves and alters during Mexico’s annual Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration. It is believed the the scent of marigolds “help guide the spirits from the cemetery to the alters”. The marigold is named for the Virgin Mary and is called “Mary’s Gold”.
MARIGOLD INFO & SYMBOLISM
TITLE: Mary’s Gold
TYPES: Over 50 species, including African (Tagetes erecta), French (Tagetes patula), and pot marigold (Calendula officinalis)
COLORS: Mainly yellow, golden yellow, orange, and red-orange
ZODIAC SIGN: Leo (July 22 – August 22)
USES: Used in salads, dyeing fabric, insect repellent, and as a substitue for saffron seasoning
Here’s what I wore on Friday. It’s Halloween, so along with my marigold flower and black horns, I wore long, flowy, black clothes. The asymmetrical tunic dress has been getting a lot of wear!
My makeup wasn’t too heavy. Just dark lips and eyeliner. I wore orange bindis, although the ones at the outer corners of my eyes seem to blend in with my skin tone.
I’m taking it easy this Halloween, but I did make an OOTD video for Marigold. Did you celebrate Halloween this year, even though it’s on a Monday? Share in the comments.
Hello, lovelies. October has been a dark, but interesting month, so I’m very late in posting October’s looks for its birthstones and birth flower. My apologies.
This look is inspired by the Opal, October’s birthstone. The Greek word for “opal” is apallios, meaning “to see a change in color”. The Roman scholar, Pliny the Elder, wrote of opalus: “The Opal, as a precious stone containing the fiery flame of the carbuncle (Garnet), the resplendent purple of the Amethyst, and the sea-green glory of the Emerald – all shining together in incredible union and exquisite pleasure”. Opal is also thought to be from the Sanskrit word upala, meaning “precious stone”. Like fingerprints and snowflakes, no two opals are the same.
Opals originate from Australia and was discovered in 1850. The majority of Opals are produced (95%) in Australia, but are also mined in Brazil, Honduras, Ethiopia, Mexico, and parts of the US. Opals are a mix of water and silica (hydrated silicon dioxide), containing a water content between 3% and 21% by weight. Of the 3 types of opal, the most rare is the Precious Opal (also called Rainbow Opal). It’s also the only opals that exhibit a “play on color”. Neither the Common Opal, which has a milky and pearly luster (“opalescence”) nor the Fire Opal, which is translucent with “a body color of vivid red, orange, or yellow”, exhibit a play on color.
OPAL INFO & SYMBOLISM
TITLE: The Eye Stone
COLORS: Nearly every color and also colorless
MOHS SCALE HARDNESS: 5.5 – 6.0
TYPES: Precious Opal (or Rainbow), Common Opal, and Fire Opal
ZODIAC SIGN: None, but has a strong affinity with Cancer (June 21 – July 22)
DEITY: Persephone, Queen of the Underworld, ruling during winter. She’s also the Greek goddess of Spring. Also honors Cardea, Roman goddess of Doorways and Entrys, and protector of families, children, and the house.
DIVINATION: “Just when you have given up, good luck makes a return appearance. Maximize opportunities to ensure it lasts.”
CHAKRAS: Several linking to the Crown (7)
HEALING PROPERTIES: Eases depression and stress, strengthens eyesight, purifies the blood and kidneys, and regulates insulin production.
SECONDARY BIRTHSTONE: Tourmaline
Here’s my outfit. The focal point of this look is the glass opal brooch that I wore on my head scarf. The long, black cardigan and lace dress gives it a gothic bohemian feel:
Here’s my face. I wore dark makeup highlighted by green and gold eyeshadow, and pink bindis to match the brooch:
That’s it for now. I’ve been sick and depressed for the past week, so this birthstone post is very late. My apologies for that. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Halloween post for October’s birth flower.
Hello, lovelies! Fall is definitely here and the weather has cooled down significantly. I decided to show off a few of my long jackets, perfect for layering and looking very goth.
I wore many layers on Day One, complete with felt hat and long cardigan. The pentacle pikes complete this look. All of my clothing was purchased on Ebay and Amazon, with the exception of the winklepickers, which were purchased from The Gothic Shoe Company.
Here’s my makeup for Day One. I decided to stick with heavy eyeliner and lipstick for the week. I wasn’t in the mood for heavy makeup, but I will definitely wear more makeup for the cooler weather. I think the heavy eyebrows make up for the minimal eye makeup.
Out of these three days, Day Two had the coolest weather so I decided to wear my new fall jacket. I have a winter coat, but I needed a light jacket for Fall and Spring. I also wanted a shorter jacket (my winter coat is long) to wear for when it’s raining outside. This jacket was purchased on Amazon.
Again on Day Two, my makeup was very minimal. I wore green contacts, which are very subtle. I decided to wear a head scarf instead of a hat.
More layers for Day Three. I wore my favorite jacket, which is long, black, and velvet – very goth and very pretty. This jacket is more on the dressy side, so I don’t wear it often. But I think it works for what I’m wearing.
Not much eye makeup on this day, but I’ve added false eyelashes and small bindis to give my face some “oomph”. The dreadlock beads and purple lipstick keep my face from looking boring.
That’s it for this week, lovelies. I was going to add an update on my dreadlocks, but I’m saving that for an upcoming post (coming soon). Stay tuned.