change

Christmas Past

These are pretty pictures but I didn’t wear this dress to any holiday parties. As a matter of fact, I wasn’t invited to not a one.

It’s been strange. Actually even more strange than not working in an office anymore. Being apart from the corporate situation for nearly 6 months now, there have been many changes but for some reason this change is bizarre. When you leave your job you don’t think about things like that. You think of the overall picture, know that it’s not painted for you and free yourself but you don’t think of your situational social scene being snatched from you.

I grieved for a moment and shortly realized it was just that, situational. Who wants a holiday party full of faux cheer? I certainly don’t. A lot of revelations have occurred since I chose faith and this isn’t a mistake. When you take a path to purpose everything can’t come with you. While you don’t know what’s ahead, you must be different when you get there. That difference isn’t merely internal. You will lose a lot of external things. Many won’t make sense but what does, is God’s plan. He knows what needs to go. You gain much more than you lose when you trust him with the loss.

Do not pity me. She is truly the happiest she has been in years. Mourn for those that remain in the comfort of a Christmas party that is no longer serving them. This unused holiday dress is a revolution in growth.

Applaud the faith and pray for the woman that I am becoming. She looks strong to me. I can’t wait to see what God does with her life. He is already working wonders. Believe me.

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Multiway Dress - Long Tall Sally (shown in a size 10) / Shoes - Payless/Accessories - Forever21  Photos by  Lakeela Smith

Multiway Dress - Long Tall Sally (shown in a size 10)/ Shoes - Payless/Accessories - Forever21

Photos by Lakeela Smith

*This moment of truth is brought to you by a woman who is finally walking in hers. It’s a gorgeous walk and she is thankful for every step.

I Wish I Could Find Your Tall Shop

The absolutely amazing Marsha Campbell of the fab blog Style of a London Tall Girl, is featured in Amazon Fashion Europe's I Wish I Could Wear That campaign. The campaign pairs three style icons with three women who are struggling with their style voices. I applaud the campaign and I love that they used Marsha to be the strong, tall figure in the piece. She is a fabulous woman, amazing blogger and I love her style!

BUT...where is your tall shop Amazon Fashion Europe? I see plus size but no tall shop. Like most retailers (including the overall Amazon Fashion whom also does not have a Tall section) out there, you do not have a category for us nor an ample selection of true tall styles. Do you have some tall options? Yes. However they are few and far between. They are mostly 34" inseam pants and I had to put TALL into the search to find those. I love that you want women to be able to wear what they love but can tall women do that with the selection on your site? 

Again, kudos to Amazon Fashion Europe for empowering women to break the societal style rules and rock what they want to but if you are going to disseminate the message, please carry the tall clothing that enables me to do that. Now that you know better, please do better.

So with that said...

Dear Amazon Fashion Europe and all retailers,

We deserve a realistic, stylish selection and category too.  

Signed, Tall Girls Everywhere

Custom Change

In order to make a change in this world you must act and support others who do.  That's one of the reasons why I am in love with Kickstarter.  In a nutshell, it's a platform for people to share their creative projects and gain support from backers around the world. 

I often support projects on the site but when I came across Black Box Denim's campaign, I immediately pledged.

Why?

Because Black Box Denim wants EVERYBODY to have jeans that fit.  Their mission is for every woman to have a detailed, beautiful, great fitting pair of jeans that are made just for them.  What a breath taking sentence.

Check out their video for the BBD mission:

Their goal is $25,000 and they have 27 days to raise the funds.  The minimum pledge is a $1 and there are other pledge amounts that get you a custom pair of Black Box Denim jeans or one of their amazing accessories.

CLICK TO SEE ALL OF THE WAYS YOU CAN SUPPORT BLACK BOX DENIM.If we want the industry to make clothes for all of us, we must support retailers like Black Box Denim.  Change will not occur until we show them that we want it. 

If you can't pledge, no worries, you can support them immensely by sharing this post which is momentarily free yet unbelievably valuable:)

Thank you for your time and support.  Have a fabulous day beautiful!

Too Real to Model

Do I look too tall in these photos?Since the moment I started to dream, I have aspired to be a model.  Even in my years of low self-worth, I had an undying aspiration to be on every cover and catwalk.  My Mom enrolled me in every class she could and even scraped up every dime we had to send me to a model competition.  While we all know that a lot of these 'model activities' are schemes to get money, the experiences I had were invaluable and in some ways helped sand my confidence into what it is today.

I had my first photo shoot at 6 years old and was signed by ABC Kids (a then small agency in Portland, Oregon). As I began growing, even though I was still a child, I literally outgrew most of the jobs at the agency so we went looking for another route.  At 15 an agency asked me if I would go overseas however my Mom was not comfortable with me going on my own and as a single Mom there was no way she could travel with me.  Thus, that opportunity was out.  At this point, I was growing like a weed and had reached 6'3".  No matter where we went, they began to tell me that I was too tall.

Too tall to model?

Yep.  Everyone said that they liked my look and presence but that I was too tall to wear anything off the rack and thus were of no use to them.

My dream has never changed but my focus did as I started playing basketball and worked hard to gain a scholarship to The University of the Pacific.  After playing for five seasons (I redshirted), I decided to walk away from the sport and pursue my life long dream of becoming a model.

Yes.  They told me I was too tall at 6'3" and I was now 6'6" but tell me I can't and I will show you I can.

I flew to New York and hit the pavement.  For a month and a half I went to every single agency in that city and EVERY SINGLE one of them said they loved me but didn't love my height.  Rejection. Rejection. Rejection.

Meanwhile, My Mom heard about an agency in Portland called Sports Unlimited.  It's specialty was providing models with sports experience for athletic and lifestyle retailers.  It was and is a great agency but the fact remained that I was only retained because of my basketball background and not just my abilities as a model.

I moved to California and began my career in the NBA but I never let my dream die.  I go after every opportunity and through my blog I have been blessed to model for retailers like Height Goddess and Candid Art.  I will continue to attack my dream until I succeed.  That you can be sure of.

Recently while traveling I picked up the fall fashion issue of Harper's Bazaar.  There was an absolutely beautiful spread with amazing women entitled Carine Roitfeld's Singular Beauties: An Homage to the Diversity of Women.  6'8" model Erika Ervin (also known as Amazon Eve) was featured and might I say looked absolutely stunning.    

6'8" model Erika Ervin (also known as Amazon Eve) appeared in Harper's Bazaar Magazine in Carine Roitfeld's Singular Beauties: An Homage to the Diversity of Women. Photographed by Karl Lagerfeld.While I am extremely happy that Erika was featured, I couldn't help but to be mad at the fact that it takes an homage in order for a woman above 6'3", as well as the various different types of women featured in the spread, to get every woman represented in a fashion magazine. 

It has to stop.

Every single, solitary woman should be able to thumb through a fashion magazine and see a version of herself in the pages.  A feature every now and then doesn't cut it.  The fact that the industry has standards of what is too short, too fat, too tall and too real is something that needs to be changed immediately. 

I dare every magazine to use real models on a regular basis.  Throwing real in every now and then is nice but making a continual movement to show the world that every shape, color and age is beautiful would be epic.

But you can just continue to make every woman in society think she should be one certain way.  It's easier and takes far less courage.