I’m Baaaaaaack!

Hey everyone!

I want to first apologize for being gone for so long, and then I want to tell you how happy I am to be back! Writing in any capacity is such a release for me; I’ve missed this! During the time I’ve been gone, I was busy doing some work on ME, and I’m happy to say that it’s paid off. I’m all done with undergrad, and I’ve earned my bachelor’s degree in business administration (I’m planning on starting grad school in Jan.), I am working full-time at a place that brought me so much joy as a kid (and still does) — the library, and I just moved into my first apartment!! At some point, we all have to do some soul searching, and although my journey is nowhere near over, I’ve begun and It has been a beautiful experience.

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With all that being said, I’m ready to get back in the trenches! I miss all the talk about fashion, beauty, life, event hopping, networking with all of you, NYC, and just the innate happiness it brings me to think about all of it. I miss my spark, my unapologetic spontaneity, and I’m so ready to get back in and make it happen! Any room for me in there? Of course I’m not really asking, just politely saying “MOVE OVER!”…ha. Happy to be back, and I sure hope you guys are still rocking with me!

I’m all grown up now (well, who ever really completely grows up?), I’m back with a new outlook, a new maturity, a new appreciation for this work and its contributors, and a new personal branding goal in mind. Bare with me, and I promise you won’t be disappointed. Looking forward to picking back up where we left off, friends!

xo,

SB

Next Stop, Destination IMAN!

Hello there awesome people!

It’s a great Friday, and all is well on The Runway Times’ … runway. Any who, I come to you today with some banter (my new favorite word) about a little vacation I went on recently. I was minding my own business one day, and the fashion goddess, Iman, comes sauntering–y’all know, her signature prowess of a glide-strut– all up all in my Twitter timeline, like “Hey y’all, check out my new website!”– in a much better and elegant all-caps-everything way Iman says things– and you know I was on the site before she could even send the tweet… (insert giggle).

So, I take my curious Georgina self on over to Destination Iman, as it is affectionately named with much purpose, and that was it guys… my bags were mysteriously packed and I was on vacation! I’ll break it down in points, because if I don’t, we could be here all night and I know y’all have stuff to do.

Destination IMAN

Destination IMAN

  • When the web page opens, it feels like you just landed on an isolated island that only the “invited” crew get to go to. The site is very clean and easy to navigate, yet has an cultural aesthetic about it that makes me want to turn on some caribbean tunes and whip out my sarong. Iman calls it ‘authentic chic’ and I agree… something that can’t be duplicated.

 

  • All of Iman’s brands are right there, in one place. Iman has literally built an empire that stands on her four-letter name, and boy does she do it justice. From Iman Cosmetics, to Global Chic, to Iman Home; she does it all, with class , style and grace of course. The site displays pages for each one of her stellar brands, with the option to “explore” if you dare (I added in the “if you dare” part for dramatic effect!).

 

Destination IMAN

Explore the brands!

 

  • It’s set up by issue, so each month you can expect something new, can’t wait to see how it changes each month! Along with monthly issues and articles about fashion, style, and the like, Iman will write a monthly blog called ‘Ageless Chic’, where she states that she’ll be “unapologetically sharing the secret to not looking frumpy without looking shamefully trendy.” I don’t know about you, but I’ll be in the front row… and I know a few other people who need front row seats as well (insert large tree for shade).
  •  …and my favorite part, the “About” page, which is usually loaded with lots of words of the events of one’s life and blah blah blah, but in this case, Iman showcases through imagery and snippets of attention grabbing articles, her philanthropic efforts, the legacy she’s built through fashion, and ‘IMAN TV’ where you can see her in action as a mogul and businesswoman.

 

Okay, I think I’ve ‘talked’ enough, time for you to tag along! Now, I’ve already booked your ticket, so all you have to do is click HERE! In the snap of a finger, you’ll be here –Dorothy clicking her heels three times style–, living that good Destination Iman vacation life where they serve fashion cocktails, Afterglow replaces the sun, and you have a different bag for every occasion. See ya there!

 

Thanks, Iman, for continuing to show us how it’s supposed to be done! You inspire me because of…

Iman

Your elegance…

 

your beauty…

your sophistication…

Sincerely,

with style~ Sharontina B.

 

 

B is for Branding: Your Brand Is a Meltingpot

Hello friends!

I’ve been really busy with school the past few days, and since I’m a marketing major we talk business/branding/marketing/money/differentiation etc etc etc–27/7! Now, sometimes I have high interest in the lessons (branding/marketing) and other times I don’t (finance/sales). Although some aspects of business interest me more than others, I’ve learned and accepted that I either have to take it all, or take nothing– and I’ve been in college too long to be all “Forget it, I’m just going to change my major to journalism” (my secret passion of  a major in my next life). Many people ask me why I even decided to study business if I wasn’t passionate about it in its entirety, and the answer to that question is that I feared it and that’s why I went for it. It seems that in our nature, we are comfortable with not having to face fears and making up excuses as to why we don’t want to do something, but my philosophy is that it doesn’t help you in the long-run. The thought of accounting, finance or economics sent chills up my spine because I just don’t like math that much–I just didn’t want to deal with it, but I realized that it is so important to be aware and understand such important factors that determine much of how we live. Any who, that’s my spiel on why I’m a business major, and no…I don’t hate it, I just REALLY have a thing for the aspects related to marketing and branding.

A few months back I introduced a potential blog series that I was going to write all about branding, based on a cute little book called AbuLLard’s ABC’s of Branding, co-written by one of my favorite professors, Dr. Jean Wilcox. I became a little hesitant after introducing the idea because I didn’t want to stray too far left of the focus of The Runway Times, but I realized a great point I could make to tie it all in. The book literally goes through the alphabet, connecting each letter with an important component/rule/or practice of branding. Since I only posted on “A”, we’ll continue with B…

In AbuLLard’s ABC’s of Branding, it states, ” B is for believable”, it goes on to talk about how the messages one associates with their brand must be believable and always deliver on what the brand promises. Many of us would probably say, “Well yeah…my blog always delivers on what I promise to my readers”, or “Yes, our products always deliver the benefit we promise to the consumer”….but is this your own bias, or the truth? It’s definitely something to consider with each and everything you do that is related to your brand.

In today’s time, like it or not, we are all brands. If you are interactive on social media, you are a brand and every single thing you do is a reflection of the image your are trying to portray. I like to talk about personal branding because it’s something I have been successful at by accident, but has since gained much purpose. The best part about creating a personal brand is that YOU have total control of it. Indeed, a brand’s equity is determined by how others view/like and respect the brand, but you create it for them to evaluate from the beginning. All of your actions, doings, what you “co-sign” to, how you dress, and pretty much any little thing you do is a tag to your personal brand! The best way to describe it, is to say that your personal brand is a melting pot of everything you are. There are many tips I could give (and will) on how to add value to your personal brand, but for the sake of my love of personal style, I’ll focus on that this time.

 

 

Your personal style is a representation of so much more than the names on the tags hidden beneath your rags (I love to rhyme words). Just think about it for a second, when you walk down the street don’t you start to place people in certain categories by what they are wearing? Categories like bold, daring, conservative, casual, professional— I do. I start to imagine what they are probably like as a person, the things they’re probably interested in for leisure, and even what they might want me to know about them as I see their representation of themselves. Yes, I was always known to think too deeply into things, but it’s my nature and I know some of you are the same way! Any who, your personal style is your elevator pitch of fashion, your “Hellooooo world” without even opening your mouth, your “mood ring” that will give sure signs of the days when you’re feeling yourself, and the days when you’re not. Many of us may be able to agree to the fact that relatives and friends especially make reference to “the type of things we wear”, and during those ever-fun shopping trips, you hear “Nahhh, that doesn’t look like you”, or “that is soooooo you!”…yep, we hear it all the time and become more and more comfortable with being known for what we wear.

So, my question to you is, do you have a unique style that is all your own and does it truly represent who you are? Is it a believable message to the brand you are and not a form of that “leave a nasty taste in your mouth” conformity? Are you in the process of repositioning that brand of YOU and want your personal style to take a ride too? I’d love your feedback/questions, I’m here to help and learn!

 

Sincerely,

with style~ Sharontina B.