The most quotable interview I have seen in a long time. You owe yourself this experience.
Mode: Tonight I felt like going cheap and chic. And not in Moschino. I am wearing a sweater I picked up at H&M for $7. I feel just like Erykah Badu right now. “My dress ain’t cost nothing but $7 but I made it fly…cause I’m clever.” Even know, Mama’s Gun helps me make it over the mountain. Underneath I am wearing a t-shirt I picked up a “N” my favorite shopping destination in Harlem. And some Chip and Pepper jeans, which I had no problem finding in my closet. And what a relief. Had I lost them I might have had to take a blackberry to the head of my roommate. A Naomi moment. But that crisis we avoided, thankfully.
Melody: I am listing to Jamiroquai’s “Runaway.” Something about him always makes me smile. His music is bright, vibrant and funky. Even when he croons a love song.
"N" STYLE in Gotham
Last night, I went to a wonderful booksigning and cocktail reception at “N" Harlem, the premier destination uptown for the chic and fashionable uptown set. Located on 116th and Lenox (in harlem - get it?), I will never forget the day I stepped past the mahogany doors into the boutique. I had read a lot of press clips in the New York Post and the New York Daily News about the opening, and I knew a few celebrities were known to shop there…so I made it my business to check it out.
Carrying a wide array of fashionable lines ranging from the Denim Factory and G Star to Tracy Reese and Nicole Miller, I was overwhelmingly impressed by both the selection and the décor of the store. It is a bi-level boutique catering to both male and female fashionista who want to pick up a nice outfit and some candles to match. Did I mention they also carry candles, pillows, wine racks and other funky accessories that are essential to New York living? Now I don't have to trek downtown to Soho...I have it here at N Harlem.
It’s very chic and comfortable. You can sit down on a soft leather chair and look from east to west and almost create the outfits in your mind. I'm a visual shopper. And the staff is phenomenal. The owners, Larry Ortiz, Nikoa Evans and Lenn Shebar have done a great job adding to the cache of the new Harlem Renaissance. And the velvet curtains adorning the dressing rooms inspired me so much that I went out and bought a velvet curtain for my own bedroom. As an artist I take inspiration from every place I visit.
Tonight, my new friend Erika J. Kendrick was signing copies of her first novel, “Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader.” As a former Chicago Bulls professional cheerleader, Erika takes us to the dark side of the poms-poms. Beneath the lip gloss, mascara and high-kick lines. We meet backstabbing vixens, controlling egotistical men and an assortment of self-centered individuals out to kill and destroy for the sake of their careers. At first I thought I was reading a book about my job…but this is Erika’s story. Not mine. I was never a cheerleader. I was in the marching band.
Erika and I bonded over a few cocktails while she told me how this novel just evolved from her everyday life. Never imagining she’d be a novelist, Erika was working on a tv treatment for a television executive when her mother told her point blank, “This is a novel.” And without any industry hookups, Erika set out cold-calling agents to pitch her book. And then it happened. After a lot of persistence, Erika landed an agent and later landed a book deal.
Erika radiates an inner beauty that I know will follow her on this journey. Please do visit her website http://www.erikakendrick.com/ and purchase the novel. I’m sure you will enjoy it.
And I must compliment Jamar Dunnigan for the event and the afterparty at Ginger. A great night in Gotham.