10. All Wrapped Up in Love: Curvy Girlz Lingerie. This post featured a recap of my partnership with friend Precious Williams of Curvy Girlz Lingerie, when she brought her exclusive brand of plus-size intimate apparel to the ladies of Washington, DC last February. Sips, sweets, and spicy conversation topped off the evening. Could a repeat event be on the calendar? Stay tuned....
9. Inspiration from the Chasing Joy Brunch & Learn DC. Last January, I partnered with my girl Arlett of Chasing Joy to bring her signature event, the Chasing Joy Brunch & Learn to Washington, DC. It was a day of motivational speakers, giveaways, and, of course, BRUNCH! This particular post included pictures from the event as well as some of my favorite takeaway messages from the day.
8. What to Wear to Work in the Heat of Summer. In Washington, DC, dressing well in the heat of summer is an art form. In this post, I outline my favorite tried and true tips for keeping it professional and stylish when the heat index is 103. I'm proud not only of this post, but also of the fact that my expertise landed me an interview with Washingtonian magazine on this very subject.
7.My Thoughts on Gabourey, Beauty, Body Image...and Lupita, Too! I love Gabourey Sidibe because she openly challenges society on its hypocritical practice of preaching "self-esteem" and "loving yourself" on the one hand and then demonizing anyone who dares to defy Madison Avenue's beauty standards without apology. With awards season approaching, a re-read of this post seems quite timely.
6. Shop Your Salary: Leather Handbags! As you can tell from the number of socially-charged and/or event-related posts on this lists, this year I veered a little off-course and got away from my first love: fashion. So with the introduction of the newest feature to Curvy CEO - "Shop Your Salary" - I've come back to basics, so to speak. Personally I really enjoy this new feature for two reasons. First, it shows you just how repetitious some styles can be. Second, it's just fun to "shop" for something at the CEO level. (Yeah, I'm not quite at the level where I'm ready to drop thousands of dollars for a handbag...but it's nice to imagine that I am.)
5. Why That Black Lady in Your Office Seems "Angry" All the Time This post represents a lot of what me and many of my friends had discussed behind closed doors for so long. Unfortunately, the media storm surrounding Shonda Rhimes' new drama starring Viola Davis forced me put these feelings into words. It was actually quite cathartic to do so. Hopefully I educated - and didn't scare off - readers who are not women of color and/or who may not share the same perspective.
4. Shopaholics Suite = Success! This post is an event recap of the secondhand shopping event I hosted with eight other plus-size bloggers this past November. This was truly the largest undertaking I had ever been a part of and while the event itself was loads of fun, the biggest takeaway for me was that nothing great is ever achieved alone. Teamwork truly does make the dream work. What I was able to bring in event management skills, Vivi was able to complement through creativity and her connections. Meanwhile, Sherra brought several key ideas to the table based out of her own experience hosting events. The entire group engaged in event promotion ("Hello, Street Team!") and contributing food, decorations, etc. On a similar note, through my membership to blogger network BLM Girls I am continuing to learn the value of a "support group." Now, I am no longer afraid of partnering with others. That fear - which was really a fear of competition - has been replaced with the knowledge that we all accomplish more when we work together.
3. From the "Fairly Heavy Black Woman" in Your Yoga Class. Like pretty much everyone on the internet, I was extremely disturbed when this utterly insensitive and incredibly naive piece appeared on XO Jane recounting a young white woman's assumptions about a "fairly heavy black woman" who participated in her yoga class. I recall being particularly tired and overworked the day that article came out, but as a budding yogi myself, I *had* to respond.
2. GarnerStyle is #BoycottingTarget - Will You? I am supremely proud of not only this post, but the movement that inspired it. From the exclusion of plus-sizes in their high-end designer collaborations to mislabeling their clothes and models (or photoshopping out entire body parts altogether), Target has a long list of offenses that caused me to join Chasity Garner and others in the movement to stop patronizing Target. It has definitely been a challenge and, admittedly, I've slipped a few times, but for the most part, I've been able to stick with it. I like to think that the movement has had an impact. At the least, we saw Wal-Mart quickly reverse course and apologize when its customers complained that its website had a category called "fat girl costumes" during the Halloween season. Hopefully, we will see Target reverse course as well and show greater respect to its full-figured customers.
1. Wisdom from Oprah's Life You Want Tour. This special edition of my Monday Morning Memo was a recap of some of the best take aways from Oprah's Life You Want Tour stop in Washington, DC. Attending this event was one of the absolute BEST things I did all year. It was, in a word, awesome. I learned SO much during that amazing weekend. But one of the biggest lessons I learned wasn't taught on stage by Oprah, Iyanla, or any of the other experts on the tour. It was to listen to my instincts and to invest in my dreams.
You see, when I first decided to attend this event, my plan was met with skepticism and even criticism by family and friends.
"Tickets are HOW much?!?!"
"Is Iyanla going to fix YOUR life?!?"
"Oprah is already a billionaire. Why are you giving her more of your hard earned money?"
Certainly these remarks made me second guess my choice. However, the experience proved to be more than worth the value of the ticket. Months later I am STILL reflecting on the lessons shared and contemplating ways to integrate the advice into my daily life. Another thing that makes this post so great is the fact that it includes a link-up where other bloggers who attended the tour (sometimes in other cities) included links to write-ups of their experiences as well. So much goodness, you almost can't take it all in.
BONUS: You Know You're a Fashion Blogger When... Inspired by Buzzfeed, I thought I'd take a stab at coming up with a bunch of gifs that signify life as a fashion blogger. This is the result (and, it's quite funny if I do say so myself).
Well, those are my top posts of 2014. I hope you enjoyed reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them. Stay safe and have a wonderful, blessed New Year!!!
P.S. - As we prepare for 2015, let me know what YOU want to see form Curvy CEO in the New Year. Please take five minutes to respond to the reader survey. Simply click here or visit http://bit.ly/1Be9fxl. One lucky respondent will win a bundle of Haute Cash from Torrid! Responses must be received by NOON on Sunday, January 4. Thank you!