Monday, May 07, 2007

No more updating here

Just to let everyone know. I have a new blog, which is closely linked to my new project. Hair Affairs e-Mag.

I will no longer be updating here, but you can find me at
come over and check me out.


Saturday, April 21, 2007

Adornment 2007 - Visitor Feedback

I found out about Adornment through M. D., who had volunteered to take part in the fashion show. I attended Adornment on Monday 9 April. Majority of my time was sat down watching and enjoying the show as I did not want to miss any of the fabulous clothes, hair styles and dance routines.

I felt the designers had such style, flair and a real passion for vibrant colours which was a pleasure to watch as it was nice to get away from the usual dull colours. I thought the drummers at the end of show were fantastic and really lifted the energy of the place!

All the best with the newsletter!

Many thanks


Adornment 2007 was the first time I visited the show, and I attended on Monday. I did not find out about it through advertisements - which was quite surprising, as my personal opinion is advertising draw crowds. I found out via word of mouth, as in the past as well.

I found the event particularly refreshing! Unfortunately I did not get to view all the stalls, as I found myself hooked to the fashions shows. It was good to see that the models used were not stereotypical, if that had of been the case that would have been very disappointing. The array of vibrant colours and designs were stunning, and it's good to know that black people have the potential to break into the designer world.


"I found out about Adornment through a friend of mine, M. D., who was going to be one of the models in the show. I must admit I had never heard of Adornment before, so this was the first time I had attended such an event in the UK. I bought a ticket for the Monday event, and arrived about 12 o'clock. I was very impressed by all the different designers, and businesses that were exhibiting at the show, many of whom were extremely talented, but yet I had never before heard of some of them.

The fashion shows were amazing as were the clothes and the models who showed them. It was a very warm and uplifting event, and it was so nice to see all the beautiful black people in there, all ages, all sizes, all 59 different shades of black, but together in a common cause, and embracing what we have to offer. Wow!! It just showed what amazing things we can achieve, as a people, when we set our minds to it and strive for a good cause. Loved it, loved it, loved!! Bring on Adornment 2008, I am there already!!"

Take care, stay blessed.

One Love

Antoinette X

Adornment 2007 - Model Feedback

This is what other models had to say.

I initially came to Adornment in a supportive role, and to generally see what goes on behind the scenes. I had no real intention of getting involved, although I had been asked to take part as they only had a few male models.

I was quite hesitant as I was the only guy present at that time. However, as the evening drew on, more guys turned up and I felt that perhaps this would be fun and signed up.

I was picked to do a couple of dance routines and to model tee shirts and jewellery.

I found the rehearsals quite confusing and chaotic at times. This was mainly due to the sheer volume of people milling around. Some models in one corner rehearsing the catwalk, others trying to learn dance steps. It certainly was a hive of activity.

The days were long and after participating in 4 rehearsals, I still could not see how it would all come together over the 2 days. However, I felt proud to be a part of the individuals taking part in this unique show.

When the first day finally arrived, I was overwhelmed with excitement. At the same time, I was quite anxious at the thought of having to partake in front of live audience.

Then it happened. Time to go, adrenalin flowing through my body propelling me onto that stage. I was one of the opening dancers, I remembered all my routines, it went well and I really enjoyed it. Once over, I felt eager to get back out on stage to perform.
Two things I have gained from this experience. One is some great new friend-ships. The other is experiencing that when "black" people work together as a team they can achieve such greatness. We need to continue to show this harmony, not only in a weekend exhibition but also within our society.

I found out about Adornment through an email from a friend stating they were looking for natural hair models.

At rehearsals some of us were a bit reserved at first, but everyone soon came out of their shell under the guidance of Janee (a professional model) and we were soon sashaying and posing away.

The event itself was extremely tiring with early morning starts, but I had an excellent time. As a hair model for TarBaby, the style was based on a rock theme and I think I got really into character. As soon as I got on stage, I became such a different person that people were commenting on my change of character!

On the second day, I was enthralled by the Dutch drumming group who reminded me of being in Barbados. A few of the models were certainly moving their waistline!
It was unfortunate I could not see all the performances and did not have enough time to wander around the exhibition area. However, I met some really wonderful people and hope we keep in contact throughout the coming years.

As stressful and tiring as it was, I would do it all again.

Blessings, Michelle Doyle

Homegrown talent at Adornment

Some UK talent visiting Adornment. Sisterlocked and Brotherlocked!

The Adornment Ambassador

Ms Erykah Badu

Adornment 2007 coming to an end!

Day 2 was just as awe inspiring and exciting as day one. Only difference was, I was so very tired. The life of a model is certainly not as glamorous as I had once imagined. I now know what Tyra's girls have got to go through!

Adornment Ambassador 2007 was Ms Erykah Badu. I was disappointed I did not get to meet her personally. I did however, manage to get a few photos, although some are a little blurred.

Sit back and enjoy the rest of the show. The three ladies by the Ashanti Hair Studio are all sisterlocks wearers, two of whom are consultants and were exhibiting as Ashanti Hair Studio.

Adornment 2007 continued........

Lets not forget the men that also modelled at Adornment. They certainly had to work hard. The jewellery desinger, Ehwunah's show, consisted of the men carrying Queen Nzinga on their shoulders. They did very well. Check them out.

Adornment 2007 continued........

It was a long day with lots going on. There were plenty of exhibitors, all with their wares carefully displayed. You could have your hair locked, buy african inspired jewellery, clothes, books, buy hair products, the list is endless.
There were also some workshops being held, but I was unable to attend any.

Lisa Price of Carol's Daughter was the featured entrepreneur, facilitating a workshop. I purchased her book "Success Never Smelled So Sweet", which she dutifully signed for me.
Sit back and enjoy some of my photos of the models.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Adornment 2007 - my experience

The day has arrived. All models rearing to go and do their stuff. I arrive at Battersea Park early in the morning, final rehearsals are taking place. The show is due to start at 2pm on Easter Sunday.

Wow, the adrenalin is now really pumping through my body, this is real. The perspex stage looks impressive. Wow, I really have to do this. Well I hope that I can, and that my nerves do not get the better of me.

Exhibitors are setting up in the main arena, lots going on around us. It is amazing how time really passes quickly when faced with a situation like this. One moment it was morning and then it was 2pm.

I was modelling for a designer called Emebet. Her clothes are all hand made, knitted. check out the photos. Emebet is in the top right hand corner. It was her first fashion show, so she was just as excited and nervous as we were.

I must say that when the moment came to go out on stage and do my thing, I quite enjoyed it.
Sadly my modelling debut was only to last about 5 minutes as the routine was quite short.
However, once back in the safety of "back stage", I was eager to do it all again!

Dance routine, designers, hair appointments

As the weeks went by, the models confidence kept growing and growing. Dance routines were coming together. The choreographers worked extremley hard, and it showed.

The designers picked their models for their catwalk shows. Most days the Artspace in Brixton was a hive of activity. Some models in one corner practising the catwalk, others in another perfecting their dance moves.

The days were long, especially after a long week at work, and the pace was fast, there was a lot to accomplish in such a short time.

The month of rehearsals was over in a flash and it was now time for the models to have their locks styled. Appointments at salons were booked for Good Friday, the show was a day away.

Busy March........

Towards the end of February I was sent an email flyer, which asked for natural hair wearers to model for Adornment, an African Inspired Exhibition, to be held over 2 days during the Easter Bank Holiday.

Being an avid America's Next Top Model viewer, I took up the opportunity to strut my stuff on the catwalk.

I had to audition and really did not know what I was getting myself into!

I attended the audition and I nervously struttedmy stuff on a makeshift catwalk. I was told I would hear in due course. Well move over Miss Jay, I got through and was excited to see where this was heading.

Rehearsals were to be held approximately every Friday for a month, in Brixton! a 45 minute tube train journey from my side of London, but hey, models have to travel far and wide, I guess.

There were a lot of people at the rehearsals, more women than men, as always.

We were shown how to catwalk. Shoulders back, hips forward, right leg forward and ready to set off. Very uncomfortable posture, but apparently very necessary! So we set off, waddling like ducklings round and round the dance studio. 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 and pose, and pose and pose. Well arms flaying in every direction, legs giving way, some really un lady like poses!

Although people had volunteered to model, about 50% were extremely shy. We had to do our walk individually and some went so fast, you could barely see them move!

I must admit, I was probably in that 50% who were extremely shy. Was not sure how I was going to manage to model to a crowd over 2 days! However, I persevered and felt that I had now taken on this challenge and although I was way outside of my comfort zone, I was determined to see it through.

Surprisingly as the weeks went by, so the confidence of the models grew. Friendships were being carved out and a small village was being created. So many different people, so many different personalities.

Locks were everywhere. However, I was the only sisterlocked sister in the house, until, I spotted her a newbie! 3 day old sisterlocks! It took me back to the time when my locks were first installed. She had so many questions and I felt privileged to answer them.

Sorry, no photos of the rehearsals, as it is difficult to get them when you are supposed to be walking and posing!

In Celebration of My Sisters Concert

Well some of you may well have recognised Eric Jerome Dickey - "one of the hottest African American writers" on the front of my emag.

Well I had the pleasure of meeting with him when I worked at the In Celebration of My Sisters concert in March. I bought one of his books, which he signed for me and obliged me in a photograph. Check out his locks!

The concert is held during International Women's Month in London and is a collection of music, comedy and inspirational acts.

I was working with the Pampering Club and as always had a thoroughly enjoyable time. Followed by an after party, where I mingled until the early hours.

Hair Affairs eMag

Send Page To a Friend

Sign up for Hair Affairs© Email Newsletter

Where have I been, what have I been up to?

Well I have been really busy since my last post.

I guess I need to start at the beginning with my updates.

After completing my Sisterlocks training in Miami in November 2006, I knew that I would need to be advertising my services. After attending a Pampering Club gathering in December and finding out about One Million Inspired Women through our guest speaker, I pledged my action and proceeded to highlight my new business venture.

In January 2007 I decided to embark on a PR exercise. I came across an email campaign company and my Newsletter, Hair Story was born.

The Newsletters main aim is to provide information regarding sisterlocks and other happenings in London.

I had about 50 email contacts and had some good feedback following my first edition. So, armed with this new found talent, I embarked on my Newsletter in earnest. I have definately become a freelance, self-made journalist!!!

I am now on my 4th Edition and still going strong. I have changed the name to Hair Affairs - eNews from a Sister "Locked" in London.

I also now have nearly 200 contacts. It is taking up so much of my time, but I am enjoying it. If anyone out there would like to join my mailing list, please use the sign up box at the top of this post. There is no cost for this eMag.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Comparison Shots

Sometimes it appears that your hair does not grow. However, just take a look!
Top picture is February 2007, bottom is February 2006!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

My first client - December 2006

On the 27th and 28th December 2006 I completed my first sisterlocked client.

Oh my gosh! It took me 16 and half hours over 2 days. It was hard work. I was really nervous the first day, but by day 2 I was working like a pro.

She had her consultation on 2nd December and we were ready for the 27th. She is a colleague of mines, so at least I knew her.

I put into practice all that I had learnt and was eager to get started. I worked well.

My client is very pleased with her hair and she tells me she is "working it" I am sooooo happy. Due to see her again at the end of this month. Check out the pics.

Two Year Lock Anniversary - November 2006

I did not mark this date as I was busy getting ready for Miami. So just a few pics of me throughout 2006.

Back to London

Before I knew it, training finished, all shopped out and heading back to Miami International Airport, back home to London. I was infact looking forward to getting home.

I checked in nice and early, but my case was overweight by about 6 kilo's. For an easy life, I just paid the excess, which was not too costly. I was tired and just wanted to get on that plane home.

The security check lines were as long in Miami as they were in London. I stood in line and did what I was told. Take your shoes off, take your belt off, any loose change, take your outside coats off etc etc.....

I don't know what it is about those metal detector machines, but I always set them off. And true to form, it went off.

Not once, not twice but about 4 times. After that I was called to one side. Maaam is your jewelry metal? No. Maaam, do you have hair pins in your hair? No. Ok step this way. Jeans fallling down, due to lack of belt, barefoot on the ground clutching passport, tickets and jacket! Hand metal detector buzzing all over me. There was nothing for it but a manual hand search, very humiliating! You're free to go now Maaam!

Once on that plane, my elderly co-passenger introduced himself and I snuggled down for the night flight home. Good-bye Miami!

Downtown Miami

I was only due to stay in Miami for a week. I also tried to get a flight to the Cayman Islands where a good friend of mine is now living and working, however my time was so limited.

When the course finished I decided to get on with some shopping. I found out which bus to take and decided to spend the day at Aventura Mall. This was fun. However I find that shopping alone is quite difficult as you have nobody to ask those all important questions.

The bus journey was about 1 hour and I thought that I was going to get lost. However the last stop was right inside the mall. I told myself that I should be heading back before it got dark.

I shopped from about 11 am until 8 pm, I completely forgot that I wanted to leave in daylight. I arrived back at my motel around 9.30pm, grabbed some food and called it a night.

The motel owners were originally from North London, so we had something to chat about.

On my last day I decided to check out Miami Beach and the Art Deco District. However, got on the bus and got lost. Travelled about half hour beyond the beach. What was a girl to do. Get off that bus and eat lunch at Subway! I must say, chicken noodle soup in Miami is great!

Oh well did not get to see the beach as I had to get back to get to the airport. However, Victoria's Secret, Sephora and Bath and Bodyworks certainly made up for that!

Sisterlocks Training Miami

I really enjoyed the days on the course and also the company. I was there to learn all I could about the technique. It was a lot to take in. Patterns, direction, partings! I was not sure I was going to be able to do this thing. What if I did it wrong.

One thing I did learn however, is that a lot of women are not given the correct information, many not even a consultation or starter packs. I too was one of those women. I also did not do my research prior to having my locks.

November 2006.........Lock Anniversary!

The 4th and 5th of November was my 2 year lock anniversary. I did not celebrate this as I actually forgot on those days and I was also busy getting ready to fly to Miami, Florida to take the Sisterlocks Consultant Training. This was going to be an adventure!

I was travelling alone and staying alone in a "strange" country! It felt so empowering, that I was to do this for the first time in my life.

I was very excited and was looking forward to my journey. I planned and planned and planned. Found accommodation and was excited at meeting these wonderful sisterlocked sisters!

I left on Friday 10th November from Heathrow Aiport, London. I flew with Virgin Atlantic and I can really recommend them. The service was very good. I opted for a window seat and made myself comfortable. I introduced myself to my elderly neighbours and proceeded to fall asleep for most of the 9 hour 50 minute journey, which was delayed by about 30 mins.

On arrival in Miami, it struck me how flat it was. Nonetheless, I had arrived. I felt like kissing the ground, much in the same way the Pope does! Empowering! Once I had cleared customs and being made to feel like a criminal, I was well on my way. Oh, criminal, bwoy don't they grill you when you arrive in the states. "Where are you staying, Maaam", how long is your vacation, maaam! Eyeball photographs and fingerprints to boot!

After finding my baggage and way out, I jumped into a taxi and arrived at my motel, which was about 5 mins drive from the Marriott Miami, where the training was taking place.

I showed, got myself something to eat from Denny's, actually ate by myself, another achievement in my books!

The next morning, left at 8 am for 8.30 am start. Taxi to the Marriott. Found the room, then waited and waited and waited. Unfortunately, the sisterlocks trainers where running behind schedule and as two training sessions where taking place, most other delegated had gone to the other training room. So I sat there wondering why I was in Miami, so far from home and alone!

Then it all kicked off. There were 22 of us ladies on the training. About 5 who were not locked.

The day was long, the room was cold. I quite forgot that I was in a hot country! The A/C just was not getting it right.

One thing that did surprise me is that no lunch was provided. All that was provided on the first day was Starbucks coffee. If you did not drink coffee then tuff luck.

The training finished at 5.30 pm for the 4 days. The same friend whom I re-tightened in October, travelled to undertake the course. She travelled to Grenada, WI the week before and then met me in Miami. She was staying with family, so although we spent the days together, I found the evening a little lonely.

First Re-tightening...................October 2006

The 5th of October 2006 marked my first retightening, having undertaken the course in September. I was unawre that you are only supposed to re-tighten your own hair having undertaken this course. However, a friend of mine asked me to do hers and I obliged!

It took me 7 hours, but both of us were pleased with the outcome.

The top picture is before and the others are after. I think I did a good job!

October 2006

This month was a difficult month in many ways. Firstly it marked the first anniversary of my mothers passing on the 4th October 2005. I therefore wish to dedicate this post to my mum and share the Eulogy that I wrote for her funeral.


Lurlynn, Lull, Mum, Grandma, many names, one woman and what a woman!

Brought up in Diego Martin, Trinidad, only child, daughter of F. and M. Francis, and step-daughter to F. Charles.

Many of her growing years were spent in Maran, Grenada with her Grandmother, Miss Gayman and her cousins. These were happy times and she often recalled the firm but fair tactics "Mammy" employed to control all her grandchildren.

Mum left Trinidad and arrived at Southampton Docks in September 1964, aged 19 years. She was well suited, of course, in an outfit made specially for the occasion by her mother, with her only grip in one hand.

She came to England with a view to studying to become a nurse. She went on to complete her studies and became a State Registered Nurse. Mum often recalled, with a fondness, the times she spent with her co-students living in the Nursing Home, many of whom were from Thailand and other far eastern countries, as well as many islands of the Caribbean.

Whilst doing her nurse training, she fell in love with and married H. Together they had three children, H. Junior, M. and M.

Mum continued to work in various hospitals, including Rush Green and Oldchurch and eventually became a District Nurse, serving those in the community.

It was this position in the community that allowed her the flexibility to continue to care for her three children on her own, following the break up of her marriage.

Mum often had to burn the candle at both ends to ensure the financial security of her three children. Finishing her day job and running to catch the bus up the road to do night duty.

Anyone who knew Mum can comment on her enormous energy and vitality. They say that nursing is a vocation and not just a job and this certainly was true in her case. She touched the lives of so many of her patients and clients, who from her caring nature, have become her true friends.

Nothing was too much for anybody who may have needed her help, and we all know that Mum could shop for England. We practically grew up in Romford Market, where she always had to get that last bargain!

They say that the greatest hardship for a mother is to watch your children fall and allow them to make their own mistakes in life.

In the words of the famous poem Desiderata " go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence..."

We have all fallen and we have all made our mistakes!

Mum you equipped us for life by ensuring our understanding of one of the greatest teachings:

"....give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime...." you of course taught us daily how to fish.

Mum was a Trini through and through, she had a great love for her people. The national flag of Trinidad stands for so much. The black represents the strength and dedication of the people as well as the wealth of the land. The red stands for the vitality and friendliness of the people as well as the warmth of the sun, while the thin white stripes the purity of aspirations and the equality of all men under the sun. I think you will all agree that Mum had all of these qualities.

Mum the way in which you lived your life is an inspiration to us all. The courage with which you have faced life's challenges is commendable. Even during her short illness she never complained. Even when the pain became unbearable, she took it in her stride. She often told us not to cry. She was a fighter to the end.

We as your children and grandchildren can only hope to measure up.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who were involved in caring, visiting and praying for our mother over the last five months. In particular, Auntie Y, your unwavering support, care and dedication for our mother was second to none. Auntie C, your prayers, kind words and meals, helped us both spiritually and physically and Auntie P, thank you for the soup - Mum enjoyed all of them tremendously!

Mum we would like to thank you for all that you have given to us and all that you have sacrificed in doing so.

Sleep on beloved, sleep and take thy rest.

Happy New Year.........2007

Hi everyone out there.

Yes I am back. Happy New Year and I hope that the Holidays found you all in good health.

However, as I have not updated in a while, I am going back to where I left off. Yes I am going back to October 2006.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Re-tightening class.......................

On Sunday 17th I undertook the sisterlocks re-tightening class with Liz Joseph in Edmonton with 4 other ladies. Liz is featured in the most recent sisterlocks journal with Carole and Marie.

The training was well organised and well enjoyed. It is quite a simple procedure once you get the hang of the tool. My index finger is very sore as you have to push down part of the tool to expose the hook. However, I am very excited and feel a sense of total freedom being able to finally control when I re-tighten my hair. I guess it will take the best part of a week to complete my whole head.

I am still debating whether or not to travel to the States to do the consultants class.

Thursday, September 14, 2006