INSPIRATIONAL BLACK WOMEN AND FASHION
Back in February 2020, I wrote a blog post about influential black women in the fashion industry to celebrate black history month. This time, I wanted to be more personal with my audience and share the amazing black women who inspire me with fashion. It was very important to me to find women who had the same feminine romantic aesthetic and who looked liked me when I started Jillian Taylor. For ages the blogs I read who had similar styles as I did looked nothing liked me. Although I still very much enjoy their content, I desired to consume pages of women who adore everything pink, florals, dresses and elegance that I can actually relate to. The one thing I've learned not only in fashion but life in general that diversity matters.
So lovelies, I'd like to introduce you to just few of the many black women that have been influential to me when it comes to style and grace.
Hi, I’m Shannon! I feel overwhelmed with joy and grateful to be included on Jillian’s blog because I love it so much. I wanted to introduce myself and talk about fashion! I’ve always had a strong and particular sense of style. Ever since I was little, I vividly remember being so anal and intricate about what I wore. I was always surrounded by people who were well dressed from my mom to the tv shows/movies that I watched. Although, in the past I opted for outfits that were less my style to fit in, I’m at a point where I’m very confident. I wear what I want and what I’m comfortable in. I could never put a definite name to what my style is because it’s hard for me to narrow it down. But if I had to describe it, it would be girly, vintage and a little sultry. I gravitate to anything delicate, pastel, floral and/or vintage. I love dresses, pink, lace and anything that makes me feel like I’m going to a tea party. I feel like this aesthetic should be sold in stores today just like, for example Instagram baddie aesthetic. This brings me to my opinions about the fashion industry. I always find myself shopping on apps like Depop because stores don’t sell anything that is my style. So, one thing I’d change about the fashion industry is for the industry to shine a light on different styles because it’s hard to find, especially inexpensive, clothes that I love. This is why I bought a sewing machine a year or two ago. It allows me to practice how to make clothes because I feel like it’s fulfilling to make something if I can’t afford it or find it in stores.
My name is Tayma Martins. I launched my namesake clothing brand in September 2020. During my teenage years, I found solace in fashion. I would spend hours perusing fashion editorials online from Vogue Paris, Vogue Italia, Vogue Russia, and American Vogue. The most exciting times of year for me were always during the global fashion weeks. I would follow along each day on the Vogue Runway website (at the time it was called Style.com, I believe). I remember the very first time another fashion website began implementing a live runway feature, where they were able to share photos from the end of the runway the minute it happened. I would sit at my computer refreshing over and over to see the photos as they appeared on the runways of my favorite designers. Fashion always provided me solace. I love that I am now able to create beautiful products and imagery through my own clothing brand. I custom design each product, down to my hand painted floral prints. For the visuals, I work with my fiancé to photograph me on film in beautiful locations. I am so inspired by Sofia Coppola’s directorial work and aesthetic. I love creating visuals that embody a soft focus, vintage portrayal of girlhood. I put much time, resources, and effort into making sure I showcase my clothing designs in the most beautiful and dreamy way that reflects my vision.
I have always been obsessed with fairytales, diamonds and vintage things so fashion is my most favorite way to express my heart! As a creative, I love the different aesthetics I get to dabble in of outfits, hair styles and makeup looks. One of my aspirations for this year actually is to begin cultivating a clothing line tailored to fairytales, Paris and vintage aesthetics. Two of my most favorite inspirations are Dorothy Dandridge and Audrey Hepburn. Aside from my own fashion enchantment, i must say, it warms my heart very much to see others using the same outlet to display the kind of princesses and princes that they are!
My name is Dana Dalgetty and I’m a content creator on Instagram. I express my feminine style and love for all things pink through my photography. I’ve been on the platform for 8 years now, and throughout the years I’ve made the most wonderful friendships! Through my account, I was able to connect with several girls (princesses) all around the world who share the same interests. I live in Toronto, and although my home is well-known to be a big city, I never met anyone growing up who loves the idea of becoming a ballerina, or throwing a tea party like I do... It wasn’t until I created a safe space online where I shared all of my favourite things, and met a whole community of girls who embraced their femininity, and supported one another for it.
If I could describe my style in one word, it would be girly. I love tulle skirts, tea-length dresses, puff-sleeves, blouses, and Peter Pan collars. (Things I don’t wear enough of!)
I also am enamoured with princesscore, royalcore, and cottagecore style. I prefer a soft & light colour palette when it comes to my clothing pieces, (I only wear black every now and then, but it’s a shade that goes with everything!) and I like to be a little glamorous with my accessories from time-to-time.
I don’t pay much attention to what’s trending, but I have to admit that I’m pleased to see puff-sleeves & corsets have made a comeback in today’s fashion! I’ve always been an old soul with a heart for romantic details and things from the past.
I’ll never forget something sweet that I was told in a comment 5 years ago... “It’s refreshing to see a person of colour who’s also a girly girl!
I like seeing more representation.”
At the time, I never gave it much thought, but I soon realized that by being authentically me, I had the potential to inspire other young girls who are Black, Brown, biracial… or any other race or background. Usually you would see feminine characters who are fashionable and chic played by White actresses in TV shows and movies. And on social media, the few popular influencers who have a feminine style (years ago) were White or White-passing. I’m the happiest to say that there’s even more representation in this community than ever before, and Black feminine content creators are getting the recognition & support that they deserve!
Now, not only am I creating content that’s pretty & pink, but I’ve also been spreading mental health awareness and shedding a light on human rights issues. One thing that always stuck with me (besides being girly!) is the hope of inspiring just one person in the world with my content; so that they can embrace their authentic selves too.
I want to thank Shannon, Tayma, Megan and Dana for not only contributing their personal input on this post, but for also being the sweetest darlings that I look up to and inspire so many others on Instagram. They push me to continue working on my blog to be another representative of a black girly princess. Beyond grateful for them and everyone who I've interacted on the platform.
Hope you enjoyed getting to know these ladies as much as I did and happy black history month, XOXO.