All Articles Tagged "model"

Second Time Around: Matthew Knowles Takes A Second Trip Down The Aisle!

July 6th, 2013 - By Drenna Armstrong
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Source: WENN

Source: WENN

It looks like there’s yet another female Knowles in the world!

According to Newsday, Matthew Knowles is on to the next one! His representative told The Associated Press that he married Gena Charmaine Avery recently in Houston, Texas. They were married last weekend on June 30th.

Avery, a former model and realtor, and Knowles have been engaged for a year and a half, according to the rep.  She is 48 and Matthew is 61 years old. There’s no word on whether or not this is Gena’s first marriage.

Yes, I know the big question is whether or Beyoncé or Solange atteneded the ceremony (that’s if they were invited). The answer is…maybe and no, respectively.  While Beyoncé was in Los Angeles for her concert on June 28th and then in Las Vegas on July 1st, she had the day off on June 30th so she may have been at the wedding. On the other hand, Solange was on vacation in Dakkar, Senegal with her son, Juelz.

Based on the timing, it seems like Gena could have been in the picture when Matthew’s youngest child, Nixon, was born, as he’s just over two years old.  You all remember the drama he had with Nixon’s mom, Alexandra Wright, don’t you? They went back and forth to court in order to establish paternity and child support.

Anyway, this is exciting news for them so congrats!

Cassie Goes Back To Doing What She Does Best And Snags Forever 21 Campaign

April 12th, 2013 - By madamenoire
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From StyleBlazer

Forever 21 revealed its Spring 2013 campaign girl, Cassie!

The model and wannabe singer posed for the brand 90s L.A. inspired collection. Full of geometric prints, crops tops, some overalls and other form fitting pieces the 26-year-old looks youthful. The collection is divided by the West Side that has laid-back pieces with abstract prints, vibrant sneakers and crop tops, and the East side that has 90s urban Los Angeles style with vintage and alternative style pieces.

See more pics on

MN Daily Salute: Tyra Banks

February 26th, 2013 - By Brande Victorian
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Source: WENN

Source: WENN

Tyra Banks

CALLING: Model and mogul


Tyra Banks ushered in a new type of model when she hung up her angel wings and showed the world you can have a nice body and an even more stellar brain in the modeling industry.

Tyra began pursuing a career in modeling when she was just 15 years old. She was rejected by six modeling agencies before eventually being signed by Elite Model Management at age 16.  Not long after, Tyra  got the opportunity to model in Europe so she put college on hold and moved to Milan. In her very first runway season, she was booked for 25 shows during the 1991 Paris fashion week, walking the runways for Chanel,Valentino, and Fendi. Tyra was also featured in advertising campaigns for Dolce & Gabbana, Yves Saint Laurent, Ralph Lauren, and Nike, and covered several magazines. She was the  first African American woman to cover GQ and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, and in 1997 she became the first-ever African American chosen for the cover of the Victoria’s Secret catalog.

Tyra modeled as a Victoria’s Secret Angel from 1997 to 2005 before hanging up her angel wings and focusing more on television and film. Tyra started her own production company, Bankable Productions, which produced The Tyra Banks ShowAmerica’s Next Top Model (ANTM) and the 2008 movie The Clique. ANTM is now in it’s 19th season and airs in 170 different countries and regions internationally. From 2005-2010, Tyra also hosted the daytime talk show, The Tyra Banks Show, which won a Daytime Emmy Award in 2008 for her work and production, and a second one in 2009 for outstanding, informative talk show.

In 2011, Tyra became a New York Times Bestselling author after publishing her first novel, Modelland.  That same year, she enrolled in the nine-week Owner/President Manager Program at Harvard Business School’s open-enrollment extension school, where she earned a certificate after completing the Executive Education Training Program in February 2012.

Harvard Certificate under her belt, Tyra is now focusing on building up her TZONE program, which  she started in 1999. Aimed at leadership and life skills development, Tyra placed her office headquarters within the Lower Eastside Girls Club’s new Center for Community so that teens and adolescents could see the businesswoman hard at work. The television mogul is also working on a new sitcom, Fivehead, based on her life as an awkward teenager growing up in Inglewood. 

For never taking herself too seriously, but being serious about the business of uplifting young girls, we salute Tyra Banks.

Click here to meet all of our salutes

Filling A Need In the Beauty Industry, Model Entrepreneur Iman Brings The Right Color to Cosmetics

February 25th, 2013 - By C. Cleveland
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Welcome to the “Work It!” column, where we take a look at business innovation of every kind.

Diego Corredor/MPI / Picturegroup via AP IMAGES

Diego Corredor/MPI / Picturegroup via AP IMAGES

Sometimes being an innovator is as easy as paying attention to what others ignore. Iman is best known for serving fierceness. She blazed runways and magazines during the 70’s and 80’s. She was a muse to Saint-Laurent, Valentino, Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, and Versace. She’s David Bowie’s wife! As if all that fabulousness wasn’t enough, you have to give her props for being an innovative businesswoman as well.

If you’ve walked through a department store or picked up a magazine for black women, you know about Iman Cosmetics. But you may not realize how the brand has made history. There was a time when being a supermodel wasn’t enough for a black woman to find foundation in her color.

Iman still remembers make-up artists asking her if she brought her own foundation when she showed up for shoots, and the grey shade her face took on when those same artists mixed concoctions to make due.

Where There’s A Need, There’s A Check

In 1994, after she retired from ripping the runway, Iman founded Iman Cosmetics. From the start, Iman was confident in her venture because she knew there was a need for her product. Women constantly approached her on the street asking what products she used, and where they could buy them. Her products, sold on the Web and in chain stores, do about $25 to $30 million a year.

Iman’s business strategy is still effective today. In every industry and area of interest there is bound to be a group that is underserved. Being the first to cater to their needs will inspire unparalleled brand loyalty.

I was admittedly comfortable with Iman Cosmetics being identified as a beauty brand that filled the gap for black women because it was deeply personal for me. It was more than foundations and powders; it was appealing to a deep psychological need that I think all black women needed at that time: to be told that they were beautiful, invited to sit at the cool table and courted in high style.

– Iman, “Think Tank: Iman on the Multicultural Consumer”

Serve, Don’t Pander And Never Abandon

The main pitfall with this strategy is alienating your intended audience by stereotyping them. As Iman says, “Multicultural markets are nuanced, but not alien.” Know your audience and their culture, but don’t pander in a way that be can perceived as offensive. Show your allegiance with subtle nods to social cues that someone not part of that group would miss.

This innovation strategy isn’t limited by race. Any trait that makes a person unique can be translated into a business’s differentiator. Appealing to a niche market is a great way to build up to serving a larger market. Iman Cosmetics slowly shifted to a more holistic vision that served women of all skin tones. That doesn’t mean when you get on leave your base for the mainstream. Never forget the customers that supported you first.

C. Cleveland is a freelance writer and content strategist in New York City, perfecting living the fierce life at The Red Read. She is at your service on Twitter (@CleveInTheCity) and Facebook (/MyReadIsRed). 

We’re highlighting Pioneers in the Game every day here on Madame Noire. Click here to meet all of our salutes.

Meet Madame Noire’s Man Of The Moment Eyan Edwards

February 21st, 2013 - By Madame Noire
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The wait is over ladies. We promised you an eligible, attractive bachelor and here he is: Eyan Edwards, a New Yorker by way of St. Croix. We don't want to speak for Eyan so we suggest you play the video above and let the juiciness speak for itself. And if you're interested in getting to know this man a little more, drop him a line at Enjoy!



Man Of The Moment Sneak Peek: Eyan Edwards On The Connection He Needs With His Woman

February 20th, 2013 - By Madame Noire
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Yesterday we told you who this week's Madame Noire Man of the Moment is, native Virgin Islander and New Yorker Eyan Edwards. Now we're going to give you just a little sneak peek into what he's all about. Sure, we could gaze at his smile or those washboard abs all day, but this man's appeal just so happens to get even better when he opens his mouth --- and you ladies know that can be a rarity these days!

Check out this trailer of Eyan's interview with MN as he talked about the type of connection he has to have with his woman, and be sure to check back tomorrow for the full package and to get in touch with this fine man.


MN Daily Salute: Beverly Bond

February 8th, 2013 - By Madame Noire
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Source: WENN

Source: WENN

Beverly Bond

Calling: Founder of “Black Girls Rock!”

Why we’re saluting her: 

How could the woman behind “Black Girls Rock” not rock? Beverly Bond is a renowned DJ and model who became known for more than her spins around the NYC nightclub arena when she founded the movement, “Black Girls Rock!,” in 2006.

Though Bond always had a passion for music, she delayed her entry into the New York club scene because she felt is was too big of a responsibility to keep people dancing and having a good time all night as a DJ. So instead, Bond pursued the word of modeling at the age of 17 and immediately landed contracts with Elite New Faces and Wilhemina.

Bond posed for major brands like Diesel Jeans, Guess, and Nike  in the late ’80s and early ’90s, and as the money came rolling in, so did the number of records she owned. When Bond’s regular record player broke, she bought a turntable just to have something to player her vinyl on, but when she actually gave mixing and scratching a try, she told Contemporary Black Biography she found out she was “kinda nice.”

Still running from her calling, Bond decided to pursue acting after her modeling career died down some, but rather than go the Hollywood route she seemed destined for, she finally admitted in 1999 she wanted to be a DJ, and a year later she became known as DJ Beverly Bond.

In just a year, Bond became an A-lister, spinning for Diddy and even Prince, traveling worldwide and making appearances with Musiq Soulchild and Erykah Badu, and landing spots on BET’s Rap City and NBC’s Weekend Vibe. A few years later, she began to not only play music, but also produce it. She also took to producing something else: award shows for Black girls.

Sensing that there were not enough positive Black role models for girls to look up to, Bond began a mentoring program to try to balance the scales. In 2006, that effort formerly became “Black Girls Rock,” and now the network she used to DJ for is broadcasting her award show on their station every year, with the support of star players like Tracee Ellis Ross and Regina King. For pursuing her true calling and giving back to Black girls around the world at the same time, we salute Beverly Bond.

Click here to meet all of our salutes.


Ladies, Don’t Fret: Ray-J Is Not Engaged!

December 15th, 2012 - By Drenna Armstrong
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Well, it looks like some prime meat is still on the market.

According to TMZ, singer Ray-J is not engaged to his model girlfriend, Mia Milano.  There had been reports that “she said yes” a few days ago after pictures surfaced of her wearing an engagement ring.  But friends – or sources – told TMZ that Ray-J is not engaged to her and is still very upset over the death of Whitney Houston.  That sounds about right considering how he’s been vocal about being heartbroken over losing her.

So where did that ring come from?  That’s anyone’s guess. There is a chance that Ray-J did give Mia a ring but it wasn’t supposed to be “like that.”  It could be that Mia, who we don’t know too much about besides the fact that she’s pretty, bought her own diamond ring and was wearing it on her ring finger. We’re sure you know someone who’s done that.  Last option? They really are engaged but Ray-J didn’t think the news would get out so quickly about it.

TMZ also noted that their source said he’s not making any relationship plans so as we’ve seen in his past relationships, Ray could still be playing the field.

Let’s Keep It Real: Housewives Open Up About How They Really Feel About Each Other

December 8th, 2012 - By MN Editor
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"KenyaM pf"


This season Real Housewives of Atlanta stars Cynthia Bailey and Kenya Moore have let it be repeatedly known they’re not interested in being BFF’s. Early in the season Bailey and Moore get into a war of words during a casting call at Bailey’s modeling agency. “I felt like she came in and disrespected me,” says Bailey. “I was really trying to bring her in and welcome her to the group and she just did too much.”

Check out how the two former models really feel about each other away from the Housewives camera. It just might surprise you. ESSENCE has the video.

Small Business Spotlight: KC Washington Shakes Up the Classic Pin-Up

November 7th, 2012 - By C. Cleveland
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Image: K.C. Washington of Noir A-Go Go

The silhouette of the 1950s pin-up has come to represent the golden era of American sex appeal. Curvaceous models forever frozen in naughty-yet-demure poses have taught generations of women how to find that sweet spot between hot and classy.

K.C. Washington, a San Jose, CA transplant that has called Brooklyn, NY home for 20 years, spotted a void among the pin-up genre’s ivory-skinned images. The beauty of Black women had been erased from history.

Noir A-Go-Go was born in January 2011 to fill that void. The online store offers black pin-up girl-themed gifts and accessories, with grinning models featured on everything from greeting cards to tote bags.

I sat down with Washington to learn how she turned an idea for a cheeky holiday card into a business, and how she juggles her passion project with her two other gigs as a published novelist and bartender.

Madame Noire: What makes your product unique among the many gift products out there?

KC Washington: I am a huge fan of the 1940s and 50s. I love the style and glamour, and I collect a lot of pin-up girl memorabilia. Every time I bought something I would think, “I love this but I wish they made black versions.” The pin-up girl genre is extremely popular and most women I know instinctively gravitate towards the fashion as well as the hot strength of the women of that time period, be it Lana Turner or Dorothy Dandridge. But, unless the woman was a famous actress and you actively sought out old Jets or Ebonys, you never see black pin-up girls.

MN: What impact do you hope your products will have?

KC: Everyone knows about the Civil Rights Movement and the struggle, but rarely is the glamorous side of black life and black women from that time period highlighted.  As I was thinking about the design for my 2010 Christmas card it occurred to me that it would be really cool if I started my own line of black pin-up girl greeting cards and postcards. My slogan is “Noir A-Go Go puts the black in the magic that is 50s Americana!”

MN: Was there something specific that pushed you to turn your idea into a business?

KC: There are two things actually. I am a bartender, and two years ago when I turned 40 I was looking for a way to change my life. I wanted to do something creative but that also gave me the autonomy that I was used to. Although I didn’t have any experience in the stationary/gift industry, I love novelty gifts and love to make my own Christmas cards and bookmarks. I’m also big on manners and going that extra mile. I’m that girl who sends thank you cards after a party. So, basically I decided to combine my nerdy love of crafting and nostalgia with a need to change jobs (eventually) and Noir A-Go Go was born.

MN: How did you accommodate for your lack of experience in product development and production?

KC: I learned and continue to learn about it by reading both magazines and books as well as going online. I also attend tradeshows and expos like The New York International Gift Fair, the National Stationery Show, and general Chamber of Commerce meetings. When my novel was released, I did a lot of readings and learned how to put together press releases and information packets which has helped me tremendously with the company.

MN: What challenges did you encounter launching your business? 

KC: The biggest challenge/surprise, which in retrospect was more challenge than surprise, is how many hidden costs there are. For example, all of the website companies that say how easy it is to setup a site fail to mention in the bold print that you can set one up for say $9.99 a month, but you can’t sell anything on that site without an SSL certificate which insures that your customer’s credit card information is safe. The certificate can run you over a hundred dollars annually.

It’s super easy to setup a pretty site, but it won’t matter if you don’t invest in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) which helps your ranking on the search engines like Google and Yahoo. Otherwise, your company may not appear in a search until the fifth page, if you’re lucky. So the cost of setting up that “1-2-3” website suddenly goes from $9.99 to $1,000 once you’ve added your shopping cart, domain name, SSL certificates, SEO, etc. Thankfully I’ve never met a budget I didn’t like and always overestimate the cost of things.

MN: What accomplishment are you most proud of since launching?

KC: One, creating a product that I am still in love with two years later; two, getting into several NYC stores my first year; and three, teaching myself design. I had never used PowerPoint or Photoshop until two years ago when I started the company. I am still learning, of course, but I taught myself everything by taking tutorials online, reading books, hunting and pecking, and asking questions. My biggest lesson is always back up and never work from the original, both of which I learned as a writer.

MN: How do you come up with the concepts for your products?

KC: Classic pin-up girls like Betty Grable and Betty Page inspire some of my images. Others come from old movies and magazines. The thing about the pin-up genre is that it is very specific. It’s all about the “Victory Roll,” which is the classic hairstyle with the thick curled bang and long wave in the back, the pencil skirt, and the angora sweater, as well as all things polka dot. One of the aspects I love most about Noir A-Go Go is the homage to black culture. That’s why a lot of my sayings like “Trust Me Sugar, I’ve Overcome” are a play on common black expressions and/or history.