Dessa launches a lipstick for charity

Local hip hop muse Dessa announced today that she’s launching a lipstick to raise money for CARE.org‘s POWER WITHIN campaign which helps educate girls in developing countries. She’s basically the local version of Nicki Minaj, Lady Gaga and Beth Ditto with their Viva Glam MAC lines…but way cooler, duh!

Created by The Elixery, the deep red shade is appropriately named after the songstress.

I LOVE a good red lip. Right now my favorite is MAC’s Pro Longwear Lipglass “Driven by Love.” It stays on really well and and doesn’t look awkward when it rubs off like a lot of reds do.

What do you think of Dessa’s color? I’m thinking it looks pretty great with her skin tone. I might need a significant tan to pull that off (damn these Irish roots).

Oh — she’s throwing a party to celebrate the launch on Sept. 15.

New life goal: Create a lipstick named after me that supports charity. How can I make this happen?

Peep show at Avoid the Grey 2012

Uptown boutique Cliché decided to switch up the format for their annual Avoid the Grey spring fashion show this year by nixing the runway for large, enclosed boxes. Basically the models posed inside the “capsules” that had small cut out holes along the walls where outsiders had to peer into for a look at the scene inside. It was pretty cool. Very cool, actually.

I was totally impressed with the execution of this set up. The inside of each capsule was transformed into a different world. One a foggy storm scene, another a sexy boudoir, another a mystical forest. Five different art displays total.

The Grain Exchange building in Northeast was packed with people hovering around these huge boxes trying to get a better look at what was displayed inside. It was so great to see Cliché present a completely new concept for displaying local fashion.

Twenty designers participated this year to create ten looks. Here are a couple of my favorites:

Sarah M. Holm took on a very Tim Burton-esque look with her design. The model has four guns attached to her bodice. Don’t mess with her.

Danielle Everine went for a winter warrior princess sort of look. How awesome is that mask?

Nothing gets you in the mood for spring more than neon. ArielSimone’s model carefully struts out from her capsule a bit taller than the rest.

A gorgeous headpiece by KR designs.

Q&A with Theophilus London


I got the opportunity to chat with hip hop/pop/electronic/other cool-sounding genre artist Theophilus London for an interview on kare11.com. You may have seen him pop up in the pages of Rolling Stone, Vogue or perform on David Letterman. The Brooklynite talked to me about his upcoming Minneapolis show (his first-ever visit to our charming city), connecting with fans on Twitter and making a cameo in a Beyonce music video (you know I had to ask him about that!).

If you want to see him live, you can see him at the LOFT on Saturday, January 14 (tomorrow!). Ticket info here. Here’s a snippet of my Q&A with him:

You’re calling this tour “Tour de Roses.” What’s the significance of that name?

Theophilus London: The rose symbolizes this year for me – 2012. I’ve been designing a lot using the rose. It’s a very inspiring flower to me. You know, “Lovers Holiday 2: Rose Island,” is what I’ve been working on recently. I’ve been working on this mind state, “Rose Island,” that’s going to be 25 songs. It will be like a free street album that’s coming out in a month or two.

This is your first performance in Minneapolis. What can people expect from your show?

TL: Yeah, it’s my first time ever in Minneapolis. This is something very energetic. This is something brand new — a new idea. This is a very, very exciting energy. A lot of new songs from “Lovers Holiday 2” and all the good ones from “Timez Are Weird.” You know, this will be a good introduction to the city of Minneapolis. And I’m just psyched to come out and play for you guys.

You’re really active on Twitter and Instagram and are great about interacting with fans. Do you use those outlets to get feedback from fans and influence what you’re working on?

TL: Yeah, that’s all that I have. Of course I use it to influence my stuff. I use it to get my music out there. Any person in this business model today should be using it as their outlet. [That] should be no surprise. You know, you have all these different social outlets [and] I focus on them every single day.

It’s clear you have a thing for clothes. How would you describe your style? And where do you get all your cool hats?

TL: My personal style is raw. It’s just how I’m feeling. It’s a very tasteful selection. [And] I make all of my hats.

So how did you end up in Beyonce’s “Party” music video?

TL: I’m friends with the family. I’m friends with Solange and Lil J. Solange invited a couple of her friends to hang out on the set. I knew the director that was shooting the video and they wanted us to be in the video so we came to show love and support to Beyonce and the whole family. It was a dope video.

“It’s time to live it up” is a repeated lyric in your song, “Wine and Chocolates.” What’s your idea of “living it up?”

TL: Just true happiness inside of yourself. Feeling good, feeling healthy and the ability to do anything your mind tells you. Be free.

My best of Metromix Twin Cities

It’s been three weeks since we got the news that Metromix Twin Cities, the site I’ve been doing marketing (among other things) for over the past 13 months, is closing shop at the end of the year. This gig has been so rewarding and fun which is why it makes this transition especially tough. Instead of sulking about it, I thought I’d recap some of my favorite features we’ve put together since I’ve been on the team.

Enjoy.

CAMP Gaga “Born This Way” CD release party

Photo: Claire Molepske

We were highly anticipating Lady Gaga’s new album, so we decided to throw a party in her honor. Held at CAMP in St. Paul, the event featured an elaborate costume contest, Gaga tunes, Gaga drinks and plenty of dancing. All ticket sales went directly to The Aliveness Project.

Top Tweeps in the Twin Cities

Graphic: Bryan Shackle

This project was so fun. We scoured the interwebs for our favorite 11 Twitter peeps (aka “tweeps”) and profiled each one for online and on KARE 11. We talked to a range of folks with different backgrounds, interests and perspectives about Twitter. A highlight: doing a Skype interview with Vikings tight end Vistanthe Shaincoe where he taught me a new catch phrase, “That’s a bet.”

Twin Cities Comedy Guide

Photo: Andy Erikson

In case you didn’t already know, the Twin Cities is home to a slew of comedic talent. Here, we profiled a number of local and nationally touring comedians with Minnesota roots. The local comic Q&A’s we did were especially entertaining.

“The Playboy Club” pre-screening party at Prohibition

Photo: Claire Molepske

Okay, so NBC’s “The Playboy Club” may have only lasted two or three episodes, but that doesn’t take away from how fun our pre-screening party was at the W Hotel’s Prohibition. Champagne, appetizers, a sexy atmosphere and an invite-only guest list made for a memorable event.

111 things every Minnesotan should try in 2011

We knew there was plenty to experience in Minnesota, but when we asked Metromix users what they thought should be on everyone’s Minnesota bucket list, we were even more impressed. Including everything from cocktails, concerts and road trips, this list became Metromix’s most-viewed feature for 2011.

Soundtown Showdown – Twin Cities band contest

Photo: Sophie Snyder

The first-ever SoundTown Music and Camping Festival partnered up with Metromix to host a battle of the bands-type contest to give local musicians a chance to be a part of the lineup. With headliners like The Flaming Lips and The New Pornographers, this was an exciting opportunity for us to offer up. Ghostmouth and Rustpocket were the two finalists who got to play on the Metromix stage. On a side note, I was able to attend this fest and thought it was really well done. I’m excited to see what they have in store for next year.

Look Good, Do Good contest with Children’s Cancer Research Fund

Photo: Claire Molepske

We had so much fun working with Children’s Cancer Research Fund to promote their annual fundraiser/concert/fashion show Glamorama. We hosted a fun contest on our site profiling some of the most stylish Twin Cities dwellers who were also community minded — and there were plenty to choose from. Pictured is the Metromix team (Blair, Shayne and me) at the party for all the nominees at CRAVE downtown.

Hanson at First Avenue

I got to live out my pre-teen fantasy and take photos of Hanson. I wrote about that here.

“Feast your eyes” series

Some of my favorite memories of the job happened over team lunches at new restaurants around town. We’d document our foodie experiences through photos and reviews in a series called, “Feast your eyes.” Some personal favorites include The Bachelor Farmer, Tilia, Travail and Wok in the Park.

These are just a few examples of work I’ve been proud to be a part of with Metromix. The list could really be much longer than this. It’s been a great experience working on a team that has worked hard to provide creative, relative content for the Twin Cities entertainment scene.

While I’m sad to see Metromix go, I’m anxious to move on with the next step (details on that still pending). Everything happens for a reason, right?

Christmas wish list (and gift ideas!)

We’ve officially entered into December which means there’s no escaping Michael Buble Christmas music, a flood of deal emails in your inbox and delicious sugary delights at every corner. Might as well embrace it.

It’s also that time of year when we all start to question what the HELL we’re supposed to buy for our friends and family. And what I’ve always found to be helpful are OTHER people’s wish lists. So in an effort to provide inspiration to your Santa duties, I give you a few things I wouldn’t mind finding under the tree.

Fingerless gloves – Patina- $16.95

Have you been to any of the Patina locations lately? They are stocked full with fun holiday gifts including these fingerless gloves in plenty of styles. How cute are they? They combine style and function for any lady with a smart phone. And you’ll be buying local…always a good idea!

I heart MPLS hoodie – Urban Bean Coffee – $45

I spotted this hoodie from Urban Bean Coffee a few weeks ago at a Movember Mobecue in Uptown and decided I need one of these in my life. Imagine my delight when I found out they come in different colors. Loving this turquoise one sported by the lovely Mimi (way to get your model on, girl!). This is the perfect gift for any proud Minneapolite. And another local business item!

Makeup brushes

We all use them and probably rarely replace them (guilty!). A new makeup brush kit is one of those things we all could probably use but don’t want to fork over cash for. Which is why they’d make the perfect holiday gift for any cosmetically conscious lady in your life. This set is from Sephora, but you can find them pretty much anywhere makeup is sold. And while you’re at it, throw in some brush cleaner.

Ready to hang, hand-stitched Kanye West tweet – Etsy – $40 

Whether you like Kanye or not, you’ve gotta admit the man has spewed some memorable quotes in his lifetime. Many of which have appeared on his Twitter feed. So why not have a little Kanye musing for display on your wall, bookshelf or nightstand? You can pick any tweet of your choosing. Although the one pictured above is pretty fabulous. Sometimes he just speaks to the soul. (Heads up: the Etsy seller has been bombarded with requests and has a waiting list in place. Turns out everyone wants a piece of ‘Ye)

Moroccan Oil – $15

This stuff is like vitamins for your hair. I was introduced to Moroccan Oil back in my salon working days and have been hooked since. It’s a super light leave in conditioner that adds shine, silkiness and I’m convinced it cuts down on my drying time. The $15 bottle is the perfect travel size (3 oz) and lasts a long time. Good for all hair types.

Rebecca Minkoff iPhone case – $28-38

How cute are these? Clothing and accessories designer Rebecca Minkoff recently came out with a collection of fun iPhone/tech accessories that would make any stylish techie happy. I want the black one with studs! Make sure to check out her eBay listings and Nordstrom for several designs/colors.

I hope this put a little pep in your holiday shopping step. Happy hunting!