“I want more Black women to feel beautiful just the way they are”: With inspiration from Mozambique, Ana Paula Xongani’s clothing line focuses on Black beauty

I love this! Uplifting and inspiring.
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Black Women of Brazil

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Note from BW of Brazil: If you’ve been following news out of Black Brazil for any amount of time you must’ve noticed that there is a sort of ‘fever’ catching on among Afro-Brazilians. Particularly among entrepreneurs, this fever that continues to spread is leading more and more Afro-Brazilians to stop waiting on a market that seems intent on ignoring their existence, culture and particular tastes, doing for self and tapping into a segment of consumer that is starving to represent with African and Afro-Brazilian styles that proudly show off ancestral origins. Designer Ana Paula Xongani is one of the women leading the charge and judging from the piece below, it’s only a matter time before her business blows up! Much success to you Ana Paula, keep it movin’!!

“I’ve never straightened my hair”, says afro fashion designer

Get to know the story of Ana Paula Xongani, whose clothing brand…

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Meet 12 YouTubers who are empowering black Brazilian women on the internet

It’s nice to see others out there giving a voice to, and putting a spotlight on, the underrepresented issues that many of us still face in this day and age. Kudos to these hard-working, inspiring young ladies!

Black Women of Brazil

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Note from BW of Brazil: You gotta admit it. YouTube has opened up a flood of opportunities for common, everyday people that simply weren’t possible just over a decade ago. Thanks to this ingenious website, people are becoming famous almost overnight by displaying whatever it is that they do best. We’ve singers blow up and earn recording contracts and endorsement deals because of YouTube. We’ve seen people appear on nationally televised TV programs after earning a loyal following on YouTube. We’ve seen women parlay their leading roles on YouTube into the release of a brand of lipstick specifically for black women. Indeed, YouTube has become a true starmaker! To be truthful, I spend far more time searching this video-sharing website than watching television as I find exactly what I want to watch there as opposed to the garbage that free and paid TV offers on a…

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Meet Ana Flávia: From Salvador, Bahia, she recently made history after becoming the first black woman to win the Ford Models contest

This is excellent! Back when I did modeling, the Ford Agency was highly sought-after. Congratulations to this beautiful young woman!
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Black Women of Brazil

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Note from BW of Brazil: Well anyone who heard about this story recently just knew that she would make headlines here at BW of Brazil! I mean, her whole story is what this blog is all about! A black woman with salient African features and rockin’ cabelo black power (an afro). And she’s from Salvador, Bahia, the city whose nickname is Roma Negra, meaning Black Rome! Of course congrats are in order as her victory brings yet another topic that we consistently speak on here: black representation. But in typically Brazilian fashion, there IS one problem with the way she won. She was the ONLY black woman in the contest! The more things change the more they remain the same! Anyway, congratulations to Ana Flávia!

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Meet the young woman from Mussurunga who made history as first black woman to win the Ford Models contest

Ana Flávia, 20, won a…

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Past-Time Weekend Fun!

I was inspired by another blogger to do this post, and it was nice to recall some of the good things from my childhood / pre-teen years. I see nothing wrong with indulging in some harmless reminiscing and nostalgia!

1. Searching through catalogues at home, looking for the “proper” school outfits for “young ladies” to wear, since I wasn’t allowed to go to the local clothing stores…but, on the days I did get to go, I managed to find things that were fairly nice. I’ve always had an eye for clothes – I wish that I had the time, patience, and talent to make my own…then, and now!

2. Playing Dungeons & Dragons with my older brothers and their friends – I was always A) the only girl in the room; B) the only non-white persons, and C) the youngest in the crowd…so, I learned to hold my own against many at an early age! Skinny little me in a room full of wrestlers, basketball players, and cross-country runners, LOL – Musclehead City! Still, they were smart…so the “dumb jock” stereotype never made sense to me. Then again, no stereotype makes sense!
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3. Wondering why Madonna was more famous than many others who had far more talent and class…and glad that my parental units never subjected us to the indignity of awards shows.

4. Indignantly insisting that my Def Leppard, Motley Crue, AC/DC, and Adam & the Ants t-shirts didn’t mean that I was suddenly worshipping Satan or doing drugs…which was odd, considering that my parents had the KISS: Double Platinum album on LP and 8-track, and listened to them on a regular basis – along with Gordon Lightfoot, George Benson, and Neil Diamond!

5. Waiting patiently for my turn on our Apple II+ computer on the nights that my brothers were home.

6. Gratified to see Tina Turner on MTV – I actually had dreams of being a singer in a rock n’ roll band, and she was my inspiration!

7. Wondering why Michael Jackson did that fateful Pepsi ad…especially since he supposedly didn’t drink the stuff. He burned himself for a product that he didn’t even use – was it karma?

8. Attending slumber parties with my few friends and watching cable at their house, to get my fix of which videos were ‘hawt’ on MTV!

9. Drooling over the “Frankie Say Relax” t-shirts in my Circus magazine and wanting one for myself, then getting pissed because “mommie dearest” wouldn’t have approved…even though there were no offending graphics on the shirts!

10. Riding my bicycle for hours on end, anywhere and everywhere I could go, just to find some secluded spot to sit and read: the cemetery, the goat farm, and the beach with petroglyphs were my favourite spots to hide away.

11. Reading in my room when Dallas, Dynasty, or the Dukes of Hazzard came on…I never understood how the ‘rental units could watch that dreck, yet criticize the daytime soaps with a straight face.

12. Baby-sitting for my kid siblings and their friends – earning money, early on, for my eventual escape from that house!

13. Practicing the piano, clarinet, and recorder…each for an hour. Sometimes, it seemed that my love of music was something that they wanted to squash – and it didn’t work, obviously!

14. Only caring about politics enough to kinda-sorta befriend the son and daughter of a local guy who decided to run for…mayor? state governor? I forget. I figured that being the “token black friend” of people who wanted to pretend that they liked diversity was better than nothing, at the time.
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15. Stunning my friends with my perfect recollection of some of the silliest songs, including “Another One Rides the Bus” by Weird Al Yankovic, and “No Anchovies Please” by the J. Geils Band.

16. Calling in to the local radio station for their “Friday Night Request Night,” and dreaming of one day being the soft, soothing voice pouring out of the speakers…which I did, five years later!

17. Wondering why people said that Vanessa Williams was the first “black” Miss America. Blonde hair, blue eyes, and light skin (from what I saw) didn’t make her “black” in my eyes then – and still doesn’t, to this day. Sue me.

18. Making endless “mix tapes” to listen to on my Walkman when I went out riding my bicycle or walking around – I was perfecting the process each and every time!

19. Dreaming of the day that I could get off of that tiny island and see the big, wide world beyond its borders.

20. Standing out on the deck of the boat we lived on, looking up at the stars, and listening to the roar of the waterfall. Summer months were spent out at the fish hatchery that my dad built, so we were away from “civilized folk” for weeks on end!

21. Going to the local library and hiding in a corner, reading, until closing time.

22. Laughing with my best friend as we wandered the streets at night, pretending that we were drunk after drinking Shirley Temples at the Elk’s club where her dad was a member.

23. Feeling important after walking into the “Teen Center” and owning the air-hockey table, Tempest, and the Time: 2000 pinball machine. My gaming prowess was just becoming apparent!

24. Sitting by the cast-iron fireplace reading, burning the bottoms of my socks off because I would use the thing as a foot-rest…our beagle would sleep behind it and snore; he had a small burnt-looking bit of fur on his left haunch because he laid up near the fireplace, too.

25. Cooking, cleaning, or writing in my journal on the weekends that I was grounded / “on restriction” for some imaginary wrongdoing – creating worlds in my head to escape to!

Ah, memories…those were the days, eh?

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Happy birthday Girl Scouts!

I’m still one at heart…happy birthday, GSA!
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Adventures and Musings of an Arch Druidess

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10 Ways to Market Your Book – Ideas Infographic

These are excellent ideas…pass them on to the writer in your life!

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

If you haven’t tried these – TRY THESE 😀

10 ways to market your book

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