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Sunday, May 26, 2013

Carnival Revolution band launch 2013 "Home for Carnival"

Carnival Revolution launched their 2013 presentation Home for Carnival tonight after 1 a.m. at Santa Roza.

The theme of their presentation drew on different carnivals. They had sections representing Barbados, Rio, Trinidad, Guyana and St. Vincent.

St. Vincent





They didn't skimp on their costumes with some of their back lines offering larger head pieces and collars than some front lines in other bands I have seen.

Their bandleader Osei Brand reminded us that they didn't make it onto the road last year (due to poor crowd control / logistics.) so they've been waiting 2 years for the road. We really hope that with fewer bands participating this year, that everyone gets to make it onto the Lakeshore.


Monday, May 20, 2013

Caribana cutie or Caribana catastrophe?

You know how there are certain fashion faux pas, things to avoid? Socks & sandals, shoulder pads, mesh tops, visible panty lines. Think of your costume as fashion, and wear it well. I know what happens in the mind of a woman. Many see the tall thin young models wearing the wire bra and thong, and they love THAT costume. Nothing wrong with loving that costume, there are many of those types to love, but ask yourself, do I love it for me? Some ladies put unrealistic pressure on themselves to get fit in 3 months so they can try to wear that tiny costume. (I’m not talking about toning and firming, which I’m a big advocate of, I’m talking attempting serious weight loss in a short period of time.) Why do that to yourself when there are other options? 
I like it when I see masqueraders who don’t try to fit themselves into a costume. Instead, they find the right fit for them. Accepting your body type and choosing a costume accordingly is the first thing to consider before you register. For example, voluptuous ladies should embrace the monokini and/or corset, not a tiny wire bra. Unless it’s custom made specifically for you, not all cage bras look flattering. If you end up trying to shove yourself into whatever was premade and you’re popping out all over, it’s not a good look.  Think of it this way, would you shove a big bird into a small cage?  

What a major fashion eye sore, not to mention, your bazooms must be sore!
Be realistic also about your bamsee. Designers offer us choices in bottoms too, we need not all wear a thong! Select something flattering whether it’s reg bikini bottoms or boy shorts. A lot of masqueraders buy their own properly fitting bottoms when the factory made or hand sewn ones they were given were unflattering.
What I’d like to see an end of this year is the 2 bra babes. You know, when the bra you ordered doesn’t fit well, so you wear your own bra underneath it. I’m sorry, but that is very distracting and just takes away from the costume. 
I lay the blame on the designers. More should be choosing real bras. Instead of these cheap string bikini tops with no support. If you’re larger this type isn’t going to fit right. I’ve said it for years, playing in a real bra is a must for me. The times I didn’t, it was not a good look.
All of this first applies to designers of course. They must keep the entire costume impact in mind, and strive for perfection. Think wow factor. Often I’ll see a sensational costume, but the headpiece is mediocre. Captivate us with electrifying elements, down to the last detail. That includes the back of the costume and headpiece, which should be decorated too. 
Now that the bands have launched, this is the time changes are being made. Costumes that aren't getting enough attention are being revamped to give them more appeal. So it's not too late designers to liven up that lackluster costume

Can we all agree to ban control top pantyhose on parade day please? There is simply no excuse for that mess. Don’t make me slap a catastrophe sticker on you! Mas tights have come a long way, it’s easier to get them now, and they don’t cost a small fortune. 
Nude fishnets, a mere $2.50 at Stitches 
All those dangly bits hanging off your waistband? That’s what snags tights, causes unruly runs. This is another fault of designers. I’m gonna say I don’t think most designers care about your runs, they just want their costume to look fabulous at the launch, in photos for their site, and hopefully crossing the stage. So it’s up to you to keep that in mind, if you are the type to really brukk out, & mix in with the inconsiderate stormers, chances are your tights will come out tattered. But you can remain run free if you keep your distance from everyone else – but then, of course, what’s the fun in that, right?   

Don’t think of footwear as an afterthought. Plan what you will want to wear, keeping in mind the average day is 8 hours. It’s a long walk to the parade start, &/or back to your car. Forget weaves (I don’t wanna know), sunglasses, travel mugs, & cell phones - you know how many broken heeled boots I’ve see left on the curb after the parade? I hate to think what that walk back to the car was like! Last year flats were the thing, very cute, matching so well with the colourful costumes. Even saw a lot of sandals, which are very impractical IMO, being so easy to break and offering zero support. So while you look super cute in photos and at the start of the day, how’d you feel at 5:00? Boots aren’t for everyone, but what I think will be the next big thing are high top wedge sneakers.   
 Fashionable, functional, & recyclable. 
    Photo: fashionbased.com

Caribana cuties know their entire costume from head to toe must be on point, and they never settle for a terrific top half, but their bottom half is just not cutting it. Don’t commit a Caribana catastrophe - choose the best costume for you, plan in advance, and you’re bound to be a Caribana cutie.          

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Toronto Revellers 007 "Mas never Dies" band launch 2013

Revellers announced they were teaming up with Mac Farlane and Ronnie + Caro.
I thought to myself, that's strange, Jamaal bringing two bands or what?
I was picturing on the road some Ronnie and Caro chick wandering into the Mac Farlane section and being told “Miss lady, you don’t belong here, if you want to jump and wave go so!! We play "marse" over here, if you want to wine up your tail, get in your section” LOL.
I guess Revellers realizes you kind of have to do both, you need to bring a bunch of  BBF (bikini, beads and feathers) sections (that can hold their own with anyone), to appeal to the young masses. And you can still provide some more theme based costumes with lots of cloth for the artistic/modest in the crowd. Anyone who has tried to bring an entire band shunning the BBF formula has either fallen by the wayside or is currently on life support. Also if you slap a designed by Mac Farlane label on it, not too many will dare criticize it when it doesn't fit today's mold. 
This is not a costume but a gold dancer

A Revellers launch always has some theatrics in addition to the costumes. We saw a pretty cool Bond martial
arts fight scene complete with professional actors. Also a singer did a very nice rendition of Goldfinger, and there were some great golden dancers too.

Her Majesty's Secret Service
 The Spy Who Loved Me
 Casino Royale
For Your Eyes Only  
Coolest male costume this year (my not so humble opinion)
 Diamonds are Forever 

Jamaal has used his celebrity to promote some really positive messages to youth (outside of carnival). Ideas of non-violence, financial responsibility and cultural pride.  From a Carnival point of view, I see him trying to show younger players that mas can be more than just a street party. There is still room for all ages and artistic expression.
On a lighter note, he is announcing all these collaborations, I only hope he cleared this with the the powers that be, otherwise they might slap a brace on him like he is from some invading Tribe, or is a Bandit. ;)            

Caribana 2010 slideshow

Mardi Gras, Hamilton

Mardi Gras, Hamilton

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Buublenut, Megan & Karabana at Caribana 2007!

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