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Famous Jamaicans and Basic Black From Head to Toe

Ok, so the bag is green and the accessories are silver, but this inspired by the Jamaican flag challenge sent me back to a color scheme that was my signature look for years, basic black.

By the way, the black in the Jamaican flag represents the people, however, it doesn’t symbolize the race of the people. Not all Jamaicans are black (or to be more politically correct, of African descent). Jamaica has an interesting brew of people which includes people of African, Indian, Chinese, European and Middle Eastern descent.  Out of many, we became one. The intermix of races resulted in an island of beautiful people and the international fashion community has taken note of the island’s alluring and exotic faces.

Famous Jamaicans in the Fashion Industry

Models born in Jamaica or of Jamaican descent includes Naomi Campbell, Oreintha Russell, Sasha Gaye Hunt, Sigail Currie, Jeneil Williams, Gaye McDonald, Jaunel McKenzie, Daria Pleggenkuhle, Nell Robinson, Lois Samuels, Carla Campbell, Grace Jones, Nadine Willis, Tyson Beckford and Oraine Barrett have graced the covers or appeared in magazines such as Vogue, Esquire, i-D, French Love, Cosmo, Sports Illustrated and GQ.  Our models have also walked for some of the best and well- known designers including Armani, Ralph Lauren, Alexander McQueen and have represented retail giants which include: Macys and H&M.

I can’t mention Jamaica’s crop of beautiful people without mentioning some of the influencers (aka bloggers).  Along with yours truly, Jamaican born bloggers includes: Sandy Gordon of Marley Simone Style, Tamu Mcpherson of All The Pretty Birds,  Monique R. Kennedy of M*rkologie, Jomarie Malcolm of Lace and Zippers and James Black of JB Style Zone.

While most of the bloggers above are coming up in the blogosphere,  Tamu Mcpherson is in a league of her own.  I discovered Tamu on the glossy pages of Lucky Magazine in a feature on popular bloggers a few February’s ago. There she was, a yardie in the midst of and in the league of celebrity bloggers which includes Kelly Framel of the Glamourai and Leandra Medine of Manrepeller.  She is not only the curator/photographer/writer of All The Pretty Birds and Fashion Director at Grazia.It, Tamu also has a personal style which is just as chic as the “pretty people” that she covers.  (See Tamu Mcpherson interview on Stylelikeu.com). Tamu now resides in Milan, Italy with her husband and son. Check out Tamu’s haute collection of floral pieces in her video Power Florals in Milan.  To learn more about Tamu, check out her interview on Vogue.It.

We also have some of the world’s best athletes.  We didn’t win, but nuff respect to the imagineers of the Jamaican bobsled team. From handcart to olympians! Along with Usain Bolt, Jamaica is the birth place of the legendary and inspiring Merlene Ottey. Other track stars includes: Asaafa Powell, Yohan Blake, Shelly- Ann Fraser and Nesta Carter.

On the music side, Jamaica is the birthplace of Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Sean Paul, Monty Alexander and Harry Belafonte. The island was once the home of author Ian Fleming’s and inspiration for his James Bond series.  Controversial figures, Black nationalist leader Marcus Garvey and Mutabaruka was born there as well. Garth Fagan, choreographer for the Lion King is also Jamaican. You can see the entire list of famous Jamaicans here.

Target Black T-Shirt and H&M Pants

Target Black T-Shirt and H&M Pants

Target Black T-Shirt and H&M Pants

What I am Wearing

I have a confession…this is what I wore to work on Monday.  Apparently, I missed the dress code book burning ceremony. When flip flops became a mainstay in my office I knew something was up, but when the shorts started walking through the door I knew the dress code was really out the window, or so it seems this summer.  Since people were wearing shorts, I figured, that I would test the waters by wearing these super slim pants. They are not leather or spandex. The sheen is from the lighting.

Word of warning to anyone working in offices who have thrown dress codes to the wind… I have noticed that the professionalism has eroded a tad bit, not based on the appearance, but based on the interactions between employees. Apparently, “stuffy” work wear, does have a purpose.  It scratches the hell out of us to remind us where we are.

To tone down the look, I donned my famous green blazer when I walked through the office and wore shoes with a chunkier heel.

Style Tip –> A well constructed blazer is a cure-all for looks that say more evening than day.

Top: Basic Black T-Shirt from Target

Bottom: Skinny black jeans from H&M

Shoes: Nine West (I’ve had these forever)

Bag: Nine West (old)

 Related Posts:

Rastafarian Inspired Style

WIWT: Wearing Rasta Inspired Style

This is Jamaica, My Jamaica

Office Wear Inspired by Jamaica’s Flag


About Natasha Samuels

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  1. Nathasha, thanks for all that great info on Jamaica. I recognize a lot of those names and I’m definitely going to check out some of those blogs you mentioned.
    I know what you mean about the deterioration the office dress code. What’s up with that? I’ve seen flip flops and shorts too and I don’t mean cuffed bermudas, I mean real shorts. Hmmm. I think your basic black was positively conservative compared what’s being worn now.
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  2. You know what I love ’bout all black? It’s hard to mess up 🙂

    You look super sleek and well, sexy, for work. I’m glad you gave ’em a bit of a break with a blazer and chunkier shoes. So far, no flip-flops or shorts in our laid back work place. We do have one partner who still struggles with jeans, so no one wants to push him past the edge 😛
    Practical Paralegalism recently posted..Paralegal Career Dressing: Heigh-Ho It’s Off to Court We GoMy Profile

    • Hah! We had our company picnic today and the dress code was “comfortable”. Shorts were everywhere. I have to admit though that most of it was tasteful. I wore a dress… (-: I know of firms here where jeans are not accepted (not even black or indigo). I have a long way to go before I retire and I am looking forward (or maybe not) in seeing how work wear will evolve in the years to come. Allison at Wardrobe Oxygen did post on this a few months ago addressed to neophytes in the world of work.

  3. Wow girl you look both hawt and HOT!!! I would not have survived wearing that in our heat. But I love the look! I like to push the dress code at work too but it is usually for naught because I am pretty much the only employee now, so . . .

    Anyway, I have ALWAYS wanted to go to Jamaica. I have had a fascination with it for as long as I remember and I LOVE all the music that comes from Jamaica. You should be very proud to be from such a culturally rich place!

    Also, I feel so AWFUL for calling you Natalie! Darn it! I knew I would mess that up eventually. I do know your name is Natasha. I have a hard time with names. Please forgive me!
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    • Lol! Was it the all black ensemble or the glare from the walls of the building that clued you in on how uncomfortable it was to shoot these photos. OMG, it had to be at least 140 degrees at this spot. We tried to shoot in the shade but there was no mercy. Lesson learned!

      On the name thing, girl please, in addition to Natalie, I also get Tash and Tasha.

      Jamaica is a naturally beautiful country, but like most places they have their share of problems which cause people to second guess their decision to vacation there. Hmmm, maybe I should highlight some of the interesting natural features of the island in my next post. In addition to Dunns River, there is a host of hot , some say, therapeutic natural springs. One of them has such a high sulfur content that the water ignites when you put a match to it (I just found out about it recently). I think the leadership is doing a great job of addressing the problems, but the bottom line is that the American economy has impacted Jamaica’s We have a saying, when America sneezes, Jamaica catches a cold.

      I highly recommend Beres Hammond. I am not sure why his music isn’t more global but he is one of the best artists that we have, period!