Aside from the Festival, I also got a chance to check out an exhibit at one of the Smithsonian museums on the inaugural and formal dresses of the nation’s first ladies. I’ve learned that the public eye is not only on the beliefs and the concerns of the first lady, but also of course on the way she presents herself to her country. She must be dignified, have style and grace, and lead a positive image of not only herself but her country and the president.
Check out how beautiful these outfits are! A rare collection
First Lady Michelle Obama’s Inaugural Outfit
Zuri Works for Womens Health helps to create headdresses and adornment for women battling illnesses such as cancer.
Leather artist Marvin Sin explaining the meaning of the ankh to the children
Hair braider and Loctician Fana Chisolm speaking on her experiences with Black hair
Dr. Baptista decided to order the chicken and waffles…smh!
Offerings from nature, when burned the purpose was to return them into the earth with hopes of peace and harmony
Of course you can’t talk about the Will to Adorn and the African American Community without addressing how we style and showcase our hair. Our hair can be so diverse, unique, and even a little ostentatious at times and it’s fun to experiment with its versatility.
I remember as a child looking at the television and seeing Caucasian actresses with long, flowing hair and wanting my hair to be as luxurious. I would go to my mom constantly, asking her for a perm and asking to have my hair straightened only to be denied and forced to yet again wear my usual braids and cornrows. I would only have my hair straightened for professional pictures and events and I remember my disappointment when I would have to wash my hair after a week or two in order to return to the braided styles. I don’t know why my mom refused my requests for straight hair, but I’m glad she did. It forced me to learn and embrace my hair and except that it is apart of the natural me. As I grew older and went on to grade school and then high school, I was still holding strong with my braids, Afros, and puffs while the other girls wore “wraps” and weaves.
Today, having natural hair in my opinion is becoming a cross between a movement and a fad. Either way, it is certainly refreshing to see African American women accept their hair and show a passion for learning about the capabilities of their hair. Wearing your hair has it grows out your head has become a movement, and a community that continues to grow and learn.
Obviously we all have our own opinions and experiences with hair. What are yours?
New York Barber Dennis “Denny Moe” Mitchell :
Fannie Hamilton explaining the benefits of natural oils and herbs on the hair and skin :