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Sunday, November 30, 2008

Saturday, November 29, 2008

On Vacation...

For thr first time in history of TCD the blog will be on vacation this weekend....See you on Monday!


my view this morning..

Friday, November 28, 2008

Are you up to the challenge? D.I.Y. wings.

I have been looking online for hot pink feathered wings for the longest while and my searches have been turning up fairy wings and baby pink feathers wings, but not hot pink! Finally I stumble upon hot pink feathers wings AND instructions on how to make them yourself.

The instructions are very easy to follow and the wings are surprisingly simply made; here I was thinking more effort went into them. The end product looks awesome, exactly what I was looking for, so I am going to attempt to make these wings for my Monday wear! The best part is that the basic wings can be spruced up however you like so it is open to many a creative interpretation.


- More cool how to projects

For those up to a bigger challenge, these wings look amazing but I don't think I have the patience or aptitude to tackle this project; all the instructions and directions are included to create these wings if you dare.

- More cool how to projects

So, even though your costume does not come with wings you can create your own with a little time, effort and creativity!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Bring out the Brolly???

Last Tuesday, the 18th of November, Port of Spain and environs flooded as if we were in the days of Noah! With just a brief shower in the afternoon a sea of water covered South Quay and homes from the capital to the East were flooded with four feet of water; the devastation numbers in the millions. Added to that headache was the massive gridlock that stranded passengers, commuters and motorist trying to head out of the city. November marks the end of the hurricane season, but these rains were not even storm related, just a regular afternoon shower that turned into a nightmare for hundreds of people, myself included.

View of South Quay under water on Tuesday November 18th;
the building on the upper left with the black roof is City Gate!


Now I am sure you are thinking when you land in February the rains are long gone and the thoughts of floods on Carnival days is a remote possibility. Well, with the climatic changes occurring in the 21st century, the "rainy season" in Trinidad seemingly never ends! I am sure all of us who played with TRIBE 2007 remember only too well when the skies opened on South Quay, just as the first section crossed the downtown stage, and drenched masqueraders. As I stood under my shelter under Royal Bank, many a drooping wet masquerader with faces stained from the dye from wet feathers passed me by looking stunned that the weather had changed so suddenly.

Warrior Spirit with wet feathers TRIBE 2007


And even though the sun played hide and seek until evening, we were sprinkled intermittently for the rest of the day. That was the first time I can recall being rained on for Carnival Tuesday, I had experienced showers early a j'ouvert morning one year but nothing like being soaked in 2007 (albeit I was technically seeking refuge under the bank!).

Most masqueraders seemed to not let the sudden showers dampen their spirits and partied on through the rains all day. For the most part headpieces survived with feathers plumping back up nicely when they dried, others ran and stained not only feathers, but faces in blue and red. My costume that year was ruined though (it was white) along with the long skirts of those ladies in Peter Elias' Jean and Dinah section whose skirts were caked with mud and dirt!

Jean and Dinah section TRIBE 2007

God forbid it rains for Carnival and Port of Spain floods as it did last Tuesday, all the fletch dry powder in the world is not going to help when what you need is a boat and a paddle!! So here are some tips to help you weather the storm if it ever comes:

*Walk with a plastic bag in your pouch/man purse - this can be used as a rain poncho or to stash your headpiece in the event that it rains and also to spread on the soggy, muddy grass in the park when you stop for lunch; an all purpose weather gear!

*Wear Boots vs Sneakers - When wading through flood waters boots are essential. You will have the last laugh at all those who wonder why on earth you were buying knee high, water proof boots for Carnival when boots keep your legs so warm.

*At the first sign of ominous looking dark clouds hop up on the music truck - these may be the only vehicles that can navigate the flood waters in the event that South Quay is under four feet of water. Besides when the DJ switches to "Wet Meh Down" you can have your own rain party and an excellent view of others scampering for cover.

*Bling out your Brolly - this will be the hottest trend for 2009, decorated and embellished mini tote umbrellas to match your costume.

The case eve matches the costume!

* Don't even bother to try and head back to your hotel /home in the event that it floods - apart from the massive gridlock to escape Port of Spain you have all the supplies you would need to weather the storm right in the band; rum, music and captive people to wine on. Turn the streets into one big block-o all-inclusive fete since you are already dressed for the occasion in bikini and board shorts.

*And finally,adopt the attitude that when life gives you lemons make lemonade- so what if it rains, your costume gets soaked and you wake up the next day with a hacking cough? It beats being snowed in and freezing your a** off! The fete never stops.. it is C A R N I V A L!!!

PHOTO SOURCE:
www.carnivalscene.com



Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Wasting even more webspace because I pay for it....

After day long deliberations with my panel of eagle eyed costume critics, we have come to a conclusion that these two bras look very similar.. imitation and inspiration!

We have all agreed that the placement of beads are very similar, however it is the combination of this as well as the fact that the appliques mirror each other in placement as well as the scalloped edge makes BOTH bras look like one is inspired by the other.





Boy, that took us ALLLLL day to deliberate but it was a unanimous decision all around; clearly we allllll had nothing to do and I was really digging deep down.... after daily blogging, 365 days a year (since August 2006) to find SOMETHING to write about today. Oh and look! I made ONE topic two posts today; genius!

Inspiration or Imitation?

Inspiration comes from many places I guess.. ...but where is the line drawn between inspiration and imitation?

Belly Dance Costume 2004




Kaotic 2009




p.s. thanks for the very keen eyed blogger for the pics!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Vintage Tuesdays

1961 continues with the history of Carnival and memories of "Old Mask".

To read all NINE pages online just click on the book below:



Or if you would like to receive it via email drop me a request at trinicarnivaldiary@yahoo.com.

Some of the older articles are no longer available for download online, if you would like a copy of any of the archives I can send via email.

Monday, November 24, 2008

First of Fete Prices....

Rumour has it that the very popular Hilarians (Bishops) All-inclusive Fete , carded to take place in January, has increased in price from $500.00TT to $650.00TT for 2009!

That is more than the cost of Beach House 2008..

Soca in Moka (Trinity All Inclusive) scheduled for Sunday January 4th is priced at $475.00TT an increase over the $400.00 it cost in 2008. Tickets are already on sale at Trinity College 629-2078, Janice Richards 755-1637, Peter Rigsby (San Fernando) 351-7681, Anthony Hosten 753-1390, and Ann Marie Narine 741-1890.


I cannot wait to see the rest of the prices.

The all inclusive question...

Current trend in costume prices sees an increase for the cheapest costume every year at approximately $300.00TT on a backline costume and $500.00TT on a frontline costume. In some cases for 2009 the prices of costumes did remain the same, while others are phenomenally expensive and the price increase is across the board for all bands no matter if they are veterans or ones without any experience at all.

If this continues for Carnival 2010 and beyond we are looking at costumes starting at on average $3600.00TT-$3900.00TT for a backline costume. One band leader intimated to me that the services surrounding Carnival are all escalating in prices as well and it is becoming very expensive to run a successful Carnival band.

There is a suggestion that in order to keep Carnival costs down that we revert to the old time days before the all inclusive premium bands became the norm. You the masquerader pay for your costume only and everything else is an option at an extra fee. This would also mean getting rid of the resting buses, cool zones and lunch stop and paying additional if you desire drinks, lunch and access to the portable toilets very much like how it is with Harts at the moment, except they still stop for lunch.

Another band that offers costume only is Brian Mc Farlane and Trevor Wallace costume price includes meals but alcohol you pay extra for. Interestingly Trini Revellers is now fully all inclusive as in the past they offered both non inclusive and all inclusive sections. The other band to go totally all inclusive as well is Legacy.

My question today is would you support Carnival bands removing the all-inclusive niceties and extras that we have grown accustom to if this would mean cheaper costumes in the future?



Would you support Carnival bands removing the all inclusive package if this would mean cheaper costumes?
Yes once there is an option for me to pay extra for all-inclusive if I choose
Yes, remove all inclusive totally.
No, I want all the pampering on the road that I have grown accustom to.
I do not care
Free polls from Pollhost.com

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Economy, Carnival and You.

Though I do not live in the United States (U.S.) it has been a tense few months following their financial crisis knowing that very soon the effects would be felt in Trinidad and Tobago despite the many protests by Government Ministers that Trinidad would not be affected. This week, we Trinidadians were asked to "tighten our belts" by none other than the Prime Minister himself. Inflation rate has soared in Trinidad to the highest ever at 15.4 % while oil prices continue to drop; cut back on spending we are told and for many the Christmas and Carnival season ahead will be a very sober one.


All this comes as my friends in the U.S. have been reeling from the downturn in that economy, suffering from losing their homes, jobs and savings; I personally know one person who lost their house, three who lost their jobs and several others who do not know if they will have a job in the coming New Year. Their counterparts across the pond are not doing better either, one friend of mine has to pay £1000 on a return ticket to Trinidad and is complaining bitterly at how expensive living expenses are in London while another may not have a job to return to after being on leave.



Several persons have expressed to me that if not for the fact that they have already budgeted and paid for their Carnival 2009 trip (ticket, costume and accommodation) that they would cancel it altogether. And while others are cutting the days spent in Trinidad shorter than they normally do, some are not making the trip at all since the "time is not right" to go off on leave.

For me I am pretty happy that the bulk of my costume payment has been made and that I have budgeted to pay off the rest at the end of this month so I do not have that headache to contend with while simultaneously cutting back on spending. It is also with relief that I did some of my Carnival shopping earlier in the year and have my boots, part of my Monday wear and fletch dry powder. Other items I plan on reusing from 2008 Carnival like my gel insoles which I only wore those two days and a pair of boots.

The main Carnival cost cutting measure for me will come in scaling back on the fetes. I am waiting patiently for fete prices to be released and have made the decision that if needs be I will not go to any fetes in January. There is only one fete on my calender that is a must do so far, the other potential fetes I am looking to attend will all be dependent on prices. Another thing I have started is assembling my Carnival wardrobe, taking advantage of sales now and doing my shopping online. Sorry but I am avoiding the Trinidad boutiques that have inflated prices by 200%, and I am not getting one thing from the growing popularity of Facebook Boutiques who also mark up their prices by much more than what is being sold at Ami Club Wear and Cutesy Girl where they get their inventory.

The hair budget for Carnival has also been slashed, I am not doing braids for sure and will most likely wear my hair in a ponytail saving about $100.00US right there! I am keeping the makeup artist for Tuesday however, somethings I simply cannot cut out completely. These may seem like little things to cut back on for those of you still thinking about how to pay off the balance on your costume, but they do add up. I spend way too much money on Carnival accessories and extras (body jewels, glitter, tights, eyelashes), money that is not even taken into account when doing my Carnival budget (yes I have a budget for everything!).

The goal is to spend less, save more, even for those of us who can afford to splurge on something as superfluous as a Carnival costume while others cannot even pay their bills or put food on the table. While I do appreciate the fact that being able to enjoy and participate in Carnival is somewhat of a luxury , it cannot be denied that the financial crisis is hitting too close to home to enjoy the season of bacchanalia without some concern.



So, please share how the economy has affected you, your plans for Carnival and what measures, if any, are you putting in place to spend less, save more? Looking forward to your comments or you can email me at trinicarnivaldiary@yahoo.com.


PHOTO SOURCE:
www.guardian.co.tt

Saturday, November 22, 2008

7 Deadly Sins of a Carnival Band....

1. Not delivering the costume a masquerader has paid for:
(i) On time, that is having masqueraders collect costumes after the advertised distribution date including collecting on the road Monday or Tuesday.

(ii) In totality, with pieces of said costume missing; this includes a non existent bra, headpiece, belt, necklace when one receives their costume.

(iii) At all, meaning that there is no costume when the masquerader goes to collect because the costume was inadvertently sold, never made or distributed to other masqueraders who encountered the situation at (ii).

Saved- if any of the above mentioned instances should occur, it is good PR for the band to alert masqueraders of the issue before collection of costume; call or email the masquerader to let them know the costume delivery date has been changed. In addition try the utmost best to deliver said costume on the new date specified or if that is not possible deliver costumes to masqueraders homes/specified location (depending on just HOW late the costume becomes available). Lastly, compensate masquerader for the stress of missing costume or costume piece without being asked (read cuss out at the mas camp); the refund should be automatic and accompanied with an apology.

2. Costume looks nothing like the prototype. Sometimes bands may have to amend costumes owing to unavailability of materials, so what the masquerader ends up with is an altered costume, different from the one they registered for. Also, sometimes you get the costume that looks like the prototype but a scaled down version; less beads, less feathers and smaller plumes.

Saved – At best all bands should give masqueraders exactly what was advertised down to the last feather, sequin and bead. IF for some unforeseen reason a change as to be made it is best to, again, let masqueraders know in advance of costume collection that a change was necessary. In good faith if the change is a drastic one that completely alters the look of the costume, offer the masqueraders options. For instance the masquerader can be offered another section of their choosing. Some changes are purely superficial and the look of the costume is not affected, for example the bra used in the costume design is altered, a simple advance “heads up” would suffice in this case, since everything else remains the same and the end result is the costume looks the same. I know that with some bands smaller bra cup sizes get the imported bras while the larger sizes get bras made locally to accommodate the various sizes; once the costume looks the same as advertised this is really not an issue.

3. Food and drinks run out on the road or dining options advertised never materialize. Sadly this happens often and not too many masqueraders complain as it is easier, when hungry, to simply look for alternative meals when you already paid for what is supposed to be included!

Saved – The solution to this one is pretty straight forward, DO NOT SKIMP ON FOOD AND DRINKS. Make sure that stocks on drinks are replenished throughout the day and that there are enough meals catered to masqueraders, security staff and band employees who all partake of the food. When you list out a host of items in the all inclusive package make sure and deliver everything including the “snacks” that sometimes never appear since you think we masqueraders are not paying attention!

4. Pricing yourself out of the game. We all know that SOME bands can set their prices at a premium and still get costumes sold, however when those very said bands do not raise costume prices exorbitantly one can gather that they as well are aware that there is a thing as pricing the costume TOO HIGH. As a consequence new bands pricing themselves on par with established bands can be a death sentence.

Saved – Set aside the anticipation of making loads of money right out the gate and pass on the savings on imported costumes and sponsors to masqueraders so that the lower prices can be an incentive to bring them in especially if no one is registering in your band; red flag!

5. Inferior quality and costume construction. This has killed many a section leader in the past. Call a certain name associated with a section and masqueraders will give them a pass if their costumes have known to be shoddy, fall apart on the road or just plain cheaply constructed!

Saved – Invest in workmanship that can deliver; isn’t this the reason given for having costumes made in China and India? Also quality control along the production process to ensure that the final product is up to standard, providing that the band leaders HAVE a standard at all. Some of them price talks and they would prefer to go with the cheapest rather than the best.

6. Sizing out masqueraders. Catering to only certain sizes drastically reduces your market and size discrimination attracts the worst publicity ever!

Saved – Be open to each and every masquerader regardless of bra or belt size even if this means facilitating the decoration of masquerader’s own bra though. Honestly though, most masqueraders would prefer to not have the hassle of looking for their own bra and would appreciate the band simply providing their size.

7. Not acknowledging the power of the masquerader to make or break you. Today’s masquerader is being asked to spend a lot of money on costumes and with that comes a certain level of demanding service and excellence that we have already paid for. We expect that after we keep up our end of the contract, paying for our costume, that band leaders keep up their end by providing that long list of amenities, in addition to the costume, that every single one of them has posted on their website.

Saved – There are cardinal rules to ensuring faithful masqueraders, customer satisfaction and catering to your masqueraders when it comes to Carnival bands:

1. Communication, communication and communication! Masqueraders like to be kept in the loop and they also like to be able to call, visit a website or email for answers to queries and concerns. Open communication!

2. Service with a smile, and yes, we can hear you smiling over the phone! The worst is to call a mas camp and have to deal with not only an ignorant employee but also one with an attitude. Remember, the customer is always right!

3. Appreciate your masqueraders. This is where little things like a really nice goody bag or providing Monday wear or setting up a costume adjustment center or throwing in discounts to fetes really make your masquerader feel “special”. And yes there are some masqueraders who do not care about all the “frills and extras” but the very fact that it is there for them NOT to care about in the first place is what matters!

4. Give the masquerader what was advertised and paid for; such a simple feat that only a few bands ever seem to get right!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Coloured Bras..

For those of you looking for coloured bras to match your costume (for whatever reason) here are a few places to look for bras:

Wet Seal
Basic T Shirt Bra in a variety of colors (red,yellow, purple, orange, pink) up to a C cup - $9.50US

LaSenza UK
Satin bra in a variety of colors (pink, blue, orange up to an F cup -£15.00


LaSenza US

Lots of bras, sizes up to a E cup - prices range up to $39.50

Do not forget to check ebay (easy to search for exact colour and size) Victoria's Secrets (pricey and limited sizes) though the latter option was best earlier in the year when there were more colours on sale.

Who will survive?

Three more months to Carnival and with only two and a half bands sold out in the face of a global recession it is any one's guess how many Carnival bands will survive after Carnival 2009!

Contrary to popular gossip Saucy and Carnival Jumbie are not responsible for the lack of masqueraders registering in certain bands. The fact is prices are too high for an unknown band asking people to gamble on a chance that the band will deliver on said promises. In addition it seems that a bikini is not just a bikini and a board shorts is not just a board shorts! If your costumes are not cute or remotely attractive who is going to be paying the exorbitant price to parade around in an ugly bikini? Clearly not many people see the costume as "just a bikini" or else we would have masqueraders registering in droves all along Ariapita Avenue.

Finally the marketing strategy of bus limes and mas camp limes is not working; don't blame people for drinking out your free alcohol and not even glancing at a costume when that is what you are offering.. fire the marketing team and come again! The only thing to save some of these bands is costume redesign and DROP THE PRICES!! These bands are too fresh to think that they are TRIBE or Island People pricing costumes accordingly, especially when the costumes are NOT CUTE!

And you may think I am being harsh this morning, but I am simply astonished at the gumption of some of these bands that will not do something to change the situation that they are in! Hello, the world is in a recession, people are cutting back on spending,some are losing their jobs and many people will not even make it to Carnival 2009 so who are you waiting on to buy these costumes at the last minute? Yes I am asking YOU that question! The time has come to do something drastic and do it quick or else I am afraid we will see only micro bands on the road supported by their ever faithful committee members for Carnival IF they make it on the road at all.

So the question of the day is, of the new bands that debuted for 2008/2009 which one/s do you think, unfortunately, will "buss" ?

Which Band/s Will Not Survive Carnival 2009?
Kaotic
Elements
Spice
Evolution
Wee International
D Krewe
Ronnie and Caro
Free polls from Pollhost.com

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Together We Aspire

It's time to confess that I have this unexplainable fascination with Trini Revellers website, checking each and every day to see when all the sections will be available for viewing.

Some days I am rewarded with another "gem" from their 2009 presentation "Sweet T &T" but I am still waiting to see costumes for the sections "Ca Cest Le Bel Air", "Devil's Woodyard", "Food of the Gods" and "The Asa Wright Nature Center" almost two months after their band launch!

Fortunately "Land of the Hummingbird" made it to the website today, albeit just a sketch and not the actual costume. It looks as if Sonia Mack's Paradisus individual and TRIBE's Hummingbird birthed this creation:

Sonia Mack - Paradisus version 2.0


TRIBE- Hummingbird


By the way, anyone else noticed that D Krewe seems to have nixed their Hummingbird section (along with The Moon) as it is not to be found on their website?

But I digress, the main purpose of my post today is to ask w.t.h. were they thinking when they designed this costume to represent "Together We Aspire"; is the Trinidad male aspiring to be a pimp decked out in the national flag?



This takes the award for worst male costume of Carnival 2009... quite possibly, worst male costume EVER as you have to be a manicou, not a man, to be caught dead in that get up!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

TRIBE Payment Options

For those who are interested in paying off the balance on your costume, please note the following:


Ready to pay off your costume? Log on to www.senvia.com to make further payments to your costume via credit card (Visa & Mastercard) or visit the mas camp during opening hours Monday- Friday 12pm-5pm to pay via LINX or Cash.

Close off date for early payments is Jan-11-2009.

Senvia instructions - http://www.senvia.com/carnival/masbandinstructions_tribe.pdf

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Vintage Tuesday


There are only two republished articles for the year 1960 by the National Cultural Council Cultural Research. One is a look at "Ole Time Carnival" and the other an overview of Carnivals in Latin America and the Caribbean. Interesting, albeit, different subjects today.


To read the articles online, click on the book below:


Or you can download both articles HERE.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Hot Wings!!

Check out the hottness that is Selita modeling those fabulous wings for Victoria Secret Fashion Show 2008... I LOVE those wings!!! Individual costume anyone?


On Haitus

The weekly question and answer session with the band leader is on hiatus as it seems as if the feature has run it's course.

The question and answer will be revisited at a later date, as long as you have questions in the future.

It was a very interesting and informative feature and thanks to you all for participating.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Carnival Baby’s Christmas Wish List

1. The most thoughtful, loving and fabulous gift you can give ANY Carnival Baby is to pay off the costume balance by December 31st. FAST TRACK is the word.

2. A Carnival costume. This one is for those who have yet to register for a band but wants to play mas for 2009. Lots of costume choices still remaining, it is not too late.

3. Fete Tickets to the hottest Carnival fetes. Extra points if you score tickets to D Vale Breakfast Party, Beach House and Brian Lara.

4. Carnival Footwear to match the costume whether boots or sneakers, just make sure it is cute and comfortable.

5. Make-up artist appointment for both Monday and Tuesday; Go Big or STAY HOME!

6. A fete wardrobe for at least three fetes. Have no idea what the Carnival baby’s tastes are when it comes to fashion? A gift voucher to their favorite store or cash will do just as well.

7. Extreme Lash Extensions for the ultimate DIVA. Get more info on these lashes here.

8. Gym membership with personal trainer. Two months to get rid of the pastelle, ham, turkey, ponche de creme and black cake pounds piled on over the holidays; you can do it!

9. Post Carnival Spa Day. Time to make this an Ash Wednesday ritual!No beach, no fetes just a full on day at the spa to massage that aching body and pamper those sore feet.

10. BRING BACK THE STAGE.. maybe this should be #1 on the list!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

D Krewe , revamped "Butterfly"...

D Krewe has changed the look of their section "Butterfly"

Before:


After:







The new version is, dare I say, much cuter than the old one without the literal translation of butterflies on your head as well as that other backpack where you would have needed a good three feet away from another masquerader!Liking the upgrade and wish other bands would rework some of the not so cute sections as well!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sold Out Section Update

Pulse 8
Caliente

Ronnie& Caro
Soca Monarch - Female

Harts
Sind

Elements
Lady Luck - Frontline

Destra in D.C.

click to enlarge


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Thursday, November 13, 2008

Destra at the COTT Awards

Destra looks ready for Carnival as she performed at the COTT Awards held last week. I am loving her fringe, feathered, fluffy monokini!! Monday wear?










PHOTO SOURCE:
www.triniscene.com

Spoilt Rotten Kids Forbidden City

Spoiled Rotten Kids has launched their 2009 Kiddies Carnival presentation "The Forbidden City" and you can view their photos of costumes available at their website. Here is a sample from the 6 sections available:

Archers



Ladies in Waiting


Fan Dancers


I love how the kiddies bands are mirroring the adult bands with the theme and doing it MUCH better as well!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Vintage Wednesday

1959, George Bailey takes the crown again, sabotage in the controversial Jaycees Carnival Queen Show and more spectators on the streets than in the stands.


You can read the three articles online by clicking on the book below:


If you would like a copy of this week's article to download please email me at trinicarnivaldiary@yahoo.com

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Age Old Question… Sneakers or Boots?

Vintage Tuesday will be moved to Wednesday as I am having serious issues with BLINK (high speed internet provider) and am forced to revert to the excruciatingly slow dial-up! Today 's topic is somewhat of a "vintage" though, inspired by a question from a masquerader on whether or not to wear boots or sneakers. My response below:


The Carnival devotees are somewhat split on which choice of footwear is more comfortable over which one looks better with your costume. For me, the choice is boots since I believe that you can have both the fabulous complement of boots and be comfortable at the same time. The key factor in choosing the right boot is finding one that fits well. Here are some tips on selection your mas boots:


1. Boots that have rounded toes (not pointy or square) where you have enough wiggle room.

2. Flat or low wedge heel. This is especially important for the ladies who do not wear heels every day. Some of you Carnival divas can pull of high heel and 3 inch platform boots, many of us cannot!

3. Flexible sole, rubber preferably. You do not want a stiff, un-bendable sole as you will be jumping and dancing in these boots and need something that moves with you. Also hard soles tend to be hard on the foot.

4. Cushioned insole. Even though you will be adding gel insoles for additional comfort, make sure the sole of the boot has some cushioning as thin insoles means you will be able to feel every pebble on the road.

5. Soft, lined boots. There are many boots that feel stiff to the touch while others are soft (yet sturdy) and have a soft inner lining. You do not want fur lined or insulated boots however. The faux suede boots tend to be soft and comfortable around your leg when zippered.

6. Get boots one size bigger and wear gel insoles. This is the single most important tip! The gel insoles make your feet feel as if they are floating on air.

7. Break in your boots before Carnival; try them on, wear them around the house making sure your feet are used to the feeling of boots and that they mold to your feet.

8. If having boots custom made, measure your bigger foot and leave room for insoles. Also make sure that the sole has adequate thickness.

9. For additional protection and comfort some masqueraders wrap their toes with cotton and bandages, wear extra socks, use moleskin from Dr Scholls

If you absolutely cannot wear boots or have no intention of forsaking your tried, true and tested sneakers the best way to have Fab footwear is to decorate the sneakers to match your costume, especially if you are playing frontline. Gold or silver sneakers, which you can find in those colours without having to spray them, will look nice and simple with most costumes. For a customized sneaker Afro Chic does an excellent job, but you have to book early as her deadline is next month.






So, the bottom line is finding footwear that you are comfortable in, be it boots or sneakers, and most importantly putting in the effort to have it complement your costume. Imagine wearing plain white or black sneakers with a costume such as Bird of Paradise frontline or Rays of Light after spending so much money on looking Fab from the ankles up!! It does not hurt to be Fab from head to toe.

All footwear are customized creations of Fab! Footwear Boots (and sneakers) by Afro Chic. You can view her website HERE.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Island People Mas.. the story unfolds

According to the IP Mas newsletter that I just received, the story unfolds on the website , confirmation from the mas camp is that this is NOT how the sections will be revealed on the road as was presumed before.. sorry!

The story begins with LOVE, followed by MIDNIGHT BLOOM, AFRODISIAC and OCEAN WHISPERS.


Hi IP Mas Community,

In our introduction to Heaven on Earth- Its what you make it we hinted that... as the chapters unfold the story will be told. So for those of you who have not had a chance to visit the website often enough, here is your personal glimpse. We begin with Love.


Love
Love….is the symbolic piece in ‘Heaven on Earth’.

Love gives us that feeling that words sometimes can’t describe
It’s a kiss of heaven
A special gift
It’s the only feeling expressed by every creature
It’s everything…
We all need it… and should express love
Our planet needs your love.

You can never say it enough…call, email, text someone the words…“I love you”

“We love you”……

Midnight Bloom
In the most miserable or dark moments of life there is always something
beautiful and enlightening to be captured...

In the same way the 'Midnight Bloom' flower blossoms in the still, mysterious,
unpredictable coldness of night. A rare and magnificent sight, when
witnessed many have said, "This is truly a creation of God"...it only blooms
once. You only live once...live to the fullest...live your life in full bloom no
matter what the circumstance and tell the story...for one day you will look
back and say "I did it! I am a Midnight Bloom".



Afrodisiac
Mmm..afrodisiac you know that strong gut feeling…
that when it hits you the only thing you can do is react.
It’s that strong sense of independence
that awakens within you the freedom - to do as you please….
toned down with just the right amount of caution
out of an acute sense of self-awareness
and all in the bliss of a spontaneous moment…
A feeling of ultimate joy and enlightenment to....
’play yourself’…’like yourself’, ‘be strong for yourself’…because
a commitment when executed.. brings about a feeling of complete satisfaction.

Ocean Whispers
I am walking along the shore…
the water making contact with my feet every time the wave breaks with its rhythmic back and forth dance…
the breathless horizon kisses the beautiful sky…the birds of the sea chirp their notes in nature’s symphony in a wonderful melody...
an essence of peace…as I lay my head and close my eyes it all comes rushing back to me…
the ocean whispering sweet ‘everythings’ as I drift off to a tranquil sleep
….to dream of…my heaven on earth



Monday Question Time

It's another week, another round of questions!Please leave your queries for our band leader via comment or send me an email with your question at trinicarnivaldiary@yahoo.com.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Instant Make Up..

This year I introduced you all to Coloronpro Instant Eye Makeup which I, and several other bloggers, used for Carnival. The eyeshadow sheets were easy to use, the shade I got was "noche" and it worked well on Monday! I especially liked the fancy ones like the Zebra and Leopard which looked great with Island People's costumes. Browsing the Coloronpro website I see some new shades that look great!




You are probably thinking what is the big deal over Instant Makeup when you have lots of eyeshadow stashed away in your makeup bag. Well, Instant Makeup easy to apply and gives you one complete eye makeup look with just one application; if you have no idea how to apply makeup it is a cool tool.

For instance, I gave my friend (pictured below) the other shade I got, Pink Lemonade, for her to use on Tuesday since she was not adept at applying eye makeup and with additional face jewels it looked pretty good for someone who did not use a professional makeup artist or had any experience at applying makeup:

Coloronpro Makeup still going after lunch (and crossing both downtown and the Savannah stage)


Now, in addition to Coloronpro AVON has introduced the same Instant Eye makeup concept with their "In a Wink" eye shadow sheets. The shades do not look as enticing as Coloronpro, but the price is much cheaper, though we split a box of Coloronpro among us ordering customized shades.



So if you are at a lost when it comes to makeup and do not want the hassle of hiring a makeup artist, Instant Eye Makeup is an option worth exploring!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Monday Wear for the Birds?

2008 was the year of the boots, with many masqueraders returning to the footwear of choice that our parents wore years and years ago. The boots looked FABULOUS and really complemented the costume, from elaborately decorated to simple matching boots, I was pretty happy to see masqueraders putting forth the effort to accessorize their costume appropriately.

2009 we will be banishing the wife beater for Monday wear! That is for those who will not be wearing their costume or costume bra top at least. The goal is to retire the wife beater in all forms including airbrushed, sequined or in matching colour no matter how cute it is or how easy an option for Monday.

The time has come to glam up your Monday wear with creative and innovative ideas. It can be as simple as decorating a bra with gems, crystals or sequin braid paired with boy shorts , as easy as wearing a monokini or as elaborate as creating your own "costume" for Monday.

Personally I am tired of having all the glamour for only one day, I want to be fabulous on both days without having to wear my gorgeous costume on Monday as well. Boy shorts and wife beaters are simply not going to cut it especially since I also have my Monday boots begging for a costume in some form.No more wife beaters and shorts for Monday wear! We masqueraders can be much more creative and innovative than that!


Here are some ideas:

Crystal Bra:




Monokini






Feathered Body Art for the daring:






Sequin Tops




Other options can include scarves (jeweled and coin), coin belts and bras or even feather wings! The idea is to go forth and be creative.. Monday wear does not have to be your "boring" boy shorts and a wife beater for 2009.

SOURCE:
Rhinestone Bra - Frederick's of Hollywood
Mononkini - Ami Club Wear
Body Art - Enrapturing Re Visions
Teddy - Sherry's Lingere (cheapest price)
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