Swahili Fashion Week is back again and this year it is scheduled for December 4th-6th at the Serena Hotel in Dar es Salaam. All preps seem to be underway with models selection done on November 14th. Above are various designers who will showcase this year. Can you spot your favorite?

The event will celebrate fashion through runway shows as well as an Awards ceremony for various categories. The M.P Blog is among the nominated for the Fashion Blog of the Year award, sponsored by Grey Goose. We have been nominated 5 times and won twice! Will this be the third win? VOTE VOTE VOTE through 

           1. via website “www.swahilifashionweek.co.tz

           2. via email by sending your code to “vote@swahilifashionweek.com

           3. via text by sending your code to 15670

We are super excited to be back in the Fashion spotlight and look forward to a great experience

Will you be there? Don't be shy and say Hi :)


xoxo

Missie Popular

 

There is so much power in taking the Time Off, just to re-energize yourself. Too often we overwork ourselves and forget that our bodies,like any other machine, needs time to cool off and reboot. 

This year, I vowed to take breaks as often as I can. The plan was to take a break in June/July and again in November/December. It is no shocker that I wasn't able to honor my vow in June/July, what with COVID 19 and all...but this November, I kept my promise.

Blending work and fun helped me to get three days of total bliss at this magical place called Firefly,located at Bagamoyo in Pwani region. The location came recommended by one of my work colleagues and I must say, she knew what she was talking about. I needed a quite and natural place to unwind, a place where TV and radio were off the table and the modernity of the Dar city is out of range. Firefly was all that and more.

It's rustic exterior was a mix of jungle and swahili coast culture, which made it easy to relax and just listen in to the music played live by the surrounding birds. 
The insides give you that Arabian feel yet with no sight of gold and other glittering items. Actually, almost everything you find inside looks old with an aura of past love. The heavy "Zanzibar doors" and wooden windows take you to Zanzibar/Lamu and Mombasa all at once. In short,I had a great relaxing time

Oooh,did I also mention how this place is sooo photogenic! Like wooooo! Between naps and great food, I had a photo session every day. Whether taking pictures of the fluffy cute cats or of myself, it was always fun.
The feeling I have today, that relaxed and energized feeling...is something I wish for you too. 


Let's all make it a habit. To just go somewhere to Relax, Regroup and Restart our engines again. Head over to my Instagram page @missiepopular for more pictures and videos of this trip


xoxo

Missie Popular

 

Each and everyone of us is a brand. And most times, we walk around as individual brands but who are also associated with other brands. This could be our personal companies/businesses, our employer's brand or the brands we Influence for. 

What I have noticed, and have been guilty of, is that we tend to forget that we are all "walking brands", no matter where we are. This translates to how we dress when we are in casual spots, where we hang out and even how we dress for office fun events.

Today I just want to give you a look into my casual look, as I blend my 9-5 job with the Missie Popular brand. This was the look I went for, as I joined Ally Rehmtullah for his 2020 Model Auditions event.

The wrap skirt and off shoulder top are from MM Brands while the strappy heels are from Fashoonista.


 Being a civil servant with a passion for fashion, means I have to find pieces that can work for both brands. Mid skirts, well tailored trousers, suits and full gowns help me a lot.


I will be sharing with you, and hopefully they are inspiration for someone reading this today.


xoxo

Missie Popular

Bringing a baby in to the world is one of the most precious, terrifying and yet most rewarding thing ever! However, it does not matter HOW you finish your journey, we all come out with major scars. The most obvious is the weight gain which leaves most women helpless. This is my story.

I have two baby boys (4 and 1 yrs). Before my first baby, my maximum weight was 52kg, but until I had him, I was 64kg. Shredding the weight after the first baby was easier than I expected, I guess my active life helped a lot. So by his first birthday, I was 54kg in weight. Life was back to normal and I liked my body. Well, that was until my second pregnancy.

Ranging from pregnancy depression to insomnia and then the weight gain, it was one hell of a mess! From 54kg to almost 70kg,it was quite a journey for me. I did not take any pictures of myself until the last month, when we did a family photoshoot. You can see the pictures on my Instagram @MissiePopular. 
Because of other health complications, I could not workout for the first 9 months after the baby. By then, I started feeling depressed by how my body changed...well, plus all the comments I received from family, co-workers and colleagues made it even worse. The moment the doctor okeyed me for exercise, I started doing planks at home. I followed video workouts by a girl named CHLOE TING on YouTube and I started getting back in shape. I did home workouts for 6 months straight.
This is me on my first day back to the gym, weighing 62kg. My son was 1 and 1/2 years by then. I could see my body getting back in to shape and thus my gym workouts concentrated in toning rather than shredding. This is the same routine I use until now. In a week, I only workout for 2 hours on Saturday and 30 minutes on Sunday. My routine involves  aerobics and weights, specifically for the Abs and the back.
After one month, I can see the shoulders getting toned to perfection, my abs are peeping and I am super light! I haven't checked my weight yet but I like how I feel and how active I have become.
In case you are struggling with the baby weight, let me know in the comments below and I will assist to share the different tips and tricks that have helped me so far.

After all, we all deserve to be happy with our bodies, right? 

xoxo
Missie Popular
 

A New Wardrobe is all I need as a Birthday present! So, I have decided to invest my time and of course,money, in creating a rather new and improved wardrobe. This is specifically so,for the corporate attires that I so needed. As most of you who follow me on Instagram know, I have been on a workout routine to loose the baby weight and gain back my size,which is going far too well. I think I am loosing more weight than I need to :(

Anyhow,back to the point. A Corporate wardrobe. Through this journey to create a new corporate wardrobe, I learnt some tips on the best ways to go about it. So....why not share it with you? Here we go :)

1. Go back to Basics. That white short sleeved Tee, a beige V-neck top, a black camisole or tank top, a long sleeve Tee etc. The basic items are a great option in creating different looks, especially when you pair them with formal bottoms like trousers or skirts. A bonus tip is, collect basics that are in neutral colors, they make it easy to blend with almost any type of clothes.

If you want to create a capsule wardrobe, you may stock these items in various neutral colors and even introduce prints like polka dots or stripes. 
2. Quality Vs Quantity: My old wardrobe was full to the brim! And just like many other women, I still struggled to find something to wear :( 
This journey taught me the importance of having few items BUT of the best quality. A good quality suit makes you look well put together, expensive and even more confident. Furthermore, it lasts ages! My point is, I now look for good quality rather than the number of items I can buy. I save for new suits, 100% cotton trousers, well tailored shirts etc.
3. Accessories: This is still a learning process for me. Adding belts, watches, earrings, bags and scarfs is something that I am trying to do now. A complete wardrobe makes more sense when you can pair it with good accessories, and for a corporate look, it is important to have the right accessories too. You will be able to know what to buy and in what colors, after you evaluate your work environment and the dress code involved. As for me, well...minimalism is all I can do.

Finally, watch out for SALE SALE SALE signs! Buying new and quality items is not cheap, thus I have several shops that I visit their social accounts every time, to see if they have that SALE sign on. To be able to change your wardrobe, you should also research on fashion retailers who sell good items, and wait for that magical moment. Ooooh by the way, Black Friday is almost here! Get ready, get a new corporate wardrobe ;)

xoxo
Missie Popular
 

I am not someone who embraces colors that often, but this orange look had me thinking...maybe I have been missing out? 
Orange is a great color, especially on a sunny summer Dar es Salaam. Just like a black color, orange is so versatile in terms of mixing with other colors. You can pair it with another shade of orange to create a monochromatic look, or just go crazy with prints and voila...you have a summer vibe!

 Bonus point to orange, unlike for the black color, it shoots well! The color pops in any photograph, and I feel like it makes you livelier :)) Don't you agree?

I honestly think orange is here to stay...


xoxo
Missie Popular

October 4th brought us another episode of the Tanzania Fashion Festival series. This is a fashion event that celebrates SUMMER in terms of fashion, music and the whole mood involved. This year, the event changed venue as compared to last two years....the new home is the Terrace at Slipway, Dar es Salaam.

This venue is one of my favorites in terms of how versatile it is! You may actually change it to almost any them of the event you want. And to start my review, let's check at how the organizers used the venue;

Venue and Logistics: The decor was at a minimal and I liked it, because it did not take the attention away from the clothes that were showcased. However, the swimming pool found at the middle to the venue was well underused. I wish the organizers would have created a runway across it or something that incorporated it into the show. Instead, the models were going all around the swimming pool, taking turns, which made the show use more time. 

The changing rooms management was better than many other fashion events that I have been to, although I would advise for the next event, to avoid putting the VIP's area next to it or to really manage the people coming in and out of the changing rooms. We, the viewers don't really have to see or hear what is happening in the kitchen :)
My favorite part of the show was the a combination of the variety of models that I witnessed, as well as the music. 

On the models: I liked the body type representation (size 0 all the way to African plus size),it is refreshing to sit at a fashion event and see clothes on a model that you can relate to. Although I was searching for those tall "giraffes" and saw very few.

 Coming back to the music part, oooh DJ Sammy was a whole MOOD! And this Jazz band below.....awesome! The music made the event more than just a runway show.

The Audience was in such great spirits and you could see a summer celebration. If only there were enough seats for everybody to be comfortable as we enjoy both the runway show and the great music. I hope the organizers will look in to this in the next event.
The Designers' showcase: Well well well :) I was super impressed by the number of emerging designers that were given the platform to show their work! Yes, there is still so much to be done in terms of achieving authentic designs (or at least "copy & customize"), but this was a great start. 
Otherwise, it’s just fixing the details and we will have a summer flagship event for the year!


 Kudos to Deogratius Kithama and his entire team for the event. There is so much potential in this event and we look forward to supporting its growth.


xoxo
Missie Popular

 A job interview can be one of the most stressful things. From getting ready with relevant content, re-reading those theories and case studies and much more. It can be tiring, and when you put CLOTHES as one of the items on your checklist, things get messier. Well, it does not have to be.

Getting ready for an interview includes getting your image right for the job and the company/institution you are interviewing for. That is why, it is important to dress according to the job you are applying for or the relevant company/institution. For example, here are the different interview dressing options for various sectors.

Smart Casual: For those in IT, Engineering, Research related fields, Social Media and other creative industries, Art related fields like entertainment etc. 


Smart casual means putting your look together in a smart way but not too strict. You may use a bit of colors, prints and mix and match. However, adhering to the length and tightness of your clothes is still a universal rule. When selecting what to wear for an interview in the above sectors, remember to research on the company culture and dress accordingly.

Business Professional Attire: This is for fields like Banking, Administration work, Hospitality, Health care/Medical, Academic and most of managerial positions. 

A proper suit in dark or earthy colors is most appropriate for these kinds of interviews. I advise you avoid prints and loud colors as well. What is important is to make sure (whether the suit is a skirt or trousers), the fit is perfect. You are expected to wear closed shoes, mostly black, dark blue or brown. 
You may also opt for a kitenge dress or a monochrome look which exudes that business feel. The most important note is to make sure your hair is styled in a business look, preferably tied at the back. Also your accessories to be at a minimal.

What to avoid: Too tight clothes, loud colors like, crazy prints, too big or much accessorizing, open informal shoes and too much makeup. 

Tip to Note: - Make sure you try on the clothes at least a day before, to make sure they fit well and that they are in good condition.
                     - Prepare your attire the night before (iron clothes, brush your shoes, select accessories)

Remember, your self confidence can highly be affected by how you look. So, get your look right and go get that job!

xoxo
Missie Popular


In any situation, we get bored, tired and sick of repetitions. Be it in eating same food, seeing the same TV shows etc. This is the same with our lives. Things become much interesting and fun when we move things around, shake the tables and shed a little of that comfortable skins. There is so much to gain from rebranding and re-inventing oneself. 

But before I go there, let me spend this paragraph to share my understanding of the term, rebranding. You are a brand. Just like Coca Cola, Emirates etc, you have your own unique features, characteristics, behaviors etc. This means, when some people are asked to define you, there are several similar words that they will all use, which means, that is how your brand is perceived. Take an example of Richard Branson, the owner of Virgin brand who is well known as a risk taker and adventurous. Or you may look at our very own Naseeb a.k.a Diamond Platinumz who is well known for his love for fashion, women and drama. 

To rebrand, means to be able to KNOW your brand, gauge if what others see as your brand is exactly WHO you are, and to be able to refine it according to what you are. It is giving yourself a chance to share your authentic self, with the rest of the world. This maybe done through addition, subtraction or making changes on your personal brand 
Re-branding and Re-invention give us a chance to show our true selves and hence we are able to set ourselves apart from others. There is truth in the saying that we are all unique. Being able to sit down and evaluate your brand, and there after rebrand it according to your truth, ensures that your uniqueness will come out shining

It is also a chance to reflect on your vision and goals. As you evaluate your personal brand, you get the chance to see if you are still on the same journey or you have been swayed away. It is a great time to restructure your goals, create priorities, evaluate the systems that may support you to achieve the set goals. This may include giving you a chance to add or reduce the amount of projects/workload that you have given yourself.
As you strategize and prioritize on your goals, rebranding allows others to see you on a different light. This is a great opportunity to gain new customers, supporters, relationships and even investors, depending on the type of brand you are. Since your authenticity will be well visible, it will attract the right people to you.
Last but not least, is the confidence boost. You know what, being able to live, say and act at your true authentic self, is the best feeling ever! Acting is haaaard yo! So, the moment you know more about yourself/your brand and be able to align all that you do in order to showcase your truth, your level of confidence will go up. Why? Because you are YOU. What you do or say will be aligned to your values and principles, and that is your differentiating factor.

Before you re-brand, do you know WHO YOU ARE? Are you in touch with your personal brand? 

xoxo
Missie Popular

I am well known for my love for earthy and dark colors, I feel like black, dark blue and brown are great and safer colors to wear. However, for those following my Instagram Account, you might have noticed a slight change on my wardrobe color scheme. This is due to the fact that I am experimenting on the "Rich Aunty" look, to see how different a lighter color makes me look. I am now trying on white, nude/neutral, beige, off white and pastels. Why, you ask? It is because;

Lighter colors gives a more polished look: It goes without saying that when you wear a full white outfit or pastels, you look more polished. There is something about these colors that just looks right. However, if you are the kind who like darker shades, like me, then you may start small and let the experience sink in first. For example, on this look, I still accessorized it with darker items such as a black head wrap and maroon pump shoes. 


Light Colors look more expensive: A while back, I read an article on Vogue concerning this myth. I had to try it myself, to see if its true. My hypothesis was to test the reactions from people on the final look, as well as to listen to how "I feel" when wearing a brighter outfit. I can testify that the myth is true! The above look, for example, received so many praises. I also experienced that "rich feeling", if at all there is one, but I felt uplifted somehow. Thank God I didn't go shopping on this day, my accounts would have been empty by now :)



It's all about Class: This is true for dark-colored outfits like an all-black outfit or black and white, however, there is something more on that all-white or pastels outfit. I am yet to try a full white or pastel look, but I have been one to admire people who try them. I will surely put on a show for you, very soon :). 

Simplicity is Sleek: Imagine a pale purple top on a full white palazzo trouser. The combination seems very simple but the look becomes sleeker. The same applied for any pastel or white outfit, of which are accessorized at a minimum but look quite chic. For this look, I only wore small pearl studs. No watch, necklace or even a bracelet. But still, it was a good look nonetheless. 

So, have you ever tried to rock a brighter look? How did it feel? Let me know on the comments section below


xoxo
Missie Popular