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Etcetera, Fashion, Uncategorized

Femininity, Style and Beauty from a middle-aged black woman’s point of view….

February 14, 2022

I am an almost 45 year old black woman obsessed with style, modernity and beautiful things.  My opinion is that buttocks out, provocative poses and taking the bedroom into the streets is inappropriate.   Call me an ”auntie,” but I also agree that bonnets on airplanes, fake eyelashes that reach the hairline and clothes that are several sizes too small are silly.  None of the above has anything to do with feminism, control over ones body or even beauty.  It’s just poor taste. Period.  Call a spade a spade.  

When did we decide as black people that we would celebrate vulgarity over elegance?  Was there some meeting I missed where we voted on the notion that black femininity would be synonymous with too much skin, cartoon characters and public displays of Karma Sutra positions paraded as sexy picture poses?  I clearly wasn’t invited to the weekend brunch meeting of the minds where we as black women decided that we wanted to be more like 90s Madonna verses Claire Huxtable.  

But whatever, every generation is entitled to determine their trends.  The beauty of being young is the privilege to make really poor fashion choices and live to tell the tale.  Hell, I wore a butterfly sequined crop top, low rise acid-washed stretch jeans and blue eye shadow to my 24th birthday party.  No, I wasn’t trying out for the Spice Girls. I was actually a 2nd year law student at Georgetown University with a signed offer to work at a major law firm in New York City.  I also had a favorite pair of BCBG neon yellow, low rise, polyester hot pants that were my favorite club attire for nearly a decade.  I remember and appreciated the hoots, stares and offers I received from men when my size 10 derrière would sidle by.  I am no stranger to sexy clothing.  I fondly remember those years.  

Circa 2001 in a Washington D.C. lounge celebrating my 24th birthday. The butterfly is infamous amongst my law school cronies. Infamy can be both good and bad…

But then I grew up.  In 2009, I was 32 when I distinctly remember the ahh-ha moment seeing then 45-year old First Lady Michelle Obama walk hand in hand with her fine, excellent and very powerful black man into the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony wearing that sublime, black, a-line Azzedine Alaia dress with modest, unrecognizable Jimmy Choo heels.  She had easy hair.  Pretty makeup.  Glowing skin. A wide genuine smile.  She was elegance personified but not stuffy or unapproachable.  In that moment, I knew who I wanted to emulate in my 30s, 40s and 50s chapters.

Last night,  I eagerly tuned into the Super Bowl 2022 halftime show to watch this much anticipated homage to Hip-Hop.  The only black woman performing was Mary J. Blige who has more hits than hits have hits.  She could singularly do a 2-hour stadium show that is a sing-along because every attendee from 80 – 16 years of age would know those anthem lyrics of power, love and redemption.   

Imagine my shock when she awkwardly appears on stage wearing head to toe white reflective sequins broken up by a crop top, bedazzled diaper-esq high waisted boy shorts, thigh-high boots plastered in even more sequins, a matching sparkling fedora and enough fake dyed hair that it reached her knee caps.  Perhaps the outfit looked awesome in person and it seems to be photographing well today online. But on live television, it did not hit the right note. It looked awkward and ill-fitting, particularly when Mary dropped it low in the open leg squat.

Mary is a gorgeous black woman.  She has a hall-of-fame life story and career that is courageous, exceptional and cross generationally interesting.  Like I said, Mary’s hits have hits.  However, I don’t even recall what she sang last night.  I don’t even care.  All I can think about is what she wore.  Why she wore it.  And where were her girls saying what I hoped they said and what I want to now say:

“Girl, YOU are Mary-J-Damn-Blige.  You’re 50+ years old and still relevant, sexy and marketable as ever.  Let them show your videos of 20 years ago where you were rocking the hell out of crop tops, glitter and hot pants.  You did that era and you did it WELL. Better than best. Mary, now is your moment to go out out on that Super Bowl stage, perform and essentially accept your Nobel Peace Prize.  Let’s call up Givenchy, Chanel, Christopher John Rogers, Louis Vuitton or Dior and have them make a costume elegant and fitting of a queen but also seriously hip-hop, edgy and so fricking interesting that Zara will be cutting, sewing and selling copies by sunup. Be imitable not impressionable.”  

That’s not what happened.   There is so much to break down.  I don’t know if Mary hand picked that white sequined diaper look or if she was talked into it by a stylist with poor judgment.  Or maybe she felt pressured by the ever present “male Hollywood daze” to dress in what men perceive as sexually interesting.  I certainly see my non-Hollywood, very normal life living peers doing that often on social media.  You know who you are….

Anyway, it’s complicated.  Many of you will disagree because we want to believe that at middle age we can still dress like a 25 year old.  We can’t.  We shouldn’t want to.  I will be hung for writing the above because it’s personal for some and because how dare I critique the only black woman on the stage (Why was there only one black woman by the way? Perhaps I would feel differently if there were various representations of black women up there performing. Are we a monolith or are we just supposed to think one-dimensional?).

You will say Mary has aged well.  She has.  So have I.  So have many. This is not a critique of what women can wear in middle-age.  This is a question about who are we and who do we want to be.  Whether you agree or not, let’s get one thing very clear.  You will be not be seeing my yellow polyester hot pants ever again.  I traded them for enduring, elegant and avant-garde modern pieces a long, long time ago.  

I said what I said.   


PS: I wish the butterfly crop hadn’t been purged or lost many years ago. If I still possessed it in my fashion archives, I would bust it out to wear with a Carolina Herrera ball gown skirt, Chanel earrings, an oversized cocktail ring, some crazy clutch and a boyfriend blazer nonchalantly thrown over my shoulders. In my opinion, that is style…
Fashion, Uncategorized

THE $120.00 Amazon Down Puffer Coat that everyone NEEDS!

December 14, 2019

I recently added this inexpensive down puffer coat to my ever growing collection as its the perfect run around outerwear piece for our upcoming New Year’s trip to Amsterdam.

I adore the voluminous cloak draping on this piece, the cozy collar which also serves as a hood and the longer length in the back which keeps my bum warm.

It’s great for travel as it squishes down to almost nothing. Y’all know Jackie does not play with smart packing! Click the link HERE for more details. This would make a great gift for anyone who lives somewhere cold or is traveling to freezing temps over the next few months.

As for fit, as the reviewers describe on Amazon, the sleeves do run a little narrow. I would describe myself as having muscular arms and this one size fits all coat worked perfectly over my chunky sweaters. However, please note that this is a coat meant to drape and swing so don’t confuse the cut of the jacket with not fitting your shoulders.

As always, thank you for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered. Happy shopping and Happy Holidays! One of these years, I will get around to doing a full “Jackie Holiday Shopping” list!

Etcetera, Fashion, Uncategorized

Black Tie Masquerade Gala Raises $1.1 Million for Harlem School of the Arts

December 2, 2019

In October 2019, I co-chaired the Black Tie Masquerade Ball for the Harlem School of the Arts, a 55 year-old performing arts school of which I sit on the board of directors and chair the development committee. We annually reach about 10,000 children and adults teaching dance, music, theater and visual arts through our classes and workshops.

As reported in the New York Times, on this night, we raised almost $1.1 million dollars to support the social justice work we do. Our school is not only about teaching piano or how to use a 3-D printer, we are using arts education to tackle systemic problems facing our community. Research shows that students who participate in the rigorous discipline of performing arts education are twice as likely to graduate college, have significantly lower truancy and drop out rates than their peers and are 78% more likely to exercise his/her right to vote one day.

Photography by Julie Skarratt Photography

I am passionate about the education we provide at Harlem School of the Arts because, as a former theater kid in high school, I know first hand the positive impact creative stimulation can have on a child’s present and future success.

Photography by Julie Skarratt Photography

Our personal philanthropy is rooted in the idea that EVERY CHILD deserves access to quality education, teachers that care about them and programs that make them feel like human beings. We are children of middle class parents. We attended public schools. We are first generation in lots of things including college educated for me. We deeply understand that our story is impossible without community organizations like the Harlem School of the Arts. While attending Spelman and Morehouse, we learned that “to whom much is given, much is required.” We are honored to serve and give back to the community of which we owe so much.

Prior to the kick-off of the evening, I organized a photo shoot on 5th Avenue outside the dinner and after-party which was held at the famous New York Plaza Hotel. Here are some of the images to document one of my favorite fashion meets philanthropy moments of 2019.

KeKe Cifferello did my makeup and Suzanne of Suzanne Millinery created this custom veiled headpiece.
A huge thank you to my dear friend Racquel Oden of JP Morgan Chase, one of honorees for the evening and a major corporate contributor of the school.
I have always admired strong, beautiful women who stand unafraid to widen their circle making room for other people’s success and boldness. We need more of this in our community.

Behind every successful woman is a tribe of other successful women who have her back.” Back in June 2019, I called Michelle and Kerri from Prom Plus NYC to help me gather Raquel Oden’s friends and family to cheer her on as she accepted her award at the Harlem School of the Arts Gala. They enthusiastically and without hesitation agreed to help pack the room with Racquel’s friends and family while also raising money to support the school. They exceeded every goal, went above and beyond and then showed up to the joint looking fly as hell. Social justice work is a team sport and true sisterhood is one of life’s treasures.

Planning a gala in New York City is a gargantuan task including choosing the venue, finding honorees, creating an ambience, working with a press team, finalizing invitations and then the ever daunting task of “fundraising.” We are lucky to have an excellent partner in Dwight Johnson Design assisting with every task and making sure that we have a room worthy of the talented children and community that we serve.

When planning a major fundraiser in a place like New York City where organizations fight for space on the social calendar, one of the sticky details is figuring out how we get the right people in the room. I was grateful to call on my girls Renae Bluitt producer and founder of “In Her Shoes Blog” and Kéla Walker, storyteller and media host extraordinaire, to join us on this important night. In the day and age of major influencers, it’s tough for a non-profit school like ours with a small budget to attract relevant people. We were thankful to have Renae, Kéla and many others in the room supporting our talented students and spreading the word on why arts education is an important tool as we tackle the systemic problems facing our children and community.

Another goal as co-chair of this event was delivering our message outside the island of Manhattan and reaching people in other cities. We were blessed to have friends and family fly in from around the country to support our mission. History shows us that we are stronger together.

This is the legacy of Morehouse and Spelman College. Our ancestors smiled down on this day. Thank you for flying in from Atlanta to support this cause.
My Spelman sister LaDonna Boyd flew in from Nashville, TN. Don’t let the flyness fool you, she is a bonafide boss lady serving as the 5th Generation CEO and President of RH Boyd Publishing Corporation.

Through my work at the Apollo Theater with Jonelle Procope, I got involved in major philanthropy when I was 30 years old. This gave me a chance, early in my career, to figure out what issues matter most to me. As I learned the ins and outs of fundraising and planning events, I was also able to work with and build relationships with executives, industry leaders and community activists. Through my leadership role at Harlem School of the Arts, I now have the opportunity to build my own table and it’s important to pay it forward by creating spaces where younger people feel welcomed and seen. My go to gal pals for this are my little sisters in crime Chelsea Roberts and Chelsea Keyes, known affectionately as ”The Chels.” My heart was warmed that they agreed to join the Harlem School of the Arts Associates’ Board and buy tickets to attend the Gala. The evening (and my life in general) was and continues to be greatly impacted by their youthful energy, ideas and enthusiasm.

I could go on and on about this magical, glamorous and unforgettable New York City evening of philanthropy and fashion. After almost a year of work, it was truly wonderful to see it all come together in such a successful night. I do hope you enjoyed a sneak peak inside the gala and learning about the impact that Harlem School of the Arts delivers to our community.

As always, thank you for your support and for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered. And, as I know the question is on your mind, yes, we have already begun planning for 2020. I will let you know as soon as details are ready to share. The work continue…


Etcetera, Fashion, Uncategorized

Packing for a Beach Vacation – The Barbados Edition

July 15, 2019

If you’re stumped about what to pack for a beach vacation, if you find yourself overpacking and paying excess baggage fees at the airport and/or if you never have what you need when you finally arrive at your destination then this blog post about what I packed for a short summer beach vacation to Barbados is just for you. Over 4th of July weekend while our American friends celebrated the United States’ independence with fireworks and barbecue, the #Hubbs and I escaped to the crystal blue shores of the Carribean island of Barbados for some golf, beach time, long family meals and general rest and relaxation. Below, I dive into how I prepared for the trip, what I actually packed and a few fun facts about the picturesque island of Barbados.  

Whether it’s a beach vacation or city adventure, before I pull out a single solitary stitch of clothing, I determine my “trip character” by asking myself the question: “What story will I tell through clothing, accessories and makeup.”  For example, am I a carefree island girl wearing lots of color seeking undiscovered white sand and local flavors or a jet setting socialite looking for luxury, fine dining and picturesque swag?  If it’s a city trip, am I a well heeled tourist soaking up the culture through museums, long strolls down undiscovered streets, shopping in quaint neighborhoods and enjoying a bite to eat at a cafe while people watching? Or, am I a chic hipster searching for a specific food truck with the best tacos in town? Deciding your character forces you to hone in on the type of trip you have planned and then forces you to pack only what’s necessary. Most people overpack because they are planning the “just in case” outfits that will absolutely never happen. You don’t need stilettos on a beach vacation just as a ball gown is unnecessary for a multi-city hiking trip through Europe.

Just in case the unexpected tete-a-test does actually arise, as you will see below, you can use accessories and makeup to take a properly planned outfit from day to night. So no worries if you happen to meet the Prime Minister of Barbados at the famous Sandy Lane lounge and “she” (see what I did there ?) then invites you to a private dinner party on a yacht. You will look effortlessly chic as my no fail packing plan will make sure you are ready for whatever moment comes your way.

After I nail the character, I pack clothing and accessories around a color story.  By choosing a few hues to take with me verses every color under the rainbow, I make sure that each item I carry pairs with multiple pieces including shoes and accessory.   

Here are some examples of colors that work well together. Pick a combination that compliments your skin tone and doesn’t require you to buy a whole new wardrobe.
  • Choose a color story and only pack items within those range of colors. This includes shoes and accessories.
  • Try on everything you plan to pack to make sure it fits, is clean and has the right tone. Snap a quick picture to make getting dressed easier when you arrive.
  • Plan each outfit for day and night meaning if you have two beach days, one sightseeing day exploring the local town, one casual dinner night and two fancier nights then plan for those and take exactly what you need. Don’t just throw a bunch of items in the suitcase hoping you will have what you want to wear for each day. You will end up with too many clothes, shoes and accessories yet not enough of anything you actually need.
  • Take clothing that can be worn multiple ways meaning the caftan, shorts or maxi skirt featured below look quite chic over a bathing suit with flats but instantly become evening ready by pairing them with a gold wedge, bold jewelry and a swipe of lipstick.
  • Shoes:
    • One pair of high heels or wedge shoe that goes with everything in your suitcase. A metallic or nuetral always works.
    • One mid height shoe like a kitten heel for more casual moments and if you’re the type that must have more than one evening shoe option (everyone has their vice so no judgement here)
    • One pair of sneakers for workouts or long walks (vacation is an excellent time to fit in the #sweatysesh)
    • One pair of flats you can wear day to night and also goes with everything in the suitcase.  
    • No exceptions on more shoes!!! Shoes take up too much room!  
  • Handbags:
    • One straw or raffia bag that can go from a day on the beach to a casual stroll through town (if it’s a city adventure then instead of a beach bag, you would pack a fanny pack or tote).
    • A couple of small but bold flat clutches.  They don’t take up space and can add quite a bit of texture and color to a basic outfit.  
  • Accessories: Although my jewelry is carefully planned with each look and then packed in a jewelry roll to protect my pieces, here is where you can have some fun and pack a few extras. Accessories are space savers that pack a big punch. Statement earrings and a bold lip can transform your basic beach caftan into a glamorous evening look.
  • Travel Outfit: wear the same thing each way (change your underwear and t-shirt obvi). This saves room in your suitcase and is one less thing to think about.


I am a “carry-on only” type of gal unless I am going away for more than seven days like next month for our 2-week European adventure through Portugal and Italy. For many of you reading this, the “carry-on only” will seem impossible. My answer is that you are packing too much stuff! If you follow the rules above carefully planning what you actually need and only take what you plan then everything will fit nicely into a regulation sized carry-on bag.

Now that you have the ground rules, the photos below regarding what I packed for Barbados should make a lot of sense.  My color story for this beachy vibe are shades of blue, oranges and green with graphic black & white.

The scarf below ties all my colors together and will serve as a turban, maybe a scarf croptop or tied on a purse for a punch of color and print.

My heeled shoe is the gold Michael by Michael Kors Wedge.  

The flat shoe is a my go to warm weather sandal that I picked up in Greece a few years back.  It’s comfortable and cane be dressed up or down.

 The travel outfit is a pair of olive linen pants paired with a gingham men’s button down and a Tory Sport track jacket. The sneakers here are my new Gucci trainers and they go with everything I packed.  We aptly named them #DirtyGucci. The gingham shirt will look chic paired with one of my bathing suits on a cool night watching the sunset while the track jacket is perfect flung over the shoulders for an air conditioned restaurant. Again, pack items that are multi-purpose.

 I had originally planned to pack a lucite kitten heel sandal from Zara but took them out last minute once #Hubbs told me that this trip will be a little more casual. I’m saving this orange gingham dress look for next month in Portugal & Italy.  

This look will serve as the basis for my packing to Portugal and Italy next month.

I try on each outfit making sure it works and then snap a picture so I know what dress goes with what shoe and accessory once I arrive at my destination.  This makes getting dressed easy during the trip and forces you to not just “throw” another item in the suitcase just because.  No extras just for extras sake.  I say that because I always pack one to two extra looks just in case I find myself feeling a different vibe that day/night or if an unexpected opportunity arises.  

This was an extra look that I didn’t actually wear. I left this particular necklace at home once I deciding that my “lips clutch” and turquoise necklace from above would work just as well.

During most trips, I wear a day and night outfit.  I love dressing for dinner. It’s an old fashioned tradition that I enjoy.

I was the most “dressed” person in the restaurant that night and could care less living by the motto #overdressedandunderbothered!

 Since this was a beach vacation, most of my day outfits are bikini/coverup looks.  

Caftans are so versatile. I can wear this striped Tory Burch Classic caftan for day with my gold flats and a wide brim sun hat or throw on my gold wedges, bangles and bright lip for a nighttime moment.

However, just in case we venture out into the market or city for an afternoon.  I packed a casual day look as well.  

“Dress like you’re going somewhere better later.”

  • Where to Stay?
    • Hands down, the best (and most expensive) resort on the island is the famous Sandy Lane. If you want to treat yourself then save your coins and book a room. The property is gorgeous and the staff and service is exceptional. It’s an experience you will remember forever.
    • Another living option is a private villa which is where we stayed on this trip. The private home was beautifully appointed and conveniently located on a beautiful and fairly quiet beach. However, I didn’t necessarily care for the food prepared by the chef. Many dishes were overcooked or not seasoned well. This is the risk when staying at a villa. However, this option is more affordable than a hotel when traveling with a group and allows for good family bonding time.
  • Where to eat?
    • Our best meal during the trip was at Cin Cin by the Sea. The pan seared market fish was flaky, fresh and the most memorable meal I have eaten all summer.
    • Another island favorite is The Cliff restaurant with its stunning decor and romantic feels.
    • A fast food Bajan haunt is Chefette known for their roti and fried fish. A Chefette is conveniently located before you enter security at the airport so grab you a sandwich to enjoy before leaving Barbados.
    • Oisten’s Friday Night Fish Fry is a must go, eat and see. We didn’t make it this trip because we were across the island but if you can find time to experience this Bajan tradition then definitely do it! Who doesn’t love an outdoor cookout that turns into a party?
  • What to do?
    • Beach: The Bajan beaches are well known for their pristine sand and turquoise blue Carribean water. Some areas are rocky so bring your rubber water shoes if you plan to swim like a dolphin.
    • Golf: We played two rounds of golf at the Sandy Lane Country Club. They have two different 18 hole picturesque courses. If you want to play the famous Green Monkey then you need a room at Sandy Lane.

Since we launched Jackie Unfiltered, I have wanted to write about travel discussing packing tips, destinations and travel dos and dont’s.  However, I never find the time to either write before and after.  The lead up to every adventure is hectic and the get back to real life takes serious effort.  So we’re trying something new here.  Write as I go. Update it as I live my life.  I’m using Jackie Unfiltered as my real life “Instagram” or “Facebook.”   What do you think? Help us improve with your comments and suggestions below.

Visit the beautiful island of Barbados as you will not be disappointed by the beauty of the Bajan hospitality.  Enjoy your summer and, as always, thank you for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered. 


Etcetera, Fashion, Uncategorized

Podcast conversation on Personal Style, Grief and a Good Tailor

June 15, 2019

Thank you Shirley McAlpine for including me in your “She’s Got Drive” Podcast. We talked about everything from personal style to living a full life while managing grief.

I believe that “style” is something that starts on the inside and then manifests itself on the outside. A woman needs a deep understanding of herself, her lifestyle and what image she wants to portray. Also, each of us should have an excellent tailor on speed dial cause he/she can make a paper bag look like couture. ☎️✂️?



Click this link to hear our podcast conversation:

Fashion, Uncategorized

Rainy Dayz Layering

January 25, 2019

Our 2019 “No Shopping Challenge for 6 mos” continues…. It’s not as hard as I thought. Well, in patent honesty, I do “kind of” miss pulling the trigger on upcoming Spring/Summer items. Net-A-Porter had the nerve to do an e-mail blast yesterday about its curated online boutique dedicated to Columbian clothing designers. My absolute fave. Nonetheless, I stand strong in the “no shopping” fight. The question is, “are you still with me?”

As for today’s #OOTD, it’s a rainy 55 degrees in NYC which means muggy, overcast and grossly wet right now but likely to get chillier as the day drags on. I am currently on the metro North train for a play date with one of my longtime girlfriends. I decided on chunky layers that I can pull off if I get warm and pile back on later today when temps drop.

I bought the jacket I’m wearing in December at the NYC “In Her Shoes” Shopping Bazaar which features consumer good from female entrepreneurs. The jacket is never worn. It’s oversized like I prefer my outerwear and a little kitschy cool with the graffiti on the back.

This chunky marigold sweater is one of my Fall 2018 splurges from cult favorite Michael Kors Collection. I love the bright warm color which pairs perfectly with red and khaki. I have only worn this fab sweater once which is a travesty as that makes my cost per wear completely awful. You will see this baby again, including with white jeans come spring!

Lesson Learned Today: We can spend more time planning to wear the nice items we actually own if we stop searching for new stuff to buy. Seems obvious I know but not necessarily so for us serial shoppers.

That’s all folks. How’s it coming with your personal “no new retail in 2019” experience? Anything shaking? It’s been a minute since we chatted. Hope you’re well!

Fashion, Uncategorized

6 Months of No Shopping

January 13, 2019

For the first 6 moths of 2019, I am challenging myself to give up shopping. This includes clothing, accessories, shoes, household appliances, furniture and all other retail. I’m #shoppingmycloset for everything that comes up and taking a retail break to focus on other ish. 

January 1: We went to bed at 6am on New Year’s Day and are still recovering.

I will try to post as many outfits as I can during this “No Shopping Challenge” but mostly I will post how not shopping makes me feel, what space it frees up for other things I am interested in accomplishing and how creating new looks from existing pieces sparks creativity. 

January 2: Wore a favorite old caftan, fedora and shoes I wore once over the summer for dinner with #Hubbs & visiting friends.

Join me on the challenge if you like or just cheer me on from the sidelines cause your girl Jackie will need HELP as she knows a thing or three about #retailtherapy.  Please build a tall, high and wide fence around my favorites stores, brands and websites.  Earlier this week, I had to unsubscribe from certain retail emails because the resort pieces and clearance sales were already taunting me! ???‍♀️??


January 5: An old Tibi off the shoulder top with printed pants and rattan accessories for a romantic lazy lunch with the #Hubbs.

Fashion, Uncategorized

Leopard Will Always Save the Style Day

December 14, 2018

This look is perfect for a casual day at the office, running errands on the weekends, a quick bite with girlfriends during the holiday or even an impromptu date night with your boo.

I didn’t mention in my last post that my new favorite leopard coat has a detachable green velvet belt!  Well, it does.  There is nothing that a curvy girl like myself desires more than a cinched waist.  I shouldn’t love a piece of fabric this much. How-so-eva, it’s the little things that matter most in life …

If you care about the rest of this joint (how could you given the exceptional coat), the orange sweater is really an oversized sweater dress I bought last winter from H&M.  I like that it’s oversized because it makes it easier to wear. Effortless but cute style was the goal today as I ran around NYC from appointment to appointment jumping on and off trains in freezing cold rain.  

The knee high dark brown clog boots are from one of my favorite Soho shopping haunts, the No.6 Store.  They are sooooo comfortable. Despite the 2.5 inch heel with 1 inch platform, I can walk for miles in these boots. They are also waterproof which is perfect for the NYC weather today. This rich chocolate color reminds me of vintage Ralph Lauren. They are the kind of boots that last a lifetime and only get better with age. The natural patina and scuffs tell the stories of days past.

My cheery ski slope green hat and gloves were part of the Tory Sport gifts they sent over a few weeks ago. I think they pair perfectly with the leopard and orange. Thank you again Tory Sport!

The tote is Gucci from the men’s side of the store.It’s a recent purchase. Sshhh, please don’t tell the #Hubbs. I needed a new tote that would fit my electronics and girlie stuff when I wanted to look professional and put together. The strap is detachable. However, today, the classic green and red Gucci stripe paired perfectly with the rest of my running around town look.

As always, thank youfor stopping by Jackie Unfiltered and taking a look at #JackiesStyleFile.  We hope you are enjoying these December days.  Tag @jackieunfiltered_ in your holiday posts so we can check out what you’re wearing this season!


Fashion, Uncategorized

Style comes from the inside and has nothing to do with labels

December 10, 2018

Over the last few years, I have worked hard to learn about myself meaning understanding my fears, unpacking my self-doubt and healing my wounds.  In this process, I have also uncovered my personal style.  It has never been clearer to me that the outside can’t manifest what’s not on the inside.  Style has nothing to do with labels, clothing or makeup.  Style has everything to do with soul. A woman who has made peace with where she came from, accepted who she is and remains excited about whatever the future holds will look sexy as hell in a paper bag, red lipstick and bare feet.

As always, thank you for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered.  Send us a message about style, your favorite fashion images or leave a comment below.  It’s our absolute favorite topic to discuss. 


Fashion, Uncategorized

Marigold Yellow, Red & Leopard Outfit Color Story

December 9, 2018

One of last week’s outfits was inspired by Michael Kors 2018 Autumn/Winter runway collection.  I am obsessed with how Kors worked leopard into almost every runway look combining this nuetral print with tartan plaid, dainty silk flower prints and bright colors like marigold and red.  

I recently tagged along to infamous Kleinfeld Bridal in NYC with my friend Janna as she searches for the perfect wedding dress for her 2019 nuptials.  The gentleman in the middle is Shaymus Yarbrough (“Shay”), a Kleinfeld Bridal consultant.  If you’re shopping for your big day, call Shay.  He listens.  He KNOWS the dresses and their different fits.  He’s honest and not overselling.  His vocabulary is off the charts good.  Janna is still considering several dresses.  I am a fan of the “coquettish.”

At first glance, I thought I couldn’t pull off this marigold cable knit sweater. Yellow is not typically one of my strong colors as I have so much gold in my skin’s natural undertones.  As I analyzed these pictures for this post, I still say that perhaps it’s still it’s not my best shade.  Nonetheless, I am drawn to this cheery hue.  I also really adore the fitted but chunky silhouette.  Most sweaters are either over sized or fitted. The cut of this sweater is genius as the knit provides the heft without the bulk.

As for the skirt, I’ve worn this 6-year old navy blue circle skirt from Tibi more times than I can count.  It goes from day-to-night. Casual to glam. I have even pulled it out for a black tie event pairing it with a white Wolford turtleneck bodysuit, sparkly belt and high fashion makeup. It’s a closet workhorse.  I have a new navy Alaia crop top that I plan to mix it up with later this winter. These are the type of closet staples (well made, neutral and versatile) that I suggest women invest in over and over again.  For your body type and personal style, that may mean a pencil skirt or even a mini. Find the shape that works for you and rock it! 

Let’s finally talk shoes. Folks are always surprised when I say that I am not a “shoe gal.”  I would never consider buying a shoe that is uncomfortable. These red boots are a recent acquisition from Aquazurra Black Friday sale.  I like the sensible 85mm heel height, 360 croc effect from toe to heel and of course the red color!  While these boots may seem like a bold choice, they perfectly pair with half my closet and most of the items I bought this autumn/winter.  I only invest in shoes that will stay with me for the long haul.  Also, I’m a New Yorker so shoes must be comfortable enough to walk a few city blocks.  We are never sure that the Uber will pick us up in front of a building, that taxis will be readily available or that we won’t have to hop on the train to avoid traffic and get where we need to go fast.
This is me headed to the Harlem School of the Arts annual Black Tie Masquerade Gala.  I took the train to midtown that day because that is the only way to get anywhere during rush hour in Manhattan.  

Thank you for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered and taking part in another #JackiesStyleFile.   We hope you are enjoying these busy holidays.   Whether you spend December running from event to event like I do or take a calmer approach and do more stuff around the house, for the love of everything that is good and true, enjoy each day in “style.”  We only live once. 


  Will Janna say yes to the dress?

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Fashion, Uncategorized

A Faux Fur Leopard Coat adds Interest to Winter Style

December 6, 2018

If you live in a 4 season place like New York City for 15 years, you have collected enough coats, hats, gloves and sweater to outfit a small country.  The variety in color, shape and material is the only thing that gets us through six months of cold, very little sun and short ass days.

I purchased this new acquisition from an online shop I found on instagram, Shop Nichole Lynel.  I of course love the leopard print, faux fur and green collar detail.  But I more love that I purchased it from a company run by a woman of color who seems to have a tunnel vision for her path to victory.  This is the type of retail I want to support.

While this coat might seem wild and crazy, it’s actually quite versatile.  It would equally amazing draped across the shoulders with a little black dress, tights, heels and a deep black red lip.  It comes with a detachable green velvet belt so it would also look tres chic belted over skinny jeans or leather pants with a borrowed from the boys oversized type shirt.  The possibilities are literally endless with this one size fits all number.

Sadly, my faux fur leopard coat is currently sold out but there are plenty of faux fur options in the stores and online right now.   You can grab one at every price point from inexpensive to runway couture:  Nordstrom, Bloomingdales, Saks Fifth Avenue or Net-A-Porter to link just a few.  I will caution that if you are diving into the fur trend, don’t spend a bunch of money until you are sure it’s a look for you.  Test the waters with a lower price point and a fun color before face diving into this whole furry moment.  By the way, that’s the way you try any new trend.  Inexpensive first.  Invest later.

As always, thank you for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered.  Wishing you a Happy Holiday season that is well dressed and lots of fun!


Fashion, Uncategorized

Holiday Pattern Mixing with Bold Red Tartan, Leopard Print & Denim

December 4, 2018

Yesterday, I rode the Metro North train from Grand Central to Irivington, NY, a small suburban town along the Hudson River about 25 miles North of New York City.  A friend and I met with a florist regarding an holiday soirée we are planning at our nearby country club.  Have you ever thought that seemingly ordinary days, not just special occasions or trips to far away places, are a chance for an adventure?

Every December, a few members co-host an annual Black Tie Holiday holiday dinner at our private club.  Yesterday, our small planning committee (meaning 2 of us) met with a wonderful florist and event designer, Seasons on Hudson, who will help us transform a few traditional country club rooms into a cinnamon and spice wonderland.  The floral designer Miko is lovely and she has created the most unique and charming little shop filled with curated decor, vintage china and beautiful objects. 

I definitely use clothing and accessories to approach life and make statements about who I am and my current mood:  

Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak.  —-Rachel Zoe

This plaid Michael Kors blazer speaks volumes while feeling perfect for a train jaunt up the Hudson River to meet with a florist in one of the River towns.  Similarly, my fancy red mesh socks from Blair Edie’s recent Halogen x Atlantic-Pacific collaboration with Nordstrom paired with luxury loafers with a bling twist will tell the proprietor that I’m fun, creative and don’t quite take myself so seriously.

This old leopard fedora perfectly complements the red tartan blazer. I learned about layering leopard with patterns from studying Michael Kors Autumn/Winter 2018 runway collection.   Hmmm, what does my outfit immediately tell this Florist whom I never worked with before?

Events are in the details. A good outfit is in the details. Hell, life is really in the details.  Joy and happiness results from diving into the sticky stuff that makes our hearts skip a beat, causes us to remember that special day or transforms the ordinary into extraordinary.  What am I trying to say?  Don’t be afraid to sweat the small stuff, just be sure that it’s “the stuff” you WANT to sweat and not what others want you to focuss on.  

As always, thank you for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered.  Have a wonderful week and again, Happy Holidays!  It’s the most wonderful time of the year.