I froze my bum off to see the House of Louis Vuitton’s exhibition “Volez, Voguez, Voyagez and it was worth it!

Taking the solo trip in single digit temps to the former New York City location of the American Stock Exchange to see  “Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition, one day before its closing on Jan 7th, was in two words- worth it!

Debra at the NYC “Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition photo by @debrafrombrooklyn

Debra at the NYC “Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition photo by @debrafrombrooklyn

 

Yes, I went solo and yup, it was a frigid  6 degrees outside in the Big Apple, but your girl survived. I was happy to see that I was amongst hundreds vying to get into the exhibit before it shuttered the next day. The exhibit which opened on October 27 drew a slew of celebs and fashion industry who’s who. With my fingers freezing and my feet going numb I jumped in place to keep warm and gawked at a group of fashionably dressed fashionistas standing in front of me passing out hand warmers amongst themselves. What I would have given for just one of those warmers to place in the bottom of my silver sneakers. I didn’t have to wait much longer for an answer.

Debra at  the NYC “Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition  photo by @debrafrombrooklyn

The lines kept getting longer and longer as  Debra waited her turn to finally  get inside  of the NYC “Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition photo by @debrafrombrooklyn

Thankfully my hour long wait ended. My line finally reached its way to the front door of the former American Stock Exchange and we entered inside.Major thanks go to curator, Oliver Saillard who brought to life the installation taking attendees on a journey of the Vuitton legacy starting in 1954 to present day. The exhibition was free to the public and stands in my opinion, in a class all by itself.

 

Louis Vuitton subway pic by @debrafrombrooklyn

Louis Vuitton NYC subway from the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition pic taken by @debrafrombrooklyn

 

With my family out of town for the holidays going solo turned out surprisingly to be lots of fun. Meeting new friends to take my pictures and chat about the installation added to the excitement.

Debra strikes a pose at the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition pic by @debrafrombrooklyn

Debra strikes a pose at the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition pic by @debrafrombrooklyn

 

Some of my favorite and memorable pieces from the House of Louis Vuitton includ collaborations with other designers and brands like  Marc Jacobs, Supreme, Steven Sprouse, Takashi Murakami, Yayoi Kusama

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Debra strikes a pose at the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition pic by @debrafrombrooklyn

Debra strikes a pose at the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition pic by @debrafrombrooklyn

 

 

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It was wonderful to see many people from all over

 

Humble beginnings indeed. Louis Vuitton who in 1835 at 14 years old, left the Jura Mountains in eastern France by foot, reaching Paris two years later and working as an apprentice to a box, crates and wardrobe maker to go on nineteen years later to start his own company attracting the likes of socialites and dignitaries including Empress Eugenie is in of itself impressive.

Photo of a young Louis Vuitton taken at the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition in NYC by @debrafrombrookly

Photo of a young Louis Vuitton taken at the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition in NYC by @debrafrombrooklyn

 

More wonderful images from the exhibition that wowed.

 

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Fashion rules everything and the House of  Louis Vuitton have always been a top choice of starlets and socialites through the years.

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Early Louis Vuitton fashions -from the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition in NYC -photo by @debrafrombrooklyn

Early Louis Vuitton fashions -from the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition in NYC -photo by @debrafrombrooklyn

 

Louis Vuitton fashions are red carpet faves of Hollywood starlets -from the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition in NYC -photo by @debrafrombrookly

Louis Vuitton fashions are red carpet faves of Hollywood starlets -from the Volez, Voguez, Voyagez – Louis Vuitton exhibition in NYC -photo by @debrafrombrooklyn

 

If you missed this exhibition you definitely missed out. It was an installation definitely worth attending. For more on the House that Louis Vuitton built, please visit the site here for US  residents and  International here for more.

By Debra Lewis-Boothman

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Multi-Platinum Artist Fabolous Is All About The Stepping Stones in his hometown of Brooklyn

Ask any Brooklynite what’s the best thing about their borough and they’ll likely say, “EVERYTHING!”

We at  crownheightsmom will have to agree. In fact, no matter the season something fun is always  happening across the borough of Brooklyn.

Annual events from the  Cherry Blossom Sakura Matsuri Festival  at  the Brooklyn Botanic Garden  to the highly in demand monthly Target  First Saturdays at the Brooklyn Museum of Art   are the most talked about but on any given day there is always  something happening here. In fact, when it comes to putting its culture on display  Brooklyn hands down seems to be doing it best.

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 Japanese Culture at Sakura Matsuri Cherry Blossom Festival  at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

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A Traditional Geisha at the Sakura Matsuri Festival at BBG in 2016

That’s why  when we found out about  the  second annual  Central Brooklyn Arts  & Culture Weekend  which took place June 10th and 11th along the famed Eastern Parkway we had to go. It was a  fun weekend spent out with the kids and was celebrated with a movie night  happening on Saturday  and an outdoors street festival showcasing the best of the borough’s foods, arts,  crafts,  culture and contributors occurring on Sunday.

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A Flyer of the 2-day event celebrating Central Brooklyn

At the outdoor street festival  on June 11 the festivities kicked off with Borough President, Eric Adams   honoring   two outstanding talents from Brooklyn — multi platinum MC and Hip-Hop artist, John “Fabolous” Jackson and the late, world renowned abstract artist and Neo-Expressionist Jean-Michel Basquiat, (whose  family represented for him).

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Rapper Fabolous receives the Key to Brooklyn from Borough President Eric Adams

Both Fab and Basquiat(posthumously) were  awarded   with the “Keys to Brooklyn” and  bestowed with individual stepping  stones inscribed with their names  and placed within the  Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s famed Celebrity Path.  The two sons of Brooklyn are now counted along the celebrity walkway amongst 160 others famous Brooklynites  past and present including  poets, performers,  artists, and athletes who lived or were born in the borough and  all made outstanding contributions to  the borough.

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Fabolous strikes a pose with Borough President Eric Adams next to his inscribed stepping stone in the Celebrity Path at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

 

The outdoor street festival  saw  locals, families  and visiting tourists  coming out to  rejoice in the arts, foods and culture along Eastern Parkway .

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Brooklyn residents check out the vendors along Eastern Parkway

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Seafood lovers were all about getting their  boxed food at Catch It

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The Brooklyn Museum brought its arts outdoors while a balloon vendor brings smiles to faces

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It was all about the sweet kernels at Kettle Korn

My 9-year old son had a blast checking out the vendors and the performances as well as  tasting some of the delicious food options on sale. He definitely liked the roasted corn which he eagerly covered in butter and a hefty shaking of parmesan cheese. So delicious.

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There is nothing better than sinking your teeth into a sweet roasted corn on the cob

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Brooklynites grabbed  Smooth smoothies as they walked the path along Eastern Parkway

The high 80’s temperature definitely led to a beautiful day outdoors with attendees  enjoying and basking in the  music, dance and theatrical plays  happening on the main stage set up at the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Arch at Grand Army Plaza. The breeze and water spraying from the fountain made for a refreshing feel.

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Those  walking  along the Eastern Parkway corridor beginning at Flatbush Avenue and heading towards  Washington Avenue got to choose from an array of vendors offering food, drink as well as the purchase crafts and fashionable items from jewelry to kids clothing.

 

Lots of activities were  available and  included fun games, bouncy houses  and  arts and crafts for the kids, a  dance party and theatrical performances  courtesy of  the Prospect Park Zoo, the Jewish Children’s Museum, the Brooklyn Children’s Museum and the New York Aquarium

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A band performs on the main stage at Grand Army Plaza

 

The 2-day cultural arts inspired events were brought together and presented by Brooklyn Borough President, Eric L. Adams in partnership with One Brooklyn Fund, Inc.,  All in all it was fun for the entire family.

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The office of Brooklyn’s Borough President, Eric Adams out  on the Parkway

 

With smiles on our faces we left  the festival  eagerly looking forward to next year’s celebration .

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Enjoying the day with my son

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Crownheightsmom Media CEO, Debra Lewis-Boothman’s outdoor street festival fashion included an african head-wrap and  a blush silk romper paired with hightop Converse sneakers.

 

If you also attended  this event please share your thoughts about the  weekend in our comments section below.

BONDING OVER ART FASHION WITH DAUGHTER 8, RE-IGNITES CROWNHEIGHTSMOM’S DESIGNER DREAMS…..KIND OF…..by Debra lewis-Boothman

I  had long forgotten or better yet,  given up  on my  teenage dreams of becoming a fashion designer . That was until recently, attending  a  Target Free Sundays  at the  Studio Museum in Harlem with my  8- year old daughter and  viewing the Speaking of People  exhibition. Directly after,  we  headed  to Workshop A  for the Hands On Fashion Extravaganza workshop to make our own fashion layouts from blank traced  silhouettes.

From the Speaking Of People Exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem

The workshop  re-ignited the passion  to begin thinking again about designing  clothing.  A dream I’d abandoned  so many moons ago  while  a teen. Summers  of  countless hours  pouring over the fashion pages of  Ebony, Vogue, Essence,  Seventeen, TEEN and  Cosmo .

Dreams of  one day designing my own line of  bold, vivid colorful fashions  reminiscent of  my  childhood in Barbados  were always at the  back of my mind. Although not led to a career in  fashion,   I did wind  on  the pages of magazines —writing and reporting  on fashion and being  amongst  the small  group of initial staffers to start-up a then  new  PEOPLE Stylewatch in 2002.-  launching  it to its fashion bible status of today . Choosing a path of going  to the  world of  magazines and celebrity journalism. I would end up writing about fashion  not designing  it,

Getting to share  the workshop with my daughter and seeing  her talents shine at such a young  age is so rewarding. Other families enjoying the including the  workshop mums, grandmas, dads and aunts taking the  for color, design  and Thinking Springtime  and Summer I chose bold colored  paper for the clothes and got my scissors to work in cutting them out. Gluing the paper clothes on was a lil tricky but

Crownheightsmom gos for the bold colors of the caribbean

We started out with  blank Sillhouttes

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The colored paper to create the clothes

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Cut out clothes to stick on the silhoutte

 

My  8- year old daughter ‘s creations: She   has a great eye for color.  She chose to use colored paper and colored  markers.

8-year old Kameko's vision on her silloutte

8-year old Kameko’s vision on her silloutte

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Kameko’s silhoutte all done

Take a trip  to the Studio Museum in Harlem.. What a wonderful way to bond  and learn  alongside your  child. Art Rocks!

MAGNOLIA GROWS IN BROOKLYN……CROWN HEIGHTS TO BE EXACT! by Debra Lewis-Boothman

FRIDAY’ S CUTE PIC OF THE DAY on  crownheightsmom goes to Magnolia, the heart-stopping, cute-as-ever little 20-month old happy tyke  who along with her BABY  stopped me in my tracks on Eastern Parkway in Crown Heights, Brooklyn on Thursday afternoon.

20-month old Magnolia

20-month old Magnolia

Meet MAGNOLIA . She literally brought the sun out today. In fact I think   her  cuteness is the  reason  the expected  snow storm for  Thursday went bye-bye!

I spotted the lil darling taking her baby out for a walk on Eastern Parkway. Along for the stroll was mum Natalie and dad Matthew. The  9-year Brooklyn residents  have been residing in Crown Heights for the past  three years.  Before  Magnolia came along the gorgeous couple  were  living in Do-or-die Bed-Sty!…

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Brooklyn is fast becoming the NYC borough young families are looking to start and raise their families.

Brooklyn is fast becoming that borough  young families are flocking to. Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, Lefferts Gardens and Flatbush are the  new favorite areas for new renters and buyers. Don’t get me wrong there is still interest  in Fort Green, Bedford Stuyvesant, Ditmas Park, Sunset Park,  Park Slope and Boroum Hill areas .

Why the Crown Heights draw ? It  has Prospect Park, the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Grand Army Plaza Library and the Brooklyn Children’s Museum  all at ones doorstep.

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Brooklyn Children’s Museum

Prospect Park

Prospect Park

Brooklyn Museum of Art

Brooklyn Museum of Art

japanese Garden  at Brooklyn's Botanical Gardens

japanese Garden at Brooklyn’s Botanical Gardens

Let’s not even begin to talk  culture. Brooklyn  is  a gumbo pot of cultures. It is the  epitome of what New York stands for.  For young families moving to Crown Heights you can walk down the  street and bump into someone from every caribbean island known to man, meet young hip  fashionable Hasidics, or a Korean  grocer   selling  the freshest fruits and vegetables this side of Chinatown, or even talk politics with the Yemen corner store owner . The cultures  my friend in Brooklyn are  infinite .

So as our little cutie pie Magnolia continues on her walk  here’s to wishing her a wonderful year and  hoping when she hits  her 2 year mark  on May 19 that she  stays as  sweet as ever for mummy and daddy .

Enjoy your walk  little Magnolia and take in all that your wonderful neighborhood has to offer. Soak it up!

Magnolia alongside mum and dad

Magnolia alongside mum and dad

CROWNHEIGHTSMOM STRIKES A POSE IN HOLIDAY FASHIONS WITH THE MOMS ON WPIX-11 NY

I love  strutting my stuff.  Seriously though, tell me  of a woman who doesn’t! We all do!  So when Denise and Melissa of  The MOMS platform asked if I was avail to join them for a holiday fashion segment on WPIX-11-Live in  New York of course I shouted  YASSSS, YAASSSS .  The thought of being in a fashion segment on PIX-11 brought  back memories of  walking[see at 12:45 wearing red dress] in Strut The Fashionable MOM Show At Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week At Lincoln Center in 2013 .That experience is one that is still unforgettable.

Leading up to the big day on WPIX.  Myself and mom-models Christy  who tweets at @mstwocents and  Jennifer  who tweets at @mommadanddaboyz  discussed with Denise  some of the places we shop for reasonable mom fashions.  I went with Century 21 as I just love their mix of designer and  European fashions,  Jennifer went with Burlington Coat Factory and  Christy  chose ThreadUP the online consignment shop.

I headed to Century 21 on  Cortland Street directly across from the World Trade Center and tried on a few outfits .

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This black jumpsuit fits just right and hits all the curves but I was still undecided. I paired it with black and salmon pumps to see which one would pop. I think I loved it with the black pumps best .

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I loved this belted jumpsuit. Plus it was in grey which is the hot color of the season. I think the bold salmon pumps really made it pop!

All White  Look: Inspired by Solange Knowles' choice of color for her wedding  but resulted in  a Janelle' Mona type vibe as I went  went for the crisp snowflake color  of winter paired with  black and white loafers.

This all white look was inspired by Solange Knowles’ choice of color for her wedding but resulted in a Janelle’ Mona type vibe. The crop sweater in crisp snowflake color of winter white paired with the bold necklace added to the hipness.

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My CHOICE! This outfit was EVERYTHING from the Ivanka Trump pumps with gold buckle which retails for $140 but were on sale for $49 to the floral Renamed-Skirt with pockets which I loved at first sight and at a mere  $34.99 paired with  the off white faux fur vest at a bargain price of $28 . The look was completed with a spaghetti strap Splash white tank a mere $9.97.

The big day came I arrived at  the PIX11 studios by 7:30am. I  went through security and looked  around for the others. The wait area was already buzzing and hair and makeup was alight with lots of movement. I said  a brief hello to Councilman  Mark Levine who was  there to speak about  the fatal NYPD shootings that had occurred  in Brooklyn and how the  Mayor was going forward with NYPD relations. Milling around also  was a group dressed in holidays costumes  of elves, santas and and santas helpers.  They were getting their makeup applied and taking selfies. Needless to say the holiday excitement was uncontainable all around .

With my makeup applied I headed back to  the wait area to greet  Denise and Jennifer  looking up I spotted supermodel Alex Wek as she  walked  into the wait area  and head directly to the makeup area. I learned that Wek was there to speak  with PIX-11 morning  News Anchors Sukanya Krishnan and Kori Chambers  about  being chosen  to push the button to release the Waterford Crystal Ball for the  60-second countdown  to ring in 2015 in Times Square.  Wek will be representing the International Rescue Committee (IRC) alongside its president David Miliband, South Sudanese model Nykhor Paul, local high school senior Sonam Lama and Cuban-American actor and singer Jencarlos Canela .

International Top Model Alex Wek will be  ringing in the New Year .

International Top Model Alex Wek will be ringing in the New Year .

Finally it was time to get in front of the cameras. Denise took her place next to Sukanya in a black Rent the Runway jumpsuit paired with suede Just Fab  wedges. Her words of advise to us moms, “Just  have fun ladies!” she said. Which is exactly what we did!

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Overall, it was an amazing experience  and one that I will hold dear. Sukanya even told us  that  we could send greetings out to our loved ones. I said hello to my three kids and even got to send wishes to my students at Long Island University’s  Brooklyn Campus. Thank you WPIX-11 and The MOMS. This was definitely a great lead in to  a wonderful  start of my New Year.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! HAPPY NEW YEAR! HAPPY NEW YEAR! HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Looking great in our holiday looks

Looking great in our holiday looks

Striking a pose for the camera

Striking a pose for the camera

Denise and Suk introducing  our Holiday looks: Conservative, Edgy (that would be me)  and Sporty

Denise and morning News Anchor Sukanya introducing the Holiday looks- Conservative, Edgy (that would be me) and Sporty.