On Saturday 27th August it was all about the kinks and curls to Respect The Fro at COTTONS Caribbean Restaurant. During the meet and greet guests where shown a slide show of images of a selection of inspired and created hair styles with braids, locks, and natural kinks which may inspire themselves to create their own.
SCREENING – The screening of the documentary 400 Years Without A Comb was written by Dr Willie L. Morrow which was inspired by his book of the same name. The film shows the effect and denial of sufficient hair care tools had on African slaves in America. It also locates the origin of the good hair/bad hair argument in the days of and following slavery, through the evolution of the social class system. DISCUSSIONS – After the screening a panel discussion was led by Charmaine of http://www.blackhistorystudies.com/ and Crystal aka Crystal Afo http://unitedkinkdom.blogspot.com/ They touched on the historical, emotional and social aspect of the documentary and how opinions of natural hair, identity and perceptions of beauty can determine how one portrays self.
TESTIMONIES – We were blessed to have a testimony from Belinda who had done the BC (Big Chop) in 2009. She presented for the first time to an audience about her hair journey, hair care techniques and product information. She expressed in her dialogue the journey she endeavoured in order to maintain her crowning glory. She went from being a product junky to experimenting and knowing what ingredients was good for her natural hair maintenance. She silenced the myth that natural hair does grow with tender love and care the healthy way, to which she ended her testimony with ‘Your Hair Is Your Crown, Where It Like A Queen’. The feedback was positive and empowered and refreshed sisters who were in the transition stages. Belinda has formulated her own hair care product range to which she hopes to sell her homemade Mango Twist to all natural beauties in the near future. She showcases her journey through her blog http://www.4nappiness4eva.blogspot.com/
POETRY & ARTWORK – Cezanne is a self taught artist who also writes and performs her poetry. During her performance she used symbolic images for creative expression and explained the symbolism of her artwork the male and female pictures – Fruitfull Mind. Due to time constraints we did not get to enjoy much of Cezanne poetry – but hopefully at another event. Here paintings and poems can be purchased in print and her artwork is exhibited within the dinning area at Centreprise in Dalston, London. http://www.cezannesart.co.uk/home
LUNCH – A buffet lunch was provided by Cottons http://cottons-restaurant.co.uk/ whilst we listened to tunes of Aretha Franklyn which was our signature album for the event – songs such as Respect and Natural Woman. During such time Stall Holders: Evelyn Products, Shangwe, Cezanne, Greenshack Productions, LEKAN P’ship, Lavel, Naturally Nubian and The Calabash Hub were selling products and merchandise.
PRESENTATION by Kapeni of Greenshack Productions who wrote Peter Sankofa and The Family Afro. Kapeni read extracts from the book and explained why it was important for his family and children to have books that represent positive children’s imagery and symbolism of black people, that will raise their confidence and a since of pride within their life. Kapeni also led us into a story to which the guests had to use their imaginations to say a sentence before passing the mic in order to create the full story. Prizes were given to the guests who were the most creative. During the event his wife Zola maintained the stall selling books, T-shirts, badges, African symbols, candles and essential oils. http://www.greenshackproductions.com/
PRODUCT SWAP – A table was laid out for the product swap for those who bought items that maybe useful for others – as someone’s junk is another persons treasure. As you can see Crystal left with a smile on her face.
HAIR SHOW – The last activity was a hair showcase where our guests had to write on a style card and explain how long they had been natural, their hairstyle and a natural beauty quote or extract that was persona or to empower other guests – Prizes were given for imagination an thoughtfulness.
I would like to give thanks to all the guests, performers, stall holders, sisters and brothers who came and supported The Calabash Hub and Naturally Nubian http://naturallynubian01.blogspot.com/with some positive vibes as we all departed Respecting The ‘Fro
Bless, Sister E – THE CALABASH HUB