Wednesday, May 20, 2020

What's in your Crown Box?

What do you have stashed in that little box? If its any inkling of what your bedroom looks like, it's probably a messy situation. LOL
So, what do you REALLY need in there (aside from your crown/banner). Make sure the next time you leave the house for your appearance, your crown box contains these 5 things.

*PS - if you are a FIRST time pageant girl, you might be wondering what is a "Crown Box?" ANSWER: A crown box is like a small piece of luggage that a pageant titleholder carries her crown and banner in for safe storage, usually brining it with her to appearances.

1. Sharpie & Autograph Cards  (or business cards)
Yo'll probably get asked for your autograph or have the opportunity to pass these out at an appearance, so be ready.
2. Mints 
You always want to smell minty fresh when speaking with people. But, avoid gum so you aren't chopping on it during speaking engagements and stick to mints instead.
3. Blister Band-Aids
Most appearances require some type of physical activity...like walking in a parade, touring through your states capital with a political official, modeling...and that means you are on your feet. Shoes can cause blister, so be prepared with blister band-aids so you can KEEP UP!
4. Compact Mirror
You want to make sure that you look presentable and your crown is on straight. After all,  you are a representative.  Look the part.
5. Travel Size Tissue
Sure, it gets the boogies out. But, this can be helpful for a number of things. Possibly, during your appearances - you gave or you witnessed a moving speech or testimonial the bought you to tears. Possibly, you spilled on yourself during the dinner gala. Possibly, your hands got messy from doing manual labor on a service project. Tissues can be a quick fix.

Lastly, looking for a DREAM crown BOX to keep all this in, you can find the BEST crown boxes in 2 locations:
1. At your NAM Pageant Boutique
2. Crown Couture Collection

Signing Off in NAMstyle!
-Breanne

Photo Credit: Brittany Link Photography
Hair/Makeup: Makeup By Maskara
Styling: National American Miss
Product Featured: Crown Couture Collection Crown Box
Models: The 2019 NAM Jr. Teen & The 2019 NAM All-American Teen

Friday, May 8, 2020

To Coach or Not to Coach

If I had $1 for every time I got asked about pageant coaches...what is a pageant coach, should I get one, do I need one, how do I find one, would you use one.....and it goes on.

So, I laid it all out right here for ya.




AND, for recommendations, here are some wonderful NAM sponsors who do provide coaching services!
Pageants2Go
Confidence & Poise
Pink Door Prep
Perfect Image Consulting
Bill Alverson

Signing Off in NAMstyle
XOXO
Breanne

Friday, April 24, 2020

HOW TO: manage your time & prepare for a pageant!

Girl, trying to squeeze in everything AND planning for a pageant can be stressful. How are you going to fit it all in??? Believe me, every pageant girl asks themselves this question. Here are some tips & tricks to utilize your time effectively when planning for your next pageant.


Also,  to stay organized, you can purchase the NAMplanner  HERE! (you don't just have to be a NAM girl,  you can be competing in ANY pageant)

Signing Off in NAMstyle!
XOXO
Breanne

Friday, April 17, 2020

3 Hair & Makeup Dos & Donts!

Everyone wants to look & feel their best Pageant Weekend! Here are some things to consider!

Plus,  these are the Top 3 Pageant Hair & Makeup Artists that I always recommend! I have had my hair and makeup personally done by them for special occasions (my wedding, events, photoshoots) and have had a WONDERFUL experience!

Olivia Rose Beauty
Makeup By MasKara
Michele Strom


Signing off in NAMstyle!
XOXO
Breanne

Friday, April 10, 2020

Stay Trendy for your Next Pageant

Did you know that I graduated Cum Laude from the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchanding in Los Angeles, CA? In fact, I graduated with LC from that TV show your older siblings or parents used to watch called "The Hills" (back in the early 2000, she was super popular). But, I wanted to put my fashion degree to good use and actually forecast some trends. Ironically, I started seeing these trends at #NAMnationals19 this past November. But, I always use NAM nationals as a gauge of trend setting for the upcoming year, because NAM nationals is really a WHOSE WHO of pageantry - the top competitors are competing, top pageant winners like Miss USAs are judging, top fashion designers like AshleyLauren are on location with a pop up boutique. It's literally like fashion week for pageantry. 

So, if you wanna stay trendy for your next pageant.....check out this video AND for additional photos of examples of these top trends, check out my previous blog of trends I saw at Nationals HERE!

OH...and for some great resources on where to SHOP these trends, check out my IGTV Pageant Pro series HERE

Signing off in NAMstyle!
XOXO
-Breanne

Friday, April 3, 2020

5 Hot Spots to find your next Interview Outfit


Check out this video to find the best places to get a killer interview outfit! Plus, with direct links below to all the places I mention, you are just 1 click away from being Interview wardrobe ready!


Links:
ASHLEYLauren
Ashley Rene's
Bridal Elegance
Wight Elephant
Crowned Swan
New York & Co.
TJ Maxx
JC Penney's

Signing Off in NAM style!
Breanne

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Top Trends from #NAMnationals19

I love NAM Nationals because....well, it's NAM Nationals and there needs no explanation. But, I also love it because it's where you see the TOP TRENDS. Everyone is rolling out their best looks - hair, makeup, business attire, gowns, runway...you name it. If it's hot - it's at #NAMnationals.

But, there were some trends that I saw that I think we can expect to see a lot more of rolling into 2020 and are totally worth mentioning. Check them out...

TREND #1: LESS IS MORE
Something that I saw a lot of (especially in the optional Runway Contest) was really simple, clean looks that were elevated with a bold shape or unique print. In the past for Runway, it seemed like girls would take formal wear dresses and cut them apart to make into what looked like shorts with a cape over it and there was lots of bling, print, color, texture - just a lot going on. But, these 5 looks not only scored high during runway, but I think the reason they did score well was because the girls took the less is more approach, thus letting their stage presence and modeling skills command the stage instead of their outfits.

This basic black has Hailey Sturgill looking trendy and sophisticated all at once. Also, a high neck line helps to bring focus to her face and elongated her body. The pop on the skirt added a little bit of flare, but was simple and not overpowering. No wonder she was in Runway Top 5 for our Miss division.
Mariah Turner is full of attitude and having a more simplified outfit paired well with her natural fierceness, winning her the National Runway title for the Jr. Pre-Teen age group. I thought the colors were youthful and I liked how the draping was off her sleeves and not necessarily a cape, like we see a thousand times. I love that she wore her hair natural and the pop of pink in her ears was fun.
I am obsessed with everything about this outfit. The shape, the cut-outs, the colors. The only thing I may have changed if it were me wearing it were the earrings (I would have worn black, but thats just me). But, pairing the black leggings with black boots kept the outfit from breaking up into pieces and once again, that high neckline elongated her look and she was clever to pull her hair back and off her face.
We've seen the high/low a thousand times before, but I thought Miss South Texas Jr. Pre-Teen really made it look elegant and youthful. I think what set this high/low a part was the material. It looked elegant, but fashion forward and because it was a heavier material, it took a shape on the runway instead of just being flowy. Also, I loved that the dress was simple, but the color popped on stage and the whole look was super age appropriate. 

I thought Miss Oklahoma Teen, Hosanna Hales, really gave us a unique look in this ensemble. Pairing a classic black dress with a flowy white vest, was a unique spin on a very classic look. I think I would have gone with dramatic ear cuffs if it were me, but other than that - I love the simplicity,  elegance, and shape.



TREND #2: MINIMAL SEQUINS
First, lets' be clear - it's a pageant. So, there was plenty of sequins and sparkle. But, a lot less than usual. Fabrics seemed to dominate with lots of texture. Where there was rhinestones on a gown, it was minimal. I think it was refreshing to see and many of the girls that kept it fresh scored well. In fact, most of our National Queens who took home the crowns really kept it light on the bling, but heavy on the textures in their gowns. Check out what I mean.

This precious one shoulder dress was simple and clean on our new National Jr. Pre-Teen, Ava Gresser. The one shoulder bow kept it youthful and elegant. She did add a bit of bling at the neckline and on the trim of the bow, but it was minimal and her earrings were simple dangles. All eyes were on Ava, and not on her dress.
Olivia Wynkoop, our new All-American Teen sported a really timeless dress. Variations of this style have been seen in the 80's, 90's, and through today. The base of her dress was a simple white lace and the cape skirt added a bit of flair that looked angelic and soft as she took the runway. I love that she chose an off the shoulder dress. Olivia is tall and so this really complemented her height.

This little nugget stole the show during the Top 5 Question, professing her interest in #thatguy (AKA - Loren, one of our Official NAM entertainers). But, before she opened her mouth,  she was already gliding across the stage in this lavender gown which features a simple textured pattern on the whole dress and minimal stoning at the waist. It was soft and elegant, which made her witty attitude all that much more of surprise! Well done, Brielle Skye!
Caitlyn Kramer's Johnathan Kayne dress is a black crushed velvet, strapless dress. It was elegant and simple, but the multi-tier ruffles created a super trendy vibe. I love that with Caitlyn's dark skin - she took a chance on wearing a dark dress because it totally payed off and she captured the title of All-American Miss.

TREND #3: CURLS FOR THE GIRLS
Back in my pageant day, everyone was chemically straightening their hair and a chi flat iron was in every pageant girls tool kit ...and by everyone I do mean yours truly! HELLO! Now, this really isn't just a NAM trend I am seeing, but it's becoming a pageant trend. (Hello Miss USA) Girls are rocking their natural locks, and even doing so for ALL hair textures..... and I am totally here for it. These were some of my FAVES (also, I too have naturally curly hair that I haven't worn natural since college....and I wish my natural curls were as pretty as these girls'!)

Maranda Saltzman snagged the 1st Runner-Up spot with her bouncy curls and bouncy attitude. Not only was she polished,  she won Miss Personality -and you can see why!

Our New National Teen,  Faith Pierre-Charles, has been competing in NAM for a few years and I have never seen her rock her natural curls. In fact, I didn't even recognize her for the first few days. But, Faith came to NAM this year being authentically herself, from her hairstyle to her attitude...it paid off. 

 Briyah Love Nobles is the epitome of "authentic and natural." I remember her as a Jr. Pre-Teen at Nationals a few years ago and her bold personality and ability to stay authentic to herself is no surprise why she won the National Pre-Teen title this year  - she celebrated her authentic self, from what was in her heart to on top of her head ;)!

 Miss Oregon was a STAND OUT on stage! I loved everything about her styling - hair, gown, you name it. She oozed style and poise and the judges saw it, too - which snagged her a Top 5 placement!

 Hosanna Hales, Miss Oklahoma Teen, has naturally curly hair, and she always wear it back (I don't think I have ever seen it down since she started as a Jr. Teen with us a few years ago), which I think is a unique and rare look. It is uncommon to see girls with natural curls pull their hair up and off their face, but this look has become her signature and I think it's worth highlighting for that reason alone!


Miss Iowa Teen, Olivia went bold with the fro. I remember her wearing her hair like this at state during preliminary Formal Wear competition and when she walked out - the whole audience gasped (seriously). I think time stood still as she took the stage - she was a beacon of beauty and it was such a fresh look! I am so happy she rocked the same look at Nationals, snagging a Top 12 finish, Runway winner, and Destination Model winner!


TREND #4: BOSS BABES IN PANTS
Yo, the pants and jumpsuits were here for the party! Interview & Personal Intro competitions saw girls of ALL ages dominate their communication skills while wearing these. I think there is something about pants that makes a girl feel like "I can do anything a man can do" and I'm loving that jumpsuits are becoming power suits. Hello Glass Ceiling, it's a NAM girl....crash!


 Yes to Miss Fresno and this seafoam green, off the shoulder pantsuit! Talk about looking chic, but total #bossbabe!
Miss South Carolina made a clever move with a simple color, high neck line and simple detailing. This really elongated her figure and brought the eyes up to her smile, making us pay attention to what she was saying vs. what she had on. Well done!

 The one shoulder ruffle made a power pant suit feel girly and is totally age appropriate. Loving this look on Miss New York Jr. Teen!

 How precious is Miss Oregon? I'm loving the bow detail at the waist and the coordinating bow detail on the shoe. The ruffled sleeve paired with the bow detailing and soft color kept this fashion trend looking little girl pageant perfect.

 Terri Lynn, Miss Tennesse Jr. Pre-Teen, really went bold with this fabric and print.  The whole plaid/houndstooth fabric/print can come off really heavy and non figure flattering if you don't do it right, but she did. Adding the simple belt accented the look and kicked it up a notch to be even more on trend. The look is youthful, classy, and totally fashion forward. Well done!

Miss Wisconsin Princess, Avrianna Artus, slayed in this adorable 2 piece pant suit.  It was a fresh, new look on the old 2 piece interview suit classic. The bow in her hair helped to keep it age appropriate. It's no wonder this look made its way into the Top 12 at Nationals!

TREND #5: #GIRLINTHEGREENDRESS
When Miss Jamaica was announced as the winner of Miss World, her runner-ups were more ecstatic than she was...especially Miss Nigeria!!!! If you haven't seen the video, I posted it below and just watch #girlinthegreendress to see what I'm talking about. But, while I swear, I'm not just trying to bring the focus back home on really whats important at NAM...sisterhood and besties! But, this was a year that I saw SERIOUS support and LOVE for one another amongst the girls...on a whole new level. Is this a pageant thing? A generational thing? I'm not sure. But, I want to truly commend each of you girls AND your parents who were at #NAMnationals19 for having the same spirit as #girlinthegreendress and for making COMPASSION, LOVE, SUPPORT, SISTERHOOD...all the goodness ....ON TREND!






Well, that's a wrap on reviewing the hottest trends we saw this Thanksgiving. Will we see you be a trendsetter at next year's #NAMnationals. I sure hope so!

Signing Off in NAM Style,
Breanne