Off the heels of Insecure’s Season Finale, we bring you an exclusive editorial with Amanda Seales (formerly Amanda Diva).
Though she plays the super bougie Tiffany Dubois on the breakout HBO hit, the real Amanda Seales keeps it super down to earth. A self dubbed, ‘Revolutionary Woman,’ she uses her platform to pontificate on politics, civil rights injustices, and cultural issues.
She is known for her smarts and passionate outlook, so stylist and creative director Bryon Javar curated strong, beautiful ensembles to accent her personality, using brands like Ott Dubai, Candice Cucuo, and MacDuggal.
See a portion of our interview below and tweet #RevoltNow to Unlock the rest:
Snapshot: Amanda Seales by Tyren Redd. Styled by Bryon Javar. Makeup: Makeup by Latrice. Hair: @_CandaceJackson
Bonus: Amanda penned an Essay about her relationship to style. Read on below:
“Style is personal and speaks for you without you having to say a word. Super flared jeans, a Pepto pink Old Navy bubble coat, and Kangols…SO. Many. Kangols!
I look back at some of my style choices and just SMH at what they were attempting to say, “sexy?”, “b-girl steez”, “I’M DIFFERENT!”, “New New Yorker in college that doesn’t live with my mom so I can wear what I want”, etc. For a long time my style was speaking for me through how I wanted people to see me.
“Eventually I’d be lucky enough to have the opportunity to work with a number of dope stylists on different projects who helped me to get closer to my own voice. I’d learn different tips and tricks along the way, like, the hair look is a part of the whole look, and that I can pretty much never go wrong in green, or my own rule, the, “I’m giving you ____” principle of color blocking.”
” For instance, if I’m wearing two different versions of pink, I feel like I’m not matching. However, if I hit you with three versions, it ain’t that I’m not matching, I’m, “giving you pink”. I live by this to this day, lol. Anywhoo, even though I always know how to identify and articulate my point of view about seemingly everything, when it came to fashion, I could never find my own words. I didn’t have them because I was more concerned about how my look spoke to others, than how it spoke to me. It was, designer Sharufa Walker, of Jinaki, that changed that.”
“In 2012 we were introduced via a mutual acquaintance who felt we’d work well together. Sharufa began dressing me in her designs for events, but would add pieces from my closet to bring the look together. I would always be amazed at how she’d uncover gems from my drawers and put them in looks in ways that I never would have imagined. Finally, one afternoon when we were doing a fitting, I asked her, “How do you do it? How do you turn these particles in my closet into pieces? How do you give these typically inane items identity?” She told me I needed to change my perspective. “You’re a painter. In your work you do all this dope stuff with color on the canvas. You gotta dress yourself with the same vision. Think of yourself as the canvas. Create art with your clothes.” A lightbulb went off. It was like I’d successfully completed Rosetta Stone for un-stylish. The sky opened up and rained down ideas. I know that may sound like some existential BS to some, but how I was viewing myself truly changed, redefined how I approached style, and how it represented me.”
“I no longer dress based on how I want folks to see me, but how I want to see myself; as art that elevates the vibrance in a room. That doesn’t mean with just colors or prints, that’s also in the confidence of how I feel in my fashion, the distinctness of the pieces, and how they’re paired. I do my best (and sometimes I’m lucky enough to work with a bomb ass stylists like, Bryon Javar) to create/wear looks that, like my artwork, are abstract yet defined, bold and black, eclectic but not eccentric. The same way you walk into a room and marvel at a masterpiece crafted by an artisan of creative vision, when I dress, I want to walk in a room and feel like a masterpiece crafted by my own creative vision, honey! My style, like my voice, is developing every day to emphatically encourage folks to challenge the status quo, comfortably live their truth, and be the light on their own path to joy. Now, when my style speaks for me, it says what I truly am, “This woman is vitality…and won’t take no shit!” “