Stylist to the stars Okera Banks has embarked upon her own clothing line based on simple, functional, clean lines and jewel tone colors that should be in your wardrobe this season. Light Essentials was born from the need for Okera to be comfortable during photo shoots and long days on the set. Her clients (Mary J. Blige, Jamie Foxx, Niecy Nash and Chris Tucker among others), quickly took notice of the chic, versatile and affordable clothing. We asked Okera to share some of her tips for busy professionals who need to pull it all together from day to night and what you need to know about the ‘swag jag.’
What are some of your favorite trends for this holiday and awards season?
My favorite trends for this holiday and award season are the royal jewel color tones of emerald green, ruby red, emerald teal and gold incorporated in the designers fabrication for the gowns this red carpet holiday season, the use of brocade and lace that gives classic timeless texture while still bringing a subtle and sophisticated edge, ornate jewel box clutches for a nice pop of contrast which often times compliments my other favorite trend of Talisman jewelry with vibrant rich colored stones.
What is one style faux pas that everyone should avoid?
A style faux pas that I feel everyone should avoid is doing too much. I like to say, overly contrasting textures and colors in one look without a frame to tie the look together. So my advice is play with 2 or 3 color tones and one texture. You must know when to stop or you can cause a fashion disaster.
Can you give us a quick fix wardrobe example for going from day/office to night on the town?
One of my mantras is eliminate the stress and throw on a dress! If you start off your office work day with a classic form fitting dress suit, the transition is quick and smooth. Loose the suit jacket and go without or according to the weather toss on a fitted leather jacket, keep a pair of at least 3 inch sexy classic pump in your car or bag, a nice clutch, gold or silver chandelier drop earrings, a bold lip color and mascara. You are ready for the night.
Which is the most popular piece from your new line so far?
The most popular piece from my collection right now is the Swag Jag.
Why do you think women are embracing your line?
The reason I think women are embracing the collection so quickly is because of a few things. First it's eye catching with the bold solid primary colors, it's easy to wear while traveling and on-the-go, the ladies immediately fall in love with the feel of the fabric and how the styles conform to their body type while making them feel sexy, comfortable, fun and chic.
What is one piece that we can always find in your suitcase?
If I am not wearing it is my Swag Jag, it’s my quick essential transitional piece for travel, to day, to night piece. For each part of my day I can wear my Swag Jag a different way.