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Be Creative

6 Kojo’s Comedy Funhouse


4 D&L Style

16 MYO Fashion

23 Cori Sims 29 Born2Ball Clothing 36 Jessica’s Jewels

Editor’s Letter Hi all and welcome to the sixteenth issue of L’ART; the UK Black History Month issue. As we are now in October, it’s time to start thinking about making that change from SS fashion to AW. The British summer weather is well and truly over and for all those that prefer their AW wardrobe to the more revealing summer collections, you’ve got lots of bright colours, prints and structures to work with this year. One retailer that you can look to for inspiration is MYO Fashion. We recently attended their collection launch a few months ago and if you saw our L’ART TV teaser, the wait is now over. We caught up with Naz who has given us a great insight into the world of MYO Fashion and what goes on behind the scenes. For another fashion fix, we’ve got Siaka Stevens who has created Born2Ball cloth-

ing. This newly started business caters for women, men and children, plus he’s pretty partial to a bit of DJing and event planning! With all those skills and a creative mind, you’ll not want to miss what Siaka Stevens is going to do next. October also marks the month that all comedy lovers have been waiting for, as Kojo’s Comedy Funhouse is finally here! Alongside Jade Avia, Kojo will be hosting at the Hackney Empire and bringing you a night of guaranteed laughs and lots of interactive games for everyone to get involved with. Plus, it’s not just comedy that he has been working hard on. Look out for his future projects that also include his very own reality show! Enjoy all this and more. Daniella & Letisha

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Style D&L

Saturday October 12th is a big day for comedy fans, as Kojo and Jade Avia take to the stage of Hackney Empire to present you with Kojo’s Comedy Funhouse. With a spectacular line-up in place and special music guests making an appearance, this is set to be one of the best UK comedy shows you have ever seen. Join us as we catch up with Kojo ahead of his Hackney Empire date, plus you’ll be hugely interested in other TV and film projects he has planned. “We’ve done a couple (Comedy Funhouse shows) in the past at a lot smaller venues to see how the actual show works and it’s been going really well,” said Kojo. “I thought I’d bring that type of show to Hackney Empire because I find that especially in an urban comedy circuit, it’s a lot of repetitive stuff in terms of the same comedians just coming into theatres and performing stand up. So what we’ve done now is make it into more of an interactive show throughout. There’s a little bit




of stand up, but not that

that person, then they

much and it’s more com-

don’t get one. At the

edy games, so the audi-

same time you’re look-

ence will be able to be

ing for more of the com-

a part of the show a little edy side of it rather than bit more than usual. We

an actual lookalike. It’s

plan all the games that

all about it being funny.

we’re going to do and

They don’t necessarily

then we put it onto the

have to be an amazing

stage and see how eve-

lookalike. It’s about be-

ryone reacts.

ing creative and being interactive.

“I won’t reveal all of it

“It’s very rare to find a female that females like.” YouTube sensations and

comedian but when it

Misha B, who will be on

comes to the games she

but one of the games is

“I think finding funny

one of the teams as well really goes in. She’s

called Celebrity Audi-

can come from anybody,

as performing a set.

ence where both teams

so that’s what I hope to

go into the audience

show throughout the

Plus, if you’re a fan of

and letting people see

and they find people

show.” Most of all, Kojo

the working relation-

her live. It’s very rare to

who they think look like

is looking forward to

ship between Kojo and

find a female that fe-

celebrities. If they find

showcasing new tal-

Jade, you’ll be pleased

males like. She’s a big

a really decent looka-

ent. There is a variety

to know that they will

hit with the girls.

like they get a point and

of actors and comedians

also be getting involved

if they find somebody

joining him this time

with games on the night. “I think the highlights of

that doesn’t look like

round, including some

“Jade’s not a stand-up

quite quick and that’s why I like bringing her

the show will be people

like Jazzy. He’s really

Funhouse, we wanted to

one of the strong char-

turn the focus on Kojo

acters; he’s from the

himself and the man be-

movie Anuvahood and

hind the comedy.

he’s got a lot of stuff on YouTube. He’s got a big

“I think I’m more myself

energy and he’s very

when I’m doing spe-

funny live. Another per-

cials like my one-man

son, who might possibly

shows, because there is

be the most controver-

no urgency. Sometimes

sial and says whatever

when you do the come-

he thinks, is Poet. When

dy shows it’s more about

it comes to the live

the jokes rather than let-

show he’s the awkward

ting people know about

one. Normally what he’s

you. When you come to

thinking is what every-

my show, that’s really all

one else is thinking, but

me. Where I’m at in my

they don’t want to say it.

career now, I inject a lot

They’re the two that will

of my personal experi-

bring a lot of the noise

ences; acting, radio and

and a lot of the laughs.”

planning tours.”

As we concluded on the

Now, Kojo is furthering

subject of The Comedy

his career even

more as he is currently working on a reality




“Me and my agent were talking about a concept

The reality show will be

goes into doing a show

to allow people to know

called Life & Laughs and it

at Hackney Empire and a

more about me and see

will document his events,

tour. It’s not all easy.”

exactly what my life

appearances, mentoring

contains on a day-to-day

sessions and of course,

So if you’re already drawn


a lot of laughs. Inspira-

in by the life that Kojo

tion came from his recent

leads, look out for its

“I move around a lot in

trip to Jamaica where he

YouTube debut in Decem-

totally different realms of

documented his trip with

ber. “Christmas Day is a

entertainment and I’ve

Instagram videos.

good day where everyone is chilling at home. Not

got two sisters who I look after, so it’s how I share

“A show like this will

everyone likes Eastend-

my relationship with

show people what I ac-

ers so it can be something

them. My auntie raised

tually do, because a lot

else for people to watch.”

me and it’s how my relationship is with her, genuine day-to-day stuff and a lot of my friends who are really hilarious as well.”


Whilst on the subject

that solid friendship and

And in true Kojo style,

of future projects, Kojo

he understands it, which

he left us with some wise

also revealed his close

is why I respect him so

words to get you think-

relationships with some

much. He did Brixton

ing... “The bigger and

famous faces. “Someone

Academy and the In-

broader you become, the

that I really like is Michael digO2; he built all of that

wider you become. Peo-

McIntyre. To go on a tour

up so he deserves to be

ple are coming to see

with him would be very

where he is at now. He

me for different reasons;

interesting. The moment I inspires me a lot.

that’s why I try to step

met him we’ve been real-

away from stand-up and

ly cool friends, so to go on “I’m planning a big thea-

focus more on acting and

the road with him would

tre tour next year, a new

vice versa. I don’t take

not only wind in my audi-

DVD, a film called It’s A

anything for granted. If I

ence but it would also be

Lot - which comes out on

can continue one of those

good to have a laugh with

October 25th - then I’ll

other projects for as long


be shooting a new movie

as people want to book

called Money & Grime,

me for, then it will be a

“I’ve known Kevin (Hart)

which has Angel, Adam

blessing. All of these

for 11 years. When I used

Deacon, Idris Elba and

things that I’m learning

to do my comedy club at

Scorcher in it. It’s the

allow Kojo to grow.”

Cork’s wine bar, he was

story of grime music that

one of the people that

hasn’t been told yet. It’s

we brought out years

really powerful.”

ago. We’ve always had

“All of these things that I’m learning allow Kojo to grow.”

Image Source: Kojo


ith a name that’s different, sticks in your head and remains individual, MYO Fashion carry these traits in their name as well as in their clothing. The Make Your Own (MYO) fashion brand pride themselves on having affordable fashion on offer and with the help of technology, a generated system and a few fashion choice words, their name remains one of the edgiest out there. With a background of family members working in the ‘rag trade’, fashion, retail and wholesale business remains in these lady’s blood. After all, who doesn’t want to be in possession of fashionable but affordable wear? Plus MYO is easily accessible online and season friendly. Did you know MYO have also part

nered up with Dins Noise Jewellery? With a line specifically designed for MYO catering to their customers, the items work extremely well with MYO pieces to further compliment their line. Popular MYO pieces today are the Cartoon Print dress, which sold to hundreds, including a US and global audience. These include Africa and the Middle East. With customers originally stemming from friends, family and work colleagues, their audience continues to snowball. Another best seller also includes the ÂŁ5 dress, which also featured in LOOK

magazine. “Some things work and somethings don’t... always surprised at which lines make the best sellers,” said founder Naz. “Popular Dins Noise jewellery is also currently being sold on the MYO site and includes the signature piece, The Hand of Fatima. The range features sterling silver, gold plated and real leather items selling at some very special prices.” You can shop more from Dins Noise on the MYO website. Have you spotted any celebs in MYO wear? The line continues to be a favourite with former Sugababe Amelle Berrabah in particular, as she loves the edgy aspect, it’s access and the fact that trends are brought right from the catwalk and to the table. Would you believe behind the scenes, team MYO are made up of great minds in IT, local government, accounts and data analysts? With a long term goal to hit the high street with a chain, these skills all certainly come in handy for planning their next big event. With a plan to have a possible eight

labels featured on the night, the follow up to the summer’s launch is set to be yet another great experience. With great feedback and photographers and prodution companies already on board, the bar has definitely been set very high for an end of year celebration to remember. Keep those eyes peeled for event updates, plus visit MYO online here ( @Myofashion

Image Source: MYO Fashion

Look out for chequer, black and white domino inspired looks next season.

Cori Sims I

ntroducing himself as a ‘crazy, wild, fun person to be around’, singer and actor Cori Sims is ready to share his ‘wild, energetic spirit’ with the world on screen and in music. Having recently celebrated his new video release with his audience, ‘Startin Something’ has seen more than 2,000 views since its debut, but that’s not all Cori’s been busy celebrating these past few weeks. “The TLC movie… I’ve been working with this movie for like a year until it got picked up,’ Cori explained. “My assistant hit me up & said there was another casting call. I then got a phone call & the rest was history.” With this acting break coming in the form of an appearance on television network VH1, the journey to being involved with the biopic documenting and exploring the career of one of today’s most celebrated girl groups has been a great experience for the young artist. “My role was the main skater & a typical day was long hours 6:00 a.m to sun down. “Expect the movie to be full of excitement & fun from the legendary hits of the biggest girl

group ever. It’s a must see movie.” Being a real artist that is able to keep it real no matter what.” Cori With his ‘Startin Something’ video said of his music career. shoot taking place and being produced by the A-Teem and organ- And the acting? Bigger movie roles ised by SongwriterTc, ‘one of the are on the agenda, but for now, the biggest songwriters’ out there, the TLC biopic, its reception and the shoot is just the start of what is set lessons and experience gained durto be a great follow up to Cori’s ing this experience remain high on video release, as he prepares for a his list of 2013 achievements for US tour. what he labels “a must see movie.” Showing nothing but ‘new and fresh’ vibes, with his self described r&b pop/rock style, Cori expressed his love for newness and an even bigger love for travelling, experiencing different places and meeting us UK citizens because of our ‘beautiful accents’!

“‘Red Light Special’ is my favourite song. T-Boz is my favourite member due to her unique voice.

“My main goals are to take my music & music of this industry to the next level. I want people to say when they see me that I’m a breath of fresh air. I have a new deal on Although this tour currently sees the table, so I cant say much about him hit 10 cities around the major an album. But I can say I have states next January, we look for- some dope singles out & coming ward to the day our accents can out, so stay tuned.” be shared with Cori in a stadium crowd. Twitter: @IamCorisims IG: @Corisims Ticket holders can look forward Travis Looney Management: 404to a live, dance filled performance 957-7250 with ‘good music and a sexy set!’. “What I’m looking forward to the most is bringing back good music. Image Source: & Kia Danae


Siaka Stevens loves being creative. It is with this passion and an interest in fashion that he created his own fashion line. Born2Ball clothing is a product of what Siaka himself is all about. The brand represents fashion, music and sport and there is inspiration behind every piece. Discover where Siaka draws his design ideas from, collections for the new season, who inspires him musically and one very unexpected fact that not many people know about him...

What inspired you to create Born2Ball clothing line?

“One of the main aims of the brand is to inspire people.”

Well, the Born2Ball clothing line is just an extension or a sub brand of the Born2Ball brand itself. One of the main aims of the brand is to inspire people and get the message across that we are all capable of achieving our dreams and goals if we believe and work hard. One of the best ways to do this was visually through clothing, so it made sense. Where do you get your ideas from for your designs? My head. I am a very creative person. I get inspiration from things I see every day, on social media and the internet. What kind of person do you envision wearing and representing the Born2Ball clothing? Anyone. the brand is a casual clothing brand with a slight urban-ish edge accessible to all. That’s why I have not tried to make it too trendy or retro like some other brands. I

would like as many people to envisage the thought of them wearing something from my line. This all comes down to the core message behind the brand; inspiring as many people as possible. If my clothing items were too niche I would lose a huge chunk of potential customers. What new things can we expect to see from you in the next season? Well I am launching the kids range in the next few weeks. In terms of the main line, only a few additions, but nothing major, as my brand is still in its infancy and has not been seen by the masses yet! We see that you are also very much into your music and DJing. How has music had an influence on your collection? I love music, all different types and genres. The whole Born2Ball idea and brand developed from one of my most successful events - Ballin’ Parties. I actually have an ‘inspired by music’ collection, which I will be releasing next season.

Image Source: Born2Ball Clothing

How would you describe your own personal style when it comes to fashion? Just cool; nothing too daring or over the top. I am a casual dresser but I can also dress very smart if needed. Normally it’s just converse jeans and a sweater from me! Which are some of your favourite retail brands you like to wear? I wear a lot of my own stuff but I do like DSquared2, Alexander McQueen, Orlebar Brown and Lanvin. When you’re not busy with your clothing line, how do you like to spend your time? I have other businesses that I am involved in, my DJing, nightclub promotion, on my Playstation and with my family, who I love very dearly.

Who are your favourite music artists at the moment and why? I don’t really have a favourite as such. I just like music period, appreciate lyrical content and the way songs are produced. I have been rinsing Jay-Z’s latest album; one of the best albums I have heard from him or any other artist period.

Name one thing about yourself that your followers may not know. My late grandfather, Dr Siaka Probyn Stevens, was the first president of The Republic of Sierra Leone.

Shop online at


Jessica’s Jewels


essica Allen is here to take your Christmas orders and more for all those special, personalised gifts you require and of course they all include that one special something... Read on to discover what gave Jessica the push to start her own business, her best sellers that will get you stopped in the street, what links her and tie dye, plus find out what customised items you can get your hands on.

“I started Jessica’s Jewels in October 2012 after my sisters asked me to customise some shoes for my nieces. Having four nieces all under the age of seven makes for perfect customer research, as they all love sparkle and pink, so I loved hearing what they liked and how the items faired with the rough and tumble of a range of ages. “The first time a few of the girls wore them out they were stopped and asked where they had got their Converse from. I still get stopped now as I love to wear my items. “I have collaborated with a friend who is a dab hand at tie dyeing and the results of the Converse with multi coloured dying and crystal toes have been amazing! Every pair is made to be completely unique, which I love! “I can customise most things; clothing, footwear, hats, glass

wear and headphones to name a few. The possibilities are endless.

“My favourite items are my Converse Crystal toe key rings. They are just so cute and have loads of uses. For example affordable gifts for friends & family, school bag charms and even as rear view mirror dangles for the car! I have them everywhere and still love customising them. “I sell crystal remembrance poppies, which I make no profit from. All profits go to the poppy appeal & these are out in November. Christmas is a very busy period too; I have hand customised Christmas stockings. These were by far my most popular item last Christmas and I really enjoy making these.

“I sell crystal remembrance poppies...all profits go to the poppy appeal.”

“My promise to every single customer I have had and will have is that I really am so very grateful for your continued support & I am always happy to help with any queries you may have and will try my best to fulfil any ideas you may have to make your item individual to yourselves. I love doing this & love seeing happy customers!”

Image Source: Jessica Allen

“My most popular items have been the customised sandals throughout the summer and customised Converse.

“As a business I like to think I work to the customers needs only, not my own. I provide the best quality products I can and I only use Swarovski crystals to create the ultimate sparkle.

Get those Christmas orders ready and your poppies ready in time for Rememberance day, by staying connected with Jessica’s Jewels online. FB: /jessicasjewelsja Email: jessicasjewelsja@ Twitter: @Jessicasjewels1

Founder, Writer & Designer - Daniella Jones-Ellis Founder, Writer & Designer - Letisha Jones-Ellis

L'ART Issue 16, October 2013  

This month marks UK Black History Month and we are celebrating the work of some very talented black people. We speak to Kojo on his ever-gro...