In 1985, I listened to British singer Belouis Some‘s song “Imagination” on repeat. Kids these days don’t appreciate the dedication it took to play a song obsessively back then! It was a delicate operation, what with lifting the turntable needle up from the vinyl record and moving it to that flat, grooveless space in between the songs, all the while praying that I wouldn’t scratch the record and create a skip in the tune forever. But I did that for my man Belouis, and 36 years later, I remember all the verses to that song. I just trip up on the song title and the chorus which, in my head, perpetually plays as, “Procrastination, could make a man of you. Procrastination, could make me love you too. Procrastination, is all I want from you.”
I can’t imagine why my special version of the song is stuck in my head while I’m writing a Jewel of the Month post at 10:30 p.m. on May 31. Hmmm. What a mystery! But I’m racing the clock to show some May love to model/DJ Tolula Adeyemi, who treated my Queen of Scots snake tiara to an Oscar night party in April.
Tolula first wore my jewelry in 2012, including my Cleopatra statement earrings in silver.
For the Oscars, the earrings had to match the 18K gold tiara, of course, so Tolula got the 18K gold and diamond version of the Cleopatras. Actually, even if the tiara hadn’t been involved, silver just won’t do for the Oscars!
In both 2012 and 2021, Tolula was styled by Marian Kwei (formerly Kihogo), and good lord! How do the years fly by? I was sure this photo was taken, like, yesterday.
It was so good to re-connect with Marian this year. She’s wonderful to work with, plus I got a kick out of remembering the silver and amethyst ring I made her. Sometimes when I look at jewelry designs I haven’t seen in many years, I feel a little surprised to be thinking, “Oh, I did that? That’s pretty great”
Marian wrote up Tolula’s whole Oscar night jewelry and apparel look for The Story, and absolutely showered my work with compliments in the process. I’m blushing, but grateful! (Oh, and there’s more to come from Marian.)
As Marian points out, Tolula got the whole Wendy Brandes Jewelry package. I mean, how can you wear a tiara and earrings without rings?
Take a close look at the ring on the right side of the photo — that’s the jet-setting Borgia poison ring recently seen on television on The Blacklist.
I’m starting to lose track of the Borgia’s travels. It was in New York City first, on the set of The Blacklist. Then it came home for a day or two before heading out to Los Angeles for Tolula’s Oscar party. It returned to New York only to fly back to L.A. almost immediately, to grace the hand of my gorgeous friend, legendary rapper Gangsta Boo.
The Borgia ring has logged way more air miles than I have since about 2018. Just for that, the Borgia should single-handedly (ha!) win the title of Jewel of the Month for May 2021, but a tiara is a TIARA. I hereby declare a tie. Both pieces are my Jewels of the Month, and they’re both available on 1stdibs and my website.
The only question now is … can I convince DJ Tolula to add Belouis Some to her playlist? It’s past time for a Belouis comeback.