Wednesday, December 31, 2008




AY YO send me a pic without showing me your shoes





Sunday, December 28, 2008

You'd think I'd go out with a BANG

Truth is I've been starting, restarting, staring at this screen, at my pictures, at the time, switching screens from Facebook to Youtube. Barely watching the House marathon and wondering why I enjoy the show.

Thinking I'm hungry but it's too late to eat considering I'm working on a flat tummy for May/June.

Oh....I can tell you how I should've started making my NYE top days ago....that if I don't start tonight it's not going to happen. How Ima be mad if I have to end up wearing something else.

:( damn. what's happening to me??!? I'll tell you if you promise to keep a secret. shhhh.

I think I'm falling in love. wow. Act like I ain't just say that. WHOA.

Oh. I can tell you how I made the t shirt in this picture from a 5-step, rip, dye, bleach, dye, distress process. How they were part of my first tshirt collection the summer of 07. How I envisioned myself selling it at Barneys for $180 but really sold it for $50 on the street.

How it was waaaay too much work for what my market was willing to pay. How I later discovered the art of silk screening and felt cheated but felt better cus I hand drew the artwork. wooo! That was close.

I can tell you I made the necklace and the bracelet and if you give me 10 years I'll make my own jeans AND boots. So when the revolution come you build the house from floating wood planks, and tin ceilings and I'll raise our 5 babies, make all our clothes, grow our food and....okay. DON'T get me started on that.

The Parables of MY Talents

Here's to being on the path to collective self sufficiency.
Wild Seed.


Maybe I've squeezed out everything I can for 2008.
Can I just say that recognizing the power of FOCUS has changed my life.



PS. I'm addicted to hairspray the movie and now the styling agent.
My hair be looking SLiiiiicK these days....what a change!
If I don't say so myself. I feel brand new.

Thank you for all the love and support this year. I'm sooooo flattered.

Here's to reinventing, challenging, amazing SELF.

Closed till 2009.

Champagne wishes and Caviar Dreams.


Yacira "Yah, Yacque, s'aint yacque, "the yak" in YakBlak, La Cocolah" Valdez

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Two Is Better Than One

In an effort to make room for new 2009 clothing :)
I've started getting rid of stuff I no longer wear, donating tons and shamefully throwing out pieces I've held on for far too long.

SIDENOTE TO FRIENDS: Please do not contact me whining about how I could've/should've given them to you.

When you're in a cleaning frenzy you just have to get rid of stuff ASAP or they magically reappear in your closet after closer consideration and/or to avert potential hating. :)

So! I came across my vintage daishiki collection, I have 6 ranging in length and color mainly because I just can't have just one of anything...I'm so extra with it. siiigh. I'm working on it.

For a second I thought I might be over with the style, I rocked them so hard throughout the years maybe it was time to move on?

Am I done doing the hippie this, hippie that? Peace and hair grease my brother.

Well....let's see about that. I tried it on already know how it goes right. I got excited and here's the proof. (FYI: not a good move to stop and have a photoshoot when trying to reorganize closet)

Damn....I do look kinda sorta cute in a sophisticated grown-up hippie sorta way. Sooo that means I'll keep it! Um them....heee.

Couldn't decide what vest I would wear....I'm leaning toward the brown cus the color compliments my skin tone. (batting eyelashes) Ahem.

Yes the cowboy boots are snakeskin. Heeeeeeeeeee hehehehheehe

BTW having the vest in two colors was purely accidental. I met the talented Morgan Love at the Afropunk block party. Morgan was selling her beautiful jewelry as well as vintage pieces. I tried on the vest and loved it but told self...self you do not need another fringe vest.

Ms. Love so impressed by how great I looked that she later came to my booth and gave it to me as a gift. GASP!!!!

I was extremely touched and flattered by the generosity of this lovely stranger. Aaah I blush.
Blushing and wishing, hoping and praying that this blog inspires you guys are inspired to send me clothes too!!! Hey a girl can dream right.

Do you understand how much fun I'm having doing this? Please know this.

BTW after the pics I walked my dog and got back in my pjs to try to get the clothes spilling out of my closet under control. Someone please spare some storage space. Please!

Ok...which one? Brown or Navy vest?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Ms Chae's Pattern of Change

Met Ms. Chae through Lichiban who thought her designs would be great for Hmm...we'll see about that.

Ms. Chae didn't reply to my first email introduction and info about Cocolah. It's all good. A few months later when Lichiban sends us both an email introduction which Ms. Chae didn't respond to either. Oh Ok, I see how it is.

In the meantime I was busy sending an average of 40 something emails a day and receiving twice as many so I didn't miss Ms. Chae's email.

It wasn't until we met by chance at Lichiban's Samurai show that it hit me, Ms. Chae approached me wanting me to sign her newsletter list and gave me her card the name rang a bell. Hmm...your name looks familiar, I says. She doesn't remember meeting me. I don't remember meeting her but....hmm....Didn't I contact you about and you ignored me?! She smiles a smile I can't be mad at and says "oh! you're Cocolah?" Whatever. Guess what?! You're fired!

In a blink of an eye I pushed her against the wall and got her swiftly into a headlock, pushed the cocolah flyer in her face and whispered in her ear through gritted teeth mean and viscous-like....


A household name even!!!
Is you crazy!?!??!?!

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! My eyes bug out and I take her clipboard and snap it in two against my knee Samurai style. HAAAA YAH!!!!

10x Blackbelt you ain't know did you?!? um hmm. so watch it.

whew. does not promote violence. violence no. fantasy yes. yes. yes.

Turns out we share a few laughs and snips of future ideas. By the time the night was over I had her sending me her DIY project to feature on the blog.

Late nights. Fast talks.

Designer and tree hugger :) Ms. Minnae Chae creates ready-made clothes for her Re-design! Re-imagine! collection as well as repurposes clothes otherwise headed to the landfill.

In an effort to reduce waste and follow in the reuse, recycle mantra of the future Ms. Chae offers easy-to-understand DIY patterns to Re-design! Re-imagine! everyday objects like scarves, utility trousers and dresses.

I hope to see more of these in the future from Ms. Chae but considering our track record I won't hold my breath. heeehehehehhehe

So peep this. Merry Xmas from!

Here's Ms. Chae's first feature!

A pattern on how to turn a scarf into a vest!

Pretty please, please send your photos when you go ahead and make yourself a vest.

Imagine the possibilities...different weights of fabric, patterns, texture. GO CRAZY!

Her clothing, patterns, and services are available for purchase on

Monday, December 22, 2008 Fashion Challenge - WIN A PRIZE!!

P.S. Dear Tiffany, my secret sketch artist, I hope you're inspired by the latest entry enough to email me another sketch. The last one you sent was a great hit. Thank you for your creativity. Loves each and every one of you!! Thanks for participating in the challenge and visiting the blog on a regular. 

Please remember to subscribe!



Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Truth is.....

Im pulling the curtain back and the previous post. I try to keep my personal 'personal' life out of it and only share what you really want to hear.  

I know, i know you guys want to hold on to the mystery rockstar persona but ay the truth shall set us all free.

I never, ever want to appear like a poser so here go:

Dear blog fans: I, Yah Valdez am a real person not a rockstar.

So my teenage son came home acting like he hadn't eaten in 2 months...I'm like dude, relax. I'm on it. Go somewhere. 

Kept repeating "mah I'm hungry" about 55 times before I actually put the laptop down to start getting dressed to head to the supermarket. 

ooooh i sweartagodifyoudontgimmeaminute!!! 

I was this close from resorting to violence. KIDDING!!!!!?

Here I am tryna to get my ROCKSTAR on as quick as possible before heading out to do that domestic thing I do. Priorities.

But no the boy is wired with that weird and scary teenage energy, basically bouncing off the walls. HIS dog is responding to the energy by barking and running around the house like HE lost his mind too. Oh My Obamaaaa. (you like that right? I know)

Heres me: "Why don't you give me a minute to get this picture?and  "Go walk the dog before the weather gets worse? and "Get started on the dishes before I get back from the supermarket" and "Did you finish your homework?" and "Get any tests back?" and "NO do NOT to make a sandwich! Just chill cus dinner will be ready soon." and "Dude can you move out the way so I can get this picture?" My GOD!!!


Here he go: "Mah, I'm staaaaaaarving" and "Mah, take this picture for my myspace." Timer goes off and there he is in the middle. Grrrrrr. THEN here comes the dog to sit exactly where I stand while waiting for the auto timer to do it's thang. GET YOUR DOGGY ASS OUTTA HERE!!! omg!

All this is basically taking place in the kitchen of our small two bedroom Upper Manhattan apartment. You GASP!!!!

Yeah yeah. I know ya'll thought I was in laid up in mansion in West Hartford, Connecticut but no. No...not a loft in Tribeca. Not yet at least.

So I finally get the picture and take off all the accessories, throw on a sweater, a wool coat, hat, gloves and head out. 

I mean really you ain't think I headed out into the snow storm in that get up. Style is not only about looking good, but also about dressing appropriate for weather, age, venue, event, etc.

Basically what I'm saying is that looking this calm, cool and collected is either harder or easier for me than you thought. There. Well said. Moving on.


An Ode to Claire Huxtable.

There's nothing to it but to do it.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Combatting Snow

When the night has come
And the land is dark
And the moon is the only. light we'll see

Stand by Me
Ben E. King

Did I mention that loves you. 
No. Really, really loves you.

Just checking!!

STOP!!! Do you see me poppin' my turtleneck. Yeah kid. 
Upgrade your colla?! Then POP IT!!!!

So the snow was coming down all day and every hour I'd look up at the clock and think..... 

Hmm I should really head to the supermarket.....yeah i still do my own grocery shopping...keeps me humble.

Finally at about I know. I finally decide to get dressed and brave it through the snow cus I'm hungry, gotta make dinner and definitely don't wanna go tomorrow morning. 

In my fantasy....ok, close your eyes and picture this, tomorrow morning "insert name" will make me breakfast in bed mmmm yes..... I'll eat, roll over into a fetal position and fall back to sleep...ahhhh. In my dream-state I'll listen to the sound of dishes being washed, closet being reorganized and the bathroom cleaned.  siiiiih.

Reality check!! tomorrow morning I'll still be on this computer working...but let's move on cus that's a sensitive subject. AHEM.

As I mentioned in an earlier post I do not own a pair of rain boots so you KNOW I don't own snow boots....really makes no sense cus it's pretty much a necessity if only to ensure the safety of the shoes you do love. I'm still in search of a fly ass pair hold up....let me rephrase that.....A fly ass pair I can afford. 

Snowboots for the snow? I said NO!! NO! NO~

AyO NatuRe! You wanna battle me?!?! Let's go! Meet me outside....I can take you. ESPECIALLY in my combat boots! wut?! 

I'll throw the snow right back up at cha!! In yo face fool. uh oh...No offense Mama Nature i was jus jivin'.....eeek! 


SO!!! I put on my boots and go get a tail to hang on my belt loop but no decide to throw all em on. UH OH!!! 

s'aint yacque Cow horn necklace, s'aint yacque linx fur necklace, s'aint yacque exclusive 3 finger ring, onyx and silver ring, mess of black and silver bangles bang bang go bangles.

A vintage HOLSTER, Yakblaks of course and then kids...THEN!!!! I pull out this silver grey cropped motorcycle jacket....this is the moment the jacket was waiting for!!!

That's all she wrote. It's done.

uh oh...feel a song comin on


Something on your chest? Better get it off!!
Go comment!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Top Gun

A few things inspired today's outfit. Wanna hear it? Here it go:

1. Quoting Starsky and Hutch, "Do it, Do it, Do it" in a deep voice two days in a row. I don't know dude....It just comes to me.
(see reference video below) heeeeeeeee hehehehhehehe

2. My never ending desire for washboard abs. If worn right high waisted jeans create the illusion of flat tummy. ;)
ho hohohohoho

3. The sheer act of taking my pinky and index fingers dappin them on my tongue and smoothing down eyebrows, going into a double snap and on to a  double handed thumbs up pointed index finger "bang bang" to a wink with a clicking sound. aay. aay! 


YOU talkin' ta me?!

"You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? YOU talkin' to ME? Then who the hell else are you talkin' to? You talkin' to me? Well I'm the only one here! Who the f*ck do you think you're talking to?"


That's all I gotta say about that. And what?!?!?!? You wanna do sumthin!?!? Do it! DO IT! DO IT!

yes of course he's wearing YakBlak's throughout the movie.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Please remember to subscribe to the blog!



Friday, December 12, 2008

I've been a bit sluggish the last few days, with body aches and low energy. I think I'm coming down with something but hustlers don't get sick so I keep pushing on. Checked my email and realized the photoshoot that was up in the air is on and I hadn't prepared. Coffee hasn't kicked in yet but I'm willing myself up to get dressed and go into "THE CLOSET'. (scary music in the background) to pick out outfits for the shoot. I have about 2 hours to get dressed, put  3 looks together with accessories and shoes, pack and get down to the location.

There are things I rather not admit about myself, so I'll insist that..."I hate being late....NO! I'm not always late...I just...I...I...yeah"

This top jumps out at me because when in a rush it's best to choose one bold piece and work from there cus you're almost there. I've only worn this top once before with a olive green blazer that pulls the green from the top. Tried on the blazer and for some reason the fit is a bit off....maybe I did lose weight...yay!!!

Then I remembered it was a blazer I picked up at an outside fair to add another layer for warmth. Then I remembered I had checked myself out in a parked car window so maybe I didn't lose weight :( maybe the blazer hadn't fit as well as I'd thought.

I look in my closet and find this lavender heather it! It's obvious in the pic I'm feeling it yes? Clothing is not only about looks but how it makes you feel. Sorta like yo lovah. ooww!

Dark purple Levis skinnies and I'm almost there.

The shoes was trial and error process, almost changed my top because I couldn't seem to find the right shoe. I have to get better about documenting shoe changes cus it's so vital. I tried two other shoes that didn't work then said...wait! Let me try these and boom. LOVE it!

OK check it! This happened purely by accident I went into the closet again to figure out what coat I would wear. This number jumps out with exactly the same color palette I have on. WOW. Am I good or what?

Can't decide if I should give myself credit for my color management skills considering the size of my closet and number of options. Yes, I have an unfair advantage and I don't feel guilty about it. It's been hard work especially on a budget. (shrug) 

THEREFORE: You're good Yah. Real good. DO it girl!
Show em how it's done.

Easy as 1, 2. 3

Thursday, December 11, 2008

There's just something about you

Last week was a very exciting week for me. I don't like to talk about things too early because I'm superstitious but I can guarantee all of  it is life altering. 

It was also a week of a few folks insisting that I change the way I look at myself. Every where I turned I heard the same message. I don't want to get too personal but they assured me that I was basically the opposite of how I see myself. I listened because I'm NOW open to new interpretations of self. 

This post is inspired by Raw Unconventional Beauty.

During my freelance stint at the indie record label I sat in front of a Tricky poster.  siiiiigh. 
There are few men that get me worked up and he's one of them. :) There's something about his ruggedness and self confidence that makes me weak in the knees I can hardly speak, I lose all control and something comes over me..

Every few minutes I would look at his face, the strong features and his dirty, dirty natural swag.

Thought to myself, I bet that man has calluses on his hands and has never had a manicure. Now...why is that sexy?! A coworker once told me my perfect man is Tarzan. 

LOL...he'd be able to catch raccoons with his bare hands and bring me it's tail so I'd be serving them FRESH on :)

Then there's Mos Def. I'll be his 8th baby momma I don't care!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

All I want for Xmas and more...


Guess who left the house today! Got called for an emergency, "please get there asap" freelance gig at a indie record company today. Didn't really have time to put any effort into my outfit so I threw on a black and white vintage top with a bold geometric print, black skinny jeans, black shoes and was out the door!

I have a confession to make, I feel a bit guilty complaining...after years and years of hoping to one day work from home. Your girl is done! Not only is it an isolating feeling but I eat more, exercise less, work more, sleep less, stink more, shower less!! LOL! 

Sorry but it's true!! Your girl be crusty sometimes, I roll out of bed and start working and have no reason to run an afropick through my hair. The other day I was at the computer plugging away, running my tongue against my teeth wondering, "did I brush today???"


Freelance jobs not only get me out of the house smelling fresh and looking clean (or vice versa) BUT always offer the opportunity internet browse, print! and be in an environment so stale I thank my lucky stars I work from home :) Grass is always greener. Pass it.

I ended up on my second fave site while trying to pace myself on a job that could've took an hour and stretching it out to three. 

The following are some of the pieces I'd like from the 2008 Fall Emporio Armani Collection. Thank you.

This is how you do sophisticated, glamorous grown up rockstar. Bet that's the softest leather jacket on the planet.....oooh! Tell me how fly I would look in this outfit....go head...tell me!!

The pants are a bit shiny for my taste but of course the pic is for inspiration purposes only cus....shooooooo. The pants cost more than my rent.

The pants are a breath of fresh air after a long stint in skinny jean country.

My style is definitely becoming more sophisticated, trying to keep my edge but dress like I'm ready to rule the world. The outfit above would make me look like a Terminator chick. Mess with me I'll crush you into smithereens.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Dreaming of Winter White

By KrisH

On my way to work the other morning, I noticed a woman, very beautiful and confidently wearing the hell out of a pair of white, wide legged slacks with a ruby patent leather heel (right, Brian Atwood Patent Leather Pump). I dont even remember the color of her trench
because I was so fixated or more so internally debating my thoughts of
white slacks in the winter. I follow the motto, "do you" - wear what
looks good on your as long as you aren't looking a sloopy mess. But the
google search numbers don't lie - people still question if it's "ok"
to pull out the white post Labor-Day. Here are a couple hints on how to include a few pieces in your wardrobe in this winter.

1) You can never go wrong in black and white. I've noticed New Yorkers love black which is understandable it's sleek, slimming and simple. A classic black/white blazer and mens-inspired wide-legged wool slacks above make for a great contrast.

2) Although white can be a challenge to maintain, another solution is to
go for an antique or off-white shade that still makes for a sophisticated and clean look without being so bold.

3) Lastly, accessorize it - not comfortable or maybe even clumsy when it comes to wearing white as a top or bottom, try a white bag, hat, scarf or jewelry as an easy transition.

GREAT JOB Krish!! Excellent tips! You're such a great writer :) yay!
You're still fired doh don't get crazy.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Not just Style. Life Style.


Got home late from an all day meeting. Challenge is to get dressed in 25 minutes to attend a 3 course meal at a fabulous restaurant where the invite says DRESS TO IMPRESS!!!! 

It's my buddy/partner, the BLACK in YAKBLAK, partner in crime and mental mogul, C to the Los surprise party at Merkato 55 in the meat packing district. 

10 minute shower. The outfit was pretty much all about the top, it fit me RAZOR sharp in all the right places. I hit a little snag with the pants but worked it out with an unexpected pair of pinstripe dress pant from my days at Corporate America. You never takes less time to try something completely different than to stare at yourself in the mirror knowing that the pair you have on is all wrong. 


Sloughy grey boots make the pant leg bunch up and make the pants look vintage/modern. Accessories up the wazoo. 3/4 vintage coat with the fur collar for drama, making the outfit look glam dirty Studio 64 sexy. Relaxed confidence that says "oh this, I just threw this together" whew!!!!  I wasn't 100% sure about the outfit but everyone else commented that I looked great, so hey.

So I was escorted by the Dapper Dan Michael in his 3-piece pin stripe suit and wool overcoat. 
Dan finds the need to demonstrate how a "gentleman" takes off his overcoat and jacket before he sits and places it neatly folded on his lap. All this while looking at his reflection in the train car window. I tell him I love that he loves himself THAT much. (shaking head, rolling eyes)

Of course, I had no time for pics. Sorry!

BTW! I have to apologize for my absence the last few days, I was time traveling. 

I love fine food second to fashion so I was soooo looking forward to dinner! The Grilled SHRIMP PIRI PIRI Shaved Coconut, Ginger Salad as an apetizer was soooooooo good. YUUUM my mouf soo happy! 

For my entree I ordered the LOBSTER PIRI PIRI Sweet Glazed Yam, Creamy Cabbage with the Coconut rice. Mmmm party in my mouth. The cabbage was a bit spicy and tangy balancing out the sweet flavors of the yam and coconut rice. mmmmm. The portion was perfect, I hate feeling too full, after dinner I wanted to roll over and be in my comfy bed sucking my thumb.

I want to eat like this everyday, have a personal chef, travel the world and sample exotic cuisine and SHOP! I want to shop at Jeffrey's down the block and come back to Merkato for brunch have a glass of champagne then head to the spa for a facial then off to my loft in Tribeca. siiiigh. Not just style. Life. Style.


The plate was set like a piece of art, while others (I won't name names) complained that there wasn't enough food, I said I looked forward to the day where I dined at places that served 1/5 the size. At places where food is not about the size of the portion but more about the symphony of flavors dancing on your tongue. YUM. I want to eat like this everyday. everyday.

Took about an hour to settle the bill because it was about 20 of us. I wish I could smack my black AMEX card on the table and exclaim, Happy Birthday C-Los! Dinner's on me. ONE DAY.

Moral of the story. Style is not only about clothes but how you carry yourself. Be aware of your surroundings and act accordingly.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008 November Fashion Challenge Entries!!!

Many folks had questions about the Fashion Challenge, didn't understand or know how their outfit could relate to the image of 

The zebra:

A Black and White outfit
An outfit with contrasting color
Pattern! The choice is yours.
Any animal print

Etc. Etc. Etc.

Thanks to all that submitted for the Fashion Challenge!!!
Special thanks to Tiffany for anonymously sending in her sketch! 

Please help spread the world and keep your eyes open for the December Fashion Challenge!!

The Future Starts Right......NOW!

There comes a time when you stand back and acknowledge the fruits of your labor. Once that realization happens you are able to move forward and see the future.

One day I will commission a famous artist to paint this picture in oil, life size with the landscape of....of...I haven't decided...arizona mountains? Dominican sugar cane fields? Glaciers? The solar system?! PYRAMIDS?!?!

The portrait will hang in the parlor of the mansion that will be passed down to my great grandkids.

My WILL shall specify that they will have to look at the painting and say "bendicion abuela" every morning and every night. 


That shall be all. You are dismissed. 

Yacira, Yacque, Yah, S'aint Yacque

Tuesday, December 2, 2008 Says oooh LAH LAH

This dude. Hmm....Where do I begin?

So check this out, he had the nerve to contact me ALL THE WAY from Paris claiming that I bite off his jacket. What jacket? THE band jacket. Excuse me? Blah, blah, blah he says.

I says, "you know what dude!! (yes I can get gangsta sometimes) I don't even know you're just mad I look better in it." ooooh TAKE THAT! ha!

Turns out this dude is not only working his Parisian/Caribbean/California accent (oooh lah lah), he is funny, intelligent, a kind heart and a beast in business. Thing is he won't let you forget it. Ok. Mr. Lah, I know, I're about your business. Damn where have I heard that one before? Oh, (sigh) We're a match made in Hustle Heaven. We are in the process of formulating a master plan to take over the world. Stay tuned.

This Dude...let's call him Mr. Lah for now, is in the process of launching his own line of clothing, shoes, bags, etc, etc, etc. Here I thought I was spreading myself thin with all my projects. Nope this dude has me beat....but I still look better in the jacket. So all is good in the fashion universe.

Side bar: I could not believe my ears when he had the nerve to ask me how I got the jacket since he had to go through a friend of a friend to get the Dolce & Gabbana jacket of the season. HUH? doh! um..well ya see um...I rolled my eyes sooooo hard I gave myself a headache. I'm thinking hmm maybe he'll trade me for this ORIGINAL vintage um generic high school jacket? Hey you never know right?! Shuddup. A girl can dream.

Check the flavors Mr. Lah will be bringing you in the very near future right here on what? MEN....get ready for the Cocolah lah, lah, lah.

Gagny Lah in the process of taking over the world:

It is really hard to believe that a kid like this can bring so much sophistication. Who knew!
Get grown cus double pockets and elbow patches instantly upgrades your style factor.
Check the EuroPeans looking like they from Brooklyn..just kidding.


Like it? Share it.

Twitter Facebook MySpace