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Sharmain Beddoe-Howard - Queen of Cool
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🔗 Bio

⭐️❤️👑
THE CAMERON HOUSE

Following her time spent abroad, Beddoe-Howard returned to Toronto in her early 20s. While juggling fashion shows, she began waitressing at the Queen Street West treasure and funky neighbourhood hotspot, The Cameron House.

Eventually, Beddoe-Howard bought into the music venue and became an operating owner alongside friend Cindy Matthews.

In Beddoe-Howard’s opinion, The Cameron House was unlike any other bar in Toronto. The venue walls were constantly being dressed in new art.

During the day, World War II vets filled the bar seats, and in the evenings, chatter and live music filled the air while an entirely new crowd consumed the dance floors. “We were the one club that had gay nights, Black nights and constantly changing art.”

It wasn’t until the 1980s that Black creatives received the acknowledgment they deserved, said Beddoe-Howard. It was a time of significant expansion, “suddenly people of color were appearing in magazines other than Ebony magazine.”

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INFLUENCE AND LEGACY

In 1998, Beddoe-Howard met her husband, Daniel Howard. “It was love at first sight,” says Beddoe-Howard. And 22 years later, we’re still in love. You know I’m lucky.”

Beddoe-Howard went on to work in PR with the jewellery company Erickson Beamon (now Vicki Sarge). She has a deep appreciation for jewelry, particularly Tuareg jewelry created by the Tuareg, a nomadic tribe from North Africa. After seven seven years she left Erickson Beamon to spend more time with her son, Luke.

Currently, Beddoe-Howard resides in Peckham,a district in southeast London, England, which Daniel, Luke her and two border terriers Lola and Jet. She is completing a Master’s while simultaneously working at an outreach program.

Beddoe-Howard appreciates that fashion is taking strides towards greater inclusivity.

“There are people that years ago would never be considered to be beautiful that are now on the forefront of beauty,” says Beddoe-Howard. “It’s your generation that’s melting the walls of all the cultural taboos, where people are recognizing the relevance of culture.”

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Sharmain Beddoe-Howard – The Queen of Cool

Words by Carolyn Bridgeman, Gabby Cleveland, Julian Beltrano

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EARLY LIFE & CAREER

On October 26, 1960, Sharmain Beddoe-Howard was born in Boissiere Village, just east of Port of Spain in Trinidad and Tobago, where she lived with her parents and three siblings Ann Marie, Katina and Adam.

Five years later, with her walking-doll in hand, Beddoe-Howard, alongside her grandmother, arrived in Canada, where she was reunited with her parents, who had moved to Toronto in 1963.

At the ripe age of 16, Beddoe-Howard was headhunted on the streets of New York and recruited by a modelling agency. This would mark the beginning of Beddoe-Howard’s modelling career.

After quickly dominating the North American fashion arena, Beddoe-Howard set off to tackle new territory in Europe, where she worked with some of fashion’s most extraordinary designers, from Yves Saint Laurent to Vivienne Westwood.

Beddoe-Howard says, “One of my favourite people to work with was Yves Saint Laurent. He was a genius who never took measurements. You would have to put a leotard on, and he would sort of line you all up, look at you, and put the measurements together by visualizing them on his model.”

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BREAKING BARRIERS

However, modelling wasn’t always as glamorous as it appeared to be, according to Beddoe-Howard. During the pre-digital age, before the 1980s, Black models and models of colour were blocked by systemic racism within the industry.

“I would be told my legs are too long, that I’m not Black enough or that I’m not light enough,” says Beddoe-Howard.

While Black models were approved for the runway, appearing on magazine covers was still considered controversial, says Beddoe-Howard. “To become a really good Black artist, you had to build this facade. But why does an artist have to come from the street?” muses Beddoe-Howard.

And while the fashion industry has seen some improvements in terms of greater diversity and representation, persistent problems of systemic racism remain an ongoing issue within it. For example, Naomi Campbell has 8 Vogue covers, in comparison, Gigi Hadid has 35 covers.

🔗 bio

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Thank you @breakfasttelevision and @sid_seixeiro for your warm welcome and having me on the show to introduce @blackfashioncanada database. You gave me valuable time and space to highlight details of the project to your vast audience. Thank you for shining a light on our database.

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👗Dress: Greta Constantine Vintage

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La Linda – Hot and Cool

Words by Alexandra Clelland and Felecia Francis
Photos: Courtesy of Carter

BREAKING BARRIERS

“You were not even thought of for catalogues,” Carter explains. “That was the bread and butter of most of the modelling choices from the ’60s on to the mid ’80s, but women of colour were not considered for catalogue work during those periods. So when I was trying to do any kind of modelling, I had to do the modelling that was available to me, but we were excluded. Black models were excluded.”

Since then, Carter says the door for women of colour in the modelling industry has slowly been opening up.

To the many Black models who are starting out, her best advice is for them to be themselves in every way. “Just do your thing,” she says. “Just be you because nobody else can be you. Do your designs and do the best you can.”

And, as the industry becomes more diverse in terms of who is now modelling, the types of clothing available year-round and more sustainability, Carter is proud of her contribution and impact she has made, especially on those who have come to admire her and view her as a role model.

INFLUENCE AND LEGACY

When asked about the proudest moment of her illustrious career, Carter explains that creating The Making of a Judge, a film directed and narrated by Carter, telling the story of her father, was an incredible highlight that allowed her to share and celebrate her Canadian, West Indian and African heritage.

Carter believes that her longevity, resilience and endurance have been major contributions to the industry.

She is most proud of “opening the door for young Black women who wanted to be in the fashion industry.”

Carter discusses her work as a TV host, and how her presence on camera gave many people hope. “Just speaking to young people who wanted to get into the fashion industry and had seen me on my show, called Black World I think that meant a lot for people to see somebody who looked like them was on TV.”

For La Linda, there are many more milestones yet to achieve in her life, and she cannot wait to see what’s to come in the future.

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La Linda – Hot and Cool

Words by Alexandra Clelland and Felecia Francis
Fact checked by Charmaine Gooden
📸Courtesy of Carter

Linda V. Carter is a renowned fashion model, media personality, actor and producer from Toronto, known for being a trendsetter and trailblazer in the fashion industry.

Her modelling career took her across the globe working for brands such as Saint Laurent, Gucci, Giorgio Armani and Givenchy, in France, Italy, and the United Kingdom.

Carter says her travels allowed her to develop a deeper understanding of culture and trends in the fashion world, through networking and experiencing the world beyond Canadian borders. She also has an impressive resume in television and film, including doing work in commercials, voiceovers and TV hosting.

EARLY LIFE AND CAREER

Linda Violet Carter was born in Toronto, Ontario, the eldest of four children — two younger brothers and a sister — to The Honourable Justice George E. Carter.

Her fashion career began as a teenager. She credits her family and heritage for her interest in fashion and design, looking at what her mother and grandmother were admiring, the materials, patterns and designs of the clothing they wore when she was growing up.

Carter is known for being a trailblazer among Black women in the early part of her modelling career, when Black women were not represented or welcomed in the fashion world.

During the 1960s, Carter says that there were no women of colour in catalogues or on the runways, but through the work done by her and other Black models, she began to get more work by the 1970s.

La Linda as she is also called, is variously described as an “extraordinary talent,” a beauty and personality that is “so real,” a diverse presence on film and a trailblazer, by people who have worked with her and who have adored her work throughout the years.

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www.blackfashioncanada.ca
website launching this Wednesday June 15th!

Thank you to colleagues and friends:
@kimberlyjenkins
@fashionandrace
cherylthompson @brec_archive
@kcintoronto
@theimageisofficial
@hellocouturedesign
@irisknowsbest
@candacecastro
@carolmartin
@rj_rest

#blackfashioncanada #blackfashioncanadadatabase #fashioncanada #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashionlibrary
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Name: Leonard Donovan Henry
Birthday: August 17
Birthplace: May Pen, Jamaica
Ethnic Origin: Jamaican
Occupations: Model/Dancer, Creative Director, Entrepreneur

👕 Henry poses in pin-striped Marc Laurent suit

📸 Photo: Photo: Greg Lawson
❤️Come follow @blackfashioncanada for new updates!

#blackfashioncanada #fashioncanada #fashionicon #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashionlibrary
#blackfashioncanadadatabase
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Beyond the Brushstrokes of Roxanne DeNobegra

Name: Roxanne Maxime DeNobegra
Birthday: December 28
Birthplace: Georgetown, Guyana
Occupations: Makeup artist

📸 Photo: Rohan Laylor

❤️Come follow @blackfashioncanada for new updates!

#blackfashioncanada #fashioncanada #fashionicon #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashionlibrary
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Bombshell Bijette- Her Strut Beyond the Runway

Name: Bijette Spencer
Birthplace: Kingston, Jamaica
Birthday: May 2, 1951
Occupations: Model, pet portrait Artist

📸 Photo: ?

❤️Come follow @blackfashioncanada for new updates!

#blackfashioncanada #fashioncanada #fashionicon #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashionlibrary
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Name: David Cardoza
Years: 1949 - 1997
Birthplace: Kingston, Jamaica
Ethnic Origin: Jamaican Maroon Mother, Portuguese Scottish Father
Occupations: Model, Actor

📸 Photo: ?

❤️Come follow @blackfashioncanada for new updates!

#blackfashioncanada #fashioncanada #fashionicon #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashionlibrary
#blackfashioncanadadatabase
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Name: Iris Karen Simpson
Birthday: September 7
Birthplace: Clarendon, Jamaica
Occupations: Buyer, Stylist, Educator, Cofounder Hello, COUTURE! Design
👗Simpson wears YSL
Location: YSL Boutique, Hazleton Lanes
📸 Photo: ?

📄Black Fashion Canada Database's agenda is to document those unrecognized, pioneering Black and multiracial models, muses, designers, photographers, creatives and entrepreneurs from the 60s-90s, celebrating their success, while also calling out the fashion industry for its decades old racism.

❤️Come follow @blackfashioncanada for new updates!

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Name: Winston Kong
Years: 1934 - 2005
Birthplace: Ipswich, St. Elizabeth, Jamaica
Identity: Jamaican Chinese
Occupation: Fashion Designer

📸 Photo: ?

📄Black Fashion Canada Database was created in 2021 as an online collection of magazine style profiles, photos, av clips, and archival material.

❤️Follow @blackfashioncanada for new updates!

#blackfashioncanada #blackfashioncanadadatabase
#fashioncanada #fashionicon #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashionlibrary
...

Designer: Winston Kong
Years: 1934 - 2005
Birthplace: Ipswich, St. Elizabeth, Jamaica,
Identity: Jamaican Chinese
Occupation: Fashion Designer

👗 Ruched gold silk lame, strapless flamenco dress, skirted with black silk taffeta.
Source: Excellence Magazine, 1987
Fashion Editor: Donna Holgate
Model: Vivienne Brown
📸 Photographer: John Wild

📄Black Fashion Canada Database was created in 2021 as an online collection of magazine style profiles, photos, av clips, and archival material.

📄#blackfashioncanada database and website www.blackfashioncanada.ca launching mid June.

#blackfashioncanada #fashioncanada #fashionicon #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashion library
#blackfashioncanadadatabase
...

Name: Adrian Hamilton Matthew Carew
Birthday: September 30, 1969
Birthplace: St James, Barbados
Occupation: Hair Stylist

📸 Photographer: David Cox

📄Black Fashion Canada Database was created in 2021 as an online collection of magazine style profiles, photos, av clips, and archival material.

❤️Come follow @blackfashioncanada for new updates!

#blackfashioncanada #fashioncanada #fashionicon #fashionjournalist #fashionjournalism #fashioneducation #fashionlibrary
#blackfashioncanadadatabase
...

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