An intimate conversation with marketing maven Karen Civil

Karen Civil is in a league of her own. From heading the marketing campaign for Beats by Dre, to maintaining rapper Lil Wayne relevancy during his incarceration to now headlining her Be You, Live Civil tour, Karen Civil is sure to be a legend in her own right.

I had the pleasure of attending Civil’s tour here in NYC for the December 11th tour date. HerAgenda owner Rhonesha Byng and Alleynyc event space in Manhattan hosted the event. Although, slated to start at 7pm the actual conversation did not begin till about a quarter after eight. Guests were becoming restless and almost turned around to leave the event, but the anticipation on meeting and hearing entrepreneur Karen Civil share her jewels on success kept them there.  Continue reading “An intimate conversation with marketing maven Karen Civil”

Yes to the Sketch: Becoming a Pantora Bride with Designer Andrea Pitter

IMG_0865Fabric enthusiast, Brooklyn native, and six years of experience, Andrea Pitter is our November feature for Brooklyn Success of the month. An acronym for her birth name Andrea Tora Pitter, Pantora Bridal is birth to a successful business. The young African-American designer sits with such poise and grace. Her professionalism is displayed effortlessly. She’s what some may call an “old soul.”


Pitter says she got her start in fashion early at the age of 16, when she started designing prom dresses in high school for her classmates. Her first official design order was when she was a freshman in college. She attended the Fashion Institute of technology in Manhattan, NY. She knew she wanted to design and after having her hand in sportswear and contemporary fashion wear she decided ultimately that her design passion was in bridal. Pitter says owning her own business does have its downs, “failure takes an emotional toll.” She doesn’t consume her mind with worrying about competition. Instead she says, “knowing that I have to work 10 times harder is ok with me.”

Her bridal showroom which is just a few blocks from her design studio, sits beautiful gowns. All hand-sewned by the designer, each gown consists of intricate details covered with lace, beads and crystals. “You should be the elevated version of yourself,” Pitter tells us of every bride on their wedding day. Words of wisdom from the mature designer just flows continuously as she continues, “when you get married you are half of you and half of someone else. That person should elevate you. You elevate each other.”


Continue reading “Yes to the Sketch: Becoming a Pantora Bride with Designer Andrea Pitter”

Entrepreneur builds a beauty empire

IMG_8964Our Brooklyn Success of the month is none other than the beautiful Chyna Russell. She is the founder and owner of The Dollhouse beauty bar and Dollhouse Cosmetics. A Brooklyn native who grew up in a single house home in the gritty streets of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Russell is determined to take over the beauty industry.

With determination, passion and a hard work ethic, Russell prides herself on being a person who has faced many adversities and overcoming obstacles. Russell motto is, “if I focus on all the things that could go wrong I would have never been where I am today.”

The Dollhouse beauty bar have been in business for over two years, and have captured the attention of celebrities such as reality stars, Tara Wallace, Yandy Smith, and online personality Blac Chyna and a host of others.  The dollhouse host’s monthly makeup classes that include gift bags with cosmetics from the dollhouse makeup line. The class attendees consists of makeup artists, aspiring makeup artists, and everyday women who just want to learn makeup application techniques. The classes offer beginner and advanced techniques for all levels. Russell also host other events in the neighborhood as a way to give back to her community. It also serves as a venue for private events such as children’s parties and business networking events.

Russell saw a void in the beauty industry and decided to open The Dollhouse and her timing couldn’t have been more precise. The Dollhouse opened right before there was a booming trend of aspiring make-up artist’s. There are no neighboring beauty bars within the vicinity of Russell’s establishment; this is how the successful make-up artist is able to stay on top of her game.  Her products are top quality and her clients says that they are just as good as Mac Cosmetics.

Since opening the dollhouse Russell have gain quite the notoriety on social media. Her instagram ha s over 40k followers who are very loyal to the brand. The dollhouse is not just limited to everyday women who are seeking to have their makeup done or learn makeup techniques but celebrities as well. VH1’s reality stars from the hit reality show Love and Hip Hop both New York and Atlanta have also gravitated towards the popular make-up bar.  Pop singer Elle Varner and up and coming hip-hop artist Nyemiah Supreme have also visited the dollhouse to have their make up done for video and photo shoots. Russell stated, “this is all a dream come true. Who would of thought a young black girl from the hood would reach the attention of so many celebrities when there’s so many celebrity make-up artists in the industry.” Her claim to fame has contributed to her  serving as the key makeup artist for VH1’s Mr. and Mrs. Jones with rapper Jim Jones and the newly hit hip-hop reality show Sisterhood of Hip-Hop.

Dollhouse cosmetics can be brought at and you can have your make-up done by the talented artist at 421 Marcus Garvey Boulevard, Brooklyn, NY 11233. You can call and schedule an appointment at (718) 450-8062.