Pardon My Fro CEO and Founder Dana Bly is never fully dressed without a pop of color.
The self-taught graphic designer created her lifestyle brand filled with fun clothing, accessories, and home decor, on the premise of lifting women up and living life on their own terms.
“In 2009, at the height of fashion blogging, I was obsessed with looking at blogs and getting inspiration from outfit patterns and bold colors. I started teaching myself how to illustrate the fashion that inspired me, and reflected who I am as a strong African American woman,” Bly tells ET.
“When I started Pardon My Fro, I designed collections of illustrative dolls that reflected who I was at the time, including natural hair that is a huge part of my Black culture. … My dolls touched people that saw themselves in the designs, and they started requesting the drawings for clothing and items in their homes,” she continues.
Since then, the designer has featured her illustrations on travel bags, sweatshirts, kimonos, personalized bath mats, shower curtains, pillows, fine art pieces, children’s backpacks, lunchboxes, and more, all made to reflect her background and sense of fashion.
“The patterns and bright colors of my dolls are culturally influenced and a true reflection of my style. … My style is proud, strong and colorful. … My classic, signature look is a graphic tee, kicks and bold earrings. … I have also added lime green to my wardrobe, since that’s my favorite color,” she notes.
Bly recommends others do the same to amp up their spring ensembles, and looks to her celebrity style crushes for extra inspo.
“Embrace color and have fun with your pieces this season. I’m loving our kimonos and how they can be styled with a pair of jeans or a dress,” she says.
“So many celebrities inspire me, but right now I would say, a drop of Zendaya, sprinkle of Gabrielle Union, and a splash of Erykah Badu,” the businesswoman continues.
As far as home decor goes, Bly shares the same sentiment and believes color can even influence your mood.
“Bring on the color. Color brings a feeling of strength and happiness. … The Pardon My Fro blankets and pillows add color, texture and a touch of attitude. They are the perfect touch to add a little statement to any room. … I also started buying plants because I think it adds vibrancy,” she explains.
Regardless of what she’s wearing or how her home is decorated, Bly feels her best when she is succeeding.
“My power comes from my small wins that build confidence in my abilities,” she says. “The Pardon My Fro Doll illustrations reflect the power that all women have when we embrace and love who we are.”
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