It only takes one conversation with NJ native, now Atlanta resident, and designer, Natt Taylor to know that fashion is truly her passion. And you need only attend one trunk show to know that this dynamic woman knows her stuff — and that you want to wear it all! At least, that’s how I felt after attending her Summer trunk show in Englewood, NJ.  Lights shone upon brightly colored fabrics, delicately feminine embellishments and flirty pleats and just about every woman in the room looked like she had just arrived at ready-to-wear custom-design heaven.  And then when I learned of her company name, I knew she had to be EXPOSED.  So without further adieu, please meet the very fashionable Ms. Natt Taylor.

General Information

  • What is your company name and when were you established? DESTINI by Natt Taylor, established in 2004
  • Why did you select your chosen company name: It actually chose me. It was my nickname on a step team in high school so when I decided to start my line…it seemed like the perfect fit. This is God’s plan for me, it’s my destiny.
  • What is your main line of business?  I design a ready to wear women’s line. I also offer custom services for proms and weddings.
  • What is the inspiration behind DESTINI? I’m inspired by life. Before I entered college, I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do, so, I allowed God to lead me and now I’m doing something that I absolutely love. I’ve always been in tune with my creative, but I never imagined being a clothing designer.
  • Explain the day in your life as a business owner: On a typical day, I’m up 5:45a heading into my studio. I respond to emails, source fabrics, check in with my interns, sketch, sew, meet, etc. My mind is constantly on overload with new concepts and ideas. I try to squeeze in food & sleep when I can. :-/
  • What is the best business advice you’ve ever received? If at first you don’t succeed, try again.



  • Hometown: Irvington, NJ
  • School Creds: Irvington High School c/o 1996 and Morris Brown College c/o 2001
  • First Job: Working in my Uncle’s bookstore in NY Port Authority
  • What keeps you up at night? Ideas…I’ll get up in the middle of the night to sketch or jot down new business ideas
  • What are some wise words that you live by? Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
  • What was/is your best career decision?: Obtaining a degree in Accounting. Fashion is 80% business, 20% creative…having knowledge and experience in Accounting helps business run a lot smoother


  • Reading now: W, Elle, Glamour, Nylon, etc…the usual fashion mags
  • Reading next: The Help…saw the movie, now I can’t wait to read the book
  • Last fun purchase: My last fun purchase was a really cute fabric I picked up in NY.
  • When you’re not working you can be found doing what? When I’m not working, I’m thinking about what I could be working on

Playing Favorites

  • Hotel: Borgata / Atlantic City
  • Getaway: Hawaii
  • Entrée: I LOVE Pasta!
  • Drink: Bailey’s
  • Guilty pleasure: Strawberry Cheesecake

Fantasies Become Reality

  • Who is your dream client? Halle Berry
  • What is your dream break-out opportunity: Dressing Halle for the Oscars Red Carpet

On the Net

P.S:  You are cordially invited to check out the Fall Destini designs and meet Natt Taylor on November 19th at the DLUX Boutique located at 21A North Dean St in Englewood, NJ 07631.  The fun starts and 4pm and I hope we’ll see you there!


The Wedding You Want, with No Drama! by George James, LMFT

The summer is a time for warm weather, vacation, family reunions and weddings.  Many couples plan their wedding during the summer and fall months.  Planning a wedding can bring a lot of stress and drama to the couple.  From deciding when and where to get married, to working on the guest list and to figuring out how you will pay for the wedding.  Stress and drama can also come from what other people want for your wedding and from handling major conflicts such as faith, money or where to live after the wedding.  It is possible to get the wedding you want and not have any drama, even with all the possibilities leading up to the wedding.

Here are 5 steps to getting the Wedding you want with no Drama.  For more on each step, check out my interview on how to have a Perfect Wedding, No Drama.

1)      Design the Wedding Together – Discuss with your fiancé what you want and what he or she wants in a wedding.  Before you bring other people in the discussion, talk it over with your partner.  Get an understanding of what you both are looking for, design how you plan to make it happen and go after your vision.

2)      Define and Discuss Boundaries – Once you know what type of wedding you both want, you can now discuss potential pitfalls and set boundaries.  A pitfall could be people who can’t make it to the wedding who you want to be there, the overall cost, or family traditions that you like and dislike.  Setting boundaries together helps to set limits on what will and will not happen in your wedding and in the process of planning the wedding.

3)      Keep your Autonomy & Include your Family – Family members, especially parents, are excited and want to be a part of the wedding planning process.  At times, family members want the wedding to be their vision and not your vision.  It’s important that you keep your autonomy by sticking to your vision.  You can make adjustments, include suggestions, but at the end of the day it should still be the vision you and your partner came up with.

4)      Work through Major Conflicts – Major conflicts will come up, how you handle them can determine if you have drama or not.  One major conflict could be around money, such as does giving money equal influence.  If your parents are contributing to the wedding does that mean they get the final say on the guest list or style of the wedding?  What role will faith play in the ceremony, especially if you are not of the same faith as your parents or partner?

5)      Develop Healthy Ways to Handle Stress – Are you still having fun, going on dates or even smiling?  What are you doing to handle your stress?  Having someone you can talk to as a couple can be helpful in handling the many stressors of the process.  Pre-marital counseling can be helpful with navigating the stress of the planning process as well as equip you with the skills necessary for a healthy marriage.


George James is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist and CEO of George Talks, LLC.  For more on this and other topics, please visit

Twitter: @GeorgeTalksLLC 


Stay Connected by George James, LMFT

All relationships can be very difficult at times. They can bring struggles, emotional pain and disappointments. But they can also bring great joy, comfort, excitement and can be a source of encouragement and peace. We can’t avoid relationships because we constantly interact with people, whether they be our parents, siblings, friends, significant others, or colleagues. But how do we overcome the difficult times in our relationships – those times of struggle and emotional pain. The answer is both simple and complex at the same time. It is to “Stay Connected.”

Staying connected does not mean that you should stick around if your partner is abusing you or taking advantage of you. Staying connected means that if you want joy and happiness from any relationship, you must be willing to stay connected to get there. When relationships become difficult, one of the first things we say to ourselves is “I don’t need him”, or, “why am I with her?” “Why was I born into this family”, or “I just won’t call my siblings this week because they are getting on my nerves.” We use distance as a pacifier for pain, hurt, fear or anything else that we don’t like. But what we fail to realize is that distance cannot heal or help you to work out the situation, and will not allow you to develop new understanding within the relationship. Creating distance may feel good, may feel safe, but in the long-run it damages your relationship.

We say that we want the benefits of relationship. We desire close relationships with our mother or with our brother, but are we really willing to work for it? Often we are not willing to work through the difficulties, and in our effort to find an easy way out, we choose distance. Now, choosing distance is completely human. Our natural human process of fight or flight is what we use in emotional situations. As humans, we biologically assess situations that increase our anxiety or fear, and are usually faced with two options: Stay Connected and fight through it, or turn to what we think is safety and run away.

Photo credit:

So let me explain what “staying connected” really means. Difficulty in a relationship of any kind can bring heaviness. Sometimes, you can get into an argument or dispute with someone over petty things, like disagreeing over the meaning of one particular word. As you continue to argue, however, you may realize that you are both trying to say the same thing but describing it differently. And, as you both try to explain your side, you start to take what the other person is saying personally. You then become offended or hurt and try to defend yourself. One word – one disagreement – just took you through a roller coaster of emotions. At that moment, you are left with a choice. You can press your way through and try to come to an understanding, or you can give up and leave it unresolved. Unfortunately, we often give up and leave the matter unresolved, saying to ourselves, “I don’t feel like going through it right now,” or “she always wants to talk, why can’t we leave it alone” or “he never listens to me, so why bother?”

It is through these crucial moments that it is imperative that we stay connected (and I do realize this is easier said than done). Yes, staying connected could possibly mean a half-hour conversation. Staying connected could mean arguing or debating before you reach an agreement or understanding. Staying connected takes practice, growth, willingness to press on, and ever-increasing communication skills. And I can promise you – it is worth it in the long run. Staying connected is hard and sometimes contrary to our human process and natural defenses. But it can be done.

When we stay connected, we resolve issues now instead of never. We work out the recurring problem with our parents, siblings, friends, and partners, instead of allowing it to become overbearing. We tear down the walls that surround our hearts, instead of building new walls to keep the people we love away.

George James, Jr., is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who works extensively with adolescent and adult men on various issues. He also specializes in helping couples improve the quality of their relationship, reconcile conflicts and overcome intense situations such as affairs, parenting struggles and loss of a loved one. Mr. James’ clinical expertise includes religion/spirituality concerns, affairs, sex therapy, improving communication in relationships, vulnerability, conflict, loss/grief and enhancing intimacy.  He is a member of the American Psychological Association, American Public Health Association, American Association of Christian Counselors and the Philadelphia Association of Clinical Psychologists.

If you have specific questions or topics of interest you’d like George to cover, leave a comment below or email us at

EXPOSED: George James of George Talks, LLC

You’ll often hear me say that I love my dynamic network of friends.  I consider myself lucky to have so much talent within my reach and any opportunity to partner with them is the cherry on top of our already sweet friendship.  So today’s feature of EXPOSED is extra special as I get to introduce you to my longtime friend, George James, Jr.

George and I graduated from Villanova together in 2001 and since then he’s been quite busy finding happiness as a husband and father and success as a nationally recognized speaker and Licensed Marriage and Family therapist.  His brand, GeorgeTalks, LLC, is a multi-faceted communication and counseling company where the list of services provided include motivational & psycho-educational speaking, executive & life coaching, and individual & couple therapy and consulting.  I can personally attest to George’s patience and sensibility when advising on sensitive matters as I have had the unfortunate pleasure of emptying out a box, or two, of kleenex during several impromptu phone counseling sessions (What?  Did you really think I am always this perky?).

I recently asked George to share his devotion to helping people achieve enriched relationships with my readers and I am elated to announce that starting August 9th he will be guest blogging on Behind the Veil, Beyond the Vows the second Tuesday of every month.  So please give a very warm greeting to my friend and our very first guest blogger, Mr. George James.

General Information

  • What is your company name and when were you established? George Talks, LLC – Established September 2008
  • Why did you select your chosen company name: It developed from a think tank and reflected who I am and what I do.
  • What is your main line of business? George Talks, LLC is a multifaceted communication and consulting company with a goal of inspiring, teaching and empowering people to lead fulfilling and meaningful relationships, lives and businesses. Services provided include Motivational & Psycho-Educational Speaking, Executive & Life Coaching, Individual & Couple Therapy and Consulting.
  • What is the inspiration behind your business? I’ve been working as a therapist for about 10 years and have had wonderful opportunities to speak, consult, teach and many more. As the opportunities continued to increase I realized I needed an business to help nurture what I was already doing. In addition, I knew there was more I wanted to do like writing, workshops, etc and my own business would help to make that possible.
  • Explain the day in the life as a business owner: Wake up, check my phone, my email, go to the office check more email, say something on twitter, review my schedule, go to a meeting, make a phone call, run a group or see clients or appear on TV/Radio then go to another meeting, make some more calls, teach a class, go to a class, come home, try to workout, check more email, maybe watch some tv or a movie, then go to bed. Somewhere in there I try to eat.
  • What is the best business advice you’ve ever received? Keep throwing spaghetti at the wall and eventually something will stick. Meaning working hard, going to meetings, speaking and whatever else your business does, if you keep doing it, something will stick and work out.


  • Hometown: Hackensack, NJ
  • School Creds: Undergrad – Villanova University, Grad – Drexel University, Doctoral program (in progress) – Immaculata University
  • First Job: Boston Chicken (before it became Boston Market)
  • What keeps you up at night? Trying to make sure I did all I can that day to put my family and the business in the best place to get the most results for that day and the future.
  • What are some wise words that you live by? I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me, Phil. 4:13
  • What was/is your best career decision? Not holding back throughout my career. Also, becoming a therapist, but not letting other people’s thoughts limit what I could and will do with my career.


  • Reading now: A mix between A Fathering book I was asked to endorse, a book on photography, a communication book and the DSM-IV (not reading as much as I want, but they are on the list of things to do)
  • Reading next: Some book for a class I’m taking and/or teaching
  • Last fun purchase: New clothes for my last vacation and 2 pairs of sunglasses
  • When you’re not working you can be found doing what? Trying to find a deal on my next vacation/getaway

Playing Favorites

  • Hotel: Marriott Chain
  • Getaway: Miami – South Beach
  • Entrée: Something that tastes good, could be Salmon or a good burger
  • Drink: Strawberry Lemonade
  • Guilty pleasure: Watching TV shows that eventually get canceled (Heroes, Human Target, Lie to Me). Also, watching movies from Disney, animated to chick flicks to comedy to action packed. Almost everything when I get a chance.

GEORGE TALKSLooking For More Information

If you have specific questions or topics of interest you’d like George to cover, leave a comment below or email us at

Preston Bailey’s Color Palette Picker

Preston Bailey – king of ALL things weddings – has recently released his Color Palette Picker to help brides and planners find some much needed color inspiration.  It’s a simple and easy  process that begins with the selection of the color you’re contemplating using as the main attraction:

Then you’ll be asked to select answers for HOW many guests are invited to your event, WHERE your event is taking place, WHAT the light source will be and, WHAT is the tone of your event and then you’ll select your PRESTON FACTOR:

The result is a  customized color palette along with some great suggestions for accent colors and a photo of an actual PB event for a little visual stimulation and ideas on how to bring it all together.

I must warn you that is it highly addictive so why not log on and get hooked now.  And then let us know what your recommended palette is.

No Time To Cook? There’s an APP for that!

Here’s an app I think all of our busy singles, nesties and knotties will appreciate.  RealSimple has recently released their No Time To Cook app – designed to give you weekly grocery lists, step by step instructions, and how-to videos for more than 850 easy dinner recipes that can be prepared in 40 minutes or less.  It will cost you $4.99 and is only available for Android, iPhone, and iPAD.  Start cooking now and download this RealSimple app for your Android or iPHONE/iPAD today!

Have you already started using this app?  Has it made your life easier?  Tell us your experience below.

EXPOSED: Angela McKnight of Care About You

Throughout life, our parents are the ones we rely upon most for guidance and emotional strength.  After all, they mended our wounds after the first fall, walked us through the doors on the first day of school and dried our crying eyes after heartbreak.  The mark they leave on our lives is hard to ignore and impossible to erase.  Sometimes though, a day comes when our parents can no longer function alone and the parent-child roles become reversed.  Admittedly, anyone who’s ever experienced it will confess that it’s a jagged little pill where the side effects include feelings of being overwhelmed, bereft of answers, and inability to find adequate help.  Thankfully, the world still holds within it, individuals who care enough to help lighten the load of children caring for parents and empower elderly parents to reclaim as much of their independence as possible for as long as they can.  I like to think of them as Ambassadors of the Elderly and I’d like to introduce to you to Mrs. Angela McKnight, CEO of Care About You and a diva with a big heart.

Company Snapshot

  • Name: Care About You
  • Established: February 2010
  • What is your main line of business? We provide administrative and social services to senior citizens. The mission of Care About You is to address the needs of senior citizens and help them live life to the fullest. Whether a senior citizen cares for themselves or receives care from a loved one or caregiver, we are committed to helping senior citizens keep their independence.
  • What is the inspiration behind your business? My late mother & granny. Also, seeing many seniors being neglected, mistreated, and confused as to what to do next.
  • What is the best business advice you’ve ever received? Do what your heart tells you


  • Hometown: Jersey City, NJ
  • School Creds: BA in Business Management
  • My First Job: Sears sales person in the children department
  • What keeps you up at night? Nothing, I love my sleep
  • What are some wise words that you live by? “This too shall pass”, “God does not give me too much to handle” and “Live your life”
  • What was/is your best career decision? Leaving the corporate world to dedicate my time helping senior citizens


  • Reading now: My son’s homework assignment, The Bible, God’s Little Instruction Book for Women, Entrepreneur Magazine, Black Enterprise Magazine, Time Magazine, O Magazine and the Draft of my first book for caring for senior citizens
  • Reading next: Wouldn’t you say that my current list is too much to think about what’s next lol
  • Last fun purchase: Broccoli and Cheese Quiche from Houlihan’s
  • When you’re not working you can be found doing what? Working…lol

Playing Favorites

  • Hotel: The Westin (the heavenly beds are to die for)
  • Getaway: Aruba or Atlantic City
  • Guilty pleasure: Pizza

Looking for More Information

Digitize Your Handwriting


Handwriting has long been a skill that, like fingerprints, identifies us from each other and while modern day technology has taken over some of the heavy lifting; it remains an integral part of who we are, giving everything we do that extra-added personal touch.

A social communication that has been largely overshadowed by modern day technology but will never go out of style is the time tested handwritten note. After conducting a very non-scientific poll of my closest friends, it seems that many of us have good intentions of sending handwritten notes of gratitude and appreciation but never do, citing, horrible handwriting, lack of time or a complete transition to digital life as the most common reasons.

Click for Free Download

But leave it to technology to save us from…well, technology.  Online sites like Fonts For Peas allow you to download from a variety of handwritten fonts (complete download included below) while YourFonts allow you to convert up to 200 of your submitted handwriting samples into fonts that can be saved to your computer.   Both sites allow you to submit your fonts for free (note: Your Fonts will cost $9.95 to download your favorite fonts onto your computer) and can help rescue you in the moments when email just won’t do.