Joppa Couture: Designing Timeless Beauty
Designing Timeless Beauty
By M. Cassandra Pascal, UDTN Founder and Writer, Author, Poet, Underestimated Diamond
I had the pleasure of doing an interview with Joppa Couture which can only be described as timeless beauty. I had the pleasure of speaking with Dorcas Bayoro, who is the daughter of Josette Bayoro, CEO and Founder of Joppa Couture. Dorcas gave me an open book about Joppa Couture. Now before we started the interview, I had to confess to Dorcas that I have worked indirectly with Joppa Couture. Joppa Couture along with many other Haitian designers and vendors participated in “A Night with Haiti” at Style Fashion Week in Los Angeles, California in March 2015. A Night with Haiti brought in over 1,000 supporters in the Los Angeles area. As I was working on the press release, I was honestly captivated by my research on Joppa Couture. The designs were not what I was expecting. The word “mature” came to mind, along with “authentic.” This was a great opportunity to interview Joppa Couture and introduce them once again to a tremendous fashion event now in Atlanta, Georgia.
Before I get into the actual details of the interview, may I tell you first that Mrs. Josette Bayoro the CEO and Founder of Joppa Couture is actually 70 years old. Yes, Mrs. Josette Bayoro is teaching us that age is truly just a number and you can pursue your dreams at any age. But of course, Dorcas had to tell me about her 6-inch heel wearing business entrepreneur about the philosophy of “not letting yourself go and knowing that you can be beautiful at any age,” stated by Dorcas quoting her mother.
Josette Shackelton Bayoro
Now, Josette Shackelton Bayoro was born in Haiti in the 1940s were she sadly lost her mother at age 3. Josette and her sister were raised by family members due to the fact her father had to seek work out the area. Even though Josette’s father sent money, she had to be a mother to her sister. Josette learned how to sew at the age of 8 and made sure to look her best growing up. This young seamstress wasn’t aware of the seeds that she was planting in her life. Now if we go further back in Josette’s ancestry, you will find that her maiden name Shackelton descends from Ireland and Great Britain. Josette is the granddaughter of Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton, a polar explorer that led three British expeditions to the Antarctic. Shackleton survival story places him as a role model of leadership and exploration making history rediscovering the South Pole plus setting a record in marching expeditions. Josette apparently followed her ancestor’s footsteps in adventures and pursued modeling in Paris. Among her travels to New York, Josette met an African businessman that soon became her husband.
Today, Josette and her husband now Apostle, Doctor Appolinaire Bayoro together founded True Beauty International Ministries in Miami, Florida. Together the Bayoro family share their love of God with a mighty congregation and raised beautiful children. The former model in Paris and New York, became a high fashion designer, and wrote her first book: La Vraie Beaute /The True Beauty, a critically acclaimed book, featured in the oldest and most notable newspapers published in Port-au-Prince Haiti. Josette S Bayoro was also an actress who played Anaise in the play Gouverneur De La Rosee by Jacques Roumain. Her extraordinary performances led her to the radio where she spent a few months as a host before she left her country for the United States.
We understand a bit more about Mrs. Josette but I had to bring my focus back to how this 70 year old woman decided to create Joppa Couture.
How did you establish the name Joppa Couture?
Joppa Couture is comes from a Bible story. Joppa first means “beautiful.” Joppa was a city located near Jerusalem and best known for its gardens, workmen, and seamstresses. Joppa was actually the home of Dorcas, a Christian woman known for her seamstress skills. Hence the origin of Dorcas Bayoro name.
What is the vision or mission for Joppa Couture?
Joppa sees the beauty in every woman. We believe in bringing out the queen within. We believe in lifting up of women and raising their confidence.
What do you look for in your designs?
We believe that our styles will make every woman sexy in all shades and colors.
Are your designs in a store or online?
Our designs are actually customized for the consumer.
What sizes do you design for?
We have no limit for our designs. We can make our garments fit for women of any size. We have a week turnaround time as well.
How does a customer obtain a Joppa Couture garment?
At this time, the customer will pick a garment from our merchants.
What shows or events have Joppa Couture been affiliated with?
Our first debut was actually the “Night with Haiti” for Style Fashion Week in Los Angeles, California
Are there any special projects or affiliates of Joppa Couture?
Joppa Couture along with True Beauty International Ministry conducts a conference after Labor Day that honors women. The conference invites homeless women and provide them with garments and bridal outfits to keep them empowered about their beauty. The event also includes a Royal Party and the royal theme encourges everyone to dress like king and queens.
The True Beauty Womens Conference is an annual encounter with women from around the world, whose sole purpose is to unite, uplift and empower women. The conference is designed with the Proverbs 31 women in mind. A complete and phenomenal woman equipped in all aspects. This woman exemplifies beauty, grace, charisma, wisdom and has a vision. We target these characteristics with seminars and workshops that trains the mind, body, and soul; also with seminars and teachings on love, finances, beauty, fitness, health, as well as workshops on home design and etiquette. (excerpt from True Beauty International Womens Conference)
Where do you see the future for Joppa Couture?
Joppa Couture will continue to focus on the transformation of women’s self-esteem through the beauty of our garments. We want to establish a store in the Miami area as well as create a franchise of stores in the future.
Georgia Peach Fashion Week: “The Innovation of Fashion”
The Haitian design collections of Joppa Couture will be presented at Georgia Peach Fashion Week first annual event. Georgia Peach Fashion Week #GPFW will be hosting an event called The Innovation of Fashion that will display the changing styles of fashion through an array of cultures. Georgia Peach Fashion Week will take place on Thursday, June 11 through Saturday, June 13, 2015. Georgia Peach Fashion Week will include runway shows, red carpet arrivals, designer showcases, product launches, and performances. This three-day event will run alongside Atlanta’s Apparel Market which is visited by buyers from all over the world.
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This interview was truly inspiring for me. Being a Haitian women seeing another women pursue their dreams under any aspect is simply amazing. I plan on doing a lot more interviews with Joppa Couture and hopefully be a part of the growing journey of jewel of fashion. I want to thank Guerline Jozef for the opportunity to meet Joppa Couture. I especially want to thank Dorcas Bayoro for the wonderful interview. I hope that I made you proud. We will do this again very soon.
Interview and Reference Courtesy of Guerline Jozef
Article and Promotion Courtesy of Underestimated Diamond Team Network