What’s in your cup?

I don’t know about you, but I’ll tell you what’s in mine! TEA, TEA & more TEA!

I love me some tea! Call me the tea connoisseur, lol. I’ll have a cup of tea over coffee ANYDAY! I’ll drink it cold or hot!


I moved back to Harlem about two and a half years ago. You should have seen me. I was like a kid in a candy store. Harlem has changed so much since I left in 2005. One of my favorite discoveries is the tea shop, Serengeti! OMGgeeeeee! If you haven’t been here, you haven’t experienced life. The variety of teas are absolutely phenomenal! The ambiance and energy is also quite pleasing. The customer service is also impeccable!

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I just recently had a collaboration for Design By U Essentials with Fashion and Lifestyle blogger Rebecca Quainoo. She asked if I had any suggestions on where we should connect. I was more than happy to suggest Serengeti! Rebecca fell in love with this spot, as I knew she would. It was such an amazing space for us to connect, exchange ideas, chat about what’s next for us both and to talk about one of our many favorite things “Jewelry!” whilst sipping on TEA. We had two of my favorites, the Lemongrass, Ginger & Turmeric and Cherry Pear infused teas. Have a cup and I promise you; you’ll be going back for more.


You truly get a feel of being in Africa when visiting Serengeti. In addition to the variety of teas that they have, you will see a display of amazing art work and artifacts. Having Ghanaian roots, I so appreciate this! Seeing the stool reminds me of Ghana each and every time I’m here.





There’s also delectable sweet treats that will go well with your TEA.


If you’re in NYC, particularly, Harlem. . .I highly recommend Serengeti Tea & Spices. You’d really enjoy this space and of course the TEA. How fitting it is to write this amazing piece during Black History Month.


Collaboration with | Rebecca Quainoo

Photography | @dadouchic

Jewelry provided by | Design By U Essentials

Adorned Collaboration

One of the best feelings is knowing that you are appreciated! When my sister girl Rebecca Quainoo called and said let’s collaborate, I was truly humbled and excited all at the same time! I loveeeeeeee to align myself with individuals that are passionate about what they have to offer in life. Not only am I a big fan of Rebecca and her style, she is one of my best costumers. She’s the proud owner of many Design By U pieces. So to receive a call from her saying, “I would like to do a piece that highlights you and your creativity!” I of course said ABSOLUTELY, ⬅ this is one of my favorite words by the way, lol!



Collaborating = EMPOWERMENT

Other than my love for my family; what excites me is natural hair, jewelry & sisterhood. When Rebecca reached out, I said let’s do brunch. Our brunch date turned into so much more than we expected. It was empowering! We spoke about jewelry, what’s next for Rebecca Quinaoo, Tima Samad, Design By U Essentials and a lot more about the power of joining forces. One of the most valuable resources that we all have is each other. One thing I’ve learned is without collaboration, our growth is limited. Alone, we can do very little; but together, we can achieve so much. Do not be afraid to collaborate with others. Of course, collaborate with those that you can learn from. For me, when collaborating, energy and alignment are key components and factors.




I absolutely adore Rebecca. We actually feel the same way about each other, lol! Not only is she supportive and genuinely applauds me, she has an amazing personality and an impeccable eye for style! We learned a lot more about and from each other on this brunch date. It doesn’t hurt that we’re also both Scorpios. . .so we definitely get each other. We dug deep and spoke not only on personal and business matters, but about what happens when you’re feeling stuck and we also spoke about GROWTH. This is why I feel sisterhood is important. Having that sister to talk to about what’s going on in your world can make such a difference. It is especially helpful when the other has experienced what you feel you cannot conquer! Healthy sisterhood relationships matters! This goes for you brother’s who are reading this as well; having healthy and genuine brotherhood. . . MATTERS!


You will see Rebecca wearing a few of her favorite pieces on Design By U Essentials.


Rebecca is wearing “R U B Y” from our Lush Collection.


Rebecca is wearing “S P A R R O W” from our Rings & Thangs Collection & “B A M B O O” our signature wood bracelets .

Jewelry is ART! Jewelry is LOVE!

My love for jewelry started when I was very young. My mother also has amazing style and taste. She’s far from ordinary! I would watch her pair bold pieces with the most simple outfits and just say WOW! You look like a Queen! I went to Catholic school from 1st grade to high school; where jewelry past post earrings and a thin tennis bracelet was forbidden. So I really started to express myself (in terms of jewelry) in my early college years. It was around this time that my love for art and different art forms aided in tapping into my creativity at a higher level. When I realized I could make my own, my love for jewelry took on a totally different meaning. I wanted to share my sense of style, my creativity, my art; paired with amazing custom jewelry; with EVERYONE.


Everything is in the details. There is nothing like the right piece of jewelry and accessories that make your outfit “POP!”  This is what I will continue to showcase from Design By U. No matter what you are wearing, you will be able to find that piece or those pieces that will bring your entire look together.


This was such an exciting collaboration ❤


I am wearing “M A U V E” from our Lush Collection


I am wearing “L O O P E D” from our Plated Collection



Collaboration with | Rebecca Quainoo

Photography & Videography | @dadouchic

Jewelry provided by | Design By U Essentials

Nothing like a flowing Maxi Dress

No matter what people think of you, keep singing your own song! Many may not know this but music is my sanity. I cannot go a day without singing or listening to music. I was having a moment in this shot 🎤🎵🎶🎵

Now about this dress 😁

I have quite a few favorite style looks. Maxi dresses & skirts are definitely on my list! Can you believe I bought this amazing Maxi dress for $20? Yes, you saw that price correctly!

It was on sale at Mandee’s in NYC. I purchased this dress a few months ago. This particular color may not be available, but they do have many great colors & patterns in stock now.

 The material and the way this dress flows is beyond words. I received many compliments while wearing this Beauty.

Because this dress speaks for itself, I decided to minimize my accessories and went with a Bold Metal Choker. I don’t have earrings on because I forgot to put them on 😩🙈


Location | Bronx, NY

Photographer | Matey Ghoslow Photography

Maxi Dress |Mandee

Necklace| Design By U Essentials