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Long Beach Gospel Fest 2015

Source: Earl Gibson III / Getty

I pray in the name of Jesus Devonte Christ that Summer isn’t canceled. However, until we have an idea of what summer is going to look like for us, we can use summer 2020 fashion trends to distract us during this global pandemic.

Yes, fashion is a great distraction, but when it is paired with a little kee-keeing with one of your good girlfriends, it takes on a power that seems to soothe whatever ails you. This was my experience a few weeks ago when I hopped on a call with my cousin (in my head), celebrity stylist GooGoo Atkins. The call was intended to be a by the books interview that would last only a few minutes, but it ended up being over an hour worth of girl talk, which allowed us to pour into one another’s cups.

While many think GooGoo’s rise to fame began on the hit WE TV reality show ‘Mary Mary as the fiesty, fashionable sister of Erica and Tina (The Marys), she has been a well-lit star since birth. GooGoo, who is one of Miss Honey’s nine biological children (14 total), has always possessed a colorful personality, a beautiful voice (yes my girl can sing too), and an amazing style that was fueled by her love for fashion.

From the beginning of our conversation, it became apparent that GooGoo’s love for fashion is more of a generational gift she transformed into a passion that fuels her purpose. “My mom and my grandma were very fashionable, and that is where my love for fashion came from. My mama didn’t play about her girls, our parts had to be straight, our edges were laid down, our lips were greased, and our legs were lotioned,” GooGoo stated. This is the strong foundation that the slay goddess, whose real name is Thomasina Atkins, was built on.

“Most girls who grow up in big families wait for the hand me downs of their older sisters, but I didn’t get to experience that because as a chubby girl, my hand me downs came from my mom,” GooGoo explained as she peeled back her layers. Lucky for GooGoo, Miss Honey slayed in the finest of COGIC friendly fashion minus labels. According to GooGoo, wearing her mother’s hand me downs taught her two things that she carries with her today, “you can be fashionable without spending a ton of money and women don’t have to be half-dressed to make a statement.’ This is why she can boast she has never “exceeded a client’s budget.”

With more than 20 years in the game, my cousin GooGoo has evolved and added designer to her resume. Oh and, speaking of resumes, hers include the likes of Wendy Raquel Robinson, Vanessa Williams,  Michelle Williams, Laz Alonso, Morris Chestnut, Avant, Kierra Sheard, and of course, Mary Mary. I think it is safe to say, GooGoo has an eye for fashion that is saint, sinner, and budget-friendly.

Just as Kandi and Porsha were curious about Nene’s closet, I would absolutely love to walk into GooGoo’s closet because I know it is a curvy fashionista’s paradise. Although GooGoo is a curvy church girl whose faith is strict in regards to women’s attire, she serves her curves unapologetically. All while encouraging plus-size women to understand that there is, “glory and greatness in being big in a society that makes every effort to make you seem small.”

Since there is no denying the fact that Spring is canceled, I decided to get GooGoo’s opinion on how curvy girls should pop out this summer, if the opportunity presents itself. Based on her color suggestions, GooGoo is pushing for plus-size women to step out of the box and rock bold colors. “Plus-size women are bold and bright, and they shouldn’t be afraid to dress that way. This summer, I want to see them in different hues of orange, white, and neons but not green because it has been done and done.” She continued by adding, “I love neons, I simply want to see us rocking the more non-traditional colors like neon blue and fuchsia.

GooGoo also wants to see curvy girls rocking short suits similar to one of her inspirations, Ellen. “I just think that the play on both masculine and sexy when paired with a bralette is a whole vibe that is cute and comfortable, work, and play.” Additionally, GooGoo is here for all things denim, especially if it has a vintage or distressed look to it and hints of metallics (shoes, hats, and anything else).

More than anything, GooGoo wants women to “dress to their liking and not because Kim Kardashian is wearing it or says it is hot.”

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