Designer Highlight : A’Kenya Phillips

Hey Honey Bunnies! You’re just in time. Grab a snack and settle in. We’re chatting with the creative and founder of custom clothing brand, Lilith & Mary. Kennie not only a creative, she is an author, designer, as well as dancer. C$BNYC is thrilled to finally have time during this quarantine. We are praying for the world, and letting God take care of the rest. Now let’s jump into this convo with the lovely Kennie!

C$BNYC – You’re an amazing creative. You write, you design and even create custom pieces. How did you get started?

A’Kenya – Thank you love. I started off as a writer. I’ve been writing since I could remember honestly. I’ve always loved creating a new life for myself especially since I grew up a really lonely and depressed child. Always been a black sheep so it was my way of being wonderful without outside opinions. I would write for the girls in my class, a child’s version of erotica since I was always draw to the erotic and sensual (weird, I know but I’m a Pisces lol). Then I got to HS and lost a writing contest so I stopped for about 4 years until a tragic breakup kicked me in the ass. I started it as a blog but I was tired of looking for a job after graduation so I needed something more productive to do. One novella, two poetry books, and 4 anthology shorts later, I felt I needed to incorporate more visuals as well as explain why my image and energy is so sexual. I want women to tap into themselves completely and authentically. Too often we live in everyone else’s truth and we die unfulfilled. We shove ourselves in boxes so we aren’t judged or lonely only to settle for relationships and circumstances that don’t make our hearts sing.

C – A lot of people who don’t know you would describe your work as risqué. Art is subjective so I’m sure when you create you have your vision in mind. What would you describe your work as and how do you think that society can benefit from it?

A – My work is definitely risqué, but it’s deeper than that. People are socialized to look at expressing your sexuality outside of the bedroom as taboo and inappropriate, but what they don’t realize is that line of thinking can limit them in all areas of life. Simply being unapologetic about who you are and how you feel can allow you to tap into your personal power, creativity, and devotion and love for self. I would describe my work and my brand as a self-helping, inspirational, beautiful, artistic lifestyle. Even when people are more reserved, they find the message helpful because it gives them the confidence to listen to what they want.

C – There’s a lot of controversy with sex toys and masturbation. I know this is something you strongly support. Why do you think these things are beneficial rather than problematic?

A – From just a basic standpoint, sex toys and masturbation are extremely essential because they allow you to discover your body and exactly how to turn yourself off, they allow you to express love to yourself, which seems silly, but psychologically speaking, it tells your brain that you love and honor you first. You give love and affection to yourself. It isn’t a need that you have to go seek out in others who haven’t proved that they love and honor you. From a spiritual standpoint masturbation helps activate your sacral chakra. Your loins hold energy that not only creates physical life, but allows you to manifest the life you envision on the outside. We always say sex is sacred and special in terms of sharing our bodies with others, but never think about what that power can actually do. When you focus on the life you wish to give birth to while aroused you’re more likely to conceive.

C – What are some things keeping you sane during this pandemic?

A – I have to be honest cuz I don’t like to be fake positive or whatever, staying sane is hard like omg so hard. Especially when you struggle with mental illness and a family who you can’t connect with. I do enjoy binging my holy trinity (Netflix, Hulu, & Prime Video), I’ve been dancing nude, sitting outside in the grass, and being a mama to my new kitty.

C – I know you’ve been designing more. Is that where you’re creative energy is flourishing the most right now?

A – Yes! I’m not much of a seamstress or an artist but I get these visions of things I would like to wear or some extra dramatic costume like piece I wanna wear to the grocery store but can’t because it would cost a million dollars and I’m not there yet lol. I’ve been researching old burlesque costumes and following for exotic dance wear companies and it has me soooooo inspired. I live for a good camp moment. I wish I could live it everyday so why not fill my closet with it lol.

All photography is the work of Kennie through her different mediums of creativity. Follow Kennie on Instagram @Lilithnmary