Shopping Cart
Jari in the Mica Ribbed Top and Bottom (left), Corey in the Strata Top and Bottom

Love is an unstoppable force for #ChromatBABES and girlfriends Corey Daniella Kempster and Jari Jones.

They are the ultimate Power Couple #Goals. As models, activists and trans women, they inspire their community by living unapologetically and sharing their joy.
_____________________________________________________________________
Corey Daniella Kempster in the Strata Top and Bottom in Red

In the spirit of sharing joy with our community, we are excited to launch our Give 20 - Get 20 Holidaze campaign.

Use code “Holidaze” from Thursday, Nov 22 at 11:59PM until Tuesday, Nov 27 at 11:59PM to receive 20% off at chromat.coIn return, we’ll donate 20% of the proceeds to support three non-profits who are empowering our community: 

-Gyrl Wonder

A catalyst which empowers teen girls young adults to define their career paths early and strategize towards their success through career and leadership development.

-G.L.I.T.S. Inc:

An organization who provides crisis support, housing referral, safe sex supplies, low cost healthcare referral, advocacy, asylum, bailout, and legal support for trans women and trans sex workers.

-Scope of Work

SOW is a talent development agency for underrepresented young people that aims to establish equity in the creative industry. SOW provides young POC creatives with access to pre-professional development resources, real world work experience, and holistic mentor relationships in order to realize a diverse, impactful creative sector.
_____________________________________________________________________

Read on to learn how #ChromatBABES Jari and Corey celebrate and uplift each other during the #Holidaze season and all year round.

Photos by Chelsea Francis
 
Jari Jones in the Mica Ribbed Top

Are there any femmes in your life that give you strength? If so, how do they inspire you? 

 

Jari: I’ve been inspired by Femmes my whole life. As a young girl, I was inspired by powerful women. I remember the late Chyna Joan Laurer (WWF Wrestler) being my idol. She was strong, she was sexy, and she held her own. Now having the language and the context behind my gender journey, I realized it was more than an obsession but a longing to be just that, a powerful premonition of what was to come. Now every femme I come across, I see beauty and strength in their whole selves, which in return inspires me to be my most authentic self. 

Corey: My wife [Jari] is an obvious answer. She’s one of the most courageous, unapologetic, creative, nurturing, and compassionate people I know. She embodies everything powerful about femmehood and has the ability to make others feel safe and seen enough to live their best lives and be their best selves too. It is one of her greatest gifts, the way she brings out the best in everyone around her.  I can’t tell you how important her affirmation and companionship was for me early on in my transition and well before that in some of my most important stages of self exploration.

"When I am with Jari, I feel limitless." - Corey

Jari in the Strata Bodysuit and Skirt 

What does being a #ChromatBABE mean to you? 

CoreyA #ChromatBABE is a fierce femme who proudly takes up space. She is bold. She is a changemaker. She refuses to shrink herself for anybodies comfort. She is both more than her body and empowered by her body. She is sexy, electrifying, unforgettable. She is her own. She lives her best life and makes space for others to do the same. It is her truth that holds her beauty. Her beauty transcends any standards set before her. She is courageous. She is unstoppable. 

Jari: Being a #ChromatBABE means to be a femme warrior who holds no standard of beauty or expectation and excels without those labels. A #ChromatBABE is powerful, they are unapologetic, they are proud, they are curvy, they love themselves and those around them fiercely. 

"The Trans #ChromatBABES specifically hold a special place in my heart. Though the world (on each opposing side) is afraid of her body, she is not afraid to show it off and proudly proclaim, that with her beautiful unique and foreign structure, she too can be sexy and desired. She is the true badass of the world." - Jari



 Jari in the Delta Duotone Suit and Corey in the Mica Duotone Top

From learning and growing through your personal experiences, What advice would you give to your younger self?

Corey: To not worry so much. Opportunity, love, purpose, self awareness, and joy are all around you and will come. Your mistakes right now aren’t as detrimental as they feel. Your life is going to take shape in ways that you can’t fathom or even find language for right now, but if you’re patient and keep holding on, you will see that even your most elaborate fantasies won’t compare.
Jari: To go for it! I think I spent a significant time of my younger years waiting for “the moment” to be myself. I allowed other people's policing to instill fear in me and delay my true authentic happiness. I would have loved to experience my young adults years with the confidence and unapologetic living that I engage with now. That’s why I make it my mission to be an example of freedom for young queer folks who are currently stuck on the idea of “the moment”. If you are able, release that and release yourself.

"You get one life, so live it and go for it!" - Jari

Jari in the Launch Top and Bottom  

You two always seem to be having fun and cracking jokes. How did you meet and was this chemistry instant from the moment you both met? 

Corey: Interestingly, “I love you” was one of the first things Jari ever said to me, but I’d describe our chemistry as love at second sight. We first met opening night of a stage adaption of “Reservoir Dogs” I performed in at our school. Jari congratulated me after the show. It was a brief exchange but I was quite taken, even surprised by her loud femininity.
However I don’t think it was then when our chemistry fully formed. I was having an argument on Facebook with a homophobic castmate from the show due to his disapproval of gay marriage having just become legal in New York. I was furious, but when I opened my messages I received a message that read “I LOVE YOU” in all caps. I quickly recognized her and realized it must be related to the heated debate I just had. So instead of blocking the profile on sight I responded and we began talking well into the night and regularly throughout the summer.
When the new semester started and it came time to finally meet again in person, I was so excited but also quite nervous and unsure. What if we didn’t find each other as hilarious and fabulous in person as we found each other online?
Sure enough we clicked immediately and by the end of the day I was sitting on her lap like we’d known one another forever. We were laughing so hard that I even drooled on her leg to my own horror! Though I hoped she’d somehow not notice, she immediately pointed it out, leading to even more profuse laughter from both of us. It was the type of safety and comfort that comes from decades yet somehow was immediately there for us. We hung out every day and talked for hours every night. And I mean hours. We just were, from then on.  
Jari: We were college besties. We physically met outside of a theatre in our school after Corey had closed a show. I congratulated her on a job well done and we kind of stopped at that, it was the end of the school year. It wasn't until I saw her facebook war with a homophobic peer after the announcement of gay marriage becoming legal in NYC that we really became friends. 
My first message to her was I Love You and I haven’t stopped saying those words since. That whole summer we talked non stop and became some sort of new age pen pals!!! The next semester approached and we were so nervous from the anticipation of meeting, despite basically being glued to our phones all summer and sharing every ounce of detail with each other, this time we were meeting as potential friends. Instantly we clicked and by the end of the day she was already sitting on my lap and becoming the love of my life.
Jari in the Strata Suit and Corey in the Arc Top

How has your love evolved as you have evolved?

"The more we fall in love with ourselves, the more we fall in love with each other." - Jari

Jari: I think what's also unique about our relationship is that our “evolving” stage was done with each other present. We were and continue to be each other’s rocks! We have been together through the most vulnerable, the most exciting and the darkest times of our lives and have continued to show each other unconditional and unbreakable love. There is nothing that she can do that would ever make me stop loving her. There is nothing that anyone can do to make me stop loving myself.
 Jari in the X Bustier Suit

What are some ways that you all challenge each other? How does that make you all stronger individually and as partners? 

Jari: I think one way we challenge each other is always broadening our thoughts on relationships. Neither of us had a blueprint on what a femme trans lesbian relationship looked like. There was no model. So the challenge for us was to allow the other person to express, without judgement and full vulnerability, what they were looking for and respond to those needs with execution or at least with the willingness to try. For me, it has made me a more giving and selfless person.

"When you are in a relationship as unique as mine, it is an interesting experience to live such similar lives but need such different things, and to see the beauty in those differences to see the strength in individuality." - Jari

Jari in the Strata Suit, Corey in the Arc Top 

What’s your favorite Chromat piece?

Jari: My favorite Chromat piece has to be ANY PIECE FROM THE SS15 COLLECTION. It was the first time I saw femmes and bodies, that mirrored mine, on a runway looking like goddesses headed to war. The strength and dark holiness around a body cage on plus size bodies shifted my thoughts on plus size and curve fashion forever. I was obsessed with the idea of cut outs, body cages, silhouette and skin on diverse bodies and what that meant for the industry. It truly inspired a 180 on own my fashion.
Corey: The  Strata Top and Bottom in Red because I’ve never felt sexier in a swimsuit. I love the classic red on such a modern design. It fits great, has beautiful cutouts and the jock strap feature is to die for and for me feels so queer and femme. Oh and not to mention highlights an important asset.

Jari in the Strata Bodysuit and Skirt 

Jari, you were recently featured in a Black hair portrait for Allure. When did you start to reclaim the negative stereotypes about natural hair? 

Jari: I've had an interesting relationship with reclaiming the negative stereotypes of natural hair. At a young age I had a looser grade of hair, which many in my community would call “good hair.” This labeling was an othering tactic, it was used to compare my hair to friends and family who had kinkier hair or tighter curls, which was considered bad hair.
Already I felt so alone in my adolescence from being isolated because of my gender expression, now someone was gonna further isolate from the people I loved, cared and saw myself as equal to, because of my hair texture. On the flip I saw how those comparisons would make my cousins and/or close friends with kinkier Hair feel and I felt for them, not being able to meet an expectation to what a perfect person was.
Fast forward to present day, I make it my mission to celebrate and uplift those textures publicly. I mostly wear wigs or hair extensions, especially in very public high profile publications or campaigns, that resemble the hair that was looked down upon in my childhood.

"I use myself as a weapon for the never ending battle against anti-blackness and white supremacy in entertainment and media." - Jari

What are some of your favorite products that you use?

Jari: After the whole Shea Moisture fiasco, Corey and I decided to shop black only or with companies that hire and uplift black femmes and women. We love absolutely anything by Mane Choice, which is blacked owned and Cantu, which is adamant about hiring black folks especially in the marketing of their products.

Jari in thethe Mica Ribbed Top and Bottom, Corey in the Strata Top and Bottom  and the Orbit Earrings

Recently the Trump administration has stated their intent to remove anti-discrimination protections for trans people. How do you think people can resist this administration’s harmful anti-trans policies? 

Jari: I think this is the most important time to really build community and really share knowledge on what we need as a community. The more internal confidence  and communal understanding we have, the more we can show our resilience and fight for each other.

"Urgently demanding solidarity and protection from your cis allies is a non negotiable request. You’re either for me or against me. This is absolutely the time to challenge and pressure your ally friends on what it really means to be an ally and supporter." - Jari

 
Corey in the Mikito Top and Bottom
Corey: For cis people, it starts with listening to trans people and trusting us to lead. It starts with speaking up especially when it’s uncomfortable and we aren’t in the room to hear it. It is in those moments that you hold the most power to not allow interpersonal transphobia to stand because though it may seem insignificant it is all these little moments that you have the power to change or shift a conversation that affects us every day. What may seem like little microaggressions are actually the prerequisites for and the  perpetuation of violence and disenfranchisement. 
Though it is because of the politicization and calculated demonization of trans people that the majority of folks have the audacity to have our names in their mouths, it is the continued dehumanization of trans people and normalization of transphobic bigotry that makes not not hiring us, not seeing us as lovable, physically hurting us or even seeing us as unworthy of living and worthy of murder simply for existing, that much more rational.

It is those little jokes that breeds fear and mobilizes someone to be persuaded to fight for the banning of trans people from public accommodation and therefor public life. It is also your job to get us in the room, to hire trans people and ensure we have a seat at the table. Don’t tell our stories or fight our battles without us.

"We’ve been doing this for a long time and have generations of wisdom, resourcefulness, and resilience. Listen to black trans elders." - Corey

Follow trans poc activists. Read trans writers. Donate to grassroots trans orgs and buy from trans businesses. Learn from trans people and empower trans people when you have the capability and resources to do so especially when trans people are struggling.

"Offsetting harmful policy takes a consistent and conscious pro trans effort in an anti trans world. Not being transphobic isn’t enough." - Corey

Actively stepping up when someone is shouting violent hate speech at a trans person is what’s necessary. Walking a trans person home who is being harassed is what’s necessary. Giving money to a trans person who is experiencing homelessness because of the real world impacts of what may at times seem like abstract discourse to you is what’s necessary. Hiring a trans person and building a safe working environment for them after they have more than likely had to endure countless unsafe work environments simply to survive is what is necessary. Holding your loved ones accountable for transphobic bigotry and refusing to tolerate violent anti trans rhetoric is what’s necessary. Conscious consistent action is what’s necessary to resist an anti trans America. 
As trans people it is important that we love on each other and support one another. It is especially crucial that we uplift those among us that are the most marginalized and therefore most affected and endangered by the countless genocidal strategies, policies, and executive orders coming out of the white house and congress.

"It is important that we laugh, that we take care of ourselves, that we show up for each other whenever possible, that we express ourselves, that we love out loud, and build community that makes us possible, now more than ever." - Corey

 

Corey in the Amelia Ribbed Suit and the Chain Hoop Earring

Do you have any favorite organizations that are doing important work for the trans community?

Corey: G.L.I.T.S. Inc. is a black trans led community based organization that provides crisis support, housing referral, safe sex supplies, low cost healthcare referral, advocacy, asylum, bailout, and legal support for trans women and trans sex workers both internationally and in the nyc area facing violence, criminalization, and disenfranchisement. GLITS provides direct services and meets the immediate needs of trans women and trans sex workers seeking asylum, experiencing homelessness and who are incarcerated. Trans women and trans sex workers are some of the most vulnerable in society to violence, discrimination, and poverty due to forces such as transphobia, stigma, criminalization, anti-blackness, racism and misogyny.

"It is crucial that we fund and empower trans people already doing the urgent work that saves trans lives." - Corey

Jari in the Delta Duotone Suit (left) and the Strata Bodysuit (right), Corey in the Mica Duotone Top and Lindsey Bottom

How do you use your platform to uplift, inspire, and activate the movement for the civil rights of Trans people?

Jari: My platform has become the most vulnerable and most transparent part of my life. I use it to not only show my community that there is a life of joy instead of sadness, healing instead of harm, love instead of indifference but there are also parts of our lives are similar, none of us are alone. While I'm not a protester in the streets I offer a different kind of fight for my community.  

"By living with contentment and excitement I get to show my community that we are worthy of love, care, laughter, joy and respect."- Jari

 

We are the ones to bring the movement of Trans Joy and pride to the forefront and have it be a movement that propels the community for the journey to come.

____________________________________________________________  

 

Use code “Holidaze” from Thursday, Nov 22 at 11:59PM until Tuesday, Nov 27 at 11:59PM to receive 20% off at chromat.co.
In return, we’ll donate 20% of the proceeds to support three non-profits who are empowering our community: 

Gyrl WonderG.L.I.T.S. Inc and Scope of Work.

 

___________________________________________________________
BTS Video shot and edited by  Julissa Ramirez at  Scope of Work
Photographer: Chelsea Francis
Art Direction: Ben Ritter
Jewelry: Anna Kikue
Photo Assistants: Julissa Ramirez and Eduardo Licona at Scope of Work
Stylist Assistant: Kareem Mercer  at Scope of Work
Footwear: Sorel
 
Follow Jari Jones here
Follow Corey Daniella Kempster here

Older Post Newer Post