LaQuan Smith, a Queens, New York native, began his brand at the age of 21. Smith spent his early years sewing and pattern making. Since the brands official debut in 2013, it has gained acclaim for its endless catalogue of distinctive and authentic garments and details. Smith has refined an equally dynamic private order clientele which spans the globe from Lagos to London. LaQuan Smith, and his eponymous label, are headquartered and manufactured in Long Island City, NYC and deliver globally. Smith’s brazenly glamorous aesthetic has also been tapped by world recognised brands including Heineken, Tidal, Samsung, Microsoft, and Verizon, for Smith directed activations.
Kerby Jean Raymond of Pyer Moss
Pyer Moss was founded in 2013 by Kerby Jean-Raymond. Kerby Jean-Raymond is a Haitian-American fashion designer of the menswear label. Jean-Raymond initially came into the spotlight for his presentation of Pyer Moss’ Spring 2016 Menswear Collection during New York Fashion Week. Jean-Raymond describes the brand as an “art project” or “a timely social experiment” at times. Pyer Moss aims to use its voice and platform to challenge social narratives and inspire conversation. Pyer Moss continues to redefine itself every season with collections and runways that combine storytelling, activism, debate, theatre and social commentary; all while using collaboration with artists and brands as a medium to further the dialogue around seasonal themes.
Aurora James of Brother Vellies
Brother Vellies was founded by Aurora James with the goal of introducing the rest of the world to her favorite traditional African footwear, while also creating and sustaining artisanal jobs within Africa. Handmade in South Africa, Ethiopia, Kenya and Morocco, Brother Vellies creates boots, shoes and sandals in styles that maintain the spirit and durability of their ancestral counterparts
Reuben Ruel of Demestik
Reuben Ruel is the creative director and designer of Demestik by Reuben Ruel based in New York City. Sources mention that the designer found his passion for fashion and style while growing up in Virginia. Ruel took a less conventional approach by using Etsy to sell his products. This enabled him to formulate a case study of the type of women hat are interested in his garments and the ability to sell direct to consumers globally.
In the past four years the business has grown 5X in sales since its conception with an increased worldwide following. The momentum of his vision and the growth of the brand are illustrated his uncompromising product quality and commitment to hard work.
Felisha of Fe Noel
Fe Noel is a womenswear designer from Brooklyn, New York. Noel entered the industry aged 19 opening a boutique for vintage lovers and trendsetter in Brooklyn. That boutique is what set off the womenswear brand Fe Noel and further encouraged her desire to help women embrace their femininity.Fe is heavily influenced by her Caribbean heritage.
Romeo Hunte New York is a definitive lifestyle brand created for all women who appreciate intricate details. Designed in New York City, the line embodies an aesthetic that is cool, conservative and intricate with a balance of feminine and masculine. The brand emphasizes on impeccable outerwear that are practical such as the signature cashmere shearling hood shawl that is one of the core elements of Romeo Hunte the brand. The vision is to create modern classic apparels that are luxurious, transitional and transformable at a contemporary price point. The Romeo Hunte woman is powerful, confident, and innovative with an admirable passion for art and pop culture.
Abrima Erwiah and Rosario Dawson of Studio One Eighty-Nine
Studio One Eighty Nine co-founded by Rosario Dawson and Abrima Erwiah, is an artisan produced fashion lifestyle brand and social enterprise that has recently won the prestigious CFDA Lexus Fashion Initiative for Sustainability. The brand is made in Africa and produces African and African-inspired content and clothing. The brand currently operates a store in NY and Accra (Ghana), an ecommerce site, a manufacturing facility in Accra, and supports various community led projects in Africa and in the USA. Studio 189 works with artisanal communities that specialize in various traditional craftsmanship techniques including natural plant based dye indigo, hand-batik, kente weaving and more. Studio 189 focuses on empowerment, creating jobs and supporting education and skills training and partners with organizations such as the United Nations ITC Ethical Fashion Initiative, NYU Stern School of Business and has collaborated with brands including Lexus. EDUN (LVMH), Fendi, Nike, Opening Ceremony, The Surf Lodge, Okay Africa and Yoox Net a Porter.
Datari Austin of Datari Austin London
A native of London ,England, Datari has been creating unforgettable feminine fashions for over 10 years. His driving passion is his love of art drawn from his experience and training in sewing and painting at the London College Of Fashion. His artistic talents naturally progressed into sewing and fashion design. The gifted designer creates his couture fashions through draping over mannequins.
Accomplished fashion designer, Datari Austin, presented his debutcollection in the United States at the Rock that fashion Show during LA fashion FW/14 in American and has since dressedprominent celebrities such as Angela Basett, Jasmine Tookes, Letoya Luckett, Madisson Davenport, to name a few.He has since graced a few fashion magazines such as runway magazine(fall issue 2014) and insitute magazine.
The Luxury women’s wear Label Datari Austin London has since evolved and has presented during NYFW , LAFW and will be presenting his latest SS/18 collection at the fashion week in LosAngeles on october 5,2017. For Datari Austin SS18 collection, the designer has chosen to go for “comfort chic” yet luxury, this season is all about evolution and progress