Remember in 2011 when Howard University was ranked the second best dressed college in the country by the Huffington Post – coming second only to New York University? I do. And I mean, how can you be mad at that?
You see, HBCUs have a reputation for being hubs of fashion and this is because they are all about creating opportunities and providing resources for students to pursue their passions, and that includes fashion. These schools offer courses and programs specifically geared towards fashion design and related fields, so students can get the skills they need to make their fashion dreams a reality.
But that's not all - HBCUs also have a tight-knit community and a supportive atmosphere that encourages creativity and innovation. Basically, they're the perfect place for fashion-forward minds to thrive and build their careers.
Black designers have made a significant impact on the fashion world, bringing their unique perspectives and experiences to the forefront. Despite facing numerous challenges and obstacles, black designers have been able to overcome adversity and make a lasting impact on the industry. Here are five black designers who have left their mark on the fashion world:
- Tracy Reese - Tracy Reese is a graduate of Parsons School of Design and has been a staple in the fashion industry for over two decades. She has dressed First Lady Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey and is known for her sophisticated and feminine designs. Reese's collections often feature bold prints and bright colors, and she has been recognized for her contributions to the fashion industry with numerous awards and accolades.
- Dapper Dan - Born Daniel Day, Dapper Dan is a legendary streetwear designer who rose to prominence in the 1980s. He is known for his innovative designs, which incorporate luxury fabrics and iconic branding, and has been a major influence on the fashion industry. Dapper Dan's designs have been worn by numerous celebrities including Tracee Ellis Ross, Lil Kim and Beyonce. His work has been featured in numerous exhibitions and publications.
- Pyer Moss - Designer Kerby Jean-Raymond founded Pyer Moss in 2013 and has since become one of the most sought-after designers in the industry. His collections often address social and political issues, and he has been recognized for his contributions to the fashion industry with numerous awards and accolades. In addition to his work as a designer, Jean-Raymond is also a vocal advocate for diversity and representation in the fashion industry.
- Virgil Abloh - A former architect and creative director for Kanye West, Virgil Abloh is now the artistic director of Louis Vuitton's menswear line. He is known for his avant-garde designs and his ability to merge streetwear and high fashion. Abloh's work has been featured in numerous exhibitions and his designs have been worn by numerous celebrities, including Kanye West, Justin Timberlake, and Drake.
- LaQuan Smith - Designer LaQuan Smith has quickly become one of the most sought-after designers in the fashion industry. He is known for his sexy and sophisticated designs, which have been worn by celebrities such as Beyoncé, Cardi B, and Rihanna. Smith's collections often feature bold prints and luxurious fabrics, and he has been recognized for his contributions to the fashion industry with numerous awards and accolades.
These five designers are just a small sampling of the incredible talent that the black community has to offer in the fashion industry. Despite facing numerous challenges and obstacles, black designers have been able to overcome adversity and make a lasting impact on the industry.
In addition to the designers mentioned above, there are countless other black designers who have made significant contributions to the fashion industry. From trailblazers like Gordon Parks to up-and-coming designers like Telfar Clemens and Tiana Kennell, black designers have been pushing the boundaries of what is possible in the fashion world and have been a driving force in shaping the industry.
Black designers have brought a unique perspective and creativity to the fashion world, and their contributions have been invaluable. From their innovative designs to their activism and advocacy, black designers have made a lasting impact on the fashion industry and will continue to do so for years to come.
As we celebrate Black History Month, it is important to recognize the impact that black designers have had on the fashion industry and to continue to support and uplift their voices.