Six black-owned luxury brands to support this holiday season

Avatar Mildred Europa Taylor | Editor December 18, 2019

Former first lady Michelle Obama wearing an outfit by Brooklyn-based designer Fe Noel

You might have noticed the extent to which some high-end brands have come under attack in recent times for exhibiting designs that have racist connotations.

From ‘monkeys’, ‘Nigga’, to ‘slavery’, many luxury brands have fallen foul with consumers over racist imagery, perhaps in their bid to pursue creativity in their works.

Last December, Prada’s decision to launch a racist blackface product at its SoHo boutique in New York enraged customers. Gucci also released black woolen jumper that looked like the racist blackface used to demean black people in America’s history.

These fashion brands were later compelled to apologize but no explanation whatsoever could justify these works that demeaned black people.

This holiday shopping season, instead of choosing high-end brands that lack diversity and inclusion, here are six black-owned luxury brands you can support:

Off-White

This luxury fashion label was founded by Virgil Abloh in 2012. Featuring items such as leather goods, belts, pants, purses, and markers, products of the fashion label represent “current culture at a taste-level particular to now.

With a specific opinion and not necessarily same with vision seasonal men’s and women’s collections are offered,” according to its website.

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/B6IaG6QAEIm/

Nubian Skin

It was launched by Ade Hassan in 2014 with a carefully edited collection of lingerie and hosiery to provide the essential underwear needs of women of color.

Hassan had then realized that it was difficult finding suitable skin-tone hosiery and lingerie for women of color.

Headquartered in London, the brand delivers worldwide and looks forward to growing the company’s offering and expanding its reach, its website says.

 

Fe Noel

Featuring bold prints, sensual tops, among others, Fe Noel is a Brooklyn-based, women’s wear brand that is heavily influenced by the Caribbean heritage and close-knit family of the founder, Felisha Noel.

“Eat well, travel often, and dress to inspire!” is the philosophy behind the brand, its website says.

 

 

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Last min shopping ✔️ #FW19 #CUSHNIE

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Cushnie

Founded in 2008, Cushnie is a luxury women’s ready-to-wear and bridal brand designed by Carly Cushnie. The label was founded on the desire to serve the modern woman.

“Artfully crafted with clean, sculptural lines, the CUSHNIE collection is precisely tailored to achieve the perfect fit for the female form,” says its website.

 

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Collection 3 Reviews — “The show continued Jean-Raymond’s mission to give credit where credit is due—by giving the black people who contributed to American pop culture their moment in the spotlight, a spotlight that was unjustly denied in the past due to the institutional racism that plagues this country. Sister: The Third Collection was the final part in this trilogy of collections titled American, Also. Jean-Raymond ushered in the new era of Pyer Moss with a collection that truly demonstrated his range through streetwear-tinged puffers made for his Reebok collaboration, elegant and ethereal eveningwear looks that seemed like something Diana Ross would have worn in the ‘70s, piano fanny packs and paintings-turned-prints by recently exonerated artist Richard Phillips that paid tribute to Sister Rosetta Tharpe, and the designer’s signature boxy color-blocked leather jackets. Jean-Raymond appeared on the stage after the finale, and the crowd cheered in a standing ovation, crowning him the king of New York Fashion Week.” -Ann Binlot, Document Journal

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Pyer Moss

Founded in 2013 by Haitian-American Kerby-Jean Raymond, Pyer Moss is a men’s and womenswear fashion label concerned with building a narrative that speaks about heritage and activism.

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Collection 3 Reviews — “There were a series of prints created by Richard Phillips, an amateur artist who was exonerated in early 2019 after 45 years of wrongful imprisonment. He, too, finds inspiration in black musicians, creating paintings in bold hues that spring off his canvases, visualizing what is surely a lively set. At 32-years-old, Jean-Raymond has realized a collection that is truly one for the history books. Not only does it pay reference to black artists of disparate mediums (music, art, fashion) that came before him, it encourages younger generations to follow suit. Indeed, so much of today's society is influenced by Western and European ideologies and motifs, which places people of color in either subservient or predatory roles. But what he displayed takes after a pantheon of leaders–Tharpe, Aaron Douglas, Langston Hughes, Maya Angelou, Benny Andrews, and Kehinde Wiley–that exemplify black excellence. And with an astounding collection such as this, Jean-Raymond is well on his way of joining that illustrious roster.” -Barry Samaha, Surface Magazine

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Collection 3 Reviews — “Pyer Moss has consistently put on grand runway shows in its history, with last year’s SS19 event bringing fashion’s elite to Weeksville Heritage Center in Brooklyn for a family reunion-style gathering. What’s critical about putting on a theatrical display, however, is ensuring that the clothes aren’t lost in the mix of it all. And once again, through his Collection 3 showcase dubbed “Sister,” creative director Kerby Jean-Raymond has proven that both can be done — and done so in an exemplary manner. Crowds swarmed the doors of Kings Theatre in Flatbush, Brooklyn last night in anticipation of what has become one of the industry’s most sought-after experiences. Despite the year-long hiatus since his last show, Jean-Raymond has proven consistent in his mission of uplifting people of color and reversing the erasure of blackness.” -Nia Groce, Hypebeast

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The brand gained a lot of fame during the Spring/Summer 2016 season, when its show “highlighted police brutality, referencing the Black Lives Matter movement through use of video, street art and fashion,” according to businessoffashion.com.

 

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Intimate.

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MWR Collection

Founded by Mia Wright-Ross, MWR Collection is “an intrinsic collection of Leather Lifestyle Accessories that are handcrafted in our studio in Washington Heights, New York City.”

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Balance.

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Poised.

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Featuring handmade handbags, furniture, and accessories, the brand “seeks to bring back a sense of humanity and exquisite artisanship to each individual product. From the hand woven leather cable detailing to the modern purposeful engineering, MWR Collection reconnects its buyers to the humanity of the creative design process.”