Browse Tag


2 mins read

The Folklore Secures $3.4 Million to Scale B2B Platform for Diverse Brands

Fashion tech startup The Folklore, founded by Amira Rasool, has secured $3.4 million in seed funding. The fresh capital brings their total funding to $6.2 million.

The new funding round was led by venture capital firm Benchstrength and included participation from Techstars, Black Tech Nation Ventures, and Slauson and Co.

The funds will be used to further develop their B2B platform and empower more diverse and marginalized brands in the fashion industry.

Their B2B offerings include The Folklore Connect, an online wholesale management platform that equips brands with user-friendly sales technology and increased discoverability through a network of global retailers.

One new service is The Folklore Capital, offered through partners, which allows brands to receive loans of up to $1 million as working capital. Rasool said a pilot program showed that brands typically seek loans between $10,000 and $30,000.

“Access to capital is probably one of the biggest things that prevents small businesses from scaling,” founder Amira Rasool explained to TechCrunch. “For diverse brands in particular, there are a lot of economic hurdles that these groups face, which makes it even harder for them to access capital. Since a large makeup of our community is diverse, we wanted to make sure that they had more resources that they can use to access capital.”

The Folklore also plans to offer additional resources to brands, such as The Folklore Source, a freelancer and manufacturing marketplace, and The Folklore Hub, which will provide educational content and downloadable templates.

With this additional funding and focus on user needs, The Folklore is well-positioned to grow its reach and empower even more creators and brands in the fashion industry.

by Tony O. Lawson

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2 mins read

Black Owned Women’s Shoe Brands for Your Spring Wardrobe

As spring sunshine warms the days, it’s the perfect time to shed those winter boots and update your footwear wardrobe. Look no further than these fantastic Black owned women’s shoe brands to step into spring in style.

From chic sandals and statement pumps to comfy sneakers, these designers offer a variety of looks to match your unique personality and spring fashion plans.

Black Owned Women’s Shoe Brands

NinetyNine Products

NinetyNine Products is a global Harlem footwear brand focused on supporting the communities that drive culture and style.

Very Lovely Soles

Very Lovely Soles offers ballet flats and sandals, meticulously crafted for both comfort and timeless style.


FETE-ish handcrafts statement shoes for the bold. Customize current styles or design your own with their Made-To-Order program.

Jessica Rich

Black Owned Women's Shoe Brands

Jessica Rich is a trendy shoe brand that offers spring-ready sandals, mules, and slides perfect for adding a statement touch to your warm-weather wardrobe.

Chelsea Paris

Chelsea Paris shoes are luxury footwear that mix European craftsmanship with African-inspired designs. Made with premium materials, they come in heels, flats, boots and sandals.

J.J. Gray

Black Owned Women's Shoe Brands

J.J. Gray is a New York-based brand that sells handmade luxury shoes crafted in Spain. Their designs are a unique blend of classic and contemporary styles.

Zou Xou

Black Owned Women's Shoe Brands

Zou Xou elevates everyday elegance with handcrafted leather shoes made in Argentina. Ethically produced and built to last, they empower artisans and minimize environmental impact.

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2 mins read

Blackstock & Weber is Reinventing the Penny Loafer

Brooklyn-based Blackstock & Weber isn’t your typical fashion and lifestyle brand. Founded in 2017 by Chris Echevarria, the brand has carved a unique niche for itself by offering limited-edition footwear with a modern twist on classic styles.

Blackstock & Weber
Chris Echevarria

Echevarria, a veteran of the fashion industry, leveraged his experience to launch Blackstock & Weber from his own apartment. He bypassed the traditional route and sought out a respected English factory known for crafting shoes for Thom Browne.

This focus on quality is evident in Blackstock & Weber’s products, known for their use of premium materials and Goodyear welt construction.

The brand rose to prominence with its take on the penny loafer. Echevarria is credited with playing a role in the recent loafer resurgence. But Blackstock & Weber’s loafers aren’t old-fashioned copies. They feature modern details and a focus on comfort, making them ideal for the everyday wearer.

While some might compare Blackstock & Weber to streetwear brands due to their limited-edition releases, Echevarria himself disputes this. The brand prioritizes quality and craftsmanship over fleeting trends.

They offer a range of styles beyond loafers, including collaborations with partners like J.Crew and Kith. This ability to cater to a wide range of tastes speaks to the versatility of Blackstock & Weber’s design philosophy.

Blackstock & Weber represents a new wave of menswear brands. They bridge the gap between high-end quality and a contemporary, accessible aesthetic. The company’s focus on small-batch production ensures exclusivity, while Echevarria’s commitment to quality guarantees a product built to last.

Blackstock & Weber is a name to watch as they continue to redefine classic menswear staples for the modern age.

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2 mins read

Black Owned Headwear Brands You Should Know

Headwear is an essential part of any outfit and can be used to make a statement or simply to add some extra style. If you’re interested in adding some unique pieces to your headwear collection, there are plenty of Black owned headwear brands to explore.

From fedoras to bucket hats, these brands offer a wide variety of styles and designs that are sure to suit any taste.

Black Owned Headwear Brands

Dungeon Forward

Dungeon Forward is a purveyor of precision designed innovative headwear. Founded in 2007 by architect David Castro, their mission is to inspire, uplift, enlighten, and tell authentic cultural stories by crowning the culture.

Wear Brims

black owned headwear

Wear Brims was founded on basic principles that are at the core of every decision and every design. Faith, Family, Confidence.

Frances Grey

Frances Grey is a line of custom, statement hats designed with a bold and creative sensibility. Designed by Debbie Lorenzo, each design embodies simplicity and timeless sophistication.

Nicholas Daley

black owned headwear

Nicholas Daley is a London-based menswear designer who explores the interplay of fashion, music, and culture. Daley builds a label around diversity, inclusion, and community while creating space for a multicultural British identity to unfold.


Monrowe is a unisex line of ready-to-wear hats, made in the USA and created for the bold at heart. More timeless than trendy, the brims blend nuances from ‘40s and ‘50s Jazz Era styles with classic Western shapes and contemporary elements.

Fruition Hat Company

Fruition Hat Company is a lifestyle hat brand that encourages freedom of expression through style and accessories; no boundaries attached.  The only rule: Be you, Be True.

Nappy Head Club

Nappy Head Club is known for its trend-savvy, inclusive clothing, where thoughtfully designed wearable affirmations create a rare opportunity to affirm Black identity through fashion.

FlameKeepers Hat Club

FlameKeepers Hat Club is a Harlem-based, upscale hat store that offers an array of sophisticated hats in many styles.


Uptown Yardie

Uptown Yardie wool Felt Crowns are made and hand finished in London, constructed on hat blocks with an internal elastic band, for fit and comfort.

by Tony O. Lawson

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10 mins read

DIARRABLU: Where Math, Tradition, and Sustainability Meet Fashion

DIARRABLU is a luxury fashion brand that blends mathematics, sustainability, and cultural traditions to create unique and beautiful clothing.

In this interview, we spoke with founder Diarra Bousso about her journey as a fashion designer, her passion for creative mathematics, her insights on the future of the fashion industry and more.

Diarra Bousso

What first drew you to become a fashion designer, and how did you get started in the industry?

I started my parent company in 2013 after feeling very unhappy on Wall Street and craving more creativity in my life. I returned to Senegal to reconnect with my artisanal heritage and started designing. For years, I was testing accessories and various types of clothing until 2015, when I decided I wanted to focus on building a contemporary lifestyle brand. However, the big breakthrough happened in 2018 when I went to Stanford for my Master’s exploring creative mathematics.

I used to draw and paint since very little, and for the first time, I was so swamped with teaching and grading that I no longer had the time or bandwidth to draw. I then had the idea to use math equations and concepts to create my textile patterns faster. This changed the direction of my company, and from then on, DIARRABLU became a fashion tech company using math to create fashion more efficiently and more consciously. 

Can you tell us about your teaching and research of Creative Mathematics in Silicon Valley and how it relates to your work in fashion design?

I became a math teacher after getting my Master’s in Math Ed at Stanford in 2018. One day I was grading Algebra papers focused on graphing linear, absolute value, and quadratic equations and started seeing their mistakes differently. Many students would place the vertex of the quadratic elsewhere or just get confused with the symmetry.

I looked at the realm of their answers across 88 students and started daydreaming about the patterns all their combined mistakes could produce. The next day, I stayed up all night graphing various equations and coloring the intersecting regions randomly. It set the tone for how I would re-teach graphing in my Algebra class for the following weeks but also informed an innovative new design process for my prints.

Being from an artisan family, the natural next step was to fuse both worlds. Today I create innovative ways to teach mathematics using art/fashion and my lessons are used by over 20,000 math educators around the country. 


How do you merge algorithms, tradition, and sustainability in your design concept?

As a mathematician, I’ve always been fascinated by numbers. At DIARRABLU, we’ve created a system that utilizes math algorithms to generate numerous print iterations using a combination of shapes, colors, textures etc. I either manually write equations to create patterns, use AI and machine learning or hand paint my designs.

Often it’s a combination of both as I love merging the authentic and the automatic. These prints are rendered on digital designs and shared on social media for people to vote. We only move to production based on customer demand and engagement. Through this approach, we’ve been able to reduce textile waste by 60% while continuously introducing new designs digitally.

In my culture, sustainability is a way of life rather than a fleeting trend. By producing on demand instead of stocking inventory, we remain true to our values and help the industry to reduce waste. It’s who we are and what we stand for. 


How do you manage your global team between Dakar, New York, Sao Paulo and San Francisco? 

Our team has grown from less than 10 pre-pandemic to over 45 today, the majority is in Dakar, Senegal, but we also have great members in New York, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Madrid, The Philippines, Cape Town, Abidjan, among others.

Today, I organize my routine to ensure I support all of them; it’s a challenge, but I’m lucky to have a great team that supports each other. My mom manages the artisan team in Senegal and she now works with great operations managers. My US operation team is managed out of New York and I am focused on managing the creative and marketing teams that are fully remote.

I am also managing the overall company and that requires a lot of alignment and planning. Luckily everyone is so excited and passionate about what they do and we feel like one big international family.

What are some of the challenges you face in leading a global team? 

The biggest challenge is navigating cultural differences. For example, our Dakar team is 100% West African but with multiple countries, languages, and ethnicities and it was so eye-opening to witness how much diversity exists even in a seemingly all Black team. The notion of leadership is very different in Senegalese culture vs Ivory Coast, Benin, or Cameroun.

On the US side, we also see that a mindset focused on efficiency and optimization sometimes goes against the traditions and beliefs of our artisan team in Senegal. There are also language barriers whereby most of the team in Senegal speaks Wolof and French whereas in the US we conduct all meetings in English.

From a global standpoint, the DIARRABLU team features multiple ethnicities across various continents which also means we often can get lost in translation as for most of us, English is a second or even third language. For me, managing people across all these cultures, time zones and languages has helped me grow tremendously. It’s definitely a very humbling challenge I truly welcome every day


You’ve showcased your collections during New York and Paris Fashion Week and represented Senegal at World Fashion Week Paris. What is your biggest achievement so far?

Starting and running a fashion brand out of my childhood bedroom makes every achievement a big deal. From selling with huge retailers, like Nordstrom, to seeing many people wearing DIARRABLU around the world and supporting our stories. For me, it’s not about money or success. It’s about magic, life, people, and my passion for fashion and math. 

If I had to pick the biggest achievement, however, it would be the fact that this company has allowed my mom to find her true passion in life! Mom left her career to raise 4 kids while my dad worked tirelessly and together they dedicated everything to us and our education. I feel so much gratitude and respect for my parents and their sacrifices. Today, we are all grown and Mom gets to do something she loves, manage a team and feel fulfilled through work that is so meaningful for her and the entire family. 

Diarra’s mother

How do you see the fashion industry evolving in the next few years?

I believe the industry will continue its shift towards sustainability and transparency in production, with technology playing a major role in improving efficiency and reducing waste. I also think that there will be a greater focus on inclusivity and diversity in the industry as consumers demand more representation from the brands they support.

What are your future plans for DIARRABLU?

I want to explore further what we can create by merging math and fashion with our iterative design philosophy while amplifying our message for a more ethical and sustainable fashion future. I am excited to explore home goods and accessories and also invest more time in releasing more art in the forms of paintings, digital prints and NFTs.

by Tony O. Lawson

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3 mins read

Ann Lowe: The Visionary Behind Some of the Most Iconic Dresses of the 20th Century

Ann Lowe was born into a family of skilled seamstresses in Montgomery, Alabama. Her grandmother was a formerly enslaved dressmaker, while her mother was an embroidery specialist.

When Lowe was sixteen years old, her mother died suddenly, and she took over the family dressmaking business. She completed a high-profile order from the governor’s wife, which established her as the new head of the business.

Lowe left her husband and moved to Florida with her son, where she worked as a live-in dressmaker for a socialite for a decade. In 1917, she traveled to New York City to attend sewing courses. However, as the only Black student, she was segregated from her peers and had to work in a separate room. She moved to New York City permanently in 1928.

Lowe’s success was attributed to her client network. Her unique gowns, often featuring floral motifs and made of fine fabric, were sought after by the wealthy American elite. She specialized in debutante gowns and wedding dresses. Lowe’s craftsmanship was of the highest quality, with techniques such as gathered tulle and canvas to hold out hems, lace seam bindings, hand-sewn organza facings, and weights to promote proper hang.

Ann Lowe

In 1950, Lowe opened her stand-alone business, “Ann Lowe’s Gowns” in New York City. Three years later, she was chosen to create the dresses for the entire bridal party of Jacqueline Bouvier’s wedding to Senator John F. Kennedy.

Ten days before the wedding, there was a flood in Lowe’s studio, destroying two months’ worth of work. However, Lowe was able to reconstruct the dresses with extra help, and despite absorbing the cost, she did not receive credit for her work at the time, as the press referred to her as “a colored dressmaker.”

ann lowe

Despite designing for an elite clientele, Lowe was paid less than white designers for her custom design work. After the death of her son and business partner in 1958, she struggled financially and ultimately declared bankruptcy in 1962.

Today, Ann Lowe is recognized as a pioneering African American couturier, and her pieces are preserved in renowned museum collections, including the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of the City of New York, and The Museum at FIT.

She is no longer “society’s best-kept secret,” as the Saturday Evening Post once called her.

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5 mins read

Black Owned Sneaker Brands You Should Know

Within the multi-billion dollar sneaker industry, there exists a thriving community of Black owned sneaker brands that are pushing the boundaries of design, innovation, and social responsibility.

From sleek and minimalist designs to bold and colorful statement pieces, these brands are not just creating stylish footwear; they are also telling stories, amplifying voices, and challenging the status quo.

Black Owned Sneaker Brands


Black Owned Sneaker Brands

Founded by Allyson Felix, the most decorated track and field athlete of all time, Saysh is a community-centered lifestyle brand for, and by, women. Their mission is to create a future in which inequality is undermined by female creativity and athleticism.


Fini Brand is based on the principle of always time to delight. Fini Brand is a popular choice for fashion-conscious consumers who are looking for unique and affordable products.


Brandblack is a Los Angeles-based footwear brand that offers a variety of shoes for men and women. The brand is known for its minimalist designs and use of high-quality materials.

Ninety-Nine Products

Black Owned Sneaker Brands

NinetyNine Products is a footwear brand focused on supporting the communities that drive culture and style while using high-performance technology to build functional products that work in competition and in life.


Black Owned Sneaker Brands

A footwear brand committed to the highest levels of quality in production, design, and materials while maintaining a commitment to social and environmental responsibility.

SIA Collective

black owned sneaker brands

SIA, which stands for Somewhere In America, is owned by Devlin Carter. The brand is known for its unique and bold designs, making them a popular choice among its loyal following.


Black Owned Sneaker Brands

ROCKDEEP is a 10-year-old athletic and outdoor footwear company providing function, style, and quality at prices that will make you mad at your favorite brand.


Black Owned Sneaker Brands

The KEEXS footwear brand is an African-inspired collection of casual footwear that accentuates the coolness of any man or woman. It is also for individuals who are expressive and unapologetic regarding their fashion choices.


Enda is an African running shoe brand inspired by the world’s greatest runners in Kenya.

Fabrice Tardieu

Fabrice Tardieu is a sneaker brand known for its hand-painted, “laid-back luxury” designs inspired by street cultures in cities like Miami, New York, London, and Paris.


Black Owned Sneaker Brands

TRONUS is a cutting-edge sneaker brand founded by the first female football player to own a sneaker company, Santia Deck. TRONUS offers limited edition styles and unique packaging, appealing to sneaker enthusiasts of all levels.


NBA veteran Langston Galloway and his wife Sabrina started Ethics, with the goal of creating a product that goes beyond just a creative design and has meaning behind it. The company aims to change the narrative in basketball footwear and ownership of it through a unique product.


PerryCo is a brand that prides itself on being unisex, offering both footwear and accessories for all genders. The brand is known for breaking gender barriers and providing versatile, stylish options for all customers.

Q4 Sports

Q4, based in Los Angeles, was founded on the four fundamental elements required for success in any game: Purpose, Passion, Dedication, and Focus. Q4SPORTS is a brand committed to empowering others through sport and located at the intersection of sports and business.

Nagast Footwear 

Nagast Footwear aims to uplift and create a positive outlook in the Black community. The shoes are inspired by African culture and are designed to be fashionable and high-quality.


In 2018, Darrell Alston launched Bungee Oblečení, a brand of luxury sneakers and upscale athleisure wear, based on sketches he created while incarcerated. Bungee focuses on high quality materials and clean, classic lines.

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11 mins read

Monetizing Your Personal Brand: An Inside Look with Tiffany Battle

In today’s digital age, the creator economy is booming as more and more individuals are finding ways to monetize their personal brands. From social media influencers to content creators, the opportunities to turn one’s passions and talents into a profitable career are endless.

In this interview, we caught up with Tiffany M. Battle, the creator behind The Werk! Place, to gain insight into her journey as a creator, and the techniques she has used to monetize her personal brand.

From brand partnerships to TV hosting and affiliate marketing, Tiffany shares her experience and insights on how to turn a passion for fashion into a thriving career.

Tiffany Battle

What inspired your love for fashion?

My love for fashion actually started with trips with my mother to the mall on most Sundays after church and brunch. You know we love brunch!

Initially, I would go to the toy stores while my mom shopped at her favorite retailers. Then something changed and before I realized it, I was living out my pre-teen dreams shopping at Rave, Claire’s, 5-7-9, Wild Pair and the like!

How would you describe your style?

Style is my art; clothes are my medium. My style is a fresh breath of fun! I’m a mixed print, patterned, texture fiend. I firmly believe in coloring outside of the lines with my clothing.

When did you realize that you could monetize your personal brand? What are some ways you are doing so now?

I have a story about that. Like to hear it, here it go!

During one of many trips to New York for New York Fashion Week, I was standing in line to enter a fashion show. I received a call for an opportunity at the Essence Street Style Festival with an automotive brand offering a cute little penny. It was definitely the most lucrative opportunity at that point in my journey. They wanted me to come to the festival and be a co-host at their tent.

I was so taken aback by the opportunity, I didn’t even negotiate it! I just agreed to whatever terms they were offering (Note: ALWAYS negotiate!). I was on the verge of tears because it was at that moment that I realized there was some real money to be made in this industry.

The primary ways in which I’m currently monetizing are the following:

  • Brand Partnerships – Through partnerships with brands that I love, like, and want to explore, I create authentic engaging content sharing their products, services, and experiences with my readers.
  • TV Host – Being a host on CLEO TV’s Boss Girl’s Guide is really just an extension of what I’ve been doing for over 10 years in the online space. I’m able to take the CLEO TV audience on the journey with me to a few of my favorite spots, meeting and greeting the owners, and giving the goods to live a bossy life. While the season has come to an end, the reruns are currently airing on CLEO TV.
  • Affiliate Marketing – Through affiliate marketing, I’m able to link to products, retailers and brands that I’ve highlighted on my site and social media channels and receive commissions on any sales generated from those links.
  • Speaking Engagements – I share my experience on the following topics with in-person and virtual audiences: 
  • Career Transitions: As a former Chemical Engineer turned Creative, I have a lot of experience in the trials and tribulations of switching career paths.
  • Highlighting Black brands and Businesses: I partner with retailers and non-profits who’ve made diversity and inclusion a priority to bring awareness and encourage spending with Black brands and businesses. 
  • Live Shopping Events: This is probably the most fun as I’m able to take an audience virtually shopping with me. It’s during a live shopping session where I can spend time explaining the thought process behind some of my selections and how I would style looks with the pieces. It’s super engaging and a great way to connect with audiences online.

Tiffany Battle

What future trends do you foresee in the creator/influencer space?

I believe there are going to be more opportunities for creators in the MetaVerse, in direct selling on the behalf of brands, and more evolution with creator-founded products, services, and experiences.

What are some best practices for brands who want to work with influencers?

  1. Approach creators with mutually beneficial opportunities. Make sure that the brand actually aligns with what the Influencer authentically showcases. Creators can be some of the best brand evangelists to drive sales and engagement if the partnership is aligned.
  2. Be prepared to pay! Some creators can take years and countless hours of content creation to cultivate an authentic and engaged following and that’s extremely valuable. If you don’t show up to your job for free, please refrain from approaching a creator with an extensive campaign brief where the only compensation is product and exposure. If there ever comes a time when bills can be paid with exposure and product, this approach may work. Until then, find the budget to pay creators for their time, talent, and access to their audience.
  3. Longterm Partnerships Equals Longterm Payoff! As consumers, we need to see something several times before we fork over the money to try it. The more times a consumer sees a creator talking about a brand, product or service, the more believable the partnership is and the more likely a reader will take action. 

Tiffany Battle

What advice do you have for creatives that are trying to figure out how to land brand deals?

Your online presence is your resume.

Everything you do on your online space has the potential to land a brand deal. So, keep that in mind when creating. If there are brands on your wishlist, take a look at the campaigns that they are rolling out.

It’s pretty simple, if you want to work with skincare brands, talk about skincare in interesting, fun, and/or educational ways. If you want to work with fashion brands, authentically share what you already love about certain brands. For instance, I used to always share my Nordstrom Anniversary Top Sales picks on my site and social media channels just because I love Nordstrom’s selection of brands, return policy and in-store customer service experience.

So, when I was given the opportunity to meet with the Public Relations for Nordstrom, I was able to pull up samples of work and speak enthusiastically about the brand. After many MANY years, I began to get paid work with Nordstrom.

Your Network Is Your Net Worth!

Who you know or meet and get to know can land you some of the biggest brand deals of your career. Attend the industry events in your city and be ready to socialize! If you live in a city that doesn’t cater to creatives, make it your business to travel to network. Before I permanently moved to New York, I religiously showed up for NYFW every season after becoming an Influencer. Every. Single. Season.

The more that I came to New York, the more I began to meet designers, the people behind the top PR agencies and other creatives. So, when I did finally transition, I had a Rolodex of connections upon arrival.

Make It Easy For Brands To Find You!  

Now that you’ve done the work by showing up online and networking in real life, the last thing that you want to happen is for a brand to be interested in working with you but you’re making them work to get in contact with you.

On all platforms, you should list the city where you’re based and your email address. Literally, make it super plan and super easy for a brand to reach out and present you with an opportunity to get paid!

Feel free to reach out with partnership opportunities and any clarifying questions here: You can also keep up with me and my shenanigans on Youtube and TikTok.

📸 Main Image shot by Karston Tannis

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4 mins read

The Brooklyn Circus: Crafting a Legacy in American Style

The Brooklyn Circus is a brand that is dedicated to telling the story of style throughout American history.

With a focus on the power of presentation and the importance of context, BKc is revolutionizing the way we think about menswear. From the construction of their varsity jackets to the looms where their denim is woven, every aspect of the brand is carefully curated to reflect a moment in time.

Ouigi Theodore, the Creative Director of The Brooklyn Circus, has cultivated​ a unique style that has garnered recognition not only among the fashion pundits of New York but also from streetwise fans as far away as Europe, South Africa, Japan, Korea, and the U.K.

We caught up with him to learn more about the brand’s inspiration and hear about their ambitious 100-Year Plan to change the way Americans dress, one iconic silhouette at a time.

What inspired the creation of The Brooklyn Circus?

We started The Brooklyn Circus in 2006 on the heels of another retail concept I launched a few years prior.

When I closed that business, I considered leaving retail but gave it a last shot and that was when The Brooklyn Circus was born. We launched The Brooklyn Circus in Feb of 2006 and never looked back. I am heavily inspired by humans—our drive, our will to exist, and the things we do to live and thrive.

How would you describe your brand?

The brand is a living organism, a conversation, and an experiment of sorts. With the varsity jacket at the heart of what we do, you can always see cues of scholastic and athletic references in the work.

Everything that we do is anchored in our history, our victories, and our struggles as a people. I have a history degree and studied graphic design, so you’ll always see the intersection of those things coming together in the stories we tell through our work.

It’s the heart of The Brooklyn Circus/BKc, our 100-year plan, and our essence.

How do you want people to feel when they wear your creations? 

It’s more about the experience and the community and of course the product which ultimately is a souvenir of the experience. People see the pride, joy, and attention to detail we put into our work. From the store experience up to the actual product.

What differentiates your brand from others? 

That’s a pretty broad question. We understand the competitive landscape but try not to dwell on that too much. We absolutely research who and what’s out there for sure to understand who is moving the needle. That said, I’d have to say what has differentiated us in the market is our commitment to Style + Character and The 100yr plan for sure.

What are your future goals for your brand? 

Our goal for the next 5 years of the 84 years we have on this 100yr journey is more retail experiences, and expansion into media, hospitality, and education. Build and open Universities and libraries to share The Brooklyn Circus/BKc approach to the history, design, and movement of Jah people.

What advice do you have for creatives trying to get into the industry?

Research, research, research. And be honest about your intentions and approach to everything you do. Work on things and ideas that will outlast you.

by Tony O. Lawson

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3 mins read

Black-Owned Handbag Brands You Should Know

When it comes to accessorizing, a handbag is a must-have for any fashion-savvy person. From high-end designer labels to trendy streetwear brands, the options for handbags are endless.

In this article, we’ll be highlighting some Black-owned handbag brands that offer a wide range of styles, from classic and timeless to trendy and bold.

Black-Owned Handbag Brands

Ree Projects

Black-Owned Handbag

Ree Projects, an Amsterdam-based luxury brand founded by designer Desiree Kleinen, is quietly synonymous with its distinctive yet understated line of luxury bags. Created with the vision to empower women through thoughtful design, each design is rooted in the concept of functional elegance.

Yvonne Koné

Copenhagen-based designer Yvonne Koné presents a collection of key wardrobe staples that are both timeless and understated. With an architectural approach to form, materials and texture, her designs strike a balance between practicality and playful use of color, inspired by her African heritage.

Homage Year

Black-Owned Handbag

Every piece, accessory, and object created by Homage is infused with sociopolitical intention. Each creation serves as a tribute to the brand’s people, culture, and environment, and is a recognition of the brand’s place within these elements.


Black-Owned Handbag

Peryton is a leather goods brand that caters to those who desire unique, high-quality pieces. Instead of following trends or seasonal fads, their goal is to craft something exceptional and long-lasting. They focus on creating products that are both beautiful and durable, for customers who appreciate the value of timeless designs

Anima Iris

Black-Owned Handbag

The Anima Iris collection features handcrafted pieces made by seasoned professionals in Dakar, Senegal. The artisans, who possess centuries-old African craftsmanship, add a unique touch of quality and attention to detail to create limited edition pieces.

N’Damus London

N’Damus London is an independent luxury British accessories brand epitomizing precision craftsmanship and style, synonymous with the creation of durable, high quality leather goods with classic and distinctive designs for men and women.

Petit Kouraj

Petit Kouraj creates unique, standalone pieces of wearable art that blend knitwear, sculpture, and cultural identity. The name “Petit Kouraj” is derived from the Haitian Creole phrase meaning “little courage”.

Agnes Baddoo

Black-Owned Handbag

Agnes Baddoo is a luxury lifestyle brand specializing in leather goods that are committed to consistently providing well-crafted investment pieces to a global discerning customer.

Amany Z

Black-Owned Handbag

Amany Z designs unique handbags that are both functional and sustainable. Their bags stand out for their quirkiness and practicality, offering a minimal and eco-friendly option as compared to traditional luxury accessories.

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