SWIRL & CHORDS FASHION AND MUSIC GALA
"SONGS AND SILHOUETTES"
MEET OUR 2018 DESIGNERS
For Andrew Nowell, fashion design has always been his passion. Born and raised in the Bronx, NY, he attended the High School of Art and Design, and went on to attend New York City’s Fashion Institute of Technology, where he majored in Menswear Design.
Described as modern, masculine and sexy, (with an edge) Andrew Nowell Menswear is a tailored sportswear line inspired by Urban Street wear and British tailoring at London’s Savile Row.
Over the years, Andrew Nowell Menswear has developed a solid reputation for quality and style. His Menswear collections were featured at Harlem’s Fashion Row, BET’s How to Rock Denim, The BET Experience: LA, BVI’s Summer Sizzle and New York Fashion Week.
Mr. Nowell is also the Creative Director and designer of DASOUL underwear; a Premium underwear line he launched in 2010, as sports inspired alternative to the men’s underwear market.
Today, Andrew works out of his design studio in Washington, D.C. and recently served as the Lead Curator for a hugely successful Art and Fashion Exhibit at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C. The menswear collection is available online and carried at a number of Specialty Boutiques in Washington, D.C..
Clarence Black Couture
The Great-Great Grandson of a tailor, Clarence Black has Fashion Designing in his blood. Clarence describes his customer as a strong, modern, sexy, and sophisticated woman with character. Clarence Black Couture has been in business for over a decade, and was founded in 2004 after Clarence completed his training at The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), with a specialty in Couture evening-wear. He has worked with Grammy Award winner Lauryn Hill and Brandy. Clarence’s has designed full collections for numerous trade shows, receiving notable recognition and awards.
Clarence Black Couture specializes in made to order couture-evening wear. Opulent, elegant, and luxurious are some of the words that best describe the intricate handwork and fabrics used in his work.
School Design - Traphagen
I hope the name Douglas Says is not unknown to you. He's a spirited, experienced designer who loves colors, cling, and bodies of all sizes. Allow me to tell you more about his experience. Douglas Says has an impressive résumé attached to his name, which includes working with a list of celebrity photographers such as; Mike Ruiz,Fadil Berisha, Alex Chatelain, Ghillian Lewin, Marc Baptiste, Dah Len, Keith Majors, Anthony Barboza, Joe Grant, Ernest Collins, Martha Camarillo and Gerard Gaskin. It is often said by stylist, that Douglas Says… is one of the most important, under exposed designers around, however the secrets out, Douglas Says is the man!
The Ke 'Collection, features mixtures of beautiful fabrics and textures that works together that completes the look. The color palette consists of neutral colors, along with accent colors of purple, red, pink, and green.
What I've found to be interesting is the new momentum that my earlier work from the 90's has garnished such favorable light, when I was working with my (Trans) customers as models, I never once considered that I was being "cutting edge & inclusive". Long before the success of "Orange is the New Black kicked in doors, designer Douglas Says left the doors cracked open decades ago”. Being a classically trained designer, with knowledge of fashions historical past, however firmly looking forward into tomorrow land, clearly his clothes reflect that understanding. In 2017 Douglas Says dressed Tracey Africa for the cover of OUT magazines, OUT100 issue, as well as on the pages of NY mag, and internet campaigns by both Clairol and Lexus. (Tracey Africa Norman been considered a trail blazing model, hailed as the world’s first Trans model).
Throughout the years Mr. Says work has appeared in WWD (the Bible of 7thAve) as well as on the pages of Essence magazine and on Black Entertainment Television (B.E.T) popular fashion showcase titled “R.I.P the runway” in 2006 premiering alongside Steve Harvey’s suit collection, then once again, solo in 2009 with the introduction of Douglas’s full-figured collection, titled “Plus U”. Leaving many, still talking about his initial launch for Plus U in 2008, which many considered a fresh, new direction, for the full-figured market.
In 2007 the “Museum of The City of New York” held what was hailed as “A groundbreaking Exploration of Hip-Hop and Style entitled ‘Black Style Now’ with Douglas Says being one of the chosen designers included in their lineup. Followed by “Thurgood Marshall” Scholarship Funds, annual fashion show which has showcased the work of Douglas Says two years running 2007 and 2008. In 2017 Douglas Says and Tracey Africa appeared together on the cover of SWERV magazines Sept/Oct issue titled A DYNAMIC DUO.
There have been several indie films that Mr. Says clothing has appeared in, such as; “Smooth the Game Is Dead”, “Don’t Go to Strangers” and “The System Within”. Throughout the years Mr. Says work has quietly been witnessed inside and outside (covers) of magazines, on celebrities, television, movies, even on the news. His work has also appeared in a few hardcover books like, “Mainhattanmanhattan” published in Germany, NYC Go-Go by Slava Mogutin, and “The way we wore” by Michael McCollom. In 2009 Douglas, himself became an author with his book release titled “Amuse” and once again in 2013 with his second love child titled “The Red Dress”,both, based on his clothing designs and the intimate relationships between him and his models.
Douglas, says it’s his mission to remove as many of the old taboos about jersey / stretch fabrics, like them not being kind or friendly to fuller figured body types, like everything else it just has to be cut with your body in mind. I am aware that real women have curves, and that we as designers need to accept that fact, lending a helping hand in projecting their curves, not hiding, deny or flat out ignore them. I’ve long since turned off the answering machine; and I’m able to answer their calls. In fashion, no one should have to sacrifice quality and or fit, not when Douglas Says… is presenting women with two gifts, the first being choice and the second being my signature shapeables “Douglas Says “makes clothes like he’s hugging a woman and saying I love you!”
Facebook: Kevin Love.