Local Black fashion designers shine at “MPLS Jungle”

Chris Juhn/MSR News

Taking place from April 20 to 27, Fashion Week in Minnesota features the hottest looks from local designers. On April 22, 100 or so people gathered for a fashion show entitled “MPLS Jungle.” Held near downtown Minneapolis, “MPLS Jungle” featured six brands: Black Coalition, DBKC, AKCollectives, LVLS, Morena, and ORR (Original Royal Refugee). What separates “MPLS Jungle” from other fashion shows is the emphasis on streetwear. Also, the show features looks from mostly Black designers.

Tyrone Williams, owner of Black Coalition, talked to the MSR about what inspired him to get into the fashion world. “I got into clothing at an early age [when] I made hats starting in the 5th grade. I used to sell them to classmates.

Tyrone Williams at Black Fashion Week. Chris Juhn/MSR News

“I started my first line called RockItBoy clothing in 2009. I started that because I wasn’t happy with how fashion made a turn, and the products weren’t quality or affordable. So I started making my own clothes and it grew from there.”

He further explained the inspiration behind his line and his frustration with the fashion scene in Minnesota, saying, “Black Coalition clothing came to me one day [because] I felt like streetwear wasn’t being taken seriously in the fashion industry — being that majority of streetwear designers are Black.

“I took the word black and used it different from the color, but as a culture of people who have been blacklisted, black-balled [and seen as the] black sheep in the fashion industry. And we came together as a coalition — a “black coalition” [of] fashion and social misfits with a revolutionary mindset,” he said.

After the runway show, the event concluded with an after-party.

Black Coalition founder Tyrone Williams takes a bow Chris Juhn/MSR News

 

 

See various looks from the fashion show below. All photos by Chris Juhn.

Chris Juhn welcomes readers’ comments to chrisjuhnphotography@yahoo.com.