Fashion isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of DC, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that the District has evolved into an area known for more than just politics and government. While the city still needs a little more time before reaching the level of New York or Paris, there are local designers and visionaries who are working hard to break the stereotype about DC not being a place a place for fashion.
This week’s five featured designers are each unique to their personal style and have created brands reflecting their individuality. Ranging from girly to urban, they represent the diversity of the city to the fullest.
- District of Clothing (@district_of_clothing): The motivation behind the District of Clothing is more so a movement than just your typical fashion brand. Inspired by the ambitious and influential, designer Dionna Dorsey created a fashion line to appeal the doers and the ambitious. The line features t-shirts and hoodies labeled with “DC Dope”, “DC Doer”, and “Le District”. Simple in design, the pieces can be incorporated into any style, for any occasion, whether the office, school, or a networking event. Long story short, it’s perfect for those in DC who are always grinding and working on their next step.
- Denada Design (@denadadesign): An emerging accessory line, DeNada specializes in handmade knits for women and men. The line’s founder, Virginia Blanca Arrisueño had a vision to blend contemporary styles with ethic elements to offer stylish – yet, high quality merchandise. Inspired by the culture and the traditions of her Peruvian heritage, Arrisueño continually works alongside skilled artisans in Perú to create DeNada’s growing collection. She’s been featured in Refinery29 DC, Capital File Magazine, and New York Magazine, showcasing her unique accessories and chic style. You can also check out her Instagram page, featuring her designs on local DC bloggers and influencers (it also showcases her really cool studio).
- Hoodlvm | 90’s Clothing (@hoodlvm): CEO and designer, Deontre Hancock, takes pride in being a self-taught menswear designer. Born and raised in Washington, D.C., Hancock makes all of his products. Just one glance through his Instagram page, and you can instantly see the 90’s influences. He brings back many of the old fashion classics beloved in the 90’s including experimental textures, loose fits, and bold prints. But, what makes him interesting is the reason behind the name. On the Hoodlvm website, Deontre states he and his brand “[stand] for something different. [They’re] rebels, [they] go against what’s supposedly be right. Like a Hoodlum who’s always breaking the law, stirring up things and not looking to be your average individual.” Pretty dope right?
- Talisa Michelle (@talisamichelle): Since 2011, she has expanded from five dresses to a full lifestyle brand consisting of women’s – casual, evening, and swimwear, girls, mens, and pets wear. What makes Talisa’s designs are unique because they appeal to both young and more mature audiences by offering timeless, versatile, and sexy designs.
“I design for the woman who is sexy yet powerful, traditional but not afraid to take bold risks, and most importantly, the woman who knows who she is and understands exactly what she wants. This is the woman who wants and deserves to look good.”- Talisa (from RawArtist.org)
- Wes Woods (@originalcrackage): Self-proclaimed as the “Stripe King,” Woods brand “Original Crackage” is all about black and white stripes, lines, abstract shapes, and color blocking. The brand pulls in inspiration from modern technology and the city lifestyle for casual urban wear that makes a statement. Look through Woods’ social media, it’s clear complex geometric patterns on simple pieces (like a T-shirt) are his signature. What makes this brand really cool, is that the same design is never made again, so each customer receives something exclusive, original, and unique.