70 Black-Run Fashion Businesses To Support Today and Always
Nurture black design talent by shopping these local and global labels.
Date August 6, 2020
We all have a responsibility to cultivate black culture in order for communities to thrive. After investing your time into bettering your awareness of systemic racism, familiarize yourself with those making a contribution to today’s style industry and make a purchase from a Black-run fashion brand if your budget allows. Here are 70 Black-run fashion brands to look into, both emerging and established, that span the world.
Sharp tailoring with an artful twist is the hallmark of this eponymous made-to-order line, which also offers custom and bespoke design services.
Kem Egwuenu launched her Toronto-based label in 2017 after years of working in the film and television industry, and crafting custom pieces for private clients.
April & Alex
Founded by award-winning British-Nigerian journalist Didi Akinyelure, this line celebrates the power of embellishment.
Diana Tracy Collection
This line of bold costume jewellery offers pieces that run from delicate to daring.
Stace Barton’s clothing and footwear label boasts a selection of pieces made from re-worked vintage materials.
Worn by the likes of Drake and Melanie Fiona, this Toronto-based streetwear brand is known for its distinctive logo.
This Miami-based creative applies an intersection of art, innovation and classic design into her pieces.
Love & Nudes
Touted as Canada’s first Black-owned skin tone-focused brand for POC, Chantal Carter-Taylor’s label also spreads the message of body positivity.
This Toronto-based jewellery brand, founded in 2013 by Annalay Ajooway, celebrates self-empowerment through adornment.
Ghanaian artist Yaw Tony’s assortment of vibrant silk twill scarves are influenced by a mix of African and Western motifs.
Afton By Palm
Bonnisa Moore, who is based in Buckinghamshire, U.K., crafts an array of elegant pieces including earrings, jewellery dishes and greeting cards.
Nana Boateng Osei’s eyewear brand uses materials sourced in Africa; styles range from eclectic to classic.
London-based entrepreneur Tahlia Gray launched her line of Italian-made tights after being dissatisfied with the variety of “nude” shades available on the market.
“Every woman deserves to fulfill the highest truest expression of herself”–that’s the mantra of Toronto-based accessory designer, Loveth Ezeifeka.
The Happy Hair Co.
Inspired by founder Sacha Atherton’s quest to find beautiful and gentle natural hair products for herself and her daughter, this U.K.-based brand boasts a range of scrunchies, head wraps, anti-frizz towels and more.
Created by Switzerland-based lawyer Nadine Ndjoko-Peisker, this range of intimates includes lingerie, undergarments and hosiery.
Summer Ruddock-Ellis, who’s also a partner in the popular platform 4ye, runs this second-hand business from Toronto.
Based in Toronto, this womenswear brand founded by Emefa Kuadey recently announced a made-to-order model in an effort to reduce waste and provide more focus on particular consumer needs.
House of Hayla
Named after co-founder Hayla Amini, who runs the brand with partner George Sully, this Canadian footwear brand offers monochromatic casual and formal styles done with vegan materials.
Canadian Mic. Carter’s designs challenge notions of gender-conformity and are made with decadent, eye-catching fabrics.
Montreal creative Linsey Myriam Bain launched her line of unisex nylon and leather bags in 2019.
Scy By Julius
This Toronto brand offers clever pieces done in reworked and upcycled textiles; one pair of jeans comes with six Pokemon cards inside clear pockets on the legs.
The handmade designs conceived by Ashley Alexis McFarlane are crafted with fair trade and conflict-free materials.
Mckenna Bisson was inspired to launch her line of everyday essentials after realizing there was lack of clothing for people who, like herself, had an athletic build.
Mike Paul Atelier
Though his Toronto studio is currently only taking virtual consultations, you can still shop Mike-Paul Neufville’s selection of leather goods.
Montreal-based designer Naomie Caron uses a material made of recycled nylon fibre to create her cheerful swimwear.
For almost 20 years, Toronto’s Bustle has offered an eclectic array of casual and evening wear developed by co-founders Shawn Hewson and Ruth Promislow.
Launched in 2006 by Kirk Pickersgill and Stephen Wong, this Toronto-based brand specializes in vibrant occasion wear.
This eponymous Toronto brand offers unisex casual wear, and its designer is nominated for a Canadian Art and Fashion Award this year.
Based in Long Island City, this brand has garnered fans including Beyoncé and Winnie Harlow.
With the tagline ‘Let Us Make You More Fabulous’, this Toronto label focuses on custom formal wear.
Stylist Tahnee Lloyd-Smith launched this emerging label that’s composed of pieces from simple jeans to tailored outerwear.
This vintage company, founded by Christiana Greene, specializes in previously loved lingerie.
Brooklyn-based Sarah Nsikak started this upcycling-centric venture as a way to honour African craft.
Launched in 2005 by Telfar Clemens, this label is best known for its vegan leather bag that’s been nicknamed the ‘Bushwick Birkin’.
Originally focused on a classic pump style, this Canadian brand—founded by an osteopath—has expanded to include sandals, boots and flats.
Atelier New Regime
This Montreal-based brand, that was launched in 2009, mixes utility with novel fabrications.
Montreal-based brothers Byron and Dexter Peart began this brand as a marketplace for well-designed wares from around the world, and recently launched a tote bag in partnership with the United Nation’s Ethical Fashion Initiative.
Toronto-based art director and event producer Myla Davey launched this loungewear line in 2018.
New York-based Canadian Aurora James’ designs are made by global artisans.
Maya Amoah founded this brand in 2017; its bold pieces are made in Ghana.
Dumebi Iyamah might be best known for her brand’s swimwear, but it also offers ready-to-wear and bridal pieces.
This L.A.-based eponymous label features pieces made from reused vintage and recycled materials.
“The future is bright, so why wear boring clothes?” asks this brand’s founder, Catherine Addai.
Launched by Haitian-born Glemaud, the label was a CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalist in 2017.
Founded last year by Sydney Ziems, this jewellery brand’s pieces are made-to-order in an effort to minimize production waste.
Diarra Bousso Niang’s brand offers classic handbags and small leather goods that are made in Senegal using local traditional techniques.
Nigerian-Canadian Tehilah Abakasanga founded this clothing brand which has since expanded to include swimwear and beauty.
Designer Kerby Jean-Raymond’s brand has become one of the most celebrated collections in the fashion world; last year, Jean-Raymond was named creative director of Reebok Studies.
This size and gender-inclusive London-based undergarment, swim and hosiery line is helmed by Ade Hassan, MBE.
When Rihanna launched her high-end label last year, she became the first black woman to lead a brand for luxury conglomerate LVMH.
Italian designer Stella Jean’s label is focused on celebrating traditional craft from around the world, and providing opportunities for international artisans.
Christopher John Rogers
This young CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund winner’s designs can be found online exclusively via e-comm giant Net-A-Porter.
This brand, launched by Central Saint Martins grad Grace Wales Bonner, was the recipient of the LVMH Young Designer Prize in 2016.
After visiting her native Ethiopia over a decade ago, model and entrepreneur Liya Kebede founded this collection of made-in-Africa pieces.
Lisa Folawiyo Studio
This directional label is a favourite of Solange and Lupita Nyong’o.
Streetwear designer Preston is a graduate of Parsons School of Design; in 2016, he collaborated with the The City of New York Department of Sanitation to launch a sustainability-focused foundation.
This San Fransisco and Nairobi-based line was founded by Gwendolyn Floyd, Catherine Mahugu, and Ella Peinovich. As the brand is focused on ethical craft practices, the trio have developed an app to facilitate the the responsible standardization of its manufacturing process.
Not only do this Nigerian designer’s eclectic patterned separates turn heads, Ize has caused a sensation during his runway shows for casting legendary model Naomi Campbell.
Carly Cushnie’s New York-based company counts Michelle Obama, Jennifer Lopez and Padma Lakshmi as fans. Bridal bonus: The brand also applies its contemporary design aesthetic to wedding wear.
Actress Rosario Dawson and one-time exec at Bottega Veneta, Abrima Erwiah, head up this label that offers womenswear, menswear and even has a kids collection.
Undra Celeste New York
This label is known for elevated takes on wardrobe essentials like blazers, turtlenecks and wrap dresses; it also offers more flamboyant styles like one-shoulder tops and metallic trousers.
Described as having an “advanced contemporary” direction, this London brand was founded by Holly Wright and Camille Perry, former heads of design and of buying for Topshop.
London-based menswear designer Rose began her brand in 2007 as a shirting label. It’s since grown to include denim and accessories.
You can shop a range of boldly printed shirts from Maki Osakwe’s 10-year-old Lagos-based line.
Jamaican-born designer Matthew Harris creates luxe jewellery and bags at contemporary price points.
Hailing from Brooklyn and inspired by her family’s Grenadian heritage, Felisha Noel gives a lively twist to pieces like sultry robes, wide-leg pants and bodysuits.
This audacious New York brand recently collaborated with iconic Australian label Coogi on a selection of wildly printed pieces.
Montreal designer Habi Gerba offers made-to-measure services as well as a collection of understated staples like delicate blouses and timeless frocks.
Under the creative direction of Samuel Ross, this brand offers elevated staples including sneakers, utilitarian shirting and outerwear; the fashion industry has taken notice, and in 2018, Ross won the British Emerging Talent Menswear category at the British Fashion Awards.
Want to know more? Here are 20 black-run beauty and grooming brands that deserve your dollars.