Monday 29th March

| BY Paul Toner

Kids In America: Meet The Designers Shaping Fashion Stateside

After a year of profound separation from those we count as our nearest and dearest, New York-based stylist and all-round purveyor of good taste Mecca James-Williams reunited her creative community for this story. “This past year has left a lot of us wondering how, why, when and where? I answered those questions holistically with myself, and they always led me back to my community,” says James-Williams. “The community that has allowed me to grow in their care, create with freedom and learn with inspiration and wisdom.”

These images are as much a celebration of the new generation of American fashion talent as they are a homage to the writers, artists, stylists and photographers who are shaping the city to be what it is today – with James- Williams and her extended family sporting some of the finest brands to come out of the Big Apple in the past decade. “New York will always be a place that’s vibrant with creativity and gritty enough to survive the toughest seasons. With that, I am honoured to choose and show respect to the different culture architects that I call my friends, family and extended creative community.”

The city that never sleeps is home to a cohort of designers redefining US style. Each of the talents spotlighted here are paving the way for a new type of luxury: inclusive glamour, designed with the many in mind, not a select few. God bless American fashion, or more importantly, the cultural innovators who are determining its outlook. They are leaders of change.


the women behind Building Black Bedstuy, which advocates and fundraises for Black-owned businesses in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighbourhood, from left, fashion director Rajni wears dress by PROENZA SCHOULER, earrings by JENNIFER FISHER; artist Nana wears top by HELMUT LANG, jeans by R13, boots by PROENZA SCHOULER; founder of concept store Sincerely, Tommy, Kai wears top by BEVZA, trousers by TELFAR, boots by PETER DO.

Theophilio

Why is New York your happy place?

“The city keeps me progressive.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“The Garment District – I consider it a playground of endless possibilities for me as a creator and designer.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“Many more blessings, and success.”

R13

Why is New York your happy place?

“Because I wasn’t truly happy until I got to New York – I always felt out of place until I stepped foot in NYC. I wasn’t raised to promote creativity, so being a naturally creative person I always felt like an odd duck. So I took it upon myself to leave and try to find happiness somewhere else. I applied to FIT and was lucky enough to get in, and as soon as I got there I was like, ‘Oh my God, look at all these freaks. I’m home.’ I feel like a lot of people feel like that about New York – it’s like an island for misfits.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“I spent the past 20 years in Brooklyn and, not to be clichéd, it’s like the real New York. You get into Brooklyn and it feels like a neighbourhood and close- knit community. I raised my sons there as well. It just feels authentic.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“I think what I hope for is what most people hope for – to heal, unity, peace and all the things we spent the past year fighting for.”


Madisin wears top and headpiece by AREA, trousers by HELMUT LANG.

Peter Do

Why is New York your happy place?

“New York is where my friends and family are. My support system is here.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“I always find an excuse to go to Flushing – that’s where you can find the best food. And I love the people and energy there.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“Clarity.”

Jennifer Fisher

Why is New York your happy place?

“I never planned to move to NYC but it was the best happy accident. I always felt out of place living in California, I never felt like it was ‘me’. Settling down with my husband, Kevin, raising my family and starting my business here have all made New York my happy place – my home.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“I am a downtown girl, always have been. Any place below my store on 18th Street is my regular stomping ground.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“I hope for growth in many areas. Once we open our store in Beverly Hills our focus is retail growth. As a direct-to-consumer brand we are always researching and developing new ways to interact and connect with our customers.”


from left, filmmaker and model Pam wears top and trousers by CHRISTOPHER JOHN ROGERS, earrings by LADY GREY; journalist and editorial director Marjon wears top and trousers by CHRISTOPHER JOHN ROGERS.

Area

Why is New York your happy place?

“We love the people of New York City – and the diversity of ideas and culture.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“Brooklyn Bridge Park at the moment – it’s a welcome escape.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“Stability and aspiration.”

Christopher John Rogers

Why is New York your happy place?

“It’s a place that I’ve always dreamed about making a home in – a place known for hard grinding, hard work and sacrifice, but also a place of community, diversity and glamour.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“Anywhere that I happen to be with my chosen family. I love the different parts of the city – Queens, Bushwick, Bed-Stuy, the Lower East Side, SoHo, Harlem – they all have their own energy. I’m very excited to feel the moment when we’re able to move past quarantine and appreciate the nuances of the city even more.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“A more expansive appreciation for all of the small things that we might have taken for granted before Covid-19, especially the ones that bring us joy. And the fun of getting dressed up again!”


musician, curator and DJ Niara wears jacket by THEOPHILIO, vest by PETER DO, trousers by VEDA, hat by NINA RICCI, boots by PROENZA SCHOULER.

Pamela Love

Why is New York your happy place?

“New York has an energy unlike anywhere else in the entire world. It’s alive all the time. The mixture of cultures is one of my absolute favourite parts of being here.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“There are too many places to pick just one. And it changes all the time. I’ve been cooking a lot lately, so I’ve been in love with SOS Chefs in the Lower East Side. You can find rose vinegar, Persian blue salt, chillies from all parts of the world and homemade chai tea all in one incredible spot. Also the farmers’ market in Williamsburg has been making me very happy.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“Respite from chaos and confusion.”

LRS

Why is New York your happy place?

“New York has always been a safe place for my artistic expression. And nothing makes me happier than when I’m creating in New York.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“During the Covid pandemic I found that my favourite palace is my apartment. I have created a work-live bubble that suits me perfectly.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“That we grow as a business but also that I do as a designer.”


from left, Mel Reneé wears tunic and belts by TELFAR, boots by C+PLUS SERIES; Ryan wears T-shirt and durag by TELFAR, trousers by BARRAGÁN, earrings by JENNIFER FISHER, ring by JOHNNY NELSON, boots by PETER DO; Marion wears jumper, belt and boots by TELFAR, trousers by BARRAGÁN; Beverly wears top and trousers by TELFAR, earrings by LADY GREY, boots by MALONE SOULIERS.

Proenza Schouler

Why is New York your happy place?

“New York is home in every possible way. It’s where our favourite people on Earth live, and the place that continually allows us to do what we love doing, year after year. No place inspires us like New York does, and it has made us into the people we are today.”

Where specifically in New York is your happy place and why?

“At home in Brooklyn or at the studio in SoHo – the two places we probably spend most of our time, especially these days. This answer would have probably been very different a year ago, and that is one of the reasons New York keeps us interested – there’s never a constant.”

What are you hoping 2021 will bring?

“Escape from this horrific pandemic. We miss our old lives, our friends and the casual, everyday encounters that make New York City the magical place that it is.”

Top image: from left, Mecca wears shirt by PYER MOSS, skirt by TIBI, shoes by BROTHER VELLIES BY PYER MOSS; Wanda wears shawl by PYER MOSS, ring by KEANE, shoes by MANOLO BLAHNIK.

Taken from Issue 66 of 10 Magazine – MY, HAPPY, PLACE – order your copy here.

@10magazine


from left, artist Gerald wears shirt and jeans by ECKHAUS LATTA; Condé Nast associate marketing director Asiah wears dress by ECKHAUS LATTA, earrings by DEMARSON, boots by PETER DO.


founder of vintage shop The Break, Hannah wears jacket and shirt by LRS, earrings by JENNIFER FISHER.


from left, artist Theresa wears dress by PETER DO, headpiece by JIL SANDER BY LUCIE AND LUKE MEIER, boots by MALONE SOULIERS; art adviser and founder of art membership club Komuna Global Arts Club, Chela wears cardigan, shirt, top, skirt and boots by PETER DO, earring by AREA.


from left, founder of accessories brand Edas, Sade wears dress by KHAITE, necklace by JENNIFER FISHER; founder of holistic skincare service Dermasaa, Samantha wears top and skirt by KHAITE, earrings by PAMELA LOVE, boots by PROENZA SCHOULER.


top and headpiece by AREA.

KIDS IN AMERICA

Photographer Lelanie Foster
Fashion Editor Mecca James-Williams 
Hair Khyrei Ortiz
Make-up Ernest Rob
Talent Madisin Rain, Wanda Norman, Mecca James-Williams, Sade Mims, Samantha Mims, Asiah James, Gerald Cannon, Ryan Gale, Marion Kelly, Mel Reneé Leamon, Beverly Nguyen, Chela Mitchell, Theresa Chromati, Marjon Carlos, Pam Nasr, Niara Sterling, Hannah Richtman, Kai Avent-Deleon, Rajni Jacques and Nana Yaa
Fashion assistant Tierney Lowery
Production Shay Johnson
Thanks to Break Studio