“We [Black Americans] spend 22 billion dollars a year in apparel, yet we represent less than 1% of designers that are found in major department stores” - Brandice Daniel
I'll never forget the day I heard that quote while watching a special by Essence Magazine on the importance of embracing authenticity. I knew that my aspirations as a plus-size fashion designer has its obstacles, however, those startling statistics punched me in the gut.
How can we have more diversity within the fashion industry in a major way? First, we have to acknowledge that there is a lack of diversity and then figure out how we contribute to it. Do we encourage and advocate for diversity within our local shopping malls and outlets? Do we give constructive criticism to brands of color, so that they are able to improve and build a successful brands?
With Prime & Peachy, we set out to build a brand that is authentic, diverse, unique, and offers quality clothing for all sizes. Diversity is so important because we all benefit from a variety of ideas, experiences, and creativity when it comes to fashion and really, life in general. Fashion is a language that everyone understands and appreciates, it's one of the few areas, much like music, that has the ability to unite people from all over the world.
We won't be able to change those statistics over night, but you can help us get there and we are willing to work hard to earn your business and trust. One day at a time and one customer at a time.
Shatoyia Bradley is a writer, homeschool mom, and designer. She resides in Buford, Georgia, with her husband and six children.