Cléair Monroe 12 p.m. on September 10th at Dorsett on Washington Avenue, Brooklyn debuted it’s Fall Winter Collection during New York Fashion Week. The show involved two parts. It started with a runway walk by the models and then a presentation where everyone could interact, touch, photograph but most importantly experience the designs up close and personal. This was my first presentation and even though I was nervous my excitement and joy to share my collection surpassed any negative feelings and/or self doubt I had. Whenever I am ready to share something really important with others I always hope at the end my vision was clear and my intent was sound. I invited family, friends and also anyone who wanted to share that moment with me.
Cléair Monroe Fall/Winter Collection is called “Black Parisian”. Black Parisian is built upon my fantasy of how I see myself in Paris for the first time. I have never been but I have a desire to go. When creating I got infatuated with the idea of ,”I’ve never been” meaning I can create whatever I want. I can design having no restrictions on what’s “right” and what’s “wrong”. I got to place myself in different scenarios and given the ability to explore certain topics like, what would I look like getting a cup of cocoa or attending meetings. I felt it was important to not do ton of research because I wanted this to all come from my ideal perfect scenario of how I would look, feel, and/or be in Paris. I sketched & made the pieces while singing, dancing, and listening to songs like Cherry Wine by Nas, Paris Toyko by Lupe Fiasco, Bailan by 2 Chains & Pharrell, etc (full list below). Black Parisian symbolizes me acknowledging all the versions of myself. I made designs for when I want to be sexy, for when I want to be sophisticated, street, or all the above. Naturally, I kept the essence of Cléair Monroe by letting my thoughts take over instead of trying to edit based on previous notions, color schemes, and/or styles. I felt connected to everything because I found out how to let all my designs live together.
Everyone who came was dressed to impress and was actively engaged. I was stunned at how many people showed up to support Cléair Monroe. Before the show started I was amazed how smoothly the fittings went before the show. Every model had a special look to her and fit the overall aesthetic of the garment(s) she was wearing. I saw a little piece of myself in every last one of them. I felt I was sending my designs on their first day of school. The post show reactions were overwhelmingly positive. I even shocked some my friends. I didn’t share photos with them before the show so they got to see everything for the first time firsthand at the show. One highlight was getting a text/call/facetime from my mom with her saying how proud of me she was. Hearing from my peers was amazing as well. If they were men they were saying, “I would want my girl dressed like this.” If they were girls they were pointing to garments going, “I want those, and I want that, when will it be on the site”? I would say my first presentation was a success. All items will be able to pre-order Sept 30th.
Special Thanks to Ziggy, Quay, Tash, all the models, Dj @Slimg3m, the entire Dorsett BK venue, my family, friends, and anyone who supported me.