While scrolling , down my Instagram timeline I came across three black owned businesses , that I feel deserve a lot of recognition and praise for the positive image they are portraying for African American entrepreneurs . These businesses exemplify "Black Excellence". The creativity and the merchandise speaks volumes in the recent rise of "Pro-Blackness". Even though they are not the only black owned businesses. I decided to highlight them this week , because the message they display through their their varied articles of clothing and accessories is a profound one and something to be proud about.
They make it easy to celebrate your black heritage and culture. Each of the products they produce has a message and that message can be interpreted any many different ways. Their merchandise has fluidity when it comes down to its meaning , it can stand for a cause , it can serve as a fashion statement or it can empower other people of African descent. Visiting their websites not only inspired me as an entrepreneur but also made me feel empowered as an African American who is in college trying to pursue higher endeavours. I enjoy seeing other people especially African Americans striving for greatness and sharing with others their passion and their talent. Each of their artwork is represented in different forms such as, bags, t-shirts , paintings , original artwork and sweaters but each of these businesses collectively shine a light on the beauty and pride of beng an African American in America.
1. Cultured Savage (Explore. Discover. Create . Maintain . African american Lifestyle Apparel Brand.)
Cultured Savage launched April 2014 and has been a huge success. You can follow them on facebook , twitter and Instagram @theculturedsavage. To purchase any of their merchandise go to theculturedsavage.com .
2. Dope On Arrival NYC (Creator of apparel that exhibit purpose with emphasis on empowering the masses.)
Dope on Arrival NYC designed and manufactured in Brooklyn , New York, was created by visionary Imani Johnson. Tired of clothing that didn't say anything significant. Now, her clothing speaks for itself . Not only that , it speaks volumes about being black and proud of it. Her clothing is able to spark conversations that usually would be uncomfortable to have with people of another race. Some phrases seen on the Dope on Arrival NYC clothing includes, "Culture Not For Sale" and "I Stay Woke". You can follow Dope On Arrival NYC on Twiiter : @DOANYC_ , Instagram: @dopeonarrivalnyc , and order from their website dopeonarrivalnyc.com.
Kashmir Thompson's merchandise and art is vivid colorful and 90's inspired. She is a graduate of the Cleveland School of the arts where she majored in Visual Communications and minored in creative writing. You can tell from her artwork that she truly has a gift for art. You can follow her on Instagram @kashmir.creviii . You can purchase her original artwork , prints , shirts and , bags on her website kashmirviii.bigcartel.com
One of the reasons I particularly enjoy these entrepreneurs is because the pride of being black exudes from their merchandise.The 90's was a booming time for black empowerment , because it was represented alot more during this time from the Cosby Show , to a Different Wolrd and many other classic shows that starred African Americans. Hence , a good amount of of the designs and asthestics of the clothing is inspired by popular 90's pop culture , shows , and artwork. This era is coming full circle when it comes to representing black power and being proud of our African roots. Each day, I see one African American inspiring another , and that is how its supposed to be.