Here's how Destiny ALIGNED itself when I met Vogue's renowned Fashion Editor Andre Leon Talley and he requested a STEPHEN+ANTONIO Fedora!

As I sit down and write this post, I still can't believe we are in our seventh month of a global pandemic. When we first went into lockdown, I had just written a plan to rebrand my site by offering a new way to approach luxury streetwear for gender-neutral clothing. I hoped to shoot a lot of content for fall during spring by traveling abroad to capture the most exotic content to help launch my new merch. Unfortunately, the universe had other plans. When everything came to a halt, my creative process came adrift.

 So many things were out of my control; many people were dying due to COVID-19, and others from the senseless, shameful and egregious violence of police brutality. Focusing on fashion was no longer the priority or concern, even with imminent plans to launch luxury streetwear. At the very beginning, I had no idea how I could help. Eventually, I found great local organizations to donate to so those directly affected by the pandemic could have immediate relief. I also joined forces with friends to protest and bring awareness to police brutality and the BLACK LIVES MATTER movement.

One thing that never escaped me was the feeling I’d have when I got dressed. How I’d feel knowing I put my best foot forward and looked like it. I looked my best. Getting dressed to go walk and clear my head of all the world’s uncertainties became a new favorite pastime.
I partnered with a factory in upstate New York on some fedoras that were apart of my future launch. I quickly added them to my daily outfit rotation and loaded them onto my online store.

One day I had to meet one of my business advisors for coffee, and after the meeting I walked down Mercer Street. And as I was walking, I heard a man "Young man, I love your face-mask. And oh my goodness! Where did you get that FABULOUS fedora?!" I turned around, and it was Vogue's very own Andre Leon Talley! I gathered myself as fast as possible and told him it was my fedora. Within seconds he went to my website and picked the exact ones he wanted. He also mentioned he was currently doing his virtual book tour, and if I could bring him the fedora, he'd wear it on video. Of course, I said yes, after all, who in their right mind would say no to The Godfather of fashion? He was the very first Black editor at Vogue Magazine, Interview Mag, and assistant to Diane Vreeland and Andy Warhol. Fashion royalty is his DNA. The mere fact that he wanted one of my fedoras was all the confirmation I needed to keep going and continue the progress of rolling out the merch that I had.

Even though the world is going through complete chaos, people still need something to look forward to, and for many, fashion gives just that. The following morning I woke up early and went over everything I was taking to him with a fine toothcomb; I crossed every T and dotted every I. I met him as he requested in the morning at his hotel, before his first zoom interview discussing his new book, "The Gospel According to Andre." He was very welcoming and gracious; he even offered tons of advice on my future endeavors concerning my creative ideas. To say he was encourging would be an understatement. He let me interview him and take pics, and he paired my Straw Fedora with with a Fenty Caftan that Rihanna made for him. It was all so overwhelming to take in. It felt like the creative gods smiled down and granted me complete alignment on my creative journey. This was all the hope, encouragement, and unsought validation I needed to set my creative blaze aflame again.