Tuesday, 4 March 2014


LaQuan Smith has combated cancer, dressed superstars like Lady Gaga It’s no secret that there is a pocket full of creativity when it comes to Africa. From Pratt’s inspirational campus in the Clinton Hill section of Brooklyn, the Fashion Department extends students a concept-led, craftbased education at the heart of one of the world's cultural epicenters.

Pratt Institute has set in motion a flashy new exhibit called "Black Dress" which pays tribute to African American fashion designers. When Rihanna famously walked her scarf out in a gold cat suit for her Rude Boy music video, you may be amazed to know that it was twisted by an up and coming designer from Queens, who is fast becoming a national sensation. His name is LaQuan Smith and he has a furor following.

LaQuan Smith is an African- American fashion designer who founded and is the CEO of the women's clothing brand LaQuan Smith, LLC. Smith is based in Queens, New York. LaQuan Smith has combated cancer, outfitted superstars like Lady Gaga and Beyonce, and has shown at New York Fashion Week. Smith is one of the ten modern New York City centered designers presented in an exhibit at Pratt Manhattan Gallery in Chelsea called "Black Dress" which pays tribute to African American designers. Born and raised in St. Albans, Smith has no proper training, no monetary backers and his grandmother taught him how to stitch. But at age 26, he has Vogue Magazine and a long list of celebrity clients singing his praises for what he calls a "hip hop Parisian" style that Rihanna put on the fashionista map. "This is the catsuit that she wore but in the 3D version, and the gold version. So we remixed and did it in a dress," says Smith.

Since he can't get the big business backers in his box this red hot will be at no show at New York Fashion Week. Professor Adrienne Jones says it's a main aim why she dreamed up the exhibit. "This is not the time for us right now. We come and go but the money isn't always there so we have to try different venues to get out," says Jones.


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