Back in September 2016, Antoine Gregory, known for his unflinching hot takes as @bibbygregory, began compiling a Twitter thread identifying the Black designers who, he felt, had been overlooked by the fashion industry. By 2020, the stylist and consultant had launched Black Fashion Fair, an expansive online marketplace, media outlet, and creative directory set to provide those designers with the attention they truly deserve.
The enterprising Brooklynite knows that economic change is required in order for Black fashion to thrive. This means forging new infrastructures and networks, so that Black creatives can buttress their work (and communities) against an inhospitable, Eurocentric old guard. “There is still work that needs to be done in highlighting Black designers as a meaningful part of the historical narrative,” Gregory says. That’s why he would like to launch Black Fashion Fair’s first exhibition and book on Black fashion, style, and culture. “By focusing on Black designers and Black fashion history, we are able to make space for us to contribute to the canon of fashion. My goal is to make sure we have ownership over our narratives.”
Alongside close collaborators Telfar Clemens and Pyer Moss, Gregory represents a new wave of US-based Black creatives who are rerouting fashion’s obsession with exclusivity. For Gregory, the future of fashion is access and visibility. It’s no longer for the select few, it’s for everyone.
Text Daniel Rodgers