Designer Aurora James Talks the Power of Women and the Real Issue With Diversity in Fashion

Photo by Joslyn Blair
The Brother Vellies designer opens up about the inspiration behind her new collection and what we should really be focused on when it comes to diversity in fashion.

Designer, entrepreneur and bonafide boss Aurora James has come a long way when it comes to her accessories company, Brother Vellies. The Jamaican-born Canadian designer started off with $5,000 and is now sitting on a booming sustainable fashion business - complete with backing from the CFDA Vogue fashion fund and major love from cool girls like Solange Knowles.

After just one glance around her spring '17 presentation room filled to the brim with fur lined sandals, outerwear that would make even the most humble fashion lover yell, 'DO YOU SEE THIS COAT?" a la Kanye West and thigh-high boots that simply take the cake, it's clear that James newest line is much more than meets the eye.

"This season the collection is called 'She Was the Message and the Means' and it's about women and the idea of helping ourselves," said James. "...a lot of times we know what we have to do but it's just about acting on that and walking in your own truth as well. If you are making statements and wanting to do certain things it's about bridging that path to actualizing those things and realizing them. So, it's about the power that we ourselves have as women to become what we want, do what we want and mean what we say.”

When asked about diversity in the fashion industry and the perceived lack of African American designers in that space, James shared her point of view as a woman of color who's made her mark.

"I know that theres some conversation lately about there not being enough African American designers and I don't really know how to respond to that per say. I think as African American people we need to be cognizant of black owned business and support that. What do you get pride from? Do you get pride from saying these are Manolos? Or do you get pride from saying these were made by a single mom in Africa? What is your hashtag going to be?"

With the new collection, James makes it easy to take pride in your look with stunning and more importantly, timeless pieces.

Get a full look at the collection here!

Read More
Filed under: Fashion