We are finally getting more answers, as Law Roach has officially confronted the reasons why he is retiring from celebrity styling. We already know that he and Zendaya are perfectly fine, so now we can get into the real nitty gritty of what fashion has done to the renowned image architect — who has created imagery and moments that will never be forgotten. Roach went on the record with Editor-In-Chief of The Cut, Lindsay Peoples, on the platform’s podcast “In Her Shoes.” He starts out saying how nervous he is, but we can tell he is ready to set the record straight and tell the world that he is for real about retiring. He says to Peoples in the exclusive interview, “I’ve been suffering for years…I’ve done everything. I’m very grateful that I’ve been able to move and climb in this industry the way I have. But I can’t say that I didn’t do that without suffering. And I think as Black people in this country, it’s embedded in us to suffer, right? We feel like to be successful, we have to suffer. You suffer through things to get to the other side. You know, you suffer through Earth to get to heaven.” Black creatives in the fashion industry know exactly what Roach is saying and know all too well the experience he has had. It’s hard to want to stay doing the thing you love when it does not love you back.
He tells Peoples about the impact of the death of his 3-year-old nephew in 2021, which also pushed him to retire, stating he had only been able to see his nephew a total of three times before his passing. That shook him to the core and mentally put him in a state of wanting to commit suicide. “The guilt of not being in his life enough and not really knowing him enough had put me into a really dark depression. And I had never been depressed in my life. So my brain couldn’t really understand what was happening. He died a day before Thanksgiving. So I was on a retainer with a client and his manager, and I’ll never forget this — his manager said, ‘“Oh yeah, but you really didn’t do anything in December.” And I didn’t say anything, but it kind of haunts me that people don’t see me sometimes as human. And that I don’t deserve grace. So it’s been a lot of little things that’s been happening over the last couple of years that have been pushing me towards this decision of retirement.”
We all saw that Louis Vuitton seat debacle, but there’s a much deeper root in his retirement. Turns out the seat behind Zendaya was her assistant Darnell’s seat; she wasn’t telling him to sit behind her. “Somebody was like, “Law, you have to sit,” and I was like, “I don’t know where I’m sitting.” That became really tough because it made people think that Zendaya wasn’t taking care of me and wasn’t making sure I was taken care of. And then it became this thing with Delphine Arnault. I was like, Where did that come from? And so, now I have a beef with LVMH, and there’s no beef with LVMH. Delphine and the Arnault family have been so kind to me.” We must remember that rumors are just rumors, and what Roach is speaking out of his own mouth the not only his truth but the actual facts of the matter.
He wasn’t credited for a collaboration he did with Dior for the actress Anya Taylor. The looks came out, and there was no sight of Roach’s name in the credits, even though it was a long back-and-forth process between the house, the designer, and the stylist. “Don’t erase me. Don’t erase my contribution to this look and to this dress. Don’t erase all the phone calls, emails, and text messages, and going back and forth, and me working to make sure that my client is happy. Don’t erase that. And when I did do that, I got so many DMs from other stylists, like, “Thank you for doing that, because they did the same thing to me.” Or, ‘They’ve been doing the same thing to me for years.’”
While he may be done with celebrity styling, he made sure to let listeners know that he is not done with fashion as he loves fashion too much to give it up all the way. The future is very bright for Roach, who attributes his work ethic and tenacity to getting him where he is today. He’s had a very difficult upbringing and only got to where he is now due to his work ethic.“I’ve always, always, had that feeling of, You have to figure it out. You have to work. You have to work. You have to work. I know a lot of people have this, that feeling of It could be all over tomorrow, so get as much as you can today. And so that’s why people also say, “Well, you could just do Zendaya and be successful,” but for me, that wasn’t enough. And then, I also had that burden of showing people like I’m not a one-trick pony.”
He’s given us some insight on what he will be doing after the celebrity styling retirement, and that’s writing a book and becoming a creative director for a footwear brand that has not been revealed to us yet.”…I’m excited about that. Because now I really get to create in a different type of way. I wanna do more personality-driven stuff.”
There’s already been a huge sigh of relief that Roach has felt in only a matter of days, and he tells Peoples, “I feel alive, Lindsay. I know it’s only been a couple days, but I feel alive. And I keep using the word suffering because it’s the only word that I can … I don’t have any friends. I don’t have any relationships; everything that could bring me joy has been suppressed because of the work. This persona of, you know, Luxury Law, Law Roach the Stylist, and not realizing that I was miserable. So I just, I just wanna breathe. I wanna fly; I wanna be happy. I wanna figure other things out.”
Video credits to The Cut and Danya’s House.