So often we dream of our brothers and sisters climbing the ranks and making it to the top of each of their respective industries, and when those moments of luck mixed with favor and dashed with blessings do happen, it’s a cause for major celebration.
Such is the case for Kerby Jean-Raymond the founder and creative director of the fashion label Pyer Moss, who was named the winner of the annual CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund award Tuesday night.
As described on the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s website, ‘the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund was established in 2003 to help emerging American design talent find continued success in the business of fashion.’
Raymond, who was already on the map as a burgeoning Black designer, has consistently showcased the travails of our communities via his opulent runway shows, but this week he can proudly exclaim ‘Mama, I made it!’
ESSENCE has regularly featured Raymond’s designs and he was profiled as one of our Designers To Watch. Speaking on his winning designs — modeled here by model Ebonee Davis — Raymond says, “we were asked to create a look based on the work of an assigned artist; we were assigned Mickalene Thomas. This dress collages over 10 layers of custom organza prints, custom printed silk, hand beading and crystals throughout.”
Raymond also crafted a men’s ensemble that was modeled by ‘Moonlight’ actor/model Ashton Sanders, adding “Thank you to my friends who played muse for this design challenge, thank you to the judges and thank you to my fellow contestants (now, friends).”
As this year’s winner, Raymond and his brand will walk away with a $400,000 cash prize, and mentorship from leading industry professionals.