BEHIND THE SCENES WITH RUTH CARTER AND H&M

Ruth Carter made history at the 2019 Academy Awards when she took home the Oscar for Costume Design. The recognition of her work in Marvel’s Black Panther shone a light on an already legendary career that included an Emmy nod for contributions to the Roots reboot and collaborations on more than ten films with famed director Spike Lee. In February global retailer H&M debuted an exclusive capsule collection designed by Carter in homage to her work with Lee.

Ruth Carter X H&M Collection, $13–$40 each, hm.com

ESSENCE was there to catch all the action at the epic campaign shoot, which had serious throwback vibes. “My work has always been a voice for Black culture about who we were in the past to who we are now,” she explains.

Ruth Carter

My work has always been a voice for Black culture.”

—RUTH CARTER

The brand tapped stylist Ade Samuel and makeup artist Rasia Flowers to add a millennial twist to the nineties-inspired shoot, which took place in Brooklyn. The visuals reimagine Do the Right Thing’s fictional “We Love Radio” segment as And That’s the Truth, Ruth!, a podcast hosted by Carter and comedian Jay Versace. Carter hopes to correct some of H&M’s past cultural missteps with the launch. “I thought I could get the most out of this by being a collaborator,” she says. Visit ESSENCE .com for more behind-the-scenes coverage.

ALEXANDER McQUEEN’S NEW IT BAG

ALEXANDER MCQUEEN HAS THE NEW SPRING “IT” BAG

For spring/summer 2020, Alexander McQueen has introduced three new handbags to its classic line. One of them, “The Story” (above, $2,190, alexandermcqueen.com), boasts dual functionality with its feminine details and sleek gold handle. The chic carrier is ideal for any boss on the go.

WILLI SMITH WILL NOT BE FORGOTTEN

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum is premiering a must-see exhibit honoring the late designer Willi Smith (below right). Widely considered one of the most successful Black fashion designers in America, the trailblazer was one of the pioneers of urban streetwear. A digital community archive will accompany the new display, which will run from March 13 through October 25.

This first appeared in our March/April print issue.

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