Tuesday evening I attended an event sponsored by the New York Public Library with designer LaQuan Smith. LaQuan sat down to an interview given by Adriana Nova (Social Media Manager of ideeli) to share his story.
LaQuan told us he always wanted to be in fashion from a very young age. As a kid he always got in trouble for sketching in class while the teacher was teaching. He said he simply loved watching and sketching women in movement. At age 13 he received his first sewing machine from his grandmother, Hattie Smith, who then taught him how to sew. In 2007, he received an internship with BlackBook and interned with them for 2 years. During those years anything that was related to fashion he was there. He was working on his own designs at the time and finally decided to go for it.
Former group Danity Kane wore his designs to several events and parties, Andre J wore his design on the cover of Fashion Week Daily, and at his very first runway show on Feb. 15, 2010, Andre Leon Talley (yes the ALT!) was front and center! After these tremendous events and leaps, the rest is pretty much history. Two of the biggest ladies in music right now Rihanna and Lady Gaga have both worn designs by LaQuan and Amber Riley of “Glee” is working his dress in the March of Essence magazine.
LaQuan was candid, real, honest and so gracious in his interview. I learned so much more about him and how he got his start. It was an honor to be in attendance and I am so looking forward to what he will do next for the fashion industry!