MEMPHIS, Tenn. – A lifelong dream is coming true for a Memphis clothing designer who will be showcasing a collection named after her hometown at New York Fashion Week this month.
Ayeshia Smith, 33, said the whole collection was inspired by a bold fabric called Memphis that gives a nod to the fashions of the ’80s and ’90s.
“It’s kind of a big thing right now,” said Smith. “I wanted to create something that identified with me, and it’s named after my hometown. So, I was like this would be perfect.”
Smith started designing clothes when she was just 13 and, by the age of 25, had started her own company: AyeshiA Apparel.
She was designing jewelry for a company in the San Francisco area but decided to return to Memphis when the pandemic hit.
“It made more sense for me to move back home,” said, “Smith said. “It actually worked out for me because this is my full-time job.”
Smith said a big fashion showroom and Plitz Fashion Marketing invited her to New York Fashion week after spotting her fashions on Instagram.
She decided to work with Plitz and says her collection will include 13 different looks.
“I started buying all my fabric back in February,” said Smith. “I actually started the collection back in June and completed by mid-July,”
Smith will be showing the ‘Memphis’ collection at the Bryant Park Hotel on September 11 and the Caelum Gallery on September 12 and said the exposure could be life-changing.
“You get to see and meet so many people,” said Smith. “Hopefully, I can collaborate with with someone who will want to pick up my collection and work with me to expand my brand.”
Smith said ultimately she would like to grow her brand on the global level and have boutiques everywhere.
“I’m praying the right person sees my work and wants to work with me,” said Smith.
New York Fashion Week runs from September 8-13.
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