Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Who was the 1st African American Fashion Designer?

Zelda Wynn Valdes

"Zelda Wynn Valdes (June 28, 1905 – September 26, 2001) was an African-American fashion designer and costumer. In 1948, she opened her own shop on Broadway in New York City which was the first in the area to be owned by an African-American. Some of her clients included other notable black women of her era, including Dorothy Dandridge and Marian Anderson. She is also most famous for designing the original costumes for the Playboy Bunnies and the Dance Theater of Harlem."   (Source: Wikipedia)

Above is Zelda heming Dorothy Dandridge's dress.

This is Hugh Hefner and the Bunnies. These are the original costumes that Zelda designed.



Cash said...

WOW!!!! Such a great post!!! I never ever thought about who the 1st black famous designer was.. EXCELLENT POST!!

Yvette Porter Moore said...

Zelda Wynn was not the first black fashion designer. She was one of many, but she did make it big in Hollywood. My grandmother and Zelda and many others did fashion shows in New York together. My grandmother was Marian Anderson's fashion designer for 20 years in New York.

Kimora and S. Dot said...

According to Concreteloop, Zelda was the 1st black fashion designer to own her own shop. I know that many slaves where involved in clothing making but were not recognized. Zelda was one of many who was recognized for her work. Do you know exactly who the very first African American designer is? Please enlighten us.

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