Cleveland’s black fashion designers make history


CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) — Cleveland resident Stephanie Nunn has been designing clothes since she was a child.

“I’m going to use thread, I’m going to use silk threads, I’m going to use leather cords,” Nunn said.

In 2001, she launched the Nadira Collection.

“Nadira means rare and every piece and definitely rare,” Nunn said.

Just by looking at his designs, you wouldn’t be able to tell that Nunn is legally blind.

“Right now I can’t see out of my right eye but shadows,” Nunn said.

At just six years old, Nunn was diagnosed with a degenerative eye disease.

“I was told I wouldn’t be able to conceive,” she said.

Nunn continued and was even recognized for her unique knits.

In 2008, she took part in the International Designer of the Year competition in New York.

“I never thought I would be close to winning first place, a trip to Paris and I was in a few international magazines,” Nunn said.

Nunn said she wants to inspire other fashion designers who have the odds on their side.

“We have a life to live, we have examples to lead, we have people to inspire,” Nunn added.

All the celebrities you see here are wearing David Ford Collections eyewear designed right here in Cleveland.

“Everyone from NeNe Leakes to Phaedra Parks to New Edition…you name it,” David Ford said.

Ford launched its eponymous brand 10 years ago.

“I paved the way for African Americans in eyewear. I’m only one in five in the country who designs African American eyewear,” Ford said.

Recently, Ford has branched out into clothing design and says his passion for fashion runs in the family.

“Mom has been a fashion purveyor for over 30 years. She retired from Macy’s. She’s done everything from merchandising to selling, and she’s really influenced me,” Ford said.

Ford added that he wanted to change the stigma that is usually attached to black fashion brands.

“As black marks, that we’re seen as delivering fake or not real or something somebody else had… by having our own stuff, you can get an idea of ​​what we’re really doing. “, did he declare.

Both Nunn and Ford are making history in their own way by showing us that the sky is the limit.

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