by John Russel Jones

Harlem’s Fashion Row (HFR) has partnered with Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (LVMH) to present three designers of color to kick off NYFW on September 6th, 2022, as part of its 15-year anniversary celebration.

New York native Clarence Ruth began his career as an artist, with his work displayed at Polk Museum of Art and the African Museum of Art. After enjoying a successful career as an artist and fashion model, he decided to merge his two passions and display his artistic expression through clothing. Clarence served as head of visuals for Ralph Lauren, Tom Ford, John Varvatos, and Andrew Buckler, before launching his own menswear label, Cotte D’Armes. Inspired by the essence of military infused with street chic biker, his denim and clothing evoke a sense of rebel darkness and individuality.

Contemporary women’s wear designer Johnathan Hayden is a master of sustainable separates. He seeks to harmonize modernity with classic craftsmanship, often listening to the needs of women in STEM-related fields to incorporate tech in his designs. Striving to achieve better beauty, Johnathan Hayden creates clean, conscious, and creative designs, rotating staple styles with new couture techniques for women who want clothing that lasts lifetimes. Johnathan is intent to dress the modern intellect, and designs for those who navigate the world brain before body.

Nicole Benefield’s design aesthetic is rooted in casual sophistication. The intent is to create clothing that is approachable with thoughtful details, and effortless fabrications, in modern proportions.  She is an advocate for being driven by emotion over trend and appreciates form and wearability. Nicole Benefield Portfolio is a slow fashion brand that is committed to developing responsibly. The collection is a combination of styles in organic, biodegradable, or deadstock fabrics that are made in small batches to avoid overproduction. This adaptive method of production is a responsible approach to fashion and an appreciation for consuming meaningfully.