'Black Dress' exhibit at Pratt Manhattan Gallery

Kemberly Richardson has more on the fashion exhibit.
February 5, 2014 3:12:29 PM PST
February is Black History Month and a new exhibit opens this week that ties into New York Fashion Week.

It's at the Pratt Institute and showcases 10 black fashion designers and their work.

"It's a play on words, black dress, what we wear, what we have fashion," said Walter Greene, a fashion consultant with Black Dress.

"It" is a first for Pratt, a new exhibit dedicated to black fashion designers from around the world.

"I see this exhibit as a new starting point where maybe there's more equality for everyone," said Nick Battis, of Pratt Manhattan Gallery.

For countless designers of color, who Walter Greene, feels have largely been ignored and also lack the financial backing, others receive.

"It's very difficult and especially in an industry that has been very formal and not welcoming with open arms to designers of color, putting it bluntly," Greene said.

A must for the exhibit, celebrated fashion innovator Stephen Burrows.

Shoelaces are found on intricate creations by Michael Jerome Francis.

This is a nod to critically acclaimed designer, Tracy Reese.

The show includes both break out and established designers, the end result is a more well-rounded experience.

"When you're young, you take more chances, when you're seasoned you start to have your craft down to what works and what is your vision," Battis said.

This exhibit focuses on 10 designers, all New York based, like Byron Lars, a favorite of many, including the first lady, Michelle Obama.

"Black Dress" opens Thursday evening.

For more information please visit: https://www.pratt.edu

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