Chicago native Zayden Skipper made his way south to become a fourth-generation graduate of Alcorn State University, an HBCU in Mississippi. He journeyed to SCAD Atlanta to earn his master’s in fashion design. Now on the world stage as a Project Runway contestant, he’s set on building a global fashion brand here in Atlanta.
Generational genius: I grew up watching my grandmother, mom, and aunts make clothes for myself and my sister. I have always been deeply inspired by my South Side Chicago upbringing with many strong Black women.
On being a minority, in the South, in fashion: Studying in the South, I gained an education on what it means to be a Black man in America. As a designer, I am often put in a box, as if the only thing I can do is streetwear. I am versatile, however. Fashion, for me, is an escape, a way to be a chameleon and a voice for the ones that aren’t spoken for.
Style statement: A cohesive look must be balanced, make sense, and flow aesthetically.
Hometown A-list: Keisha Lance Bottoms, Tanya Sam, Lori Harvey, Tierra Whack
New Year, new . . . Zayden Skipper brand! I am ready to elevate and run with heavy hitters like Jerry Lorenzo and Virgil Abloh.
Muses: Rihanna, Beyoncé, Michelle Obama, the Cool Kids
Most surprising revelation during trying times: How resilient I am, and God works in mysterious ways
What does it mean to wear Zayden Skipper? You are confident, empowered, bold, interesting, and unique. You are the star in a room full of darkness.
Dream collab: Christian Dior