7 Black Designers We Want You To Know About

Beauty & Style | M. Yvette | 09/03/2014 | 04:45 PM EDT

Just in time for New York Fashion Week, we're putting the spotlight on these gifted designers

Fashion Week kicks off Thursday and editors, bloggers, and fashionistas alike are in a frenzy.

While we're doing the laborious behind-the-scenes duties of seeking the most outstanding fashion and beauty trends off the runway, we haven't forgotten that seeing Black designers (and models) present at Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week is still coming up scarce. So, in honor of NYC's most stylish time of year, we decided to show love to 7 Black designers we think you should pay special attention to, and support as much as you can.


You probably remember one half of the namesake fashion brand's owner, Kimberly Goldson, from Lifetime's television series "Project Runway" (season nine). She's the first designer on our list to gain success from the show, but she surely isn't the last. Goldson and her sister Shelly E. Powell now run the brand out of Brooklyn, New York. The womenswear collections have gained attention for their eclectic use of color, texture and prints while serving a touch of BK!


The sisters behind the brand, Darlene and Lizzy Okpo, birthed their womenswear collection, named after their father and debuted at Fashion Week in 2011. The now 27- and 24-year-olds are a big deal in fashion, leaving more to be talked about, season after season.


As the runner-up on season five of "Project Runway," Korto has gone on to create collections inspired by her African roots. Momolu studied at the Parsons School of Design in New York City and decided to audition for the then Bravo TV show, scoring a spot in the competition. Since then, she's used her platform to continue her vibrant, feminine designs.


Created by Shane Oliver, the young designer debuted at New York Fashion Week at the Fall 2014 presentations. The menswear brand also has an exclusive collection available at Barneys.com.


A design duo of Maxwell Osborne and Dao-Yi Chow, the young menswear designers were the winning recipients of the 2013 CFDA menswear designers of the year award. Their line is a casual mixture of sporty, mostly black-based palettes that have an upscale appeal.


Born and raised in West Philadelphia, Dom Streater made her mark in the fashion world when she landed a spot on the award-winning television series, "Project Runway" (season 12). Just a few years after graduating from Moore College and Art and Design school, Dom became the winner of "Project Runway," debuting at Fashion Week earlier this year.


LaQuan Smith taught himself how to design and create fashion pieces, after his grandmother passed on her sewing machine to the Queens, New York native at the age of 13. After creating his namesake fashion brand in 2008, LaQuan began designing custom pieces for celebs like Beyoncé, Tyra Banks and Kelly Rowland. His collections are edgy, feminine and striking, focusing on intricate cuts and rich textures.  

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(Photos from left: Mireya Acierto/Getty Images, Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images, Joe Kohen/Getty Images,  Desiree Navarro/Getty Images)

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