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EBONY FASHION FAIR: From Black Designers.

Fashion Statements From Black Designers

The ethnic creativity that Black designers put into their clothes this season shows a great respect for their cultural heritage. Some designers gave descriptive names for their ensembles. "Bird of Paradise" is a colorful ensemble by Montgomery, and C. D. Greene's "Dagger Dress" is a red matte jersey dress that leaves one thigh and leg exposed while a long skirt panel with a design on the end simulating a dagger covers the other leg. There were many African influences, which were also evident in the jewelry and other accessories, as well as in fabrics and hairstyles. In addition, there were sleek, feminine cocktail dresses as well as colorful sporty ensembles. These dazzling creations from Black designers show that they are on the cutting edge of today's fashion trends.

African-inspired "Witch Doctor" ensemble designed by Montgomery with round-neck, sleeveless "Haley's Comet"-inspired, hand-painted rayon and Lurex dress decorated with cheetah fur shawl over one shoulder tied on side with genuine African artifact, hand-beaded wall hanging. Accessorized with headpiece of synthetic black and white hair with decorative bone across front, butterfly bracelets and long white fly-fan in hand made of synthetic hair.

Matte jersey dress with round neckline, keyhole-scooped front, short monkey fur sleeves with an a-symmetrical, long-paneled "dagger handle skirt bottom, by C.D. Greene. Accessorized with wide gold bracelet and rhinestone ankle strap slippers, by Manolo Blahnik.

Strapless six-gored stretch denim, knee-length dress, by Perry White. Accessorized with matching embroidered stole, wide-brim hat, ribbon tied in bow to side of neck, and elbow-length fingerless gloves.

Colorful, two-piece, long-sleeve suit ensemble with V-neck and baby-doll collar, five snap closures, two large side-pockets and elastic-waist miniskirt, by Stephen Burrows.

Scoop-neck, sleeveless stretch tulle short cocktail dress by C.D. Greene with hand-sewn Swarovski crystals all over. Note: Unusual wing design hairstyle.

Stephen Burrows designs kneelength, chiffon cocktail dress with haltered asymmetrical neckline and circular ruffle.

Scoop-neck, short-sleeve, kneelength silk satin cocktail dress with hand-painted design. Note: Decorative flowers in hair and matching sandals.

Water-weave, print stretch tube top with satin finish elasticized pants worn under long jacket with large collar and deep lapels and three-button snap closing, by Perry White.

Sleeveless, V-neck, A-line short cocktail dress with flower design, by Tracy Reese. Note: Bird perched on shoulder and in hair.

"Bird of Paradise" chiffon velvet ensemble by Montgomery with asymmetrically curved, one-shoulder neckline, top of dress and long, fringed shawl umbraed and hand-dyed horizontally. Tiger-print, hand-dyed skirt with inverted-V cut-out for hand-dyed fringe. Accessorized with Maasai Tribe-inspired hat of hand-dyed, umbraed Mongolian lamb fur. Note: Gold rings with long tassels tipped with gold balls and gold-buckled platform shoes.

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Author:Johnson, Eunice W.
Publication:Ebony
Date:May 1, 1999
Words:441
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