Style designer Stevie Edwards, regarded for his avant-garde womenswear and get the job done styling superstars like Diana Ross and Jody Watley, died previously this week right after a battle with lung cancer. He was 58.
A longtime Hyde Parker, Edwards was born in 1965 and grew up on the South Aspect. He attended Dunbar Vocational Large School in Bronzeville, wherever he figured out to tailor. This led him to pursue vogue style at the Ray-Vogue College or university of Design and style, now the Illinois Institute of Artwork.
It was in higher education the place Edwards caught the eye of Eunice Johnson, an government and the matriarch of Johnson Publishing Enterprise, which manufactured Ebony and Jet Magazines, and the founder of the Ebony Style Good demonstrate. In 1986, when Edwards was only 21 yrs previous, Johnson obtained many of his leather-based evening robes for her around the globe trend tour. His job before long took off.
That winter, just one of Edwards’ gown layouts was highlighted in the February challenge of Ebony Magazine as part of a team of up-and-coming Black designers “making trend historical past.” He produced an look on the Oprah Winfrey display in its inaugural year that calendar year.
After the present, Edwards commenced doing the job as an assistant to noteworthy Chicago designers these types of as Barbara Bates, who intended a number of items for Michael Jordan, and Reginald Thomas.
The designer Edwards admired most was Chicago designer Keith Kendall, in accordance to a 1999 Herald report, who mentored him. In the article, Edwards described himself as a “true designer,” expressing, “I sketch the styles, minimize the designs and sew them collectively, as opposed to employing somebody else to do the precise operate.”
In 1996, Edwards opened Collections, a boutique outfits and shoe retailer in Hyde Park. Found at 1360 E. 53rd Street, the shop carried his patterns and the do the job of designers this kind of as Kenneth Cole and Through Spiga.
“I wanted men and women not to have to go downtown,” he claimed of opening the Hyde Park retailer. “They can occur into the community and come to feel an Oak Road vibe and invest in their Italian sneakers in this article.”
About the subsequent several a long time, he opened two Italian boutiques in Gold Coast and the West Loop.
Just after 9 years in the neighborhood, Collections closed in 2005 following the building’s obtain by MAC Attributes.
In 2008, he introduced his upscale women’s brand and South Loop retail store “I Luv Stevie.” Dionne Williams, creator and founder of the “Emerge! Trend Show” at New York Fashion 7 days, explained to WBBM News Radio that Edwards had a reward for developing patterns that spoke to females. “You can be self-assured in what ever design and style that you like. You can be daring. You can be delicate. I imagine his designs seriously sort of showcased that,” she stated.
Other celeb dressings provided Tiffany Hadish and Terisa Griffin.
Edwards announced on social media in early July that he would be having a break from trend to concentration on his struggle with Stage 3 lung most cancers. He received an outpouring of help — an online crowdfunding marketing campaign set up to assistance include medical expenses brought in extra than $7,000 in donations.
Though going through procedure, Edwards died in Chicago on Sunday, August 13.
His household has requested for donations to be designed in his honor to Northwestern University’s Robert H. Lurie Thorough Most cancers Heart.