Haitian American designer Kerby Jean-Raymond waves after the Pyer Moss show at the Kings Theatre during New York Fashion Week in Brooklyn on September 8, 2019. Credit: Kena Betancur/AFP/Getty Images

By Kristen Rogers for CNN

Kerby Jean-Raymond will become the first Black American designer to present at Paris Haute Couture Week, a significant moment in his ascent within the fashion industry.

His fashion label Pyer Moss, which has been invited to be a guest member of the official Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture, will show its first couture collection in July.

The historic first comes amid ongoing conversations about how the fashion industry can combat racial prejudice and disparities within its own ranks and more broadly.

In an interview with CNN Style in 2019, Jean-Raymond described Pyer Moss as an “art project that operates in the fashion space.” The brand, which he founded in 2013, embraces the power of fashion as a storytelling device, often weaving theater, activism and social commentary into its collections and runway shows.

Jean-Raymond’s 2018 project “American, Also,” was a three-part retelling of the American story, which included the history of Black cowboys, as well as the daily experiences of Black families. For the latter, artist Derrick Adams created 11 artworks that reflected Black life, which Jean-Raymond turned into garments shown at New York Fashion Week. Continue reading

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  1. Bravo💐Kerby Jean-Raymond!🤴🏽My hope is that he represents a new era of inclusion, not a token to appease the blatant lack of color within the world of Parisian Haute Couture. I think it is worthy of historical note to share that Patrick LeRoy Kelly was the 1st American Designer, of any color, to present as a registered Designer with the Chambre Syndicale du Prêt a Porte.

  2. Haitians as an ethnic group with its own culture, language, history, etc cannot be designated as Black American, no more can a Jamaican be designated as a Bahamian.

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