The recycled BDK blazer is reconstructed by hand. I use contrasting thread so that it compliments the wonderful hand painted art on the back of the blazer by DEKA i.e. 7even Nations (Brian Paupaw). The reconstruction of the blazer represents the rebel approach to what I consider “Hip HOP” culture to really be. It was the rage against the beast that often held and holds the inner city community back. That beast being the government that dose not and has not embrace(d) the true struggles of the inner city communities. The recycled hoodie and dress are inspired by the vibrant colorful lyrics of DBK. True “HIP HOP” culture was about being witty and using what you have to make it all work for your self. It was about up lifting each other and raising the level of consciousness to those outside of the community. It was about being clever w/ metaphors and hot parole!!!! It was like an intellectual debate between respected rappers/ not talking about buddy and loaning some damn blood rocks for a piece of that ass. “Aint no half stepping!”
Carmen Webber, Sistahs of Harlem (SOH), has a strong love for music, visual arts, performing arts,
martial arts and dance. Her motto is to “Keep on keeping on”, her
Great Grandfather’s favorite saying, and “The Sky is the limit!” These
are words that her family has nourished her on since she can remember,
and they continue to ring in her ears today.
A native of Charlotte, N.C., Carmen traces her aesthetic roots
to Harlem, New York where her paternal grandmother lived, and also
where her maternal grandmother made frequent shopping trips to.
Thus, Carmen’s strong design reference and great sense of couture
fashion are linked specifically to not only Harlem, but New York City
as well. Coming from a long lineage of artists, Carmen has used this
familial talent to inspire her artistic visions and work. At age
sixteen, Carmen worked as a model in trunk shows for designers like:
Alexander Julian, DKNY and Anne Klein. Using her experience as a model
coupled with her artistic vision, Carmen continued to nurture this
interest and talent throughout high school and into college.
In 1989 she began her studies in Architecture at Savannah College of Art & Design (SCAD). Carmen completed a four year program in 1993, graduating Cum Laude with Honors, being named “Top Fashion Designer “ of her class, and earning her B.F.A. with a double-major in Fashion Design and Illustration. After graduation Carmen moved to Paris to further her studies and modeling career. Among her great experiences there included an internship for Christope LeMaire who studied under Christian La Croix and is now the head designer for Lacoste.
Carmen showcased her first ready-to-wear collection at the La Couple Jazz Club in Paris in 1996 and launched the Sistahs of Harlem clothing line with a friend in the summer of 2001, starting in humble street fairs selling handbags and deconstructed t-shirts. The success of the company has had a snowball effect on her career.