One of fashion's finest, and a true freedom-fighter, Marvin Williams is secretly setting the tone for the fashion industry, one-repressed-fashion-victim-at-a-time...
Having known Williams for quite some time, now, I just knew I had to share his story with all of you... so, here it is... rough, rugged and RAW... just the way that he would like it ;-P
1) Hello, HELLO! What’s up, Mr. Williams?
Hey, what’s up Avon!! It’s good to finally reconnect with you about life and fashion.
2) Okay, so, as unfashionable as it may seem (LOL), a lot of people don’t know that you and I first got acquainted in the world of banking and mortgages… How would you explain your career path, from then to now?
(LOL) True! Wow, that was around eight or nine years ago… it’s been a total 360; we both knew working at the bank was a means to an end (while finishing our degrees in college). Since then, I moved to Los Angeles [California], working -first- in graphic design and pursuing fashion. I remember trying all mediums (graphic design, fashion, painting and web design- which drove me crazy), and realizing it wasn’t fascinating to focus my attention on just one aspect of art, it was combining them as mixed-medium, that I loved the most. Fashion -and design- was always at the forefront of my mind, however, I never knew what [area] of fashion I would [be] in. I first started my career in the footwear industry, designing shoes for brands such as Christian Audigier, Ed Hardy, Nine West, Philip Simon, the U.S. Army and most recently, Reebok. It was in 2008, when I began to think about ways to create my own brand; I started conceptualizing and everything began to materialize in 2010, [after which] I started my own clothing and lifestyle brand, Meat Packing District.
3) When did you first realize that fashion was “it” for you, as a profession?
I always knew I wanted to be an artist or designer, from childhood (and school confirmed it), but I didn’t know where I would fit, in the fashion industry. I realized fashion was my passion, once I moved to LA and worked in the graphic design industry, however, I wanted something more. I wanted to create tactile items instead of editing and working on layouts for fashion editorials; I wanted to create the clothing worn in the spread. Clothing and footwear design wasn’t just something that I dove straight into; I had a vision and faith. With faith, anything can happen, it’s just finding the right path, working passionately and trusting -in God- that it will lead you where you aspire to be.
4) There are sooo many areas to explore, within the fashion industry… Why is ‘design’ the right choice for you?
Designing makes me feel complete; it’s a profession I would do if I wasn’t making money. With design, I have a voice (and like a poet to paper), it creates and tells a definitive story.
5) For your clothing label, Meat Packing District, who came up with that name and idea, and what is it all about?
It was on a flight (back, from a business trip to Japan), [where] I began to envision an expanded fashion line, inspired by the creativity of cyber-punk, futuristic, Japanese style. I contemplated opportunities to blend this style and create something new; I always want to push the envelope and create something [that] people [will either] love or hate [while staying] as far away from [being] indifferent. I chose to counterbalance extreme science-fiction with grounded, gritty industrialism [that’s] indicative of [some] classic, American cities. This juxtaposition led to the name, Meat Packing District, which alludes to New York City’s Meat Packing District; a stark transition from [a] hard-working, [industrial area], to one of [NYC’s] most fashionable neighborhoods. I aspire for [the label] to be known as ‘raw luxury,’ and ‘post-apocalyptic,’ [a] concept [that] embodies the dichotomy of a dystopian reality and freedom; individuality and ultimately, change, are the resounding values emanating from the line.
6) Where do you see yourself, in the future?
Alongside developing next year’s collection, we are currently working on the charitable aspect of Meat Packing District, LLC, with a campaign called “Feed the Need,” [which] focuses on donating funds, as well as support [to combat] social epidemics that affect our community (such as AIDS/HIV awareness and prevention, cancer, poverty and health). Another important part of “Feed the Need,” will be to ensure [that] the next generation is able to enjoy the Arts, and live healthy, long lives. I aim to create a name [for myself] within the fashion industry, while building a lifestyle brand that also gives back to the community; I couldn’t do all this by myself, I have an excellent team who helps me -daily- and believes in the brand.
***For more information on Marvin Williams and the Meat Packing District, LLC, please visit his website, at: www.meatpackingdist.com.