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FYI is getting back to the basics by interviewing some of the most talented up and coming designers, models, and other industry professionals. I get excited about entrepreneur interviews because this is what this blog was founded upon, due to well-known publications and other blogs not giving the new comers a chance to share their stories.

We got a chance to catch up with Jamar Copes aka Flaw, designer, and owner of the clothing line Ekwede. The brand gives you an urban feel with headbands and hoodies but with a classy twist with over coats and blazers. I encourage you to keep reading and get familiar with this brand and his name because I can definitely see longevity in the fashion game for him!

Ekwede is such a unique name, where does it stem from?

Ekwede is the phonetic spelling of the word “equity”. Before starting my line, one of my mentors suggested I name my line after something that meant a lot to me that will also inspire those around me. After watching a FUBU documentary, I chose the word equity because most minorities don’t know what equity is and using the phonetic spelling raises questions about my brand as well as sparks the conversation on ownership and value. Through fashion I’m helping mold generations before and after me while making a fashion statement!

With the every fashion related field being oversaturated, what makes you stand out from other up and coming designers?
That’s a great question. I stand out first and foremost because I wasn’t born to fit in. Personally, I feel that I am designing my clothes straight from my heart and not for a get rich quick plan. Also, I feel that my clothes are eccentric and out there; they captivate you in its boldness. I don’t play it safe with “less is more”. More is more!

I know that you are also a music artist, how do you implement that into your clothing line?
I feel that they are two different entities. I try to keep them separate as much as possible minus promoting my clothing line in my music videos. I don’t want people to dislike my clothing and in return dislike my music. Or dislike my music and feel they can’t support my line. Hence, the separation.

What other designers, brands, or people have influenced to your pursue starting your own clothing line and why?
Dapper Dan was a heavy influence because everything was always bold and custom. Pierre Cardin’s prints are unbelievably amazing as well as the fabrics he would choose. Lastly, I will say myself. Growing up I didn’t have much availability, as far as clothing goes, that made the statements I wanted. So I started making my own clothes from what I had, taking pieces here and there to create what I really wanted to stand out.

Other than social media, what other ways are you getting the brand’s name out there?
Hey, I’m old school! I still believe in word of mouth. I made a promise to myself near the end of 2017 that I would wear at least one thing from my line anytime I leave the house. Now I only wear my brand from head to toe anywhere I go. People will walk up to and try to buy what I’m wearing, off of me sometimes, I might add! But I wouldn’t say in this day and age one is more successful than the other. They both go hand in hand to make a brand great.

Where do you see Ekwede in the next five years?
Wherever God decides to take me. Simple. 

How dope is this clothing line?! Just know that I'm gearing up to get that yellow over coat! Be sure to follow his Instagram pages for updates and orders @ekwede_byflaw @TheFlawEra! 

Check out more pics below!  

Photos by V Way Photography 

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  1. Yes Jamar! Your brand is an awesome contribution to fashion, not just through your advanced understanding of color, but from the spirit from which you create.

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