Trinidad and Tobago-born designer Joshua Joseph and his brand Rebels to Dons have been chosen to work with renowned shoe brand Clarks Original and American designer Ronnie Fieg who owns and established the Kith brand.
The Rebels to Dons owner was given the responsibility for creating a design with Clarks and bring a modern perspective to a brand that hold a tremendous weight among Caribbean people.
With this in mind, Joseph designed designed pieces that can be worn anywhere, any time and at any event.
The shoes are made from a natural tan nubuck leather – leather that has been sanded or buffed – and the features are that of the Clarks brand, from the crepe outsole to stitched upper detailing
Joseph said he wants buyers to know that the shoes are customisable as they come with two removable fringed straps, one in a matching tan nubuck and the other a nubuck brun. He said those trimmed straps can be swapped or layered together.
Joseph said his inspirations for the pieces came from the late 1970s and 80s, when a new wave of Caribbean immigrants imported their distinctive fashion into New York City’s street wear lexicon.
Honouring the two places that shaped him as a designer, he said, “I wanted the design to show how the city and the islands are connected through style.”
While speaking to Sunday Newsday on how he felt being able to work with a staple in fashion of the Caribbean, he said he was calm, but only because of his headstrong attitude and unwavering goals.
“The reaction was a natural smile, we truly understand where we stand and where we are going when it comes to bringing visions to life.”
Joseph said the idea for the design came during the discussions with Clarks Original but was positive that if that idea was discarded, another would follow almost immediately.
When asked what were the contributing factors to this career path, he said fashion wasn’t his first love.
He first started off as a DJ, but because of his creativity and curiosity he fell in love with the fashion industry. As a result, Rebels to Dons was born and established in 2014 as a way to keep inspiring himself – given the name of the company – and has worked tirelessly towards making opportunities like these a reality.
Rebels to Dons is now one of the leading menswear brands coming out of the Caribbean and the US for professional athletes, worldwide artists and young business owners.
Given his career shift from DJ to designer, he advises young and upcoming artists who may be facing the same uncertainty to, “Please be true to yourself and your craft. Be original.”
Joseph’s design can be bought on his Rebels to Dons website.
The physical launch will be held in SoHo boutique Blue in Green at Soho Beach House, Miami on July 30.
Anyone interested in updates on Joshua Joseph’s fashion journey can visit his Instagram page @joshuaj.joseph
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