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“A piece of art worn on the body of a walking canvas,” words from Ahniel Lee, designer of luxe streetwear brand, Povrich. I had the privilege to attend the brand’s debut fashion show titled “I Must Be Dreaming”. The collection embodied various symbolic references in today’s society and gave insight to the beginning of Povrich the brand. Ahniel expresses his understanding that everything happening at this moment for the brand and himself was at one point just a dream. Aside from the unique designs Ahneil displayed, the complete aura of the night was unreal. The strong presence of several different cultures throughout the show made for the perfect representation of his brand. After getting the opportunity to speak to the young designer, I wanted to take this chance to ask him more about his collection, style influences, his personal style and the outcome he foresees for Povirch.
Why did you choose fashion design as a career?
“Well I don’t feel like I chose this as a career, I feel that in a way I was chosen to be a fashion designer. From a child I’ve always been intrigued with fashion, dressing to the best I can, allowing my outfits to speak about me before I say a word and overall looking and feeling good. As a fashion designer and creative I feel like when I create it’s not considered as me working but as enjoying my time on a craft I love, I wake up every day without the pressure of “hating my job” but loving my talent and feeling god’s grace and blessed that I’ve made it and done the things I’ve accomplished.”
How do you describe your personal style?
“ I feel like my personal style is how I feel in that current moment. If I was to give a label to it, I would have to say street lux/hype beast. “High end streetwear” but there are times I dress laid back (Nike Tech fleece joggers Jordan1’s and I’m Gucci).”
Who is someone that influences your fashion?
“The mind of Virgil Abloh– the way he creates without fear and has a “beautiful mistake” type attitude which is directly parallel to my mantra “create without fear.”
The attitude of Kanye, he’s determined and the self-love he has for himself is admirable. He creates without fear and is firm in his creativity its bold and brave.
The mind of Jim Carrey, law of attraction plays a huge part in my life and the way I think. Jim Carrey is a beautiful soul with so much knowledge and I take inspiration from him in the sense of he’s his own being. He views the world through a different lens so its inspiring for me to study a person as such which in turn is like adding fuel to my creativity because my thoughts multiply and develop into firm thoughts which leads to creating without fear items that I personally admire regardless of 3rd party opinion.”
If you could what piece of advice would you give yourself when you first started out?
“Listen, create without fear, learn that the items you create, as long as you’re in love with them first– nothing else matters …don’t create because of what you think people want to see. Create because it’s what you feel. This is art; its beyond just clothing.”
Where do you see Povrich in the next 10 years?
“As one of the most successful and spoken about streetwear/lux brands, globally. Appearing in Forbes & Opening up, a Flagship store in Toronto and by that time I’d have captivated the audience of Hype beasts, 14-35 market that are for the culture and follow povrich as they would Supreme or Off-white.”
Any advice for anyone starting out in the fashion world
“Its corny but “just do it” one day we all die let this speak volumes to you there is no “impossible”. Chase your dreams and demand them within yourself to turn into reality… the tongue is a very powerful tool when its used to cast a blessing on your life and what you want for yourself. Keep the goal in mind and work towards it, each failure is a blessing of knowledge to not make that failure happen again, learn to tailor your mindset to positivity and do your best. Once you start your craft it’ll start progressing like a domino effect and you’ll fall more and more in love with it – that’s what it takes! Create without fear (for creatives) and in general one day we die so don’t be 65 wishing you tried.
I am excited to see what is next up for Povirch. It was so inspiring to be able to witness Ahneils thoughts/dreams/goals come to life. To me, it’s further proof that you can do things your way without having to go down the same road as others. In the words of the designer himself “Create without fear.”