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Cris Tameu

16th May 2021

Fashion Design BA student Cris Tameu is passionate about the fight against racism and social injustice, a personal subject to him as a young black man. He has taken the Black Lives Matter movement as an inspiration, to lift people with a message of positivity. His final major collection ‘Black is Bright’ pays tribute to the activists who have fought before, with a deep respect for the people who continue to dedicate their lives to the cause. Black socialism, activism and self defence against police brutality are the cornerstones for the movement, which Cris explores through his own personal thoughts and vision for this collection. 

Image of a fashion student's work

Cris has a strong work ethic, believing that positive energy and belief in yourself will result in positive outcomes in return. “You attract what you reflect”, he said. One of his key words is ‘awareness’ – “it’s important to be aware of what is going on around you, around the world, in order to be part of the solution”, he added. He uses his experiences in life and as a designer to grow and move forward, with a goal to build something which people can talk about and use to reflect about the BLM movement today. 

His final collection ‘Black is Bright’ combines menswear tailoring with utility and military garments inspired by the uniforms of the Black Panthers to create striking silhouettes. The key colours for the collection are black and the various shades of black, in mid and lightweight cotton fabrications. Cris understands the importance of the journey behind designing a collection, showcasing the depth of what this project is about through his use of hand drawing and CAD skills. 

Cris has designed a follow-on collection named ‘The Black Gatsby’ inspired by ‘The Great Gatsby’ by F. Scott Fitzgerald. He has explored this concept through the eyes of a young black man who has established himself into the upper class. His muse is somebody who has always been seen as an outsider from society, battling against cultural standards and prejudices. With a focus on 1920s tailoring, this high end spring / summer collection encompasses both formal and casualwear of the time, interpreting iconic garments through the lens of ‘Afrofuturism’ with vibrant colours and a combination of lightweight cottons and African wax cloth. 

Each of these collections are a deeply personal exploration of culture and what that means to Cris, with a lasting feeling of a bright future ahead. Cris said: “There are lots that we can talk about, for me personally as a designer of the future it’s about leaving a message. I see fashion as a way to communicate your persona to the people.” The vision he is putting across is certainly one of positive change. 


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