Today’s dose of the truth comes from fashion icon, B. Michael. B. is an artist, designer and the Co-Founder of b. michael AMERICA. B. has dressed the likes of Cicely Tyson, Beyonce, Venus and Serena Williams, Cate Blanchett and the late-great, Whitney Houston.
B. talks to us about his journey to the truth. He shares with us his experience with fully embracing who he is, both professionally and personally, and how living an authentic life, marked with artistic excellence, has created a life filled with loving relationships, professional successes and set him on a path to becoming timeless
Dr. Seku Gather
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[6:24] Professional Truth - B. always knew that he wanted to be a designer, says he was born with the blessing and jokes that he was really was born with the curse. He had a brief stint working on Wall Street but, as he says, it’s great to know what it is you’re meant to be. He knew very quickly Wall Street wasn’t for him and, after taking a leave of absence, he started designing as a Milliner for the hit show, Dynasty. As soon as he stepped into the truth, all of these great opportunities started opening up for him. Cut to years later, after a successful Fashion Week presentation, his partner noticed that he didn’t have his usual spark. That conversation led to an exploration that resulted in B. coming to the realization that he there were a number of designers with his skin hue who, when they passed away, took their legacies with him. B. wanted to be different, he wanted to be timelines. He set out on a course to create a legacy and a brand that lives beyond him.
[12:40] Personal Truth - B. is an openly gay man and in a relationship with his longtime partner, Mark-Anthony. He was previously married to the mother of his two daughters and feels very fortunate that he can be very clear and open about his personal truth. He got married very young and says the time they spent together was great, they had a lot of fun. However, as they grew up, they realized that they should have remained friends. They amicably separated, remained friends and co-parented their daughters. Much like with his work, B. has always been who he is, he just had to realize it. He talks to us about his process of reconciling with his faith and religion, and taking the courageous step to live an authentic life.
[17:03] Becoming Timeless: B. once said in an interview that he wants his pieces to be timeless, that intrigued me and I ask him how one becomes timeless in business? He says it’s important to have a business model that’s proven and sustainable, and that you have to be willing to continuously reinvent and then reinvent again until your formula is refined. B. says the timeless businesses understand the need to continually evolve.
[20:05] Relationships Versus Friendships: I ask B about his approach to relationships and how he curates and maintains a bond with those close to him?. He that says he’s learned that relationships are with the people who are there for you always, the people that are there for the everyday: the rain days, the high days and the low days. Friendships, he says is a term that’s used very loosely these days, they are with the people that you have dinner with, could also be with those that you do business with.
[25:43] Yes or BS
The best quality clothes are US made?
New York is the fashion capital of the world?
B. Michael prefers designing couture?
DeBlasio should run for president?
Mens’ clothes are easier to design?
The Oscars are no longer so white?
B. Michael and Michael B. Jordan are the same person on Google?
A clothing designer has a similar approach as a film director?
Race is less important than talent?