black fashion by javii: interview with fashion designer nene l.a. shiro

October 2, 2012

I recently had the opportunity to interview 19 years old, Brooklyn native Nathaniel “Nene L.A. Shiro” White. Nene L.A. Shiro is a fashion designer who’s ability to mix and match colors are out of this decade. The colors, prints and patterns he uses are vivid, vibrant, and advanced. They take us to the future and the past while never leaving the present.
Nene L.A. Shiro’s only form of fashion education took place at the High school of Fashion Industries where he majored in fashion design. He said the school changed his life. Before entering high school he knew nothing of design or what it took to be a designer.
Shiro’s designs were recently published in the Aug/Sep issue of Culture magazine. He snagged a spot on Fox 5’s Good day New York to talk about a wedding dress he designed at the age of 18. He was also featured in Women’s Wear daily and the New York Beacon. Enjoy this exclusive interview with the man behind the name, Nene L.A. Shiro.

How would you describe your personal style?

If you don’t know me you’ll probably think my style is 80’s inspired (Because of my hair) but I gather little pieces of my personal style from everywhere. My style is somewhat relaxed with a bit of edginess, vintage and a “TAD” bit trendy. I’d throw on a pair of Harem drop crotch pants in a heart beat.

What was the first article of clothing you ever designed?
My first piece i ever designed was for a Brat doll lol. It was a one sleeved body con dress with a little fur throw that i made out of a pillow case for my High school admission portfolio.

Is there a message you try to get out with your designs?
My clothes aren’t so common lol, making things that the average person could wear is cool, but a huge part of me LOVES to make over the top, out of the ordinary pieces. If my clothing had a theme [or message], it would be to BE BOLD. My clothes are exotic and more so geared towards people who aren’t afraid to express who they are through their clothing.

What’s the worst outfit you’ve ever created?
Hmmm lol my worst outfit would have to be this HORRID two piece dress I tried to make for my first ever fashion show. It was navy blue with an ugly neon orange cutout and lime green holes in the back of the top to lace it up with a orange lace :'( haha, the top rose anytime the model walked and her whole bra was exposed lol i thought i was Poppin. 

What inspires most of your Designs now?
Most designers would say “nature” or “the beach” or something, but what inspires a lot of my designs is music. What i usually do is put on some Azealia Banks  and picture what kind of outfits i’d like to see coming down the runway with that song playing. 

What are some of your favorite and lease favorite fashion trends at the moment?
Favorite Trend: Leather Sleeves, Silver, Studs/ Spikes (i eat those for breakfast), platforms, bleach and dip dye.
Least favorite: obey/supreme hats, inverted crosses and plaid shirts tied around your waist lol.

Where do you think is fashion heading?
Right now I definitely think people are starting to pay more attention to fashion and trends and what’s “in”, which is good! BUT id love for people to take trends and make it their own and Incorporate who they are into their looks. Slowly but surely people are starting to become more accepting of others’ styles and dress more daring and carefree.

Where would you like to take it to?
I’d love to take fashion to where high fashion and couture is an every day thing. One day… one day…

Favorite designers?
I love , Mugler, Balmain, Gareth Pugh, jean-Paul Gaultier and of course Alexander McQueen! They all cross boundaries and are WAY outside of the box which i love!

You guys could always find Nene L.A. Shiro on:
Tumblr: nenelashiro
Facebook: Nene-LA-Shiro
Instagrams; @Nene_LA_Shiro & @nenelashiro_designs


Photos by NEEF FRESH NeefFreshPhotography