Stevie Edwards, vogue designer with neighborhood roots, dies at 58 | Night Digest

Vogue designer Stevie Edwards, recognised for his avant-garde womenswear and perform styling famous people like Diana Ross and Jody Watley, died earlier this week immediately after a battle with lung cancer. He was 58. 

A longtime Hyde Parker, Edwards was born in 1965 and grew up on the South Facet. He attended Dunbar Vocational Substantial Faculty in Bronzeville, exactly where he uncovered to tailor. This led him to pursue fashion design and style at the Ray-Vogue School of Layout, now the Illinois Institute of Art. 

It was in university wherever Edwards caught the eye of Eunice Johnson, an govt and the matriarch of Johnson Publishing Corporation, which created Ebony and Jet Magazines, and the founder of the Ebony Style Good demonstrate. In 1986, when Edwards was only 21 decades outdated, Johnson procured a number of of his leather night gowns for her globally style tour. His job shortly took off. 

That winter, just one of Edwards’ gown patterns was showcased in the February challenge of Ebony Magazine as aspect of a team of up-and-coming Black designers “making vogue history.” He made an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey exhibit in its inaugural year that calendar year.

After the present, Edwards began working as an assistant to noteworthy Chicago designers such as Barbara Bates, who designed many parts for Michael Jordan, and Reginald Thomas. 

The designer Edwards admired most was Chicago designer Keith Kendall, according to a 1999 Herald write-up, who mentored him. In the short article, Edwards described himself as a “true designer,” stating, “I sketch the layouts, minimize the patterns and sew them collectively, as opposed to employing someone else to do the genuine do the job.”

In 1996, Edwards opened Collections, a boutique clothing and shoe retailer in Hyde Park. Situated at 1360 E. 53rd Street, the shop carried his designs and the do the job of designers this sort of as Kenneth Cole and By using Spiga.

“I wished men and women not to have to go downtown,” he mentioned of opening the Hyde Park retail store. “They can appear into the group and experience an Oak Street vibe and purchase their Italian sneakers below.”

More than the next several a long time, he opened two Italian boutiques in Gold Coast and the West Loop. 

After nine several years in the community, Collections closed in 2005 adhering to the building’s buy by MAC Properties

In 2008, he launched his upscale women’s manufacturer and South Loop retail store “I Luv Stevie.” Dionne Williams, creator and founder of the “Emerge! Vogue Show” at New York Fashion Week, informed WBBM News Radio that Edwards experienced a reward for generating models that spoke to gals. “You can be assured in whichever style that you like. You can be daring. You can be comfortable. I believe his patterns actually variety of showcased that,” she said. 

Other celebrity dressings bundled Tiffany Hadish and Terisa Griffin. 

Edwards announced on social media in early July that he would be using a crack from vogue to target on his battle with Phase 3 lung most cancers. He received an outpouring of help — an online crowdfunding marketing campaign set up to aid go over health care prices introduced in much more than $7,000 in donations. 

Though going through therapy, Edwards died in Chicago on Sunday, August 13.

His loved ones has asked for donations to be produced in his honor to Northwestern University’s Robert H. Lurie Extensive Most cancers Centre.