Updated: Jan 1
T. Lavender heads to New York to talk to Fashion Designer Steez Premium!
T.Lavender: Yo! Steez! What is good family? I just saw your new exclusive drops online. The gear is fire! Thank you for sitting down with us today. We appreciate the love man. Let’s chop it up! T.Lavender: You’ve been doing your thing for years. Take us to the beginning. Tell us how your brand “The Section NY” came about, how you got started & what made you create something so different for the culture?
Steez Premium: Yeah, man . . It has been YEARS! The idea to create came about at the age of 15. I was apart of a collective at the time, and I noticed that they didn’t have the exact vision I was looking to produce to the world. That’s why I used my style to create timeless pieces through The Section. My style isn’t like every ones, I like simple yet stylist items. Things that the most fashionable would wear & also the person who just doesn’t care. That’s was my main goal when it came to “The Section NY”.
T.Lavender: Where did you originate from? Where were you born & raised
Steez Premium: I'm from Bed-stuy do or die (laughs) Brooklyn, New York City to be exact though.
T.Lavender: What is the meaning behind the name “The Section”? Steez Premium; I didn’t want the brand to be in a box. Times change, and pretty fast. I didn’t want to have a name that didn’t reflect where the brand is now, and where the brand will be in the future. So “The Section” to me was pretty vague. I am able to have any type of “Section”. One day I’ll have the Steez section. Next day the “Premium Section”. But all in all it’s still apart of “The Section NY”.
T.Lavender: Who is Steez Premium? How does that name define you? Steez Premium: Steez Premium is multitude of things. Steez means “Style With Ease”. It pretty much sums up me and my creative mind mixed with my chilled Charming demeanor ( laughs). Premium was actually something I adapted through an event planning collective I was associated with. It just had a nice ring to it together. Everything premium. Everything big, lavish, and clean.
T.Lavender: What fashion icons inspired you to become a designer? Steez Premium: It wasn’t a fashion icon in particular, but a style. I was dirt poor living in poverty with my single mother. We couldn’t afford the NYC streetstyle. Jordan’s, timbs, and uptown’s which are Air Force 1’s all ran the New York fashion culture back in the 90s. All those things were expensive as hell. So in search of my own style, I fell in love with skate board culture at a young age. Because it was more affordable. I used to sit on MySpace and look at the skater kids with the dope vans, supreme, and Nike SBs. I used to get vans from Urban for $20 a pop. So When I started to see where most of those people where from it was California. So I would say LA culture, Poverty, and working with what I had, mixed with NY natural drip, inspired me to design.
T.Lavender: How has your experience been in the game being black & apart of the lgbtq community? Were there obstacles you had to overcome? Tell us about your struggles & your accomplishments during this process.
Steez Premium: Honestly my experience has been a long ride, but worth it. The LGBTQ community isn’t as supportive as they make it out to seem. I was ambitious at a young age. I had that drive that people around me who were older didn’t have. I feel like honestly if I didn’t associate so closely with the community at a time I could’ve been further in life. I feel like people held me back in fear of who or what I could he. Me being so Naive and young I felt I was gullible and oblivious to a lot of things I should’ve seen. But to this day I still am who I was meant to be, and the people who tried to slow me down, aren’t a factor in this race of mine. Being black just adds a target on your back that I under stood at a young age. So I don’t think it held me back, but helped me be a strong independent individual. Because there’s no hand outs in this life time for us as Black people. Only hard work and hustle. My accomplishments run deep. I make my peers proud, my mother is beyond proud of me, and I’m making a change with this fashion shit because of my style. So I feel pretty great.
T.Lavender:. Ok you know we have to ask. Are you taken or do you belong to streets fam? Lol we gotta know. Steez Premium: (laughs) I’m not for the streets. I would say I’m an acquired taste, and I’m not for the weak. (Laugh) but yeah I’m single, and focused. Not looking for anything that may try to distract that.
T.Lavender: I see a lot of celebs rocking the brand. Which celebrity had you juiced the most to wear your brand? Steez Premium: To this day my favorite celebrities are Teyana Taylor and Iman Shumpert.
T.Lavender: New York is a tough place, but the best place for fashion. Would you live anywhere else or is home where it is for you? Steez Premium: I would live everywhere else, I love my city it’s what made me who I am. But it’s so much opportunities in other states. I’d be a fool to stay here forever and not seek those opportunities.
T.Lavender: Is there anybody in the fashion industry you would like to collab with one day? Steez Premium: Besides other dope underground brands who have it together. I would like to work with Pyer Moss. Another brand by a person of black culture, and New York native. I think he embodies the look I’d wish to achieve when more established.
T.Lavender: What advice do you have for the youth in the LGBTQ community who want to break into the fashion industry?
Steez Premium: Stay in your lane and go for it. Be yourself at all time and do what’s really in your heart regardless of what someone else may think. They’ll come around eventually. But stay true to you and do all the research before spending thousands. Spending money you don’t have will keep you discouraged, especially if you haven’t built an audience.
T.Lavender: What’s up next for you & The Section NY? Thanks so much for speaking with us. Before you go, let everybody know your social media, website, etc. Steez Premium: The brand is releasing our first drop of the Fall right now, as you know. We’ll be doing pop up shops across the states. All those dates are TBD. As for me, just continuing to build on the brand, expanding is currently in place. I have a ton of planning to do for my Traveling Artist event “Art Of All Forms”. Besides work I’ll be working on bettering myself, hitting some personal goals, on top of my own traveling for some good ol fashion me time. But I want to thank you for having me. I honestly appreciate your consideration. For all those who may be wondering where they can find me, or the brand. On Instagram you can find me @SteezPremium. You can find the clothing brand on Instagram & Twitter @TheSectionNY or on our website www.TheSectionNY.com. Those who are into the Arts can follow @ArtOfAllForms_ Please subscribe to our mailing list on the website for updates on new products, and promotions! Thank you all in advance!