Featured Image by Jason Nocito
The New York Times just announced that Liberian-American designer Telfar Clemens is the official designer for the Liberia Olympic Team. Despite the 2020 branding, the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will start on July 23, 2021. All eyes will be on Liberia as they enter the Olympic Stadium draped in custom Telfar designs. Clemens told the NYT the Opening Ceremony will be, ““a show everyone gets to see.”
Those who aren’t privy to the fashion world might not know that Clemens has been the “it” designer for some time now. He was crowned King of Fashion Week in 2019 and his highly coveted handbags have given him a sorta cult following. But it’s not just his keen unisex designs and style that has propelled him. Telfar and his team often align the brand with meaningful projects that have a positive impact.
For example, Telfar recently designed uniforms for the American fast-food chain White Castle. Then the company offered limited-edition designs for sale. Proceeds went to the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Liberty and Justice Fund, which helps bailout minors from jail. ““White Castle supported us before our success and we consider them family,” Telfar creative director Babak Radboy told Vogue.
After Liberian Olympian Emmanuel Matadi reached out to Telfar, the start of a new meaningful partnership formed, the Times shared. The article also shouted out ’96 and 2000 Liberian Olympian Kouty Mawenh, who is Liberia’s Olympic attaché, for seeing the deal through. Matadi runs the 100m and 200m, and will be representing Liberia at Tokyo 2020 with his team members. The team will officially announce its members, after the last Olympic qualifier in early-July. Until then, the rest of the world will wait to see fashion, sports, and pride collide in Tokyo.