You’re recognized as a leader for your work using District of Clothing to help spread the message of equality. Can you tell us how your viral Trust Black Women shirt came to be, and what you hope will come from your brand in the future?
“I believe creatives have a critical and fundamental role to reflect the culture, time and truth in society. James Baldwin said it best: ‘The role of the artist is exactly the same as the role of the lover. If I love you, I have to make you conscious of the things you don’t see.’
“As a Black woman creative myself, this is part of my passion and purpose—to reflect the culture, time and truth in society via simple, innovative yet timeless work that helps make others more aware of things they may or may not see. To create work that encourages progression, inspires action and supports self-love. Moreover, it’s imperative that I, in some way, exist within all that I create.
“I believe that to Trust Black Women is to affirm that Black Lives Matter. I believe that to Trust Black Women is to trust our values, our voice, our voting behavior and our commitments. I believe Black girls and women deserve to be heard, to be seen, to have opportunity, respect and support, and to be protected. And I aspire to help spread this across as many districts as possible, so it was only natural to design the Trust Black Women hat—the first item in the collection—in 2018.
“My hope for District of Clothing is that she continues. I hope that my vision is too narrow and short for all that she’s capable of doing, but I certainly hope she continues to embrace, and be embraced by, the activist, creative, entrepreneur, and community dreamer, doer, and changemaker spirit blossoming throughout our nation. Selfishly, I’d love to see Michelle Obama, LeBron, Naomi and Serena in a District item!”
As a Black woman creative myself, this is part of my passion and purpose—to reflect the culture, time and truth in society via simple, innovative yet timeless work that helps make others more aware of things they may or may not see.
- Dionna Dorsey
This has been a trying year, to put it plainly. How have you been finding or seeking joy?
“This has indeed been an incredibly challenging year, but it’s also been a year full of miracles, new successes, surprises and transformation for me. Personally, it’s most important that I cling to my faith, trust the process as well as my partnerships, and do my best to continue. Because my joy is within, so as long as I take care of myself to remain centered and faithful, I am joy.
“This mindset allows me to do the externally joyful things like binge-watch shows, cook, organize, take long walks, work out, FaceTime loved ones and spend time with my fiancé and bonus boys. My partnerships, specifically my partnership with Printful, allows for business to continue—from manufacturing through fulfillment—with no logistical interruptions or worries.”
What advice do you have for others working to advocate for change in 2020?
“Allow your passion to meet your purpose. And then, once that happens, trust yourself and your ability to do the work, and give generously.”