Every designer deserves some love, but lately we’ve all noticed the (much needed) push to uplift marginalized makers. Not all black designers receive the support that their talents deserve, but black designers have been serving incredible looks from the beginning. It is becoming quite prevalent that black designers have not been getting the recognition that they deserve in an industry that often overlooks their greatness. Below, I’ve curated a list of the top 5 ways that you can show your support for black designers, starting right now. These steps are simple and effective.
First and Foremost: Get informed and Support the Cause
Learn about the history of black businesses, then share the information that you come across to inform others. (@blmakersmatter on Instagram has been sharing marginalized makers and fashion history non-stop and we’re loving it!) Actively seek out black designers and share their work in any way that you can, increasing their visibility on the internet. The more attention their work receives, the greater the opportunity for them to prosper. Seek out causes that are rooted in change and progress for black designers. Sign petitions and donate to their causes when possible. Even if you can’t donate, share these movements to spread awareness and attract traffic and attention. Below are some specific ways that you can show your support for black designers.
1. If you can, highlight marginalized designers in your posts.
If you have a blog or social account, make content that showcases the black talent that you follow and find. By highlighting these brands on your social media, you are creating a tighter community and lifting those who deserve to shine. Reach out to these designers to ask how you can help. Perhaps they have a cause they’re raising funds for, and you can spread the word. We’re stronger together.
2. Interact with their Socials and Blogs
By engaging with black designers on their social accounts and blogs, you are sharing the love (and creating more of it). Share their Instagram account to help alter the algorithm. The more that you interact with black designers, the more often you will be suggested similar content. Instagram will then show more content like the pages you interact with. Like, comment and save their designs and ideas to emphasize that this is the content you enjoy and want to see more of. This will help their content to be seen more frequently in your feed!
3. Pin the pages of black designers.
Pin items from designers’ portfolios or Instagram accounts. The extra effort to click on the designer’s profile instead of pinning the articles that highlight these designers will bring traffic to them specifically instead of the publication that is reporting about them. Pinning images will drive traffic, so if you’ve found a designer that you love, pin their work to spread it.
4. Subscribe to email lists and turn on notifications.
Subscribe to email lists to hear from that brand or person more directly and intimately. It’s a way for designers to connect directly with their audience and to reveal their newest designs and promotions. Remember to pin and share any special projects that black designers send through their email newsletter, to help bring in traffic. Another way to stay informed is to turn on post notifications for tweets, posts, uploads, etc. to be notified when black designers that you follow add new content. Comment, like, pin, save and pass it along in any way that you can to spread and attract traffic and awareness.
5. Utilize their links.
When you find black designers that you love, don’t forget to browse and use their affiliate links. Brands monitor the traffic of the user with these tracked links, and high clicks increase their chances of working with that brand or other brands in the future. More importantly, affiliate links are how the brand commissions the person that they’re working with. By clicking their links or swiping up, you’re helping them to receive payment.
Supporting black designers means more than just purchasing their items. There is much more to be done to shine a light on these incredible, but marginalized communities. Do your research to find the talent and then help them to be successful by sharing and engaging with their pages in any way that you can. Black designers are dependent on support and positivity — they’re already doing their part by creating incredible designs, so help them thrive by lifting their designs and ideas.
Leave a comment with some of your favorite black designers below; share your tips for supporting black designers, too!