The Recipients of the prestigious KARIB NATION, Inc. 2014 “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE – FASHION INNOVATION” are, CARMICHAEL BYFIELD/House of Byfield, Netherlands/Jamaica, ERICA APPLEBY/ETA Luxe, ANTHEA BULLARD, Hardour Collection, Nassau, Bahamas, JEWEL SHANNON, New York/Barbados, THEODORE ELYETT, Nassau, Bahamas, KRISTIN FRAZER, British Virgin Islands, APRYL BURROWS, Nassau, Bahamas, SHAUN GRIFFITH-PEREZ, Trinidad & Tobago, ASHLEY MARTIN, Kingston, Jamaica, SHARLEEN JERNEL LAGON, St. Lucia. and HELMER JOSEPH, Haiti/Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Another category has been added this year and awarded to the two Top Models for Exceptional work and dedication to the Caribbean fashion industry. – “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE IN RUNWAY & PRINT MODELING“
Awards will be presented at the 5th Annual CARIBBEAN STYLE & CULTURE FASHION SHOWCASE, in celebration of CARIBBEAN AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH, on Friday June 27/2014 @The Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742.
HOUSE OF BYFIELD
Carmichael Byfield born October 18, 1975 is an innovative designer from Jamaica with tremendous potential. After having lived in New York he moved to the Netherlands in 2008. That’s where his passion for designing men’s clothes returned. At an early age Carmichael got inspired by designers such as Vivienne Westwood by ones like Donna Karen, Nicole Miller, David Paulus, Ted Lapidus, Versace and Franco Moschino who in 1994 produced flower-printed menswear what really gave him more inspiration to follow their footsteps. After taking part in designers training in Jamaica and New York, his designer’s hands started itching again when he arrived in the Netherlands. There he spent most of his time (Drawing, Creating Images And Combining Fabrics) which eventually led him to enroll into a Fashion School.
In 2011 Carmichael started designing for (The House of Byfield). The House of Byfield’s designs can be described as discreet and elegant wear with an eye for detail and a sportive touch. Carmichael mostly works with light fabrics in asymmetrical layers, so it falls beautifully and natural on the body. His ‘daywear suits’ are for men who dare to dress well and still aren’t afraid to use color.
(CARMICHAEL BYFIELD will be awarded the Caribbean Style & Culture 2014 – “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE – FASHION INNOVATION“)
With an eye for detail, ANTHEA BULLARD is a designer that highly values textile embroidery, stunning print work, and beautifully crafted designs. Made to compliment the body, Hardour Collection is constructed to depict movement. She is not afraid to take risks, as each garment is seen as a work of art to be perfected. Every particular item that Hardour creates is a one of a kind design that is singular, unique, and individual.
The designer has created her series of works to suit the particular tastes of social lights, celebrities, politicians, first ladies, top models, divas, super stars, and members of the royal families. For these fashion forward individuals whose needs are always that they should stand out from the crowd and make a statement that will last, Anthea’s Hardour Collection asks the question, “Whats in your closet?”
Anthea hails from the beautiful islands of the Bahamas. She left her native Grand Bahama to study fashion design in Los Angeles, California in 2004. In 2008, she gained high recognition in a student fashion competition in Los Angeles among nearly 200 other great designers from all over the world, including, USA, Japan, Africa, China and Sweden. In 2007, Anthea founded her clothing line Hardour Collection which is an array of high end fashion for both men and women.
The collection consists of one of a kind, ready to wear and haute couture garments inspired by fashionistas, celebrities, politicians and socialites. The line pays extreme attention to detail and craftsmanship, as well as making use of couture fabrics from all over the world. Hardour Collection began with a flagship boutique in Freeport,Bahamas but has now began global expansion. The company has shifted gears and is now tapping in the Miami fashion scene.
We chose Miami as our first international market because it boasts the elite and luxurious lifestyle which Hardour has built itself on. Miami is home to Miami Beach, which is now a fashion hub for entertainers and entrepreneurs alike, “so we know the line can be appreciated here.” But the brand’s expansion does not stop there, all focus has been put on its online presence. The Hardour website complete with e-boutique, where consumers can purchase all Hardour garments online and have them shipped globally is online and fully operational. Personal design consultation can also be arranged via the website.
(Ms. BULLARD will be awarded the Caribbean Style & Culture 2014 – “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE – FASHION INNOVATION”)
Theodore Elyett is a rising star in the regional fashion circuit. Recently presented with the ’40 Under Forty Award,’ by The Bahamas Ministry of Youth Sports & Culture and Jones Communications Network, the 29-year-old fashion designer is considered a trailblazer in Caribbean fashion. Elyett became a Bahamian ambassador for the arts when he emerged as a fan favorite and the winner of Mission Catwalk Season 3. His skill placed him a stitch above the rest, beating out 15 designers from around the region for the coveted title of the popular design competition. Elyett introduced a new generation of Bahamian fashion to the European market when he showcased his eponymous label at London Fashion Week February 2014. Also included in his Mission Catwalk prize package is a scholarship to the prestigious University of the Arts London – London College of Arts and a retail contract with a chain of boutiques in Jamaica. Elyett has been a mainstay in The Bahamian fashion industry for more than a decade. His fashion portfolio dates back to 1998 when he emerged as a 13 year old award winning designer. Since then, he has built a portfolio in Nassau, the Caribbean, South America, North America, Africa and Asia. In 2012 he was named The Bahamas’ Designer of the Year by leading Bahamian online fashion publication Stylezine. His designs have been featured on the covers and inside pages of every local fashion publication including Profiles98 Magazine, Nu Woman Magazine and CaMari Magazine. Elyett also captured international attention when featured in VOGUE ITALIA’s The Black Blog and ESSENCE MAGAZINE BLOG. He’s the champion of the Runway to Fashion Week Designer Competition, the recipient of the Harl TaylorBAG 2010 Scholarship, an award winning gown and costume designer for Miss Bahamas Universe and the 2005 recipient of The Bahamas Ministry of Youth’s JA – Recognition of Excellence for outstanding achievement in Fashion Design and Entrepreneurial Skills. (Mr. ELYETT will be awarded the Caribbean Style & Culture 2014 – “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE – FASHION INNOVATION”)
KRISTIN FRAZER born and raised on the beautiful island of Tortola, British Virgin Islands, Kristin is the third generation in a family of women whose keen eyes for color and purity of fashion design have always been coupled with a direct sense of fashion-forward style.
During internship with two major companies – Carolina Herrera and BCBG Max Azria in 2006, she was inspired to design her own collection. The thought about one day owning and operating her own design studio evolved from a sweet daydream to a very real and distinct sense of destiny. Kristin’s love for travelling and exploring new places has carried her to other countries including the Caribbean, USA, England and Europe where she has discovered the exciting, entertaining and inspiring beauty of other cultures.
Kristin has been featured in many local, regional and international magazines such as The Welcome, POSH Magazine, e-Women Magazine, SHE Caribbean Magazine, Essence, Ebony & Marie Claire. She has a drive for successes, yet humble as she continues towards her goal to have an internationally acclaimed brand that is sold throughout the Caribbean, US and Europe.
Trèfle Designs was established in the summer of 2008 with the futuristic vision of a highly recognized clothing brand that would be appealing to women, men and children both nationally and internationally. Its vision is to produce simple and timeless designs that are defined through the rich products of colors and textures in fabrics, and the closeness and detailed construction of the silhouette of each style and fit. Trefle strives to give customers total satisfaction through quality and comfort of its products.
Trèfle now focuses on luxury swimwear and resort-wear for women and children, and is steadily evolving as a brand of class.
From the successful launch and first runway show in 2008, Trèfle has been present in shows locally, regionally and internationally. Trèfle has graced the same catwalk as recognized designers such as Korto Momolu, Kevin Hall, Indashio, Laquan Smith, Anya Ayoung-Chee among others. Supermodels including Sessilee Lopez, Bobby Roache, Tara Gill and Sandhurst Miggins have all worn a Trèfle piece in either swimwear or resort wear and celebrities like Anna Maria Horsford, Selita Ebanks, Hector Lincoln and other credited industry elites all gives full support to this newly established brand.
(Ms. FRAZER will be awarded the Caribbean Style & Culture 2014 – “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE – FASHION INNOVATION”)
SHAUN GRIFFITH – PEREZ draws his inspiration from the archipelago of sister islands washed by warm waters of the Caribbean seas. Islands like his native Trinidad and Tobago have had a checkered and colorful history that has resulted in their rich multicultural heritage. It is from that crucible and his journey as an artist from which Shaun draws inspiration for his collections.
The humble beginnings, at a small village fashion school in Arouca, Trinidad, fanned the fires of his passion for fashion. His rise from obscurity to recognition and prominence has been a long and often painful one. Through it all, he recognizes that the journey has been one to humble him, test him and to reveal what is in his heart.
Today Shaun has been hailed as one of the most exciting designers in Trinidad and by extension the Caribbean. Since winning the Emerge Award for Up and Coming Designer in 2006 his collections have been gracing Caribbean fashion runways.
In 2007, 2009, and 2010 his collections were featured in both Trinidad and Tobago (FWTT), Tobago Fashion Week (TFW) and Caribbean Fashion Week. He was invited to attend Islands of the World Fashion Week in the Bahamas in 2009. In addition, Shaun has presented collections in St Vincent , Grenada, Barbados, Antigua and Bermuda. Shaun’s love of the Caribbean, its seas, its sun, its landscape and the plethora of cultural influences that informs his philosophy of design. Shaun embraces it all and as David Rudder declares …the journey now start…..
(Mr. Griffith-Perez will be awarded the Caribbean Style & Culture 2014 – “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE – FASHION INNOVATION“)
Often described as “young, beautiful and talented”, Jamaican born Audrey Martin, AKA, Ashley Martin is that and more. The award-winning in-demand fashion designer is better known in some circles as an awesome performer with the ability to take a well-known contemporary aria and make it her very own. She has earned herself rave reviews as a top billing singer and a cabaret performer.
She later emerged as one of Jamaica’s leading fashion designers, copping an award for having designed what is arguably the world’s first glass dress, in 2011. This speaks to her creativity and ability to eschew the ordinary in search of finding, fulfilling and giving flight to her creative genius.
Ms. Martin started her clothing line in 2011, “Attitude by Ashley Martin’’. Attitude has taken center stage at the Caribbean Fashion Week in Jamaica for three years running (2011-2014). Ashley’s designs have appeared in US, European and the Caribbean media. Ms. Martin’s work is building an avid fan base, and has drawn the attention of American actresses Vivica Fox and Kenya Moore.
Martins’ work has been showcased on the Tyra Banks show, “Americas Next Top Model. Ashley’s designs were incorporated in the 2012 season finale. Additionally, Ms. Martin’s designs also appeared extensively on “Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model”, and Ashley’s’ creations were exclusively incorporated in the shows 2013 finale.
Ms. Martins work has been featured in several magazines and music videos. Ashley’s gowns have been worn by numerous Miss Universe competitors in 2013; Ms. Martin provided the ensembles for more than half of the contestants in the Miss Jamaica World Pageant. Ms. Martins works has also been featured on the cover of Buzzz Caribbean and the Beauty Book.
(Ms. MARTIN will be awarded the Caribbean Style & Culture 2014 – “AWARD OF EXCELLENCE – FASHION INNOVATION”)
SHARLEEN JERNEL LAGON
Jaeylu is Sharleen Lagon – a vibrant thirty year old who found her passion for fashion at the tender age of 16. The dream was sparked when her friends laid eyes on her first work of art – a design for her very own prom dress. Despite not being able to stitch, Sharleen became busy sketching designs for others. Her journey continued in 2004 with three consecutive entries in the annual Cinnamon Production Amateur Designer Competition, placing in the top three each time. Although never gaining first place, her appetite for fashion design was sharpened, driving her to enroll in the Barbados Community College, completing an Associate’s Degree in Fashion Design in 2009. Her final school project became Jaeylu’s first collection – “L’ Enchantment” – bridal pieces with madras trimmings. This first flirtation with drawing inspiration from St. Lucia’s rich French Creole heritage would soon become her signature, garnering acclaim from a wide range of critics.
A tailor by trade and training, Helmer Joseph is a demanding perfectionist who left Montreal for Paris shortly after completing his studies at Lasalle College. An outstanding technician and plastician, Helmer practiced his art for the benefit of some of the greatest names in fashion and the performing arts in France, Italy, Japan and Spain. Concurrently he worked on his own creations and completed his training in knits, embroidery, art and textile design. An alchemist of volumes, Helmer creates fashions free of superfluity, minimalism and fluff. His constant quest for perfection and refinement eventually led him back to Montreal, where he could more effectively devote himself to his art. He put his 20 years of European know-how at the service of Philippe Dubuc and teaching. He also crafted costumes for the stage and wedding dresses reflecting a daring blend of techniques, styles and materials. Some of his limited-edition creations are available in the great fashion capitals. Helmer…exclusively for the elegant!
In recognition and celebration of the outstanding achievements in Runway and print modeling within the Caribbean Fashion Industry. The 2014 winners: SOOWAN BRAMBLE / Trinidad & Tobago and NIKETA BARKER /Guyana
SOOWAN BRAMBLE – Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago
Niketa Barker at 23 years old is two years away from acquiring her Degree in Medicine & Surgery (MBBS) from the University of Guyana however, this regal beauty is not all about the books in fact she is one of Guyana’s elite models in runway, commercial and print. Originating from the small town of New Amsterdam, Berbice, Niketa has made quite a name for herself in the fashion industry both locally and internationally.
It all begun just four years ago after moving to the capital city Georgetown to pursue a career in medicine which was when she was discovered by internationally renowned fashion designer Sonia Noel and subsequently made her runway debut on the stage of Guyana Fashion Weekend 2010. It was on that very runway that she was scouted by yet internationally well-known fashion designer Deron Attz to model his fashion line in an exclusive photo-shoot for popular Caribbean magazine ‘Profile’s 98 (Spring Issue 2011)’, little did Niketa know at the time that was just the beginning of a very successful modeling career.
From there it was all “up-hill” for Niketa and in November 2011, she was lucky to be one of two models who outshined eighty others and were selected to represent Guyana at the ‘Elite Model Look Caribbean’ competition in Trinidad and Tobago. From there Niketa went on to do several television commercials for high end companies like Digicel Guyana, Republic Bank, Exclusive Styles Boutique and Giftland Office Max (for which she was spokesperson and television host for one year). She also did countless fashion shoots for designers like Pamela Fox, Marcie Dos Santos, Sonia Noel and Olypmia Small-Sonaram just to name a few, was featured in numerous local magazines and newspapers and quite frequently a runway sensation at various fashion shows. Ms. Barker also took a go at a few pageants namely Miss Guyana Jamzone 2011(Miss Photogenic), Miss Caribbean Hibiscus 2011 (finalist) and Miss Guyana Universe 2012 (1st runner-up; Best Smile & Body).
Today the name Niketa Barker is sure to ring a bell in the ears of people both in Guyana and around the Caribbean, and this runway diva known for her unique facial features, alluring charm and walk both on and off camera shows no sign of slowing down…Niketa will be awarded the “Karib Nation’s Award of Excellence – Runway & Print Modeling”
NIKETA BARKER – Georgetown, Guyana