How’d you get into fashion?
My grandmother used to have me in magazines. I wasn’t allowed to watch TV when I went over to her house. At 5, I’m flipping pages of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.
You own Shingo Fashion, a custom women’s clothing line. What does shingo mean?
Shingo is Swahili for neck. I chose that because, for me, it’s a representation of being confident in yourself.
You describe yourself as very confident. Have you always been this way?
I was actually very insecure growing up, especially at 15, being tall and skinny. I couldn’t understand why I looked so different. Around 20 is when my confidence and me being fearless started poking through. Helping women feel confident is a focus for Shingo. It can be tough when you’re making clothes that are extended sizes. Girls who feel like they want to be different and original but they can’t find it in a retail store, I’ve been able to help them do that.
You also offer extended sizes at your new OTR shoe store Own Lane Shoetique.
Size 12s are expensive to make, but there are some brands that carry them. I want to be known for extended sizes. I want women to feel like they can come in here and find a pair of shoes.
You’re also a celebrity stylist, fashion show producer, and single mom to a 1 year old.
Everybody calls me the Mom-preneur, because my first title is being Harlem’s mom. I’m on this crusade for single moms who want to be entrepreneurs but feel like they can’t because they have a child. I want women to know that you can still execute and live your dreams.