The birth of the urban fashion era in the late 1980’s through the 1990’s brought a collaboration of music and fashion to the hip hop community. This alliance stimulated a spirit of creativity for fashion in a young dancer named Travis Williamson from White Plains, NY. Travis was determined to leave his signature in this fast paced and ever changing world of fashion. A hobby of making garments for himself quickly transformed into a completely developed clothing line affectionately named “Rithem”. A name given to him by his sister while he was dancing in talent shows and for various artist. The name “Rithem” also stands for Reflecting Image That Holds Extensive Manifestation. Inspired by fashion companies that were having huge impacts over the urban community like Harlem Tailor “Dapper Dan”, Cross Colours, Karl Kani, FUBU, Pelle Pelle, Enyce, Mecca, Phat Farm, Akedemiks and Rocawear, Travis also had dreams to gain mainstream notoriety. Acquiring retail space in the White Plains Galleria Mall in 1998, was his plan to bring his dreams and goals to reality.
Travis began sewing the year he graduated from high school in 1991. He continued his education at Westchester Community College where he went on to study fashion marketing and business management. Travis began building his brand in 1993 by putting the Rithem Logo on t-shirts and apparel. The very first logo was created by a friend named Ricky for the brand. It consisted of a cartoonish face wearing a cap that had a needle going through it and a button theessayclub.com https://writemyessayrapid.com/ was used for the eye. That logo evolved into a customized logo drawn by a graffiti artist named Smitty in 1994.
Travis quickly gained the recognition of his town, being revered as the hottest new designer cultivating urban fashion. Travis aka “Rithem the Designer” became known as the man that could make anything out of nothing. There was no garment he couldn’t stitch. At the young age of 14 Travis was employed at a local dry cleaners. It was there that he would meet his teacher and mentor Earl Adams. Mr Adams strongly believed that the skill of sewing could be passed on to anyone who had the burning passion to learn the craft. Travis worked multiple jobs after exiting high school to save money to purchase the equipment he would need to make his custom pieces. He was finally able to purchase his first sewing machines from Mr. Mitchell, a local merchant. He sold Travis an industrial Mercury Straight Stitch and a Serger for finishing garments. He was beyond a shadow of a doubt well equipped to handle any lightweight or heavy custom job. Soon thereafter, Travis was making his way to Manhattan to participate in fashion shows as well as networking with like minded individuals.
Before the age of social media, there was only grassroots marketing also known as guerrilla marketing. This is the concept that you target your efforts to small groups of people and hope those groups spread your message to a much larger audience. This was the cheapest way to get your product out to the public. To begin heavy promotion for himself and his brand Travis appeared on a popular 90’s video show called Video Music Box. He as interviewed by the legendary Ralph McDaniels. This gave him the boost he had been looking for. It propelled him beyond just local notoriety and introduced him to the five boroughs of New York. Travis would at times find himself strapped for cash but would still make his way to the Metro North Train Station, pushing his garments in a shopping cart, in order to do fashion shows in Manhattan. Often times he found himself without money for the return trip home, but with determination and faith that he would sell some of his pieces he pressed his way to his destination.
In the late 1990’s Travis worked very hard to create a lane and a brand for himself. He always had a spirit of entrepreneurship and was looking to elevate himself to the next level. He began meeting with investors and bigger fashion labels to get backing for production to further manifest his dreams. Travis was unsatisfied with offers that would force him to loose creative control of the company he was building and only be hired as a designer. He decided to turn down those offers because for Travis it wasn’t about having wealth, it was about establishing a legacy to be left to his future children.
The launching of the new line “Liquid Metal by Rithem” signifies the course his career has taken. “Rithem the Designer” has adapted to the times and stayed relevant by taking shape in whatever endeavor he explored. He did this while being fluid enough to work around all the different phases fashion has gone through during his 26 years in the business. He stayed solid enough to withstand the test of time and create all he imagines for himself. The first concepts to emerge from Liquid Metal will be t-shirts available in Onyx, Chrome, Royal Blue, Pink, Green, Orange, and Gold. Visit: www.RithemTheDesigner.com