Sherman Tyrone Brown
Interview and photo documentation of Sherman's early fashion inspirations and his creative process behind his clothing design.
I was very fortunate to be exposed to fashion at a very young age. My passion was exclusively aspirations because, you know, I didn't grow up in a wealthy household.
My mom had a very dear friend while I was growing up. His name was Reginald Andrews, but we called him Reggie. Reggie worked for Ralph Lauren in the Marshall Fields. Reggie would come over all the time always looking like the flyest, little old man that you could ever meet. He drove a little drop top Mercedes. He always had crazy clothes on, cashmere coats with leather gloves to match, some sort of bag before it was cool, and all these colored socks and loafers, and he was just a man. Reginald was one of the top salesmen in Marshfield. He worked exclusively for Polo, so everything was Polo, Ralph Lauren, everything. For gifts, if I did well, he would always have polo. As a result, I fell in love with the whole lifestyle of Ralph Lauren. Seeing the Ralph Lauren lifestyle through ads in the magazines stuck with me.
Reggie and Ralph were my early fashion inspirations.
Reggie would buy my mom clothes, and I couldn't wait to wear my mom's size because she was the flyest that you ever want to see.
She had a tomboy style because she was a cop. But she also had this very business woman, church style. The tomboy style was her in boy jeans with some Tommy Hilfiger loafers on with no socks, pants rolled up in this oversize, blue blazer with brass buttons that she wore from Ralph Lauren, and an oversized men's dress shirt. She had this real Pulp Fiction like bob hair style. On top of that, she played tennis, so she had all the tennis skirts, the socks, the K Swisses, the hats to match her Polo shirts. Straight out of the magazine.
So here we are in the hood, living and dressing like we were from some country club as a result of Reggie.
My mom was a police officer. My dad was incarcerated for 15 years. I grew up with two totally different ends of the spectrum.
I watched my mom wear a uniform everyday for 30 years as a police officer, and I watched my dad wear a uniform everyday as a prisoner.
My aesthetic falls between these uniforms. I am a luxury uniform type of guy. I take those elements of seeing my parents in uniforms and make it luxurious, continuing the juxtaposition through fashion’s place in my life.
My fashion brand is called Tyrone Brown, which is my middle and last name. Tyrone is notoriously a name with a bad stigma in the African American community. Tyrone has the negative connotation of a very hood, very gangster man who means you no good. It took me a long time to embrace my name Tyrone, the name of my father. I never told anyone until I decided to be me. I decided to make room for Tyrone in luxury fashion and to juxtapose the stigma of Tyrone. Tyrone Brown deals with the finest fabrics from all across the world. I love silks, cashmeres, and angoras.
When I am designing, I like to be in silence and alone, I play the same instrumental song over and over again, and I will stare out the window at the sky. For inspiration, I will take a walk and look at architecture or well dressed strangers walking by.
Clothing has a spirit behind it. Every outfit has a certain mood. I want my client to feel sexy and powerful. I want my designs to enhance my client’s great features as well as the great aspects of their personality.
Does the world need another fashion designer? Probably not, but the world does need more advocates who walk in truth, love, and light.
If you'd like to connect or follow along with Sherman,
please visit his instagram.