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Fashion Killas

'Social Fabric': Meet the Dope Designers From Season 1

From fedora masters to sneaker mask and rap tee creators, these are the artists turning heads on Fuse's NAMIC Award-winning series 'Social Fabric' With Kyle Ng

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Cody Wellema (Wellema Hat Shop)

Wellema Hat Shop

Name: Cody Wellema
Specialty: Bespoke fedoras
Where to Find Him: 837 E. Mariposa, Altadena, CA 91001 | www.wellemahatco.com

An affinity for the '30s and '40s and appreciation for detailed craftsmanship drove Wellema to open Wellema Hat Shop, fitting 100 percent handmade hats for clients from around the globe. In the premiere episode of Social Fabric, Wellema discusses how the fedora became a symbol of the Pachuco movement/culture in Los Angeles.

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Gladys Tamez

Fuse Media

Name: Gladys Tamez
Specialty: Artisanal hats blending American and European techniques
Where To Find Her: 2347 E. 8th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021 | gladystamez.com

You might already recognize Tamez's work from Lady Gaga's Joanne album cover—that wide-brimmed pastel pink hat has become instantly recognizable. The designer, who launched her namesake brand in 2012, offers handmade hats that blend American and Euro techniques. This season, Tamez shows Social Fabric host Kyle Ng how she creates a modern spin on the fedora...and takes on the task of crafting a hat for GRAMMY-nominated singer/songwriter Mayer Hawthorne.

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Howie Nicholsby (21st Century Kilts)

Fuse Media

Name: Howie Nicholsby
Specialty: Unique takes on the traditional Scottish kilt
Where to Find Him: 48 Thistle Street, New Town, Edinburgh EH2 1EN, UK | 21stcenturykilts.com

Nicholsby strives to "give men throughout the world a realistic alternative to trousers...by pioneering the next step of [the kilt's] evolution." Since launching his Edinburgh shop in the '90s, the custom kilt-designer has turned heads for his unconventional use of leather, gold, camouflage and pinstripes. Join Nicholsby this season as he examines the origin of plaid and its connection to family history.

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Jeff Wanjala (Wan Fam Clothing)

Fuse Media

Name: Jeff Wanjala
Specialty: Clothing and accessories influenced by the Maasai shuka
Where to Find Himfacebook.com/WanFamClothing

Wanjala and his brother, Emmanuel, have transformed the African fashion industry for their innovative designs paying homage to the Kenyan shuka and vibrant Masaai culture. He walks Ng through the connection between Scottish plaid and the Kenyan shuka and how the print is being modernized today.

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Freehand Profit


Name: Freehand Profit
Specialty: Sneaker gas masks
Where to Find Himfreehandprofit.com

Los Angeles-based artist/sneakerhead Freehand Profit (Gary Lockwood) shows Social Fabric viewers his intricate process of making "sneaker masks," gas masks made from dope sneakers. He also takes on the challenge of creating a custom sneaker mask for none other than Trinidad James.

A self-proclaimed hip-hop lover, Lockwood seeks to explore "issues of identity, materialism and duality" faced in the hip-hop community within his work.

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Rian Pozzebon (Vans®)

Getty Images

Name: Rian Pozzebon
Specialty: Elevating Vans sneakers
Where to Find Himvans.com

A streetwear veteran, Pozzebon revived the world's most beloved punk rock skater shoe by elevating the longstanding brand’s most iconic silhouettes "through the use of premium materials, style-driven designs and unique collaborations." Explore Vans' history through an in-depth conversation this season with Pozzebon.

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Kenishi Iwaya (Pure Blue Japan)

Fuse Media

Name: Kenishi Iwaya
Specialty: Carefully crafted, hand-dyed blue jeans
Where to Find Him: 3-31-20-102 Jingumae Shibuya-ku Tokyo 150-0001 Japan | www.purebluejapan.jp

A trip to Kojima Jeans Street will uncover the history and manufacturing practices of Japanese salvage denim, as Pure Blue Japan founder Iwaya has made waves since 1997 with his handcrafted jeans. The denim designer works to "challenge the new expression of indigo by utilizing the delicate and outstanding technology of Japanese craftsmanship for all processes, including dyeing, weaving, sewing and distressing."

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Anonymous Designer (69 Jeans)

Fuse Media

Name: Unknown
Specialty: Non-demographic denim
Where to Find Him/Her: Somewhere in downtown Los Angeles | sixty-nine.us

Who knew that anonymous fashion designers existed? Social Fabric hopes to track down the unknown face behind 69, a brand launched in 2011 that creates unisex, non-demographic denim. Comfort comes first for this sought-after designer, whose vision is to craft "timeless and classic" looks that are "made in our present and meant for the future."

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Daniel Patrick

Fuse Media

Name: Daniel Patrick
Specialty: the Tall Tee
Where to Find Him: 7967 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046 | danielpatrick.us

This Australian, Los Angeles-based designer gave up a shot at playing professional rugby to pursue fashion, and he's done pretty well for himself. Known for his "nomadic" vision of minimalist, high-end streetwear, Patrick reimagined the t-shirt for the modern man by crafting the highly touted "tall tee." With storefronts in both LA and NYC, he continues to expand and perfect his aesthetic that balances an affinity for hip-hop, the outdoors and athletics.

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Fuse Media

Name: Dbruze
Specialty: Exclusive rap tees
Where to Find Himdbruze.cominstagram.com/dbruze

"Hard merch ain’t made for artists these days. They just want the quick stuff. I’m not into that," Queens, New York, native Dbruze (Darien Bruze) said in a 2016 Noisey interview. The surprisingly young designer caught the attention of hip-hop heads a few years back for his vintage-inspired rap tees that resemble bootleg concert shirts. Since getting into graphic design in 2012, Bruze has designed threads for the likes of DrakeFuture and Juvenile.

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Ben Jammin (Jammin On Haight/Love On Haight)

Fuse Media

Name: Ben Jammin
Specialty: Tie-dye tees
Where to Find Him: 1400 Haight St, San Francisco, CA 94117 | jamminon.com

Straight from San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury neighborhood, tie-dye master Ben Jammin (Benjamin Strebel) shows Ng around his vibrant boutique, Jammin on Haight (reopened as Love On Haight earlier this year). Along with exploring the history and relevancy of tie-dye, he welcomes Ng into his tie-dye studio to show him the ropes. Get ready for colors on colors on colors!

Watch the NAMIC Award-winning series Social Fabric starring Kyle Ng on demand on Hulu, and don't miss the series return Tuesday, May 1 at 10PM!

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