It’s funny when we are programmed to think something. For example when I say “nude pumps”, what color pops into your head? Likely the same color that pops into mine. Likely the same color that pops into most people’s heads.
The nude that pops into your head is likely the same nude that popped up into Brother Vellies’ designer Aurora James’ head. That is until it hit her one day that the nude that is the “standard” is not actually nude for most skin tones. Especially for black and brown women.
On Instagram James writes, “It’s black history month and I want to tell you a story. Off and on for years a light peachy color has appeared in my collection that was casually named ‘nude’. On a balmy day in May of last year I haphazardly grabbed one of those shoes, put it on and realized the disconnect and negative effect of language in my own design process even as a woman of color. After years of being told what the standard ‘nude’ should be, I needed to recontextualize that word within my own body of work. Not just for myself, but for my customers. So as we launch into Black History Month I am happy and humbled to share our ‘Nudes’ Collection with you in many different shades of leather and suede.”
What makes Brother Vellies’ expansion of nude so exciting is the fact that it goes well beyond the pump. The shoes offered in the collection range from flats and sandals to feather embellished statement pieces. So whether you want a shoe that matches for your skin tone for practicality or to have a fashion moment – you’re covered.
Only time will tell if other brands will evolve their view of “nude”, but one can hope. Shout out to Aurora James and Brother Vellies for paving the way! The full collection is available at Moda Operandi. Note, it’s a definite *splurge*!