Meek Mill has heard him. Young Thug has heard of him, and he’s even worn him in concert. It’s about time everyone has heard of McJordan Erhunmwunse. The Maryland-born fashion designer has quickly made a name for himself with the help of his own label, M.J.E. Studios. Now based in Downtown New York, Erhunmwunse is bringing his taste and ideals to Bello readers.

Who or what inspires your designs? 

I’m very inspired by function – Everything I create has some form of utilitarian design element. My designs are also inspired by the duality between streetwear and ideas of luxury. My color palette is normally kept neutral, and I like designing from different perceptions and feelings – rather than solely designing from the body. If I had to put my work in a box, I’d call it ready-to-wear looking into the future of streetwear and modern design techniques.

Share with us the day you realized you loved fashion. 

Creative output always felt like the right place to be and I always knew that – Fashion was something I organically started to learn about and pursue. Since I was little I was into sound, moving image, color, taking things apart and putting them back together again. I’m from a small town in Maryland and there’s not alot of fashion here. I travelled a lot as a kid and fashion made me feel closer to the places I wanted to be without actually being there – You can be who you want in fashion, at the same time you have the power to influence and challenge anyone emotionally and mentally. Fashion isn’t the only medium for that but it’s the only medium I saw I had the talent for.

Was fashion always something you wanted to pursue professionally? 

It was something I was always interested in but no, initially I didn’t think I would pursue it professionally. Both of my parents are in the medical field. My mom is a nurse , and my dad is a practitioner and business owner so at first it felt strange thinking of going into something like that. As you could imagine they tried to get me into the medical field but that didn’t last very long. They always knew I was the creative kid so fashion wasn’t difficult to get them to support. I’ve definitely had my phases trying to figure out what to pursue. I was also really into sports growing up and wanted to play basketball professionally at one point but I didn’t think I had the talent to go far. I also wanted to make music at one point.

Since starting your own label and putting your designs out there, how has your work evolved? 

I’ve always had the same design practice and vision but something i’ve seen evolve is my consciousness for color and fabrication.

Young Thug wore one of your pieces live in concert. How did it feel to see that? 

It felt really good to see that. It felt like validation that what I was doing was good enough, or the ideas I had at the time at least. Personally I think he’s one of the most influential musicians in the realm of today’s hip hop scene. It’s a moment I won’t forget.

Who do you design for, as far as audience? Since starting the label, has your audience influenced your designs? 

I design for the confident young man/woman who wants quality, innovation, and comfort. My audience has definitely influenced my designs – People in general influence my designs and philosophy. I love studying what people wear, why they wear them and where they wear them to and I try to mold that idea into what I want to see people in. I am my audience and all my designs have an element of me in it. No matter who I’m designing for, there’s always a dose of me.

What’s your mission with your designs? How do you see your work being remembered? 

I just want to create pieces no one’s ever seen or felt before – For my designs to be remembered as innovative and timeless. I want my pieces 10 years from now to still be relevant and tasteful.

What’s your advice to young designers?

Build and know your identity. You should be able to tell someone who/what you are and your brand in one sentence maximum. Also, save your money! This industry isn’t cheap.

By Michael Jacobo