By Meriem Cherif
The embossed letter ‘T’ wrapped with a ‘C’ adorns bags, Instagram pages, and fashion editorials everywhere; if you haven’t heard of Telfar, you may be behind.
Telfar is the brainchild of Telfar Clemens, a Liberian-American fashion designer based in Queens. Starting his company in 2005, Clemens captured the essence of New York spirit: the then 18 year old rolled out a unisex cothing line, selling pieces to whoever would take them. Clemens’ journey was slow—the fashion world did not put a spotlight on unisex clothing as they do today. It was not until 13 years later that he truly made a shockwave in the world of fashion, thanks to the CFDA Vogue Fashion Fund. With money available to design with no barriers, Clemens created a new product: the Shopping Bag.
The sleek design captured the attention of many, with celebrities Solange, Bella Hadid, and even Oprah Winfrey sporting the accessory in different colors and sizes. The distinct logo found itself in New York Fashion Week, and the fashion world was buzzing.
Telfar brings a new definition to high fashion, abandoning the notion that pieces must be expensive to be luxury. The front page of their website states, “It’s not for you, it’s for everybody.” Ranging from $150 to $257, the Shopping Bags represent one of the most affordable trending accessories on the market. However, the popularity means that getting your hands on a Telfar bag is no simple task; restocks often sell out in a mere 60 seconds. Nonetheless, Telfar’s success makes one thing clear: being unconventional in fashion is often more rewarding than subscribing to precedent.