Good fashion should always prompt a double take. Anything less than that isn’t worth discussing.
Luckily, there’s no shortage of killer stores in Chicago ready to sell you the clothes to make you look best. However, if it is true neck breaking, double-take-prompting fashion you want, there’s only one place you really need to go to: Iridium Clothing.
Founded nearly a decade ago, Iridium has gained the kind of international notability reserved for some of the most high-profile clothing lines, attracting the patronage of folks like Usher, Justin Bieber, and Gucci Mane just to name a few. The brand hasn’t always had this kind of attention though. At the brand’s heart are the humble beginnings of founder and designer Gregory “Platinum” Williams.
Born in the Bahamas, Platinum moved the United States with his team and quickly showed a knack for art, as well as a keen sense of determination. After establishing the brand, he quickly grew Iridium into a lifestyle empire, catering to high profile clients and the masses alike. “My art is a language and I would like for people to comprehend what I’m saying,” Platinum says. “People who understand my brand and get our designs, concepts, and lifestyle connect with us.”
His inspiration stems from the people and communities in his life, an eclectic supporting cast ranging from international musicians to close family. What they all have in common though is how they ultimately help Platinum work towards the brand’s ultimate goal: changing the world for the better.
The brand is still very much grounded in reality, despite this lofty goal. Platinum is very much aware that as good and noble as his goal can be, it’s ultimately nothing without patronage, advice he believes other creators should heed. “[It] seems like people are making a lot of stuff they think is cool. Keep in mind, stuff they think is cool,” Platinum explains. “If your designs can’t relate to anybody, you will be the only person rocking/having it.”
Luckily for Platinum, Chicago’s arts community is incredibly supportive of what Iridium has to offer. He appreciates the opportunity to get support and feedback from so many gifted artists around him, all with their own perspective from life experiences. According to him, the brand has benefited markedly from the constructive criticism that was shared amongst peers. A breath of fresh air considering the volatile state of a country currently divided among racial, sexual, and political lines.
“Man, the elections were just held and Trump won,” Platinum states. “So my thoughts about the state of the community are definitely not politically correct at the moment. I’m not feeling good about where we’re at; I’m actually really sad right now.” However, art and politics tend to have a strong relationship. After all, art take on social and political dimensions through epochs and cultures, striving to break through the barriers that divide us, whether it be through song, written words, or fashion.