Who. What. Woke. | Legendary Rootz by Raven

Who. What. Woke is a mini-series I created on my blog to shine a light on creators who use their artistic talents to spread awareness on social issues in the world.

Meet Raven! The creator of the empowerment brand known as Legendary Rootz. She is a 20 year old Queen, designer, sister, daughter and student currently majoring in biochemistry / pre-med as well as secondary education. She absolutely loves quotes and the meanings behind them. She loves the versatility that they possess and how one day the quote can mean one thing and the other day it can help you get through the day.  

How did you (and/or others) come up with the name, Legendary Rootz
            I want everyone who wears my brand to know that no matter what they were told, that they have the potential to be LEGENDARY. As a community, we are told that we will not amount to anything and not given the resources to succeed. However, I hope to inspire others not only through my brand, but one of my main goals is to utilize my platform to implement positive outlets through youth centers all over the country that highlight their talents.
            Marcus Garvey has a quote that states “A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin or culture is like a tree without roots.” This statement is so relevant to my life and hopefully the lives of my customers. African-American history is what we have made it. We are trendsetters and innovators. In order to understand our excellence we must reflect and understand the past. This understanding is where the word roots come from in the name. I really don’t know why I used a Z instead of an s (maybe autocorrect).

A little background on how and why you (and/or others) started Legendary Rootz.
            Representation. Not seeing anyone who looked like me was the reason why. I was tired of going into stores such as Forever 21 and ASOS and seeing shirts with women who did not look like me plastered all over. A goal for Legendary Rootz in the near future is to start actually be sold in these stores and eventually start my own store.

            Now the how was a little different. I had the idea come to me while attending an AASC Student Government Leadership camp. One of the activities that we did was breaking a wooden board. On one side of the board we wrote our goals and aspirations and on the other side of the board we wrote our obstacles. Along my education goals, I wrote that I wanted to open a store for black people worldwide. Little did I know goal would come to fruition soon. After leaving camp, I started drafting up designs and figuring out what site I wanted to use as the platform for my store. Through some trial and error, I found the store I was going to use, added some products and just let the store sit there. It wasn’t until someone at my school wrote an article on me that the products actually began jumping off and others began purchasing.

Your passion is Black beauty. What does it mean to you?
            Black beauty means to be accepted and love yourself no matter your skin tone, weight, sexuality, pronoun or any other label that society places on us. We focus so much on what others think of us and have to remember that we must love ourselves as well.

Why is it important that you spread Black beauty?
            Like Fannie Lou Hamer stated “I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.” I am sick of the standards that women are upheld to. We have to look a certain way, talk a certain way and even walk a certain way. I stand for Black Beauty because I am tired of meeting little 7 year old black girls who tell me that their classmates called them nappy headed or some mean name that has to do with the color of their skin. I love the trend that was started in 2015 of reclaiming the labels that society has placed on us. Instead of being ashamed of our kinks and curls, we will embrace our nappy hair.

What's the best part of owning a brand? The most stressful?
The best part of owning a brand is being able to see the final product. From the initial idea to the drafting up to adding it on the site, the progress is what’s really important to me. I love when people send me their pictures wearing the products because it actually makes it real.
            The most stressful part would definitely be making sure everyone’s happy. Their unhappiness could come from something that was posted on Instagram to a mistake made regarding their order.

There are other brands targeted towards Black beauty and people of color already out there. How is yours different?
          Legendary Rootz strives to foster unapologetic Black girls who are proud of who they are. Our customers believe that we focus on loving yourself and cultural roots. Unlike others, Legendary Rootz was specifically made for Black people and we’re not afraid to let the world know.  

Of everything you could have created, why apparel?
            I love the fact that apparel can be created and worn any and everywhere. For example, I also create accessories such as stickers and mugs. However, Legendary Rootz apparel is like a billboard. I want Black girls and guys worldwide to be able to wear these clothes not only to empower themselves but to empower others they come into contact with. I attend Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church in Phoenix, Arizona and our motto for the year 2016 is to Occupy All Streets. I hope that my apparel will reach everyone and bring positivity.  

Want to shout out anyone else who's a part of the brand?
            Yes, shoutout to everyone who has supported the brand. Shoutout to my family especially my parents and my sisters (@jaydria + @jazz.mone) who have not only supported my decisions but also assisted and making sure everything runs smoothly.



  Customers can use the code #WhoWhatWoke and receive 15% off their order.

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