Introducing to you: CHI ILOCHI

Yes, this is a new post and yes it is a profile article! I am so excited to introduce to you all, my readers, someone who is not only a designer, but she is also a singer/songwriter, poet, journalist, AND personal stylist. It's that Black Girl Magic.

From Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Chi Ilochi uses her creativity in different forms of art to create a platform for herself; one of those forms includes fashion. When asked about how her interest in fashion developed she told me, "My interest in fashion came at a very young age. I had to be at least 9 years old. I always ALWAYS felt like the outcast. No matter how hard I tried I just couldn’t fit in."
Chi was known for wearing wacky colors and crazy prints, which are known to be more nontraditional when it comes to fashion. "I felt so different at a point, I tried to wear what everyone else wore and it didn’t work. It simply wasn’t me." Luckily, Chi did not let her interest in wacky colors and crazy prints change her style persona; she took it upon herself to embrace her uniqueness in fashion.
"Once I did that it was almost as if I lived and breathed fashion, I just couldn’t get enough of it. To be able to put on an outfit that could turn heads, stop traffic, and have mouths drop just blew my mind. From then on, I knew fashion wasn’t just in me, it was a part of me."

As you can see above, Chi's style is vibrant. One of the biggest secrets in fashion is being able to use different colors, textures, and fabrics together and separately. She describes her style as "eclectic soul" and explains how her personal style is formed by stating, "I love to wear different prints, patterns, and colors that make you feel, that make statements and have voices of their own. I love simplicity but complexity." What I love the most about her style is how she is able to balance simplicity and complexity because while there is nothing wrong with wearing "simple" gets boring after a while. Switch it up! Step out of your comfort zone every now and then and wear something you know will have people saying "Woah" just because it is that much out of your comfort zone.
"If the outfit doesn’t make my heart race or that of others, then something’s wrong. Where’s the fun in dressing safe ?! Defy the norms, create your own trends, where the trench in the summer! To me, that’s what fashions all about," Chi says.
As a stylist, Chi encourages all her clients to step out of their comfort zone and mix prints and/or patterns. Her advice to her clients is to "defy gender norms and practice wearing what you normally wouldn’t." She pushes them to explore themselves and ask questions. She also encourages her clients to overcome their insecurities by saying, "Study different celebs outfits that you admire and if it’s an outfit you would find nice on them, but not so much on you, ask yourself why you feel that way. Learn to combat your insecurities with affirmations like 'Why wouldn’t this look good on me?' or 'If they can wear it, so can I, and I bet I can wear it better!' Don’t be afraid to take a fashionable chance with yourself." Even if you are not one of her clients, I encourage you to listen to that advice because confidence is key in fashion.

So now that you know about her personal style and how she has been able to create it, who are her biggest fashion inspirations? This is probably the hardest question to ask any fashion enthusiast because we have too many inspirations but Chi lists Jeremy Scott, Aerin Creer, SZA, Jay Versace, and Pharrell Williams as her top favorites. "All unique and amazing individuals, but their ability to create such unique and unseen looks just blows my mind. I have absolutely no words, it’s just truly inspiring."

Creatives never rest, this is just a fact. We are constantly being inspired and constantly working to perfect our work and ourselves; sometimes we do is too much to the point where we must remind ourselves that nothing is perfect...but we will keep working until we are close enough. As a creative, we are also always setting new goals for ourselves. When asked about her biggest goals as a creative, Chi says, "If I were to list my biggest goals as a creative, I’d be listing forever, but If I were to list my main goal, I’d say to heal, help and inspire others to be the ABSOLUTE best they can be." It is not easy being a creative these days because it seems like everyone is in a competition to be known as "the best" but imagine being a BLACK creative where you constantly have to give your all just to feel as if your work is not good enough. Chi expresses, "I want the world to know that a black woman did it, she fulfilled her purpose, and she helped everyone she could along the way do the same." I admire Chi and her work because not only is she opening doors for herself, she is also opening doors for other black creatives.

Her biggest advice other creatives, as she states, is:
"I would tell them to not rush anything. To not be discouraged by what other people may be doing or how many likes or followers they have. Everything happens in God's timing so trust yourself, trust your talent and trust in God. There’s room for you.  Any time when you feel like there are too many people in the field you’re in, just think about the credits at the end of a movie. If there can be 1,000 directors working on just one film, why can’t there be room for you? Continue creating, stay thankful, humble without self-deprecation, focused, and keep God first and everything will fall into place. What’s meant for you will be and no one can get in the way of it. If you’re persistent you’ll get it, if you’re consistent you’ll keep it, if you’re grateful you’ll get more of it. Never stop creating." 

Chi has truly inspired me to be a better creative and I hope she has inspired you as well.


Chi's Instagram: @Igbohippie_
Chi's Twitter: @Igbohippie_
Chi's Youtube Channel: Chi Ilochi

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