A grand or flamboyant manner; verve; style; flair
There was a time when I thought I was suppose to be in the fashion industry. I switched my major from Educational Leadership to Fashion Merchandise. I was serious, stressing in Detroit trying to build a world-class brand with little knowledge. In my eyes I was going to be a famous stylist, nothing or nobody could tell me otherwise. I started to study a little deeper and I came across a few individuals who were amazing and they served as inspiration to my development. One of the individuals happen to be Mr. Panache Himself. Below you will find out more about him and his creativity. No not be surprised when you see him leading menswear into a indelible direction. Ladies and gentleman, without further adieu, Mr. Panache Himself.
Christian Drye: Introduce yourself (name, where u from, where u live, what you have going on).
Mr. Panache Himself: Well for starters my name is Michael Ugwuezi. A lot of people may know me as "Mr panache himself." I was born and raised in Atlanta Georgia and I currently sell women's shoes.
Christian Drye: For me, fashion di not click until high school. What was fashion like for you as a child?
Mr. Panache Himself: Fashion for me as a child was pretty rough. We didn't have lot of money so I wasn't able to wear all the nice sneakers and all the nice clothes so I think thats where I kind of found my passion. Since I wasn't able to have the nice clothes and nice shoes I started designing my own shoes in my own clothes.
CD: I never designed, but I always had dreams to do so as my style got better. What was the defining moment that brought you close to fashion?
MPH: I think my defining moment was around 2008 when I was in school for fashion merchandising and I had a internship at Saks Fifth Avenue here in Atlanta. I really didn't know that much about fashion, I just knew how to dress and put things together. But when I entered in that luxury environment it really opened my eyes to a whole different world. It takes me to a different realm of fashion and I really liked it.
" When I started dressing the way I dress now I immediately noticed there was a different perception that people had of me, but it was always positive so that really inspired me to keep doing what I was doing. " ____________________________________________________
CD: Where do you plan to take fashion next?
MPH: Well I'm really looking into starting my own line. I had a line when I was younger but it was catered to more of an urban demographic but now that I'm older I feel that I could add to the menswear community with my own line. I'm thinking more around the lines of: suits, sport coats, shirts - things of that nature. So I'm in the planning stages now but in the future there's a huge possibility that you can see some work for me.
CD: I really look forward to that! I may be your biggest fan (laughs). What advice do you have for a young man coming up who wants to get involved in fashion but it isn't popular in their respective neighborhood?
MPH: My advice to the young guys would be: just do you. If it's something that you're passionate about - for example, something that you love or if it's something that you dream about then don't let anybody persuade you to not do that. Don't worry about other people. Don't worry about naysayers. At the end of the day the people who are actually "real" are going to respect you because you're doing something that you want to do, something that you love to do.
CD: Makes perfect sense bro! I would have appreciated that as a kid. My creativity was delayed due to the fact I was worried about being different. I'm being curious, How many pairs of loafers do you own?
MPH: As far as lovers go. I don't have that many pairs. I only own about 17 pair of loafers.
CD: Inneed 17 loafers (laughs). What's your favorite accessory? I always thought it good for a man to have a navy blue sportscoat, thats my favorite thing.
MPH: I always tell people that my favorite accessory is confidence. Because when you're a menswear aficionado and you take pride in your appearance you have to have confidence. You have to own that look. Because it doesn't matter what kind of suit you had on, or the kind of shoes, or the kind of shirt or tie, if you don't have the confidence to own that look, then people won't believe you.
CD: Confidence is MAJOR! What stores do you shop at right now? How can we get fly like you?
MPH: I honestly don't shop at any stores. A good 85% of my wardrobe comes from eBay, because I get the best deals on items that you can't find everywhere.
CD: What's the most expensive fashion purchase you've made this year alone?
MPH: Well I would say that my most expensive fashion purchase that I have made this year was probably my og Air Jordan 1s - I always wanted a pair. So when I found out that they were going to be released this year I made it my mission to buy them. Yet, they were only $160.
CD: Is it hard for you not to shop?
MPH: No it's not hard for me not to shop because I did a lot of shopping in years past so I have a lot of clothes in my closet. So I'm good on shopping (laughs). I still need to get some stuff tailored. I still have stuff I haven't worn yet.
CD: I want to thank you for accepting my interview. It's been a long time coming, I've had you on my list for about a year. You are definitely one of my influences, thank you for being confident in what you do. Any Last words? Shout outs? Social media?
MPH: I want thank you for featuring me on your blog. I'm sorry I got back to you so late. It's always nice to have a fellow African American male that has an appreciation for menswear, done right. Secondly, I would like to shout out everybody that shows me love! If anyone wants to get in contact with me or ask me questions about fashion they can Follow me on instagram: @Mrpanachehimself