Murway: A Black-Owned Fashion Business Making a Difference
Like many other industries, the fashion industry struggles with racism. Black designers have been fighting for equality for decades. While there have been some positive steps, the industry as a whole is lacking the equality African Americans deserve. Only 7.5% of all US fashion designers are Black. One company striving to make a difference in this industry is Black-owned Murway. Murway is a gender-neutral luxury Italian leather bag line.
Struggles Faced by Black Fashion Designers
Black designers face a number of struggles in the fashion industry. The systemic racism in the industry stems from heads of fashion houses rarely hiring people of color to design for them. The heads of houses are rarely people of color themselves so the cycle viciously continues. Since Black designers struggle to break into the industry the traditional way, they are faced with starting their own business. This obviously requires capital. Without this capital, designers can’t develop inventory, can’t get their products in front of customers, can’t advertise, which makes it difficult for any business to succeed.
Denishio Murray, Founder of Murway
Denishio Murray, founder of Murway, had an interesting start in the business world. In 2017, when he was just 24 years old, Murray started Murray’s In-Home Care. This personal care agency assists the disabled and elderly. This company gave Murray a head start in being a successful Black entrepreneur.
Murray notes there are certain characteristics that make you more likely to succeed when starting your own business. Doing so requires “determination, resilience, taking the time to educate yourself on business and your industry, and having a very strong work ethic.” For a Black entrepreneur, he stresses that these things are even more important.
In 2020 he started Murway, a gender-neutral leather bag line. He had always had a passion for fashion design and with his experience in business, he decided it was time to combine his two skills.
As a Black-owned business, Murway is one example of a company that formed in part due to the difficulties African Americans face in the fashion industry. It is common for Black fashion designers to have a very creative, unique vision. Sometimes this vision is not shared by those higher up on the food chain.
Murray encourages future entrepreneurs like him to “never let anyone place a limit on your capabilities.” He also tells up-and-coming Black designers that “your own approval is enough.” This is an important reminder for all designers, he says, because he believes that it is easy to get rejected in a world where creativity and subjectivity are the name of the game.
Murray Gets Started in Fashion Early
Murray recalls being his mother’s stylist from a young age. He would style looks for his mother and other family members whenever there was a special event. He loves to use his creativity to make people feel good about themselves. His love for fashion is rooted deeply in his love for his family. This is one reason why he named his most recent “MoMo” collection by Murway after his late uncle, who passed away from COVID-19 in September 2021.
Murway Combines Black Creativity with Luxury
Murway bags combine unique Black creativity in design with genuine Italian leather. Consumers, especially members of Gen Z, have changed their shopping habits in recent years. As a result of the Black Lives Matter movement, a “Buy Black” movement has emerged. These consumers are looking to buy from more socially conscious, Black-owned businesses. Obviously a positive for Black business owners, it is time to capitalize on this movement. Denishio Murray wants Murway to take advantage of this movement. He has made his bags available to all consumers on his website. These bags are a luxury product. Similar bags may sell for over $1,000, but it was important to Murray that his bags were accessible to everyone so he lowered his prices.
For more information on Murway, please visit: