China Royal continues to get and give love via Kickstarter. Whether supporters are in the food industry, the art world, or have worked in fashion for years, China Royal is a stylish fit for them. We get to know more of the brand’s Kickstarter backers and all around supporters.
Chef Gerry Garvin (pictured above) has known Shikiri Hightower-Gaskin for almost 15 years. After being the executive chef for her highly acclaimed Beverly Hills soulfood restaurant Reign, he blazed a career trail filled with household names, including working for the Ritz Carlton, Noa Noa, Morton’s and the Four Seasons Beverly Hills. The three-time author was also recently spotted working his magic at the New York City Wine and Food Festival.
What are some of your favorite items in the China Royal line?
I love the hoodies and the t-shirts. I think it’s all hot. Shikiri’s very good at that.
How would you describe your personal style?
I love a great suit, great shoes, and a nice timepiece. I work out six days a week so I like things to be fitted but not tight. I went to Nobu last night and had on a vest, a skinny Tom Ford tie, and Zegna pants. I’m not very funky though–I wear tees and things on the weekend but I like to travel in style.
What other brands will you mix and match with your China Royal rewards?
I’m a Neiman Marcus fan so I wear their jeans. Seven [For All Mankind] also makes great jeans so I can match those with a China Royal tee and a great Ferragamo shoe. I also have a couple of Paul Stuart slacks at home. I’m not really a fashion guy, and I’m absolutely not a trend follower. If it looks good to me that’s what matters. I just do me.
Pastor Richard Sherer has known Shikiri Hightower-Gaskin and her husband and business partner Bela for almost two years as members at his church Berith Christian Fellowship. He’s in the midst of organizing a boutique event that his Oakland church is hosting in November where congregants and the surrounding community can donate one fashion or home item, and take a fashion or home item donated by another member.
How did you become a fan of China Royal?
Bela and Shikiri told me the plan before the line launched. They’re stylish, genuine people and they have a style that I think people would want to wear. Plus I saw their passion and excitement for the line.
How would you describe your personal style?
Business casual. I like suits, ties, hats, the whole nine. But people don’t dress that way now and I like to be comfortable. I have interesting dimensions so all my suits are tailored. I wear jeans all the time, relaxed but not baggy.
What are some trends you might indulge in this fall?
Boots are back in a big way for men, so are jean jackets, even layered with a vest. Where we live we have a few seasons, our temperatures change dramatically so you have to layer. Your look changes throughout the day. I’m interested in that China Royal [men’s] suit for mixing and matching.
Azja Pryor–yes, relation to Richard Pryor on her grandfather’s side, is a busy Southern California mom who lives a lifestyle rooted in health and wellness. For her, comfortable clothing that also looks chic is a high priority for her. With a style always infused with Boho-Hippie elements she’s excited to pair her box braids do and stylish ‘tude with great new fashion finds.
Why did you become a China Royal Kickstarter backer?
Shikiri is my girl so I’ll support whatever she’s doing. That was my first inclination. Once I saw the pieces and spoke to her and Bela and saw the passion they had, and the admiration he has for her, it was touching. I saw the hoodie and loved it. I thought it was so fly I wanted to support and I wanted to get some pieces for myself.
What are some of your China Royal favorites?
I love the hoodie–the China Royal symbol on the back! I got a sample of the butterfly dress and wore it to a training in Vegas, I got so many compliments on it.
What’s your favorite look on a guy?
I love a clean looking man, a guy who can put on a button up and tailored pants or a suit with no tie, and I mean really wear that suit. Shoes are really important too, you can tell a lot about a man in his selection of shoes. I hate baggy clothes and I don’t like too tight either, those looks could just die.
What would you love to see next from China Royal?
More shoes, and purses! Accessories, a laptop bag, add-ons to the pieces I already love.