Angel Brinks knows intimate details about Cardi B, Nicki Minaj, Rihanna, and Missy Elliot. She also knows a lot about K.Michelle, an entertainer who is often painted as difficult. Brinks, curvy beauty with an impeccable work ethic enjoys an intimate relationship with some of hip hop’s reigning Queens because she has designed the very clothes that they have worn on their backs.
Needless to add, being a fashion designer for the rich, famous and demanding is a stressful job. In the fashion industry, it’s dog-eat-dog. There are very few African-American designers, men or women, who are making a name for themselves in the industry and even fewer that can even say that they come close to pulling down Michael Kors dollars. According to a Goggle search conducted at the time of filing, Kors’ net worth is 600 million dollars.
In WE tv’s “Angel Brinks/ The Real Bling” we get a behind the scenes peek on how the hip hop fashion queen balances her life and her demanding work. She’s known for her standout designs which are generous with sparkly bling and figure-hugging dresses, bodysuits, and her over-the-top, eye-catching accessories.
To build her empire she must juggle being a mother, business owner while giving herself enough calm space to create the actual designs that are bringing her the word-of-mouth and the clients.
In a few words, it’s a lot. Here is an edited interview with Angel Brinks, where she talks about life and making “Angel Brinks/ The Real Bling” on WE tv.
LOS ANGELES SENTINEL: ‘Angel Brinks/ The Real Bling’ really helped me understand the stress level of an up-and-coming fashion designer. How do you balance this life or do you?
ANGEL BRINKS: Well in my particular situation, I need to set an example for my children to follow their dreams. They need to see what a working parent looks like. With my son’s fathers being deceased. My daughter’s father career involves him traveling around the country, I’m all they have daily. With that being said, I need to be a great role model for them. Being a mother is a full-time job. I support all women who want to achieve their goals, whatever that may be! I do feel I’m spread thin sometimes by giving everything and everyone my 100% but sometimes, when you’re spread so thin, something somewhere won’t get all of you.
LAS: Client-by-client, what do Cardi B, Nicki Minaj, Rihanna, Lil Kim, Missy Elliot, K.Michelle like? What don’t they like?
AB: Unfortunately, I cannot discuss these details because I respect all of my client’s privacy. For the most part, certain performance, videos, themed events require certain looks, so I work with them on what their vision entitles and do offer my opinion on what works and what can be done.
LAS: Do you have a step-by-step on how you deal with high-profile, celebrity clients?
AB: It varies. Sometimes I deal with their stylists and other times I deal with the celebrity directly. Either way, I’m very hands-on from the beginning. We go over looks, mood boards, designs, materials, etc. to make sure my clients love the vision. Once the client approves, we start working on the look and I send photos/videos throughout the entire process. My celebrity clients appreciate and admire that I make sure they are aware of every step of the process.
LAS: Why do you enjoy making clothing with so much bling? How does your style translate to a more workable type of clothing line or is that a market that holds no interest?
AB: That’s the best part about being a designer is that you bring to the table your creativity. Bling is my nitch. People come to me to stand out. They want to be the center of attention when they walk into a room full of people. I’ve tried to make simpler looks, but consumers prefer the bling pieces. I do offer what I call a boutique collection. These items are hand-selected items I purchase from vendors and not the designer. They’re made in bulk and can be found in other boutiques as well, making them more affordable.
LAS: What did you think non-scripted TV was when you initially said yes to the show vs. what you know about it now?
AB: This is a great question. You’re so excited about being on TV for the fame or money that will come with it, but you don’t realize what you’re getting into. On scripted shows, you’re able to play a character. Non-scripted, you are yourself. You will be judged for everything you say and do. You could be the best person in the world and someone somewhere will have something to say about you. If you can get past what people have to say about you, then you’re golden. It’s all entertainment. As long as you keep it fun and not allow it to permanently damage your livelihood, then it’s just a fun job at the end of the day!
LAS: What’s next?
AB: I would love to have a contract with the Lakers’ cheerleaders (designing their outfits) and being apart of wardrobe on big movies and tv shows, such as ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ I want to expand my brand to be sold in department stores. I may grow and expand, but one thing will never change: I will continue to inspire all women around the world, and empower women till the day I die!