Alcorn alumnus Raymond Banks debuts clothing line during The Model Experience Fashion Week showcase in Los Angeles

Alcorn State University alumnus Raymond Banks ’18 has expanded his clothing brand by showcasing his line, Hoodvenchy, during The Model Experience Fashion Week Runway Show in Los Angeles Saturday, March 26, at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

The Model Experience Fashion Week was held March 25-27. The event was founded in 2012, and its mission is to create opportunities for models and talent by way of its annual fashion show.

The Hoodvenchy brand, which debuted in 2018, began as a runway collection for Banks’s first fashion brand, “The Gentlemen’s Touch.” Banks’ relentless passion and consistency have positioned him for stardom in the fashion industry.

“I never intended for Hoodvenchy to be a separate brand, but once I debuted the collection the demand was so high for it, so I had to give the people what they wanted. That’s when Hoodvenchy took off,” said Banks.

Banks was inspired to name his brand Hoodvenchy after studying how luxury brands were culture appropriating the African American community in certain designs. Therefore, he decided to create a collection that would mimic their doings.

Growing up with fashionable parents impacted Banks at an early age. Style piqued his interest while accompanying his mom on her hours-long shopping trips.

Banks’ earliest fashion memories are of the church fashion shows that his mother entered him. But, at the time, he didn’t realize that these fashion shows were molding him into a fashion maven.

“My whole life consists of fashion and everything that comes with it. Fashion allowed me to find who I truly was as a person, and it also allowed me to help others along the way. I can remember growing up watching my parents get ready to go out on a Friday or Saturday night and admiring their ensembles. No thread or wrinkle was out of place. They truly made it look easy and effortless.”

While a student at Alcorn, Banks served as president of the T.R.E.N.D. Modeling Squad. After graduating, he returned to serve as the squad’s advisor from 2018 to 2021.

The platform allowed him to express himself through fashion while offering his expertise to other aspiring fashionistas.

“While working in my fashion career, I always made sure my clients were genuinely happy with any service I provided, whether it be styling, designing, or personal shopping. Seeing a client smile and feel good about themselves after receiving my services is the biggest payoff for me. When a person looks good on the outside, it makes them feel good on the inside.”

Banks began to perfect his craft which led him to enroll at Parsons School of Design, where he earned a master’s degree in fashion management. The degree allowed Banks to network with other like-minded individuals who could help him get to the next level.

“I hope to inspire the next person to continue to follow their dreams and aspirations. Hoodvenchy should be a beacon of hope to the next person.”