Style Signature: Meet Harold Kensington

Having already designed for Yeezy by Kanye West, Diane von Furstenberg and Céline, Harold Kensington is now making a (design) name for himself. 

  Portrait of Harold Kensington, founder of Harold Kensington London, after a styling session for Yeezy (Season 2) as a womenswear designer. Photo: Louis Trinh

Portrait of Harold Kensington, founder of Harold Kensington London, after a styling session for Yeezy (Season 2) as a womenswear designer. Photo: Louis Trinh

In my ongoing "Style Signature" series, I talk to menswear creatives of color about how they are making their mark. Thank you so much to my incredibly talented friend, Harold Kensington unisex clothing designer & founder of Harold Kensington London  for sharing his designer story! 

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I feel like fashion goes beyond what we wear and its disposal — I believe it’s also technology and advancement.
— Harold Kensington
 
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Creator of "oversized, yet refined casual" unisex clothing, Harold Kensington loves the "cool edge to an androgynous/boyish aesthetic that works on a male or female client."

Right after university, Harold worked with smaller contemporary designers (aligned with bigger brands) to gain more insight on the pros and cons of working in fashion design. He envisions a more sustainable fashion world, as he feels "the consumption and bad disposal/unconventional production of materials is creating an unstable environment."

From London, Harold spoke with me about his new brand, AEROLD Studio, what he learned from designing for some of the fashion world's top brands, and how his Nigerian background shaped his hard-working ethic.

 

Thank you so much for speaking with us! First, tell us about your brand, Harold Kensington London. 

It’s a design service based on my design experience in fashion. I have designed for brands like Yeezy by Kanye West, Diane von Furstenberg, Céline, Theory and many more. Through this experience, I gained knowledge of designing and marketing useful products based on consumer requirements and creative exploration. Currently, the Harold Kensington London brand is a bespoke design service that is focused on working with individuals and companies to fulfill their design ambitions.

Harold's interview with Angela Fink of TheFashionSight.com. Watch them discuss brand development, inspiration and working with Kanye West on the Yeezy line.

 

Who is the Harold Kensington London client?

Ideally, a client that has an interest in a product suitable for them either from a collection already designed by myself or a new idea to explore. I am a designer that designs menswear and womenswear or unisex clothing; I believe my client can pretty much be an individual that admires my design delivery. 

   

How did you get started? 

I got started off with my design journey by working with smaller brands right after university — I worked with contemporary designers who had worked for bigger brands that I was astounded by. I felt if I place myself with those designers, I can get more insight on the pros and cons of working with bigger brands…and it worked!

  Behind-the-scenes shot of Harold styling his unisex collection for a lookbook shoot. Photo: Louis Trinh

Behind-the-scenes shot of Harold styling his unisex collection for a lookbook shoot. Photo: Louis Trinh

What is your background? 

I was born and partly raised in Nigeria; it is predominantly where I get my foundation of hard-work and consistency — personally and professionally. 

 

What inspires you & your work?

Mostly, my Dad. He was so hard-working and overcame such personal and professional challenges. Unfortunately, he was diagnosed with terminal cancer, and he passed away.

 

What’s your best advice today for your younger self, just starting out? 

It would definitely be to be very attentive to "managing" in all senses of the word — managing my perception, my goals, my rigidity, my input & output. As I have grown, I have become more aware of energy and how to efficiently apply it to a situation.

  Product shot from AEROLD Fall 2018 Collection. Photo: Adeaze Ihebom

Product shot from AEROLD Fall 2018 Collection. Photo: Adeaze Ihebom

Who would you love to work with that you haven’t yet? 

I would love to work with a Fortune 500 company, [such as] Google, Tesla, NASA — these big corporations that deal with creativity in all senses. I feel like fashion goes beyond what we wear and its disposal — I believe it's also technology and advancement.  

Just like information/communication, clothes have developed from animal hides and furs to cotton, denim, and plant-based or technical creations. It would be a fantastic collaboration of minds to create a sustainable alternative to resources we may be running out of, or have run out of, as I feel like the consumption and bad disposal/unconventional production of materials is creating an unstable environment.

 

What do you love about working with menswear? 

I love the ease and fit of how I can apply it to creating unisex clothing. There is this cool edge to an androgynous/boyish aesthetic that works on a male or female client.

  Product shot from AEROLD Fall 2018 Collection. Photo: Adeaze Ihebom

Product shot from AEROLD Fall 2018 Collection. Photo: Adeaze Ihebom

What is your "style signature?"

Oversized, yet refined, casual aesthetic.

  Product shot from AEROLD Fall 2018 Collection. Photo: Adeaze Ihebom

Product shot from AEROLD Fall 2018 Collection. Photo: Adeaze Ihebom

 

What are five fun facts that we may not know about you?

  1. I am a very big tourist at heart, and I love to travel.
  2. I love sleeping (although I am always working.) 

  3. I lost about 35 pounds of weight, supplementing some meals/snacks for grapes and other fruits.
  4. I am going to build a multimillion dollar company that will sustain communities and business by working with its locals.

  5. I would love to live in different cities every three months of the year to further my goal of community sustainability.

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Can't wait to see what else Harold Kensington London achieves! To learn more about Harold, visit HaroldKensingtonLondon.com, or connect with him on Instagram: @AEROLD_studio & @haroldkensingtonlondon.

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