Charles Smith II Premiers Striking, Personal Collection



The following words will not be mentioned in this article: edgy, contemporary, and New York.

Those who were present in the crowd at Charles Smith’s debut fashion show last Friday, August 30th, might expect such a description. You’ll not read that here, and this is why.


Smith (pictured above) is the 24-year old Creative Director of Smith II. The Harlem native may still be in school for fashion design at the Art Institute of Dallas, but he kicked his career into high gear with the launch of his line in December 2012. Last Friday’s show at The Blow-Up Gallery in the Shops at Park Lane marked its official public premier.



Packed with leather, mesh, exposed zippers, and even some wild faux fur, the collection doesn’t sound like anything all that different at first. But the beauty of the garments, what set them apart, was the details. A top was cut to expose more than a hint of breast. Zippers hung below hemlines. Mesh draped against models’ bodies, drawing lingering stares.



It wasn’t perfection, but it wasn’t intended to be. This line was Charles Smith personified, his passion and raw talent packaged for all to see. The show was meant to excite, and maybe leave onlookers a little uncomfortable. It transcended clichéd adjectives.



As models walked with sleek hair and black lips, the buzz was visible in the audience. Filled with recognizable faces from the Dallas fashion scene, as well as close friends and colleagues of Smith’s, all were aware of the time and work that went into the presentation.

With his first collection and an e-commerce store already in place, we anticipate what will come next from Charles Smith. After all, he has yet to graduate, and many skills will be polished in school. For a debut, however, Friday was a major success.



All departed feeling more than a little proud of their friend. And they had every right to be. For more information or to purchase pieces from the collection, visit


All photos, credit Heather Lettieri for DFW Style Daily.