Fashion designer Stevie Edwards, who’s created custom creations for celebrities like Tiffany Haddish and Diana Ross, has died. He was 58.
According to Women’s Wear Daily, Edwards’ family confirmed he had been battling colon cancer since 2021, and the disease claimed his life on Sunday. Funeral arrangements are currently underway.
Last month, Edwards announced on Instagram that he would take a six-to eight-month break from designing “depending on the healing process.”
Edwards learned tailoring at Dunbar Vocational Academy before segueing into fashion design at what was then called Ray-Vogue College of Design (now the Illinois Institute of Art). Before starting his career, Edwards worked for local Chicago designers Barbara Bates and the late Reginald Thomas.
In 2008, Edwards launched the I Luv Stevie label and worked with stylists like Law Roach.
His three-decade-long career took off as he started red-carpet styling. When a silent investor offered to pay for advertisements for the designer in Vogue, GQ, W and Harper’s Bazaar in 2020, his exposure exploded.
Edwards’ investor paid for a few ads in major publications, including a full-page spread in a Los Angeles regional issue of Vogue. Edwards told WWD in 2020 that it was the first time a local Black designer acquired full-page ad space in the magazine. The ad featured a model wearing a black floral pantsuit designed by Edwards. The words “The New ‘It’ Designer” and the 58-year-old’s name were splashed across the page.
The publication’s October 2020 issue included the ad featuring “About Damn Time” singer Lizzo on the cover. The monumental issue also marked the first time a Vogue October issue featured a plus-size Black woman.
“I’m making history in the same issue,” Edwards told WWD.
Of his career, Edwards’ sister Aretha told WWD on Monday that it was “his world. That’s all he lived for.”
“All these celebrities like Tiffany Haddish were not just celebrities,” she told the outlet. “They were his friends. That was Stevie’s heart. What hurt him most was when he couldn’t continue his career. He hadn’t been able to do that was since the first of this year.”