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Inspiring Conversations with Morgan Davis of Morganeliz

Today we’d like to introduce you to Morgan Davis. 

Hi Morgan, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
Entrepreneurship and the arts have been a large part of my life. Around my junior year of high school till my sophomore year of undergrad, I ran plus-size blog and clothing line called Hey Big Trender — where I made upcycled vintage pieces for sizes 14 and up. Soon after, I received my BFA in Design with a Concentration in Fashion from Howard University in Washington, DC. From there, this created a full-fledged catalyst into creativity and business development for the past 8+ years. 

Fashion, and the arts overall, is so important to me because I see it as a form of creative rebellion for marginalized folks like myself — especially other Black, dark-skin, fat women. The fashion industry is inherently fatphobic, anti-Black, and capitalistic, so I use my designs as a way to create a safe space for folks to use fashion as an artistic form of expression and liberation. 

Currently, I’m based in PG County MD and own a business called Morganeliz, which focuses on providing made-to-order, size-inclusive (Small-7X) clothing, accessories, art prints, and home goods that celebrate the divine in all of us.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
It hasn’t always been a smooth road. I run Morganeliz by myself, and every garment, art print, accessory, etc. is. made by me. I love what I do; however, when you’re the head designer, marketer, accountant, publicist, project manager, creative director, and customer service department it can be a lot — especially when you’re running a business that exists outside of what is deemed the “majority”. Many independent designers tend to focus on making clothes only for folks under an XL (or at the most a 2X), and on top of that many believe that fashionable clothing shouldn’t be made for larger bodies. So, there have been many instances where my business hasn’t been taken seriously due to fatphobic ideologies, and because the clothing that I make doesn’t focus on hiding or taking up less space as a person of size. 

Appreciate you sharing that. What should we know about Morganeliz ?
Morganeliz focuses on providing made-to-order, size-inclusive (Small-7X) clothing, accessories, art prints, and home goods that celebrate the divine in all of us. One of my specialties are cowl neck tops and dresses. I love how ethereal they feel & are, and how they highlight the beauty in all body types. I make clothing (and other pieces) for folks who are not afraid of taking up space, who acknowledge that beautiful clothing doesn’t have to stop at a 2X, and understand the intimate dance between self-expression and fashion/art. 

What makes you happy?
Overall creating makes me happy — whether it’s just for myself or for others. However, beyond that, I absolutely love when I get feedback from customers talking about how one of my garments has become their go-to piece in their wardrobe, and that the fit is unlike anything else that they have. It’s really important to me to not only make beautiful pieces but to also ensure that the construction is on point — especially when I’m making orders for folks over a 1X. As someone who has been plus size my entire life, there have been way too many times where I’ve tolerated my clothing because that’s what was available in my size — even though it was made poorly. So, I make it a point to ensure that all of my customers feel great in the clothing that I make — or anything else that they purchase from my shop. 

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Morgan Davis

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