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Designers Ashley R. Ryles of AR’RYLES and Charlene Dunbar of suakoko betty had some seriously fierce looks hitting the runway at this year’s Essence Street Style Block Party.

The AR’RYLES line stood out with its sophisticated pencil skirts, blouses and jumpsuits that are perfect for the office or for a night out on the town. The collection is inspired by Ashley’s travel experiences and her time working with Badgley Mischka and Elise Overland.

Ashley said she was motivated by design mentor Ron Bass to “design without limits” and that being involved with the event “ignited a flame” for her future work. Ashley’s motivation shows, as AR’RYLES defined itself through its sleek layering and rich color coordination.

Charlene, however, put out some strong competition with her gorgeous, African-inspired designs. Onlookers marveled at the bold, modern patterns contrasted with its traditional cuts in the suakoko betty collection. The suakoko betty line is unique in that fabrics for each piece are hand-dyed in Liberia to make custom garments for each and every buyer.

Charlene says that she focused on playing with mesh and varying textures to put together her collection for the Essence event.

“It’s amazing,” Charlene said. “To take an idea from a sketch on a paper to see it on stage and just hear the audience react, it was great.”

We don’t know about you, but Team Beautiful was beyond impressed with Ashley and Charlene’s work. See their fabulous clothes at Essence’s long-awaited block party in the video above.


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