Zelda Wynn Valdes. (June 28, 1905 – September 26, 2001)

(photo: Dorothy Dandridge in a dress designed by Zelda Wynn Valdes)

There’s not much information on Valdes but in the fashion industry, Valdes is considered a legend. She was the first African-American Fashion designer to open up her own shop on Broadway in 1948. Valdes outfitted many stars such as Joyce Bryant, Josephine Baker, Gladys Knight,  Sarah Vaughn, Dorothy Dandridge, Ella Fitzgerald and many more. Valdes later opened a store called “Chez Zelda”on 56th street. Zelda Wynn Valdes iscredited for designing the first Playboy Bunny uniforms  as well as the uniforms for the Dance Theater of Harlem.  Zelda Wynn Valdes also helped creat the National Association of Fashion and Accessory Designers

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