Pyer Moss Designer’s Touching Hair Tribute to His Father

Kerby Jean-Raymond, the founder of menswear label Pyer Moss, is known for his activism, both on and off the runway. For his fall 2017 collection, the designer made a different activist cry: a personal ode to his father in his aging years, illustrated through hair.

African-American model with gray extensions.
African-American models had gray extensions added to their hair to help “age” them. (Photo: Getty Images)

The collection, “My Father as I Remember, 1980-1999,” is the first part of a multiseason series called “Stories About My Parents.” After having what could be interpreted as a strenuous relationship with his father, an immigrant who arrived in New York from Haiti in 1980, Jean-Raymond’s collection aims to show that there is an unspoken, yet often forgotten feeling that although we may not understand our parents, we can respect them.

To highlight his father’s maturity, Jean-Raymond wanted to “age” the models.

Lead hairstylist for Metro Look Beauty T. Cooper told Yahoo Beauty, “When I spoke with [Kerby], he said the inspiration for the collection were his parents, so he wanted to age the models a little bit. So we utilized gray hair, about seven packs per model of Kanekalon hair, to give them nice, long braids, mostly concentrated toward the front so you really see it coming head on.”

Swarms of hairstylists encircled the girls, working on different sections of the hair up until the final moments before the show.

Hairstylists work on braiding a model before the show.
Hairstylists work on braiding before show. (Photo: Getty Images)

“For non-POC models, we decided not to do braids because we didn’t want anything being misconstrued or misperceived,” said T. Cooper. “We just wanted them to look business-like, so they have a center part and their hair is slicked back into a smooth ponytail.”

A sleek pulled-back ponytail.
A sleek pulled-back ponytail for the runway. (Photo: Getty Images)
Model with fresh, dewy skin with center-parted hair.
Models sported fresh, dewy skin with center-parted hair. (Photo: Getty Images)

“For the guys, we’re just letting their hair do what it does. Just one model [Kelly Gervais] has natural hair. They did a twist-out on her, and it was fluffed out, so it was nice and big and voluminous. He wanted her to look like a strong, natural sister. Her hairstyle is the impetus to what is happening in politics, culture, and African-American culture,” said T. Cooper.

Model Kelly Gervais in a
Model Kelly Gervais opened the show wearing a “Nothing to Say” shirt and a beautiful afro. (Photo: Getty Images)

Of course, the main hair statement on the runway was the gray and black box braids. Cooper walked us through how to achieve this look at home.

A model poses while hairstylists create box braids.
A model poses while hairstylists create box braids. (Photo: Getty Images)

You will need the Janet Collection Kanekalon hair (three packs of gray and four packs of black), which can be purchased at your local beauty supply store.

Hair from a local beauty supply store.
Hair can be purchased at a local beauty supply store. (Photo: Jamé Jackson for Yahoo Beauty)
  1. Part the hair down the middle and begin making square one-inch sections

  2. Take portions of the gray and black braiding hair and fold them in half together to wrap around the square section for braiding

  3. Intertwine your natural hair into the Kanakelon hair and braid all the way down to the ends

  4. Fold the hair up three inches from the tips

  5. Grab a few strands of the Kanekalon hair and wrap them around the hair that you have folded and knot it for texture

  6. Continue the same process throughout the entire head

Detailed shot of the black and gray braids at Pyer Moss.
Detailed shot of the black and gray braids at Pyer Moss. (Photo: Getty Images)

Read More:
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