Student Timeekah Murphy Co-Designed for Beyoncé in Lion King Spirit and Bigger Videos
Timeekah Murphy is a student at FIDM and a fashion designer who, together with her business partner Brittany Duet, has designed for celebrities including Beyoncé, Cardi B, and Nicki Minaj. They co-design both of their brands—Alani Taylor and Deviant La Vie. Timeekah served twelve years in the U.S. Army before attending FIDM, and will graduate next year with her degree in Merchandise Product Development. Timeekah will be debuting her fourth collection at The Zenith Experience, hosted by Nick Cannon, in Downtown Los Angeles on Sunday, October 6.
Describe your design aesthetic: My business partner Brittany Duet and I both have individual brands that we co-design for each other. Alani Taylor is my personal brand, and my aesthetic is high fashion mixed with streetwear. I consider it bridge fashion. I like to take streetwear and turn it up a notch and merge it with different culture type designs. When it comes to Brittany’s Deviant La Vie fashion, inspiration sits at the crossroads of art and fetish. When we combine the two together, I believe we've created a new wave of fashion and art.
Who do you design for? We’ve designed for Beyoncé, Cardi B, Tyra Banks, Tiffany Haddish, Black China, Summer Walker, Nicki Minaj, and many other big names.
In what ways are you inspired by streetwear? I love the comfortability of street clothing. I wanted to take that and add it to high fashion clothing so that you can wear it on red carpets, to fashion shows, dinners, etc., and still turn heads all while being comfortable.
Your brand is named after your daughter -- tell us more: Yes, I started out as a street designer in 2011. In 2016, my daughter was born and we named her Alani Taylor Murphy. Her name sounds so elegant and smooth that I named my brand after her and transitioned into high fashion. Because I fell in love with street designs I figured out a way to keep both of them and still love what I do. Also, I want to leave my daughter with something when I'm no longer around—something she can literally call her own.
Who are your favorite designers? Mine are Alexander McQueen, Micheal Costello, and Deviant La Vie. Brittany's are Olivier Rousteing, Tlz L'Femme, Iris Bonne, and of course Alani Taylor lol.
How do you feel your experience in the military has prepared you for the demands of the fashion industry? 100% discipline. I still look at things as a mission. I tell my team all the time, "Give me the mission and I’ll execute and accomplish it."
What would you say to someone in the military who wants to pursue a career in the creative industries after their service? The sky isn't the limit and you can accomplish anything you set your mind and heart to.
You’re an established designer, so how do you feel FIDM is helping to prepare you further for your career? FIDM gives me the ability to learn the things I wouldn't learn on my own. The teachers there are very knowledgeable and skilled at what they do. There are many opportunities at FIDM. The teachers there not only care but truly want to see students succeed. I look forward to what doors will open for me while attending FIDM and thereafter.
What is one of your proudest accomplishments? We both feel that designing for Beyonce for the "Spirit" and "Bigger" videos was our biggest accomplishment. Because not only were we designing for an icon but we were able to be apart of history. We grew up on Lion King and now our children get to see this now and forever. Lion King itself is an iconic movie.
Any advice for current FIDM Students? Create your own lane, do your research and combine that with something that you love. Having passion and skill behind your work will make you want to get up and do it every day. Always bet on yourself, have a vision and don't let anyone change that because at the end of the day it's your art.
What is your biggest goal right now? To be apart of Met Gala.
Anything else you’d like to share? Stay tuned to what we have in store for the world with Deviant La Vie and Alani Taylor.
Visit thezenithexperience.com and Instagram @iamalanitaylor to learn more.