The conversation I had with the 26 year old fashion designer Ron Louis surprised me. Instead of him filling the room with words of who he is, he taught me who the world is. The mastermind behind the “Phera” brand believes in a world we control. He believes that not only do you “design the life you want” but that the thoughts we have control our actions and who we are. This interview felt like a conversation you have with a blunt in one hand and understanding of the world the topic of discussion.
Cheanell: Why are you “PLUGGED” ?
RON: I guess cause the people made me that way. This my city, I have to be plugged to do what I need to do.
Cheanell: Chicago doesn’t have a big celebrity culture like New York or LA does. We don’t have celebs just walking around. Do you look at yourself as a Chicago celebrity, do you feel like you’re valued in the sense of a celebrity? Do you feel important?
Ron: I try not to think about it like that cause you can get caught up in feeling yourself. I try to make it more about the culture and pushing my art form. However, it is important to go outside and meet people to gauge where you at. I see the love and respect it, but I don’t think too much of it.
Cheanell: I know years ago you had a music blog, and you mention before that that got you some buzz in the city. Which one gave you the most plug, fashion or music?
Ron: Probably music, I had a few clients just being in the culture because I started to do interviews with local artist. Organically, just me being around is what plugged me and not necessarily music or fashion. I started out just being a person that was around.
Cheanell: What are the cons of being being Ron Louis the fashion designer? We can guess the pros.
Ron: The things I run into can be annoying. I was at a restaurant and the waiter ran over and was like “Man, I’ve been trying to get an order in!” Im like aye I’m out to eat. People be all in your business, it can be a lot. I’m a private person so it can be a little scary.
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Cheanell: You said “You want to do something great for your city and be recognize for it.” do you feel like you gotten to that point?
Ron: Naw, i’m getting my toes wet. It’s a lot of things I have to get done before I become a face of my city. But I might not never feel like I’m doing enough.
Cheanell: Explain that a little more.
Ron: I don’t doubt I’m going to be successful, it just a personal journey. I’m chasing myself. It aint about success because success comes with chasing the best version of you.
Cheanell: And what does success look like for you?
Ron: Living my truth, being me and expressing, while pushing others. My definition of success is always changing. I feel like it’s never enough, and that fun to me. That means its always room for growth. I don’t want to get involved with anything and feel like there a ceiling.
Cheanell: Damn, I always thought I was going feel successful once I got financially good. I thought that was going to bring me happiness. But once it happened for me it didn’t bring me joy. So I feel what you’re saying.
Ron: We always say we want one thing but once we get it we like aw, this not what I thought this would feel like. Same thing goes for life. You can have the prefect situation but still feel sad or not fulfilled. Thats cause you aren’t checking with yourself everyday to see what that true being of you is . And it might not have shit to do with money.
Cheanell: What else do you want from life?
Ron: To be free and I don’t even know what that is but that’s the best part.
Cheanell: Thats not scary to you, to not know where you want to be or do next, not having a plan?
Ron: No, you gotta change that word to excited, and anxious. You have to change the words to those feelings. But you should be scared because that’s going to create a new you.
Cheanell: What are your fears then?
Ron: Jumping and people not understanding it. But more recently it has been not wanting to lose the people I know. I’m scared about out growing the ones I love and that mean the most to me. Them asking me, why you trying to grow, why you trying to change, why you trying to be better?