Black History Month wasn’t always the 28-day celebration of Blackness we know it to be today. Back in 1926, Black historian Carter G. Woodson proposed the second week of February be named “Negro History Month.” The idea caught momentum, and by 1969, Black educators and students of Kent University advocated to make this a month-long celebration of our existence.
The first official celebration of Black History Month took place at Kent State from January 2 to February 28, 1970. Fifty-one years later, we’ve been uplifting Black pioneers within our community during the second month of the year. While it’s impressive to speak to the accolades of celebrities, politicians, and philanthropists who inspire us daily, there is a wide range of everyday entrepreneurs who are also worthy of recognition.
Black women are the fastest-growing group of entrepreneurs. Underfunded and overlooked, we manage to persevere by carving out our lane and starting businesses that position us for success. As part of a month-long series, we’re highlighting Black women who are making serious waves in the fashion and beauty industries and more. Kicking off this series is Mikaela Pabon, a wife, mother of two, content creator, wardrobe stylist, and designer dominating the athleisure world with her tropically-printed fashion line, Dressed in Joy.
Mikaela’s infectious spirit and love for mixing prints serve as the blueprint for her collection of joggers, hoodies, t-shirts, and dresses. It’s as if she transferred the sunshine of her bright personality to clothing. Her floral prints are reminiscent of her love for Hawaii and hula dancing. If you follow her Instagram page, you’ll see her occasionally bless the masses with her soothing, graceful movements.
Mikaela has been building her brand for quite a while. The encouragement from other fashion lovers is what inspires her to maintain her business. “Being able to share my unique point of view as it relates to style has been extremely rewarding. Knowing that my audience and customers really love what I create inspires me to create more,” Mikaela said.
Judging by the growing number of Black women-owned businesses, it is clear that we are heavily invested in building generational wealth and establishing our blueprint to success. Women like Mikaela inspire others who may want to morph their dream into reality. “It’s a great time to be a creative Black woman building a business. Part of the reason I started with a hoodie was because I was inspired by another Black women-owned business,” Mikaela exclaimed.
Before Mikaela launched Dressed in Joy, she was the owner of another brand that marketed unique pieces. She eventually shifted her focus to a colorful collection of printed athleisure pieces that captured the hearts of her customers. The outpour of love and support for her brand has been a huge source of gratification. “The most rewarding part is getting messages from customers telling me how much they love their pieces, or that they never wear color and prints but loved my pieces so much that they had to have them. I love to hear that they feel the same JOY I do when I wear my pieces.”
Elle is quite the hype girl. The mommy-daughter duo makes adorable reels that show how this mom of two juggles it all. Black women have proven themselves to be the superheroes of the world. From raising children to creating and managing businesses, we are living proof that we can do it all.
Black Style Blazers Series: Mikaela Pabon Is Leaving Her Bold Imprint on the Fashion Industry was originally published on hellobeautiful.com