Sneakers that Black teen designed to be featured in Oscars gifting suite

Academy Awards organizers reached out to 14-year-old Amira-Dior Traynham-Artis about including her kicks in the exclusive space.

The countdown to the “95th Academy Awards” ceremony is on and between Rihanna’s anticipated performance and the notable Black nominations, there is a lot to look forward to. However, this year’s Academy Awards is extra special for 14-year-old fashion designer Amira-Dior Traynham-Artis, who will be making her Hollywood debut.

“Wow, I’ve come a very long way. I know if I was able to go back in the past and drag younger me right here, she would be so excited and so proud,” Amira-Dior told New York’s ABC-7

The Brooklyn native and middle schooler began designing clothes and shoes a few years ago. With the support of her mother, she turned her birthday party into a launch party for her brand, Lane 1, the motto of which is “speak without saying something.”

Oscars 2023, young Black designer, The Academy Awards, Amira-Dior Traynham-Artis
Fourteen-year-old fashion designer Amira-Dior Traynham-Artis is the founder of the brand, Lane 1. (Photo: CBS New York)

Her designs have certainly made a statement. A few weeks ago, Amira-Dior and her mother Kenesha Traynham-Cooper received a call with an opportunity they’ll never forget. 

“They would like you to come out to L.A. and provide this sneaker for celebrities attending the Oscars,” Traynham-Cooper recalled. “I was like, ‘What!?'”

“Oh my gosh, the Oscars […] Is this even real? I can’t believe I’m here,” Amira-Dior said.

Lane 1 designs feature a neutral color palette intended to cater to all skin tones and are typically made to order and manufactured in Italy. But for the special occasion, 75 shoes will be manufactured in Amira-Dior’s native Brooklyn with the help of Gernie Company.

The teenager’s designs will be on display in the pre-Oscars DPA Luxe Gift Suite. But Amira-Dior hopes to see some of her favorite celebrities, like Zendaya, wearing her shoes on the red carpet. 

“For me, no matter what the task is, if I really have my mind set on it, especially when it comes to art, I’m going to do it,” she said. 

With dreams of one day working with brands like Nike and Adidas, Amira-Dior is probably taking a step in the right direction with this Oscars move. 

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