We had the good fortune of connecting with Essence Yvonne and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Essence, what principle do you value most?
The principle that matters to me the most is being true to myself. Once individuals are comfortable being who they are unapologetic, their lives will start to reveal for themselves. When I wasn’t true to myself, I felt very confined and drained to denying my true self. Decisions were more manageable to make, and I felt a sense of freedom.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I consider myself to be a jack of all trades. My parents allowed me to participate in various activities at a young age. As a result, I enjoyed exploring different dance forms, fashion illustration, modeling, acting, piano, and art. As I got older, I expanded my artistic ability with clothing. After graduating high school, I moved to Los Angeles, California, and attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM), where I later graduated with a degree in Product Development. Newfound knowledge and confidence gave me the courage to start my streetwear clothing brand, BeTru2U. BeTru2U is an urban faith-based brand that focuses on more than selling clothing. It embodies the lifestyle of a spiritual being. I wanted BeTru2U to symbolize the opposite of what society normalizes. We produce clothing that has people amazed by the graphics but taken back by the messages. I also have a faith-based podcast to assist in filling individuals up with the word of God and positive messages.

Getting to where I am today wasn’t easy. I had to reteach myself many things. Being an entrepreneur takes a different mindset, vision, strength, and risk-taking. All this has helped me build character endurance and helped me apply it to my personal life. I overcame plenty of obstacles by staying in tune with myself and not neglecting how I felt through the process but no matter how I felt to keep going. Additionally, working with Karl Kani, The Godfather of streetwear, I learned so much from designs and what it takes to run a streetwear business during my time there.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
If I were a tour guide in Miami, I would take my friends to brunch at Yard Bird. Yard Bird has the most bomb chicken and waffles I have ever had. Since the restaurant is by Collins Ave, we would go shopping and splurge on a couple of items. One of the days we can go on a boat ride or jet skiing. Most of my friends appreciate art, so we have to stop by Wynwood and the Miami Design District, where the late great designer Virgil Abloh statue is. We can take in the art and a couple of pictures for memories in those locations.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Like the old saying, it takes a village. I would apply that to the woman I have become. First and foremost, God has helped me learn my true identity and help me find my purpose in life. Also, my family, peers, and church community have encouraged and guided me in my path. I wouldn’t say that it was easy. There have been moments in my life where I’ve been knocked off my pivot, but the presence of my loved ones strengthened me to push forward in all my dreams and goals creatively, intensely but gracefully like a Boss.

Website: https://www.bt2uofficial.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/essenceyvonne/?hl=en

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNmcwsg86PIfftyL2PYmfTg

Image Credits
Images by Jada Harrisingh @jadaharrisingh

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