By JR Valrey, The People’s Minister of Information
Jordan “Jona” Robertson is the main architect behind a locally-based fashion brand, targeting inner-city Black people, called “Blvck Privilege”. The brand’s purpose is to arm the wearer with confidence and empowerment, as a shield, to protect against the centuries-old, racist perspectives that white people have of Black people, in a white dominated society like the U.S.. The Bay Area has traditionally been a place where people march to the rhythm of their own drums, such as in Hip Hop, where it is the home of out-the-trunk hustlin’; Jordan is taking the same mentality that made E-40 and Too Short household names, and applying it to the fashion.
Far from just a tshirt dealer posing as a fashion label which is now the trend, “BLVCK PRIVILEGE”, has expanded into making leather and silk pieces, in an effort to upstage the white luxury brands that Black people spend billions of dollars with every year, trying to look as if we are validated by the same white society that has been proven to hate us, en masse.
Jordan “Jona” Robertson is a trailblazer and innovator in today’s fashion, in a post covid world, where people seem to be a bit more conscious of the choices they make, and who benefits, in the post-Breonna Taylor/George Floyd era of this country. We can beg, cry, and protest injustice all we want, but that does not sideline the hard work of building an infrastructure that is for us, and by us.
Jordan “Jona” Robertson speaks about his fashion brand, “BLVCK PRIVILEGE”. Check him out in his own words.
JR Valrey: Can you tell us a little bit about your brand? What is “Blvck Privilege” about, concept and fashion-wise? What does the name mean?
Jordan Robertson: “BLVCK PRIVILEGE” – the name itself means that it is a privilege to be you, to be Black! That we are entitled to more than the second class citizenship that they demand we accept! As far as the design: the “a” was replaced with a V for a couple reasons. The V is actually representative of a pyramid, the most well known thing that is most associated with the “golden age of Black peoples”. It is upside down because I feel we have lost our way and will only be made right (flipped right side up) by re-educating, refocusing, and re-realizing the potential we have! The V also points to “I” planting the subconscious message that it starts with “I” and it is a privilege to be you, OWN IT!
JR Valrey: What makes your brand cutting edge?
Jordan Robertson: The concepts, the message, the timeless pieces that come from “BLVCK PRIVILEGE” make it cutting edge! The flexibility and accessibility of the brand make it cutting edge. In a world where brick and mortar establishments are closing at a rapid pace, we have found a home in being online as well as being mobile! Fashion should represent culture, culture represents the soul of a people, my brand represents and embodies the soul of my people, the message of my culture and the cutting edge theme that fashion can represent an ideology.
JR Valrey: Where are you from? How did your roots motivate your brand?
Jordan Robertson: I am from Oakland California. Growing up in Oakland is rough! I’ve lost more friends than I can count, including two of my best friends, and it just seems to never end! It’s a place where if you aren’t mentally strong, you will not survive! At the bottom, there’s a culture of hopelessness and despair. I want the brand to be an example of what we are capable of, and to plant the seed of self worth through fashion. The entrepreneurial and empowering flowers budding now are more so an extension of these roots than motivated by them!
JR Valrey: What kind of pieces do you offer? How did you choose these articles for the brand?
Jordan Robertson: I started off simple with t-shirts, track suits, and hats to showcase the lettering and message of the brand first! Leather goods were among the first releases to set a tone, and announce to the world that this is a brand whose priority is quality; the highest quality! I chose leather goods, because I want to provide us with an alternative to the luxury brands that we spend with, an alternative that has a story and a message.
JR Valrey: How did you get into fashion?
Jordan Robertson: I got into fashion to change the world! People wear clothes which are walking advertisements! In my soul, I am a creator and while fashion has always been a part of who I am, I made it my profession because it enables me not only to be creative, but to educate and empower as well!
JR Valrey: Who inspires you? Why?
Jordan Robertson: I am inspired most by my ancestors! I am inspired by leaders like Muhammad Ali for his sacrifice and commitment. I am inspired by the never ending growth of Malcolm X. I am inspired by Kanye West, Tupac, Dapper Dan, and Virgil Abloh. I am inspired by the trenches! They motivate and give me purpose more than idolizing any celebrity ever could! They inspire me to help in every way I can. One of my biggest inspirations has been Mistah Fab! I can only dream of having the impact he has had, and his character is golden. He truly is an example of what we could be, and more importantly what we should be, when we do what we could.
JR Valrey: How big is the brand, staff wise and distribution wise?
Jordan Robertson: Staff wise, the brand currently employs one. The owner/managing member is responsible for everything from marketing content and design, to manufacturing and distribution. As the brand grows, I hope to not only empower our people, but employ them as well.
JR Valrey: What are your aspirations over the next five years for the brand?
Jordan Robertson: In the next five years, “BLVCK PRIVILEGE” will scale to being one of the top black owned luxury brands on the west coast; with leather goods, silk pieces and urban wear that empowers education.
I started this company to give back to my community! 25% of all proceeds will be used for community outreach and rebuilding! In the first five years,“BLVCK PRIVILEGE”, god willing, will open a resource center in Oakland with the proceeds. Over the first 20 years, we aim to open many more.
JR Valrey: How do you want people to feel wearing your brand?
Jordan Robertson: I created the brand as a way to plant the seed of self worth and confidence within our people. I want those who wear it to feel confident and capable of all things, despite what they go through or see in the world! I want my merch and brand to serve as counter-programming to the self destructive conditioning we are subjected to.
JR Valrey: How can people keep up with you online?
Jordan Robertson: People can find me at:
FB Blvck Privilege LLC