Target Showcases Shreveport Sisters’ Brand
Jolie Noire is one of five black-owned brands on the retailer's shelves this month.
American retailer Target introduces its shoppers to black creators and designers during its annual Black History Month celebration. This year's campaign – Black Beyond Measure – features a brand familiar to many Shreveport-Bossier shoppers: Jolie Noire.
Shreveport natives and sisters Keyondra and Kim Lockett are the founders of Jolie Noire, a luxury and essential wear brand created in 2019. Meaning "Pretty Black" in French, Jolie Noire joins four other blackowned, custom-designed lines this month at Target and is the only multi-product collection included in the retailer's 2022 campaign.
In May 2021, a senior buyer for Target emailed the designing duo and expressed interest in showcasing Jolie Noire in its 2022 campaign. Initially thinking the request was spam, Keyondra and Kim were elated to work with the nationwide retailer.
"To have Target reach out to us and explain how they love the aesthetic of our website and the aesthetic of our social media means a lot," said Keyondra. "Because we aren't sitting here twiddling our thumbs. We definitely do the work, and to have someone recognize it and show they appreciate it by wanting us to be part of their brand is really exciting."
"When we learned Target wanted to work with us, [Jolie Noire] was not even two years old," added Kim. "It was special because this is a reach we could not get as a new, small business."
After an agreement was finalized, Target's corporate staff and the Lockett sisters got to work. Color schemes were chosen, meetings with the manufacturer were had, and design ideas were solidified and executed.
The final pieces created for the genderinclusive line include custom variations of Jolie Noire's signature pieces, such as "Girl with Hat," "In Her Shoes" and "[Noire is] What I'm Wearing Today."
Now living in Atlanta, Ga., Keyondra and Kim, a singer/songwriter and fashion stylist, respectively, by day and lifestyle bloggers/ vloggers by night, created Jolie Noire after noticing retailers rarely carried designs that represented blackness.
"We decided to create what we didn't see in fashion," said Kim. "Our inspiration is black women, period. We design with all skin tones in mind, but we show a lot of love to those with deeper skin tones simply because it's not there."
As for the name Jolie Noire, the two wanted the brand's name to reflect their Louisiana roots and be a conversation starter.
"We wanted to make sure that 'Jolie Noire' would be used to challenge people and to educate people," said Keyondra. "And to help people know and understand what it is that we stand for: that black is beautiful."
"We're not afraid to put ourselves out there," added Kim. "It's a huge undertaking – a bold statement – to say 'pretty black' for fear of being exclusive to groups of people, especially when that's not our intention. We find that it's not problematic to celebrate what's uniquely yours and to share that with the world."
Following Jolie Noire's showcase on Target's shelves and website, Kim and Keyondra hope to see their designs in more retailers. In addition to the major retailer's reach, Jolie Noire pieces have adorned the shoulders of singer, songwriter and actress Naturi Naughton; rapper, singer and actress Eve; musician and songwriter Tasha Cobbs; "Miss Lawrence" from Bravo's "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" and many others.
"It means so much for us to be able to have our message and our mission out there," said Kim. "It's amazing because so many people who didn't know about us – who would have been shopping with us all along – now know about us. We are going to keep surging forward. Target including our brand has given us huge confidence.”
Shop Jolie Noire at a Target near you, online at Target.com/BlackBeyondMeasure, and joliexnoire.com.