A passion for fashion turns into a business

Andrew Chiwara, creator of Cozartts collection. Photo courtesy Chiwara

Two years into running his first business, Andrew Chiwara can say that he is a successful entrepreneur. Chiwara is a fourth-year agricultural business major at Florida &M from Broward County who in February founded Cozartts Collection, a streetwear clothing brand.

Although he always had a passion for fashion, Chiwara didn’t always sell streetwear. Before launching, Chiwara noticed the number of female students on campus and started Cozartts collection selling strip eyelashes and wigs.

“I decided to start selling stuff last summer and stuck with it,” Chiwara said. “After being on campus, I realized it was so many more girls than boys and a lot of stuff is sold to women.”

Fast forward six months, and Chiwara decided to stop selling lashes and wigs and begin selling clothing for both men and women. The switch came about when Chiwara realized how much more profit he could make if he catered to everyone on campus.

For years, those who know Chiwara encouraged him to get into fashion. The first piece of clothing released was a black hoodie with the words, “Allure De Jour Cozartt.” Now, Chiwara releases new pieces of clothing frequently. Cozartts Collection is well known on campus and grows in popularity constantly.

Logo courtesy of Chiwara

Recently, Chiwara participated in FAMU’s homecoming, selling clothing during market Monday. Like other pop-up shops Chiwara has taken part in, market Monday was a success. Although Chiwara does not have any plans of selling clothes in a store front, he intends on continuing to be a part of events where he can market his brand and continue selling merchandise online after graduation.

Balancing school and a business isn’t always easy, but Chiwara has friends who help lighten the load along the way. Friend Genesis Lyles says it’s a pleasure to help Cozartts Collection grow.

“I help take pictures in some of the streetwear by modeling for upcoming releases and taking Drew’s pictures as well when I’m asked,” Lyles said. “I’m just there to support him no matter what, because I see how much work is put into this brand and how passionate he is about what he does.”

Passion is what keeps Chiwara going. Those around him are influenced by his passion daily. Customer Emani Johnson says the love poured into the clothing is noticeable.

“I can definitely say Drew built his business from the ground up,” Johnson said. “Cozartts Collection definitely is a prominent brand at FAMU and has the best shipping I’ve experienced in Tallahassee.”