AFTER falling upon dark times in his life, designer Ryan Mckenzie from Eastwood is finally ready to release his fashion line that got him through it all. “This collection was inspired when I looked back at my own life. “After dropping out of varsity in 2014, everything seemed to go downhill and I felt a lot of pressure,” said Mckenzie.He said he struggled with life as everyone around him either seemed to be studying or working and succeeding in what they were doing. Struggling with depression, Mckenzie said he turned to God and found the courage to dream again eventually finding a part-time job and getting back into studying. “After working and studying I then found a job in an NGO called Breakthru Community Action, where I currently work while running my clothing line,” said Mckenzie. Having gone through various struggles, Mckenzie said that the release of this clothing line, by him and his mother, was a direct result of the things he went through.“The inspiration for this range comes from the struggles I have faced and those that we face in our lives, and that no matter what they are we cannot let it determine our future,” said Mckenzie, who credits the strength he has to God. Working side by side with his mother, Mckenzie says that the two are an unstoppable fashion duo who do not compare themselves to others and use fashion as a way of sharing a message of hope through their clothing. Mckenzie says that his customers can expect his “STAY x HOPEFUL” clothing brand to feature lots of patterns and local fabrics with many different textures.“Nothing has been easy for me and I have had to persevere through a lot. This collection is a reflection of that and a message to all the dreamers that there is always hope,” said Mckenzie. The “STAY x HOPEFUL” official launch will be held at the Scottsville Mall on November 21 up until November 30 from 9 am to 5 pm.