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Tagged: cheryl song, Crystal McCarey, fashion, Fashion designer, featured, Jeffrey Daniel, Juliette Hagerman, kellita smith, lifestyle, mc hammer, Michelle Stevenson, Myron Montgomery, natalie cole, Nieci Payne, Reginald Thornton, Right On! Do you ever wonder where many of the Soul Train dancers of the eighties and early nineties got some of their unique and elaborate outfits and fashions from?
Toney Briggs:  Soul Train was one of the first things that inspired me to want to get into fashion design.
Toney Briggs:  I was a really big fan of Patricia Davis as well as Fawn Quinones, Sharon Hill, Sheri Beyers, Sherry Foster, Jermaine Stewart and Jody Watley. Toney Briggs:  What ended up happening was that I had fashion shows in the city I grew up in.
Toney Briggs: I found out I had a cousin on Soul Train named Junior, and I was trying my best to get in touch with him. Toney Briggs: Cheryl was working at the office at the time and when she told me who she was, that was my beginning of designing clothes for the Soul Train dancers. Toney Briggs:  I remember one time I did this dress for Sheila and Pam Brown, the show’s head coordinator, did not want her to wear that dress.
Toney Briggs:  I remember getting a call that there was this girl looking for some lace outfits and she saw some lace outfits that I made and she wanted to meet with me since they thought she was going to be a huge star. Toney Briggs:  I made some Hammer pants for Jack the Rapper, who was the biggest radio personality in the country at the time. Toney Briggs: I didn’t get to do any outfits for Janet but I did make some outfits for Michael’s “Come Together” video, which I was so excited about. Toney Briggs: I’m working with this actress named Ariane who is on the show Total Divas that airs on the E!
Toney Briggs: There are so many talented women I would love to design, for like Kerry Washington. I enjoyed this article showing how Soul Train inspired your creativity and lead to your being a fashion designer. Turn on safe browse to hide content that has been flagged by the community as not safe for work. Turn off safe browse to show content that has been flagged by the community as not safe for work. I used to watch it as a child and it really inspired me to see the unique things that the kids would wear and the fashions that they had on the show.
My little sister, as well as my friend Francine Fox, were my fit models.  They used to try on everything and I really started to sew a lot. She said she couldn’t promise me that I would get in and she was not even supposed to be giving me that information, but she gave me the dates. I had to show my bus ticket to show that I rode for three days all the way to Los Angeles and I begged them but they would not let me in. Myron said of course.  The first thing I sent was some baggy pants of a white and cream-ish color I made out of my mom’s curtains. The meeting was the same day of a Soul Train taping and I said no, I couldn’t do it and I turned it down. One of the Soul Train dancers took me to Vegas with her to meet Natalie and I made a dress for her. He was revolutionary in getting rap music and R&B played on the radio back in the eighties.
They told me that Hammer’s record was selling but they didn’t have an image for him after meeting with so many designers.
I also did outfits for James Brown, who was like a father figure to me, as well as his background singers called Bitter Sweet.
The lady that was in charge of their group called me to do their clothes and I agreed to do them.
He gave Soul Train “the look.” He was responsible for designing and making thousands of outfits for many of the dancers on Soul Train and he got the stamp of approval from Don Cornelius himself.

I was also inspired by Diana Ross and designers like Bob Mackie that had that edge with the different entertainers they designed for.
When I joined the 4H Club, the leader saw all that I could do with sewing and designing and told me that I had to remain a member of the 4H Club. There was a bar that separated my mother’s kitchen from her living room, and I would sew and sew until I got that bar full of garments, and then sell them to the community.
But one day when I called 411 and I asked for Soul Train in Los Angeles, the operator said to me, “You must be looking for Don Cornelius Productions.” So she gave me the number and I called and Cheryl Song answered the phone.
I had also finally located my cousin Junior, who had just finished dancing on the show two seasons before. I begged and knocked on the door and the dance coordinator, Chuck Johnson, told me to wait after lunch.
It was one of those tight fitted dresses that showed your shape and it had a plunging neckline. She wore a purple and black checkerboard top that I designed and was the girl who danced with Michael during the video. I also had the opportunity to work with Sherri Shepherd, who wore my clothes on The View, Ellen, Jay Leno and on the red carpet. I thanked him and told him that coming from him that was a compliment since he dressed sharp all the time. He is featured in the Soul Train documentary Show Me Your Soul and is also featured in the book Love, Peace and Soul: Behind the Scenes of America’s Favorite Dance Show Soul Train which is available on Amazon and in bookstores.
No money or other consideration is being solicited, and if sent in response, it will not be accepted. It was his love for the program as a child growing up in the small town of Wilson, North Carolina that influenced him to want to be a designer, and he got what he wanted. On days I didn’t want to go to the meetings, she would knock on my door and drag me to the meetings to share my talents.
Afterwards, there was a radio station WGTM which was the main radio station in our city and the DJ’s name was Golden Boy.
People would come in and they would hear I had designer clothes.  I was just a child in elementary school! So when I flew out to Los Angeles I met Cheryl and her dance partner Myron Montgomery, and we connected. But she told Sheila that she could not dance on the show with that dress on and told Sheila to have a seat.
Things like that happened a couple of times but I would never let anything come between me designing for the Soul Train dancers. Me and some other dancers were her opening act.  After the show, I asked her manager if I could be Vesta’s designer and dancer on tour.
I told her mother who I was and asked if I could design outfits for Shanice and she said sure. There were four guys from Soul Train called the Soul Brothers and they used to perform with the rapper Def Jef. I sewed the first outfit and I passed it to her and she would sew the second outfit and we’d keep it moving. He adored me and told me one night at dinner that I was a genius and I almost lost it when he told me that. She really inspired me to go full flare with my designs as well as Kellita Smith, who played the wife on the Bernie Mac show.  I did a lot of her outfits for the red carpet at many events. I then told him one day I would have to do something for him and he said we will have to talk about that but it just never happened. A fashion show featuring some of the designs worn on Soul Train is also in the works, and a documentary about my contributions to the fashion industry by way of Soul Train is in development.  I also want to take my clothes to another arena where I can share them with the world because I know a lot of people love my work but may not know who I am. No offer or sales of the securities will be made or commitment to purchase accepted until qualification of the offering statement by the Securities and Exchange Commission and approval of any other required government or regulatory agency.

Briggs once said, “Fashion is [my] passion.” He was also responsible for the fashions of many other celebrities in the entertainment industry.
After I connected with everybody else and went back to North Carolina, I started sewing like crazy. Myron told some of the dancers about me and people were coming up to me asking if I would design outfits for them. So while Sheila was sitting down, Don looked across and saw her and said, “Sheila, start the Soul Train line!” And she got up and wore that dress out! He spoke to her and in four days I went out on the road with her, making outfits for her, doing her hair and doing her choreography.  I even brought in the Soul Train dancers on some of her performances, such as the Lou Rawls’ Parade of Stars and in a performance with Vesta on Soul Train.
So Nancy told them about me and they came over and I made them the baggy pants and they would wear them when performing with Def Jef. Eazy-E also called me a genius but when the Godfather of Soul called me that, it blew me away. An indication of interest made by a prospective investor is non-binding and involves no obligation or commitment of any kind. So I auditioned about eight of my friends and we started traveling all over the city doing shows. I would work in cucumber fields, tobacco fields, whatever I could do to make money to buy fabric and send the dancers outfits to wear on Soul Train.
It then snowballed into doing outfits for other dancers such as Crystal McCarey, Sheila Lewis, Juliette Hagerman, Nieci Payne, Reginald Thornton, Michelle Stevenson, and it went on and on. Renaldo Ray was the host of the show and he took us around Los Angeles and the dancers modeled my clothes. They saw Hammer at this club and he was wondering where they got their baggy pants from, and they told him a friend of theirs from Soul Train, Toney Briggs, made them. Come back in two days and I will have an outfit for him.” So I made this baggy, blue lame jacket with the big baggy pants, and they took it to him and it was history from there. To make an investment in any deal currently testing the waters on the SeedInvest platform available to the general public, the Company must first register and qualify the offering with both State and Federal regulators.
In fact, one time before that, one of the dancers, Crystal  McCarey, told me that Don told her he loved the outfits I was designing for the dancers. This was before “U Can’t Touch This.”  I made eighty or ninety percent of the outfits he wore after that hit came out. He adored my work and lifted my spirits and I’m thankful for the encouraging words he gave me to further my career as an entertainer.
We danced in night clubs, too, but we had to be supervised by our parents.  We would dance at the clubs and then we had to leave.
Jeffrey Daniels saw me and came over and asked what was wrong and if I was okay.  I said no, and that I had come 3,000 miles to dance on the show and that man over there said I couldn’t dance.
So when Hammer got to Soul Train, he saw Sheila Lewis on the riser and was wondering who made the outfit she was wearing. Jeffrey said, “Which man?” I pointed to the man, Chuck Johnson, and Jeffrey told me not to even trip.
So what ended up happening was Hammer’s vice president was at the home of Candy, one of the Mary Jane Girls, whose clothes I was making at the time.
But he told me when Chuck was on the other side of the floor to get up and dance on the opposite side of the floor.
They happened to be watching Soul Train and he made a compliment about Sheila’s outfit and that he had her information but lost it. Hammer and that they wanted to meet with me the next day so that is how that all came about.

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