Gregory Dubuisson and Emmanuel Carboo grew up on different continents.
Eventually the pair would find themselves both working at Lowe’s in Worcester. Carboo was sketching designs on receipts.
“I do the same thing,” Dubuisson told Carboo when they first met in 2013.
Their passion for art, music and fashion has blossomed into a friendship and now the creation of their own business called The 4ce 2.0.
The energy between the 25-year-old men, who share an apartment on Uxbridge Street in Worcester, is palpable. Their drive resulting in them meeting famous singers and musicians, Wyclef Jean, Steve Aoki and Desiigner.
Aoki and Desiigner wore jackets designed by Carboo and Dubuisson on stage during a concert at The Palladium this year.
At a young age, both men knew they had art and fashion in them, but were trying to figure out a path in life.
Dubuission grew up in Port Au Prince, Haiti, in a time of turmoil. As his family worked to make ends meet, he began making clothing for his sister’s dolls at age 5.
“I would just start cutting up shapes and making outfits,” he said, sitting near his Singer sewing machine. “I didn’t know how, I just started designing.”
Carboo grew up mostly in Ghana attending and singing at his father’s church. His mother made and sold clothes to help raise Carboo and his two sisters and brother.
“That’s how I believe I learned the skills to design,” Carboo said. “I was a street kid trying to learn the ways of the street. Trying to learn what life had for me.”
Dubuisson moved to the Boston area in 2009, living there with his uncle. Carboo’s family move to New York City when he was 18.
Carboo began customizing shoes, selling his creations on eBay to make some cash. He created customized hats as well.
For Dubuisson, he wanted to become a doctor. He took classes at Anna Maria College and Worcester State University. One day, he realized art, music and design was his real passion. He quit school and began pursuing his dream.
They created The 4ce in Janaury.
The fashion, music and paintings created by Dubuisson and Carboo will be on display Oct. 27 at the Worcester PopUp at 20 Franklin St. The show is from 6 to 11 p.m.
Both self-taught on how to sew, Carboo and Dubuisson created their Royalty clothing line, which incorporates bright colors, flashy patterns and furs into jackets.
One day, earlier this year, they took a gamble to showcase their clothes to a star.
Friends told Carboo and Dubuisson that Wyclef Jean was at the Wilbur Theater. They grabbed whatever cash they had and designed a jacket in a few hours.
At the show, the jacket caught the eye of one of Jean’s handlers. The duo then found themselves in front of the musician, one Dubuisson idolizes because he is from Haiti.
“Wait, we are sitting next to Wyclef,” Dubuisson recalled saying in his head. “The whole reaction when he saw the jacket, I was like, ‘Wow’.”
They followed their gut again and made more jackets and brought them to a show at The Palladium in Worcester this year.
Using their charm, the aspiring designers got in front of Aoki and Desiigner. The artists wore the jackets on stage.
“It’s crazy. We imagined this would happen but couldn’t think about it when it started,” Carboo said.
“You have to take an opportunity when you see it,” Dubuisson added.
With their Royalty design, they want to empower people.
But they want to empower the youth of the city. Both painters and musicians, Carboo and Dubuisson want to show people it is important to chase a dream.
The plan for The 4ce 2.0 is to create an environment where musicians, singers, artists, designers can collectively meet and grow.
“We want to help the youth and enhance their talent,” Dubuisson said. “We want to show them, if we can do it, they can do it.”