A film called Looku celebrating the work of 11 emerging Kenyan brands and designers, including Favoloso By Nanu, Genteel, Nisisi Factory, Sevaria, Enda and We Are NBO, premiered virtually on Saturday 20 February.
Brought about by the British Council’s Creative DNA programme and emerging creative consultancy Fashion Scout, Looku was co-directed by Sunny Dolat and Noel Kasyoka, who sought to recreate the creative vibrancy of Nairobi’s street style scene.
“Whenever we see images of Kenya and Nairobi, often, it’s the landscapes and wildlife that are often prioritised, over the incredible and dynamic people who live there,” said Dolat, a stylist, creative director and co-founder of The Nest Collective in the Kenyan capital who leads the creative direction of Creative DNA x Fashion Scout digital publication Wauzine. “Looku and Wauzine are a celebration of Nairobi, Nairobisms and Nairobians in their glory and flair, a love letter from us to us.”
The screening of Looku was accompanied by three panel talks on timely topics like fostering creativity during crisis, reimagining fashion’s capital cities (moderated by Helen Jennings, Wauzine features editor and co-founder of Nataal Media), and the value of more conscious design practices.
Fashion Scout is a leading international consultancy and platform for nurturing, empowering and showcasing the future of fashion. Fashion Scout’s showcase events in London, Paris, Kyiv and other fashion weeks have presented a whole generation of designers to international media, buyers and influencers.
With 20 years of experience in the industry, our consultancy creates and delivers bespoke mentoring and development programmes for designers and organisations around the world enabling designers to adapt and build sustainable businesses in these challenging times – and providing them with the opportunity to showcase their work to the international market.
Metta is Nest Groups’ physical and digital entrepreneurs’ network, where they bring together founders, entrepreneurs, policymakers, academics and investors to collaborate. Nest Group is committed to creating collaborative environments that help corporates, start-ups, and our investors scale and succeed.
HEVA Fund have invested in more than 40 creative businesses and directly supported over 8,000 creative practitioners in the fashion, digital content and television, live music and gaming value-chains. From Nairobi, Kampala, Kigali, Arusha, Lamu to Dar es salaam, the creative sector is where the creation of new products and new cultural experiences is happening.
They want to be at the forefront of helping producers of cultural goods and services to build high-value, profitable businesses where new ideas will come to life, and where the highest potential for great profits, great jobs, and happy people will be found.
Not long ago, Menswear brand Labrum London launched their 2021 autumn-winter collection named St. Giles Blackbirds. The collection pays tribute to the black community that settled in London’s St. Giles area, which was full of soldiers, sailors, and former slaves.
The inspiration for the collection is Olaudah Equiano, a man who fought to abolish slavery. The collection itself utilised traditional West African fashion. For instance, the trench coat was a tribute to Equiano’s style. Moreover, the collection displayed loose-fitting tailored garments with voluminous statement ruffles with blue, beige and a pop of bright yellows.
Labrum London continued to be aware of the production wastage by having 70% of their collection made up of deadstock fabric and factory surplus from the previous seasons. They used durable materials to expand the longevity of their garments.
The accessories were made up of 80% upcycled materials.
Labrum dedicates this season to the heroes of ‘St Giles Blackbirds’. Celebrating a section of the black community comprising of; sailors, soldiers and former slaves that settled in England in the late 1700’s and soon found themselves poor, dispossessed and living within the St Giles in the Fields area of London.
Dubbed the ‘black poor’ they were dispassionately transported Sierra Leone following difficulty finding the solace that London once promised.
The group are symbolic of a familiar history and repeated tale: black people who are discarded as soon as they no longer prove useful. Today, the St Giles Blackbirds, defying the attempts of silence and being cast away, are highlighted by Labrum. Their story depicted as one of migration and great resilience.
Special thanks to; The blackbirds of St Giles Lesley Goddard at St Giles in the Fields Converse Creative Direction: Foday Dumbuya JulianKnxx Art Direction & Styling: Ib Kamara Musicians: Anaiis Kwaye Sheila Maurice-Grey Ayo Salawu Jonathan Moko Godwin Sonzi Renato Paris MUA: Riona O’Sullivan MUA Assistants: Hiromi Iizuka Chiharu Wakabayashi Hair Stylist: Shanice Noel Hair Assistant s: Franklyn Nnamdi-Okwedy Nat Bury Muriel Cole Carl Murray Danielle Igor
The fashion industry provides the world with a full calendar of fashion show events from across the world. From runway shows to trade shows, the fashion world knows how to keep busy. But which events are not to be missed? As most things in the world, not all fashion events are created equal. Some events just top the hot list year after year.
Here is a list of the top ten annual fashion events to attend, or at least dream of attending don’t forget to add them your bucket list.
1. Paris Fashion Week
The greatest of all fashion shows, it is one of the most celebrated fashion weeks held in bi-annually in Paris one of the four fashion capitals of the world. The event is held to showcase Spring-Summer and Autumn-Winter collections at the respective times of each year. Many of the notables in the fashion industry, as well as the well-known connoisseurs of fashion attend the event to view the designs.
Some of the famous designers who place their latest creations on display include Dior, Paul Smith, Louis Vuitton, Nina Ricci, Lanvin, Julien David, Barbara Bui, Jean Paul Gaultier, Vivienne Westwood, Givenchy, Alexander McQueen, Chanel, Valentino, Miu Miu
2. New York Fashion Week
New York Fashion Week is a biannual event which occurs in February and September of each in New York, one of the primary fashion capitals around the globe. The New York Fashion Week event is considered to be among the four major fashion weeks in the world next to London, Milan, and Paris.
The event is attended by some of the biggest fashion names in the industry including Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors, Dianne von Furstenberg, Tommy Hilfiger, Herve Leger, Brooks Brothers, Alexander Wang, and many more. It was established in the early 1940s and was the first fashion event across the world. The purpose of the event is showcase American fashions which ordinarily play a secondary role to French designs.
3. Milan Fashion Week
Milan Fashion Week (Italian: Settimana della moda) is a clothing trade show held semi-annually in Milan, Italy. The autumn/winter event is held in February/March of each year, and thespring/summer event is held in September/October of each year. An event of glitz and glamour in Milan, Italy among the big Four Fashion Capitals around the world, the Milan Fashion Week occurs bi-annually like its counterparts every year.
It is scheduled in the months of February-March for the Spring Summer Collection and September- October for the Autumn Winter Collection. It begun in the year 1958 and since has been counted as one of the most illustrious shows the world over. Prestigious fashion houses are part of this event which includes Dolce & Gabanna, Roberto Cavalli, Gucci, and Prada among others.
4. London Fashion Week
London Fashion Week is one of the primary four fashion week events around the globe which takes place bi- annually during February and September. The event showcases the latest trends and designs in womenswear and is attended by top designers and fashion houses in the industry who flock to the event to exhibit their latest creations.
It was launched in the early 1980s and is organised by the British Fashion Council discussed earlier.
Some of the designer fashions on exhibit include Antonio Berardi, Alexander White, Burberry, Beth Gilmour, Christopher Kane, Claire Barrow, David Koma, Eudon Choi, Erdem, Finlay & Co., Giles, Holly Fulton, Jasper Conran, Kevin Geddes, Lucilla Gray, Margaret Howell, Noel Stewart, Osman, Simone Rocha, Vivienne Westwood, and many more.
5. Berlin Fashion Week
Berlin Fashion Week is a relatively new event which takes place at Brandbenburg Gate each year during the months of January and July. The event was initiated in 2007 with the purpose of showcasing up and coming designer’s creations. Berlin Fashion Week is a collaborative effort of the Berlin Senate and the Berlin Partner GmbH, the central contact agency for overseeing new operations and foreign trade to promote Berlin as a business hub. The event is sponsored by Mercedes-Benz which also sponsors a series of other fashion industry events.
Since the establishment of the Berlin Fashion Week event almost a decade ago, the event has gained international status for many new and upcoming designers. The designers are bringing their fashions to the Berlin capital in an effort to get started on their way in the highly competitive fashion industry. Attendees can view fashions from designers such as Dorothee Schumacher, Ewa Herzog, Fyodor Golan, Emre Ernemoglu, and more.
6. Australian Fashion Week
The Australian Fashion Week is an annual event held in the country which aims to feature the works of fashion houses and designers from the Australian and Asia Pacific regions. It was first held in the year 1995. This event brings the designers and the retail buyers under one roof and helps the latter to purchase the latest in fashion from them.
Some of the noted Fashion names associated with this event include Lisa Ho, Alex Perry, Zimmermann, Toni Maticevski, Leona Edmiston, J’Aton Couture, Ericaamerica and more.
7. Dubai Shopping Festival
Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) started on 16 February 1996 as a retail event intended to benefit retail trade in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It has since been promoted as a tourist attraction.It is an annual month-long event, usually scheduled during the first quarter of the year, and attracts about 3 million people to Dubai.
Over the 30 day period, visitors have access to the best fashion brands from around the world with special deals and promotions, in addition to attending a variety of arts and cultural events. The events take place in the Mall of the Emirates and include The International Festival of Fashion Photography from Cannes which is an extraordinary showcase of the latest beauty and fashion photography in large format by notable fashion photographers.
You can also experience events such as The Diamond Fashion Show by Dhamani which features notable jewellery designers who showcase their exquisite designs against a sparkling Burj Khalifa backdrop. The Dubai Shopping Festival website is a great place to discover more interesting fashion events during this annual extravaganza.
8. Tokyo Fashion Week
The Japanese are known for excelling in whatever they do. Fashion is not an area where they are lagging in any respect. The Tokyo Fashion Week is an event which has steadily climbed up the charts of popularity over the years.
The styles and trends showcased are bold and often very experimental. Some of the most unusual fashion trends have come out into the world through the Tokyo Fashion Week and it wouldn’t be a surprise if this event slowly becomes one of the best in the industry.
9. Africa Fashion Week London
Founded in 2011 by Ronke Ademiluyi, Africa Fashion Week London ( AFWL ) is Europe’s largest fashion event promoting and nurturing African and African-inspired design talent ,with a collaborative catwalk, exhibition and business development program, AFWL has led the way in highlighting Africa’s emerging designers and apparel industry and has been at the forefront of bringing awareness of Africa’s burgeoning fashion industry to the international market.
Since 2011, AFWL has hosted 8 catwalk events and contributed expertise to at least 10 more events produced by 3rd parties such as The Mayor of London’s Black History Month celebrations, they have also showcased over 800 emerging designers & exhibitors, from Africa, Europe and America, to almost 70,000 visitors including buyers, retailers, influential industry professionals, and the media and is now a highlight on the annual fashion calendar.
AFWL brings value to designers through, contacts, experience and knowledge within the fashion community, with a core team made up of experienced fashion industry experts and business professionals, AFWL is committed to creating a platform for African and African inspired designers that not only showcases them to an international market, but also supports them in building a sustainable business that is globally recognized and promotes social change in Africa.
10. Los Angeles Fashion week
Los Angeles Fashion Week takes place twice, annually in numerous locations throughout the Los Angeles area. Currently, three event producers hold multiple day runway shows concurrent with Market Week (also known as LA Fashion Market).
While there are several productions that take place throughout the county of Los Angeles, a number of city officials, including Mayor Eric Garcetti and District 14 council member Jose Huizar, have awarded event organizers LAFW the official event status
CFDA Fashion Awards
The CFDA Fashion Awards, also known as the Fashion industry Oscars, this annual event recognizes individuals in the American Fashion Industry with awards for design excellence and extraordinary accomplishments in journalism and creative vision, according to the CFDA.
There is also a lifetime achievement given each year. But the highlight of this award show is of course the red carpet. Stars and industry people dress to impress in the best of high fashion. It is not only an event; it is a star studded runway show.
Fashion shows debut every season, particularly the Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter seasons,this is where the latest fashion trends are made.
Content courtesy of Nairobi fashion hub Digital Team