Tuesday 30th of May 2023

Nairobi, Kenya

If Rihanna herself can’t hold down a luxury fashion label in 2021, then who can?

When I heard the news that LVMH was dropping Fenty (the clothing brand) from its roster and putting it on sleep mode, (or a momentary coma with indefinite return), I flinched, but nothing automatically triggered me. I love me some Rih Rih, but I wasn’t going to have sleepless nights over the first lady of pop music and beauty becoming a little less rich.

However, something didn’t quite sit well with me. For me, it was beyond Fenty.


There was a message there and it took me a few moments to grasp it.

It’s understandable there are those that perhaps feel like her luxury fashion brand didn’t have legs as she is more of a beautiful babe. It’s a fair point. Although her undeniable sex appeal and attention to diversity do sell lingerie (Savage x Fenty heart eyes), she isn’t really a lingerie designer either, right? Nor was she a beauty pro before she launched her sell-out Fenty Beauty range.

So it made me question whether there’s something else going on and whether we should be questioning the landscape of luxury when it comes to Black ownership and where exactly representation fits into this conversation.


One of the arguments for the closure of Fenty is that her core audience is ultimately not a luxury buyer. “I believe that the clothes haven’t done as much as beauty and lingerie, but that may be because Rihanna’s current demographic/core audience is millennial/gen Z Black, men, and women.

” says creative consultant Arrieta Mujay Bärg, 41, who was a former Head of PR and Marketing for River Island and led Rihanna x River Island 13’ collection. “However Fenty fashion house has only been opened for less than two years and it takes time to develop a following when you are doing something different from the norm,” Bärg adds.

The same may be said for a lot of Black designers like the super trendy Telfar Clemens and the super edgy, cool, and monotone Cold Laundry founder Ola Alabi, who often attract a more ‘urban demographic’ for lack of a better word.


By no means is that a bad thing, but of course for sustainable success, there is a need to appeal to as wide an audience as possible. Gaining respect across the board in that space is a hard task, but it’s lazy to assume that consumerism within the Black community or a specific generation is capped at a price point.

Bärg agrees to add: “On the same note. It would be inaccurate to say that her, having a majority Black following is the reason that the brand has failed. Developing a high-quality luxury brand and sticking to it is no easy task.” Barg believes that the same level of grace is not allowed fairly, and that may support the case as to why we see so few successful Black-owned/Black-led luxury businesses.


“Case in point: Edun – the brand fronted by Bono and wife Ali Hewson made LVMH a loss of $28million in a space of five years, and every year they were given the benefit of the doubt and they kept feeding in cash until there was no turning back,” says Bärg.

Written By Sheilla Mamona

Content courtesy of Glamour & Nairobi fashion hub 

Rihanna’s Fenty fashion label to close down after 2 years

The slowdown of luxury fashion continues with the announcement that Rihanna’s ready-to-wear line Fenty has been discontinued.

The fashion line, launched in 2019, made history as the first luxury brand run by a black woman and effortlessly chimed with Generation Z’s values of inclusivity and diversity. It was also only the second luxury fashion house started from scratch by the French conglomerate LVMH after Christian Lacroix in 1987.

Although it comes as a surprise  Rihanna picked up the Urban Luxe gong for the brand at the Fashion Awards in 2019 – the end of the ready-to-wear arm of Fenty is in part a casualty of the pandemic.

The brand, known for footwear, denim items, and eyewear, has struggled with supply chain issues and the singer, who is based in the US, has been unable to travel in order to collaborate with the Parisian fashion team.

During a press conference in October, LVMH’s chief financial officer, Jean-Jacques Guiony, also hinted that they were having their share of teething problems.

“On Fenty fashion, we are obviously still in a launching phase and we have to figure out exactly what is the right offer,” he was quoted by the New York Times as saying. “It is not something that is easy. We were starting entirely from scratch. Obviously, we have the great help from Rihanna on this, but I would say it’s still a work in progress when it comes to really define what the offer will be.”


Despite other LVMH-owned fashion brands such as Dior and Louis Vuitton bucking the trend of decline during the pandemic, net profits for the parent company fell 34% in 2020, according to the WWD website.

Fenty’s final collection, a collaboration with the footwear designer Amina Muaddi, was in November last year and its last Instagram post was on 1 January.

The shuttering of the fashion arm of Fenty will not affect its side projects, the lingerie arm Savage X Fenty and Fenty Skin, which are both considered a success in their field: the former made $108m (£78m) last year and the latter, which is available in Boots, has made £26m in four months, according to WWD.

Content courtesy of The GuardianNairobi fashion hub 

Rihanna Releases New Fenty Eyewear 2020 Campaign

Fashion house FENTY presented new Release 5-20 Eyewear collection for the Summer 2020. The collection features 3 new styles in 5 different colors the Off Record, the Classified and the Coded Sunglasses.

Fashion photographer Arnaud Lajeunie captured FENTY Release 5-20‘s campaign starring the stunning Mame Anta Wade. In charge of styling was Jahleel Weaver, with beauty from makeup artist Anthony Preel.

“I mean… sheesh!!!” is how Rihanna described her new Fenty sunglasses. Sheesh is one word for the three new eyewear styles, which the brand founder has created “to suit every high, low and incognito mood of summer”. Other suitable adjectives include, but are certainly not limited to: retro, technicolour, and one hundred per cent bad gal.

In @badgalriri’s world, a #WFHFit consists of a hoodie and some seriously cool shades. Thank goodness the eyewear is part of Fenty’s latest drop, available from today, which features a modern update on the cat’s eye in eye-popping colours like candy pink, acid lime and blue tortoise.

Rihanna debuted her Jet Black Coded shades during a lockdown shoot that brought high-fashion drama to her Instagram feed. Inspired by vintage silhouettes, the rectangular frames with subtle cat-eye shape are also available in Milky Way with matching coloured lenses.

This week, RiRi posted a selfie of her Acid Green Off Record sunnies  Fenty’s most vibrant eyewear yet, designed to “deliver ultimate summer vibes”.

The ’80s frames with animal print temples also come in Candy Pink and Cosmic Blue for “a summer of camera-ready digital fun”. Like the Coded pair, they retail for £280 at Fenty.com

If you can’t see yourself papping Insta pics in these classic-with-a-Rih-twist styles, Fenty is releasing a third futuristic pair in June. The Classified model has a “dramatic silhouette” with similar accents to the previous Blockt and Antisocial frames, and comes in Black Gold and Rose Havana for “an air of old school glamour and mid-summer romance”, according to the brand.

Rihanna – Designer
Arnaud Lajeunie – Photographer
Jahleel Weaver – Fashion Editor/Stylist
Anthony Preel – Makeup Artist

Content courtesy of Models 

You Could Star in Rihanna’s Next Savage X Fenty Campaign

This year, hot girl summer feels like it’s being replaced by quar girl summer but thankfully Rihanna has a better solution: Savage X Summer. Her lingerie and intimates brand has released its latest collection and is debuting a campaign, photographed on Rihanna and a cast of her muses.

It has everything you’d associate with Rihanna’s summer vibe: neon colors, revealing silhouettes, and plenty of sex appeal. What’s more, the campaign images seen here were all photographed in the models’ homes in collaboration with the collage artist Rafatoon, who used tropical foliage and dreamy landscapes to create a Rihanna worthy world around each muse.

What makes this drop especially exciting for those of us stuck at home is that we can get involved. As you know, Rihanna is the queen of finding new talent on Instagram see her “Bitch Better Have My Money” video for the proof and this campaign extends the opportunity for a Savage X star turn to all her fans.


From now through July, the Savage account will be running a contest where people can submit their own Savage snaps. Several will be selected to be photographed over Face Time this summer and star in images for a later drop.

So, really, what are you waiting for? Practice your poses ASAP and follow the @savagexfenty account for more information.

In honor of Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty second anniversary, the brand is doing things differently for its new summer campaign. The “Savage X Summer” collection’s campaign was shot by the brand’s own ambassadors and influencers exclusively at home in collaboration with mixed media artist Rafatoon. Plus, fans have the chance to star in Savage X Fenty’s July campaign, which they can learn more about soon on the brand’s Instagram page.

This article originally appeared on Vogue 

The New Barbados-inspired Fenty Release Is Here, And It Includes Collapsible Sunglasses

Since Rihanna announced the launch of her luxury fashion house Fenty, we’ve pretty much been refreshing our feeds for the first opportunity to get our hands on the limited-edition pieces. For those that missed the last drop

Release 6-19 explores items made for ease of travel and intended for escape – think light fabrics and head-turning prints (which we’d expect when Rihanna is the Artistic Director). The collection, which will make its way onto the website via two separate drops, features knit, satin and body-hugging jersey dresses that celebrate the female form, and aims to provide you with investment pieces to treasure for years to come. Plus, they’re limited edition, so you’ll have bragging rights too.

The collection’s colours hold special significance to Rihanna, as the orange, fuschia and teal tones aim to mirror a Bajan sunset, while the oversized graphic tees pack a political punch as they celebrate the immigrant experience and represent Rihanna’s roots. Though, she did throw in some Japanese-inspired dragon prints. Because, well, Rihanna can do what she likes – she even shot the campaign images herself.

And it seems Fenty has our Middle-Eastern sun in mind with this drop, as eyewear is being highlighted with two new styles – the first of which shields your entire face, the second a foldable laser-cut style. Of course.

This article originally appeared on Grazia Middle East 

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