Happy New Month!
I don’t know if this is a global phenomena or it mainly happens in developing countries but you will agree with me that in the recent past, ever since fashion found its footing in our countries we have been swamped with an influx of fashion events left, right, center.
This has made me wonder what the purpose of all these is and just how effective these events are in the growth of the local fashion industry?
Yes, I know we are still young and growing and in the process making some mistakes but at some point we have to decide to grow and make the necessary changes. We can’t just accept the status quo and rant in hushed tones whenever we get yet another invite to this supposedly promising fashion gig that will grace the presence of established and upcoming designers who have been showcasing the same stuff all year round because it is just too expensive to keep on coming up with new collection for a show that doesn’t even guarantee it will have buyers among the audience and more than that, you still have to pay to showcase yet you are a struggling designer, for lack of a better word.
This drove me to do a small research on what the West did right to change this situation in their country and why there is order in their events and the designers actually benefit from the shows.
The Fashion Calendar is an American bi-weekly publication founded by Ruth Finley in 1945, listing all fashion related events in New York. Responding to a lack of coordination in the growing American fashion industry, Ruth started the subscription based Fashion Calendar. The calendar is considered the main resource for scheduling and managing fashion events in New York City. Occasionally international events with relevance to the New York fashion scene will be included as well.The calendar was acquired by the CFDA on October 1st, 2014.
We can clearly see from this that what we are currently facing isn’t a problem unique to us alone but it was also prevalent in the U.S. The only difference is that one woman took the step and made a difference. We’ve had talks like this before but it always ends up achieving nothing but I feel just like Ruth we can start with one place then slowly move to other areas.
Nairobi being the capital city and the main fashion hub of the country, I think we can start with it. Just like New York, there’s so much lack of co-ordination in the fashion scene and I believe with commitment and concerted efforts a difference can be made.
If industry stakeholders could come together and brainstorm on the way forward and not just leave it at that but actually start on the implementation process, I believe this industry will grow in strides we haven’t seen. It will work for the benefit of both the event organisers, designers and attendees. Since there will be a list of the main events, designers can come up with collections to suit their clientele for the different seasons and events and the attendants can also plan to not just come and see but also buy some of the stuff being showcased. For the event organiser, this will be a nice opportunity to organise a premium event paying attention to detail and quality.
Making it a win-win situation for all of us.
I have also dived into the world of Youtube and you can check out my first video here.
Print Bustier Dress: Mia Mara Creations
Brian’s Outfits: Rajab Karume
MUA: Louise Kamina
Photography: Vince Njuguna
Location: Sangare Country Homes & Resort
I would love to read your thoughts on this.
Till the next post, enjoy your weekend.