The 8th edition of Heineken Lagos Fashion Week has come to a close. Serving as a hub to connect fashion stakeholders, the #LagosFW tent played host to over 50 designers, attracting thousands of fashion experts, enthusiasts, media across the continent and beyond.

#HLFWNG featured a series of activities including the Fashion Business Series Dinner, #LagosFWRetail in Partnership with #SheTrades and #FETSWallet, Visual Makers Fellowship with Canon, Green Access Showcase with Fayrouz and the Heineken Live Your Music After Party.

For the eighth year of #LagosFW, the platform expanded the reach of the Fashion Focus designer support initiative to other African countries. The 10 Semi-finalists for 2018 / 2019 season selected are truly reflective of its Pan-African focus: Larry Jay and Duaba Serwa (Ghana), Haute Baso and Moshions (Rwanda), Katungulu Mwendwa and Jasleen Matharu (Kenya), TAlakija, Rick Dusi and Ili (Lagos) and Naolila (Angola). They presented their work before a panel that included Rukky Ladoja (Grey Projects), Mazzi Odu (Editor Magnus Oculus), Nisha Nkanbar (Industrie Africa), Liam Freeman (Editor, Vogue International) and Londe Thompson (Project Manager Fashion Focus). This year we had over 5 of our Fashion Focus 2017 / 2018 finalists showcase their Spring/Summer ‘19 collection including the winner of the first-ever Fashion Focus X FETS Wallet Fund, Emmy Kasbit who worked with a mentor – Ijeoma Ogbechie of Avivere all season long on how to financially sustain and position a fashion business.

Emmy Kasbit

Fashion Business Series continues to be the platform where industry leaders across the fashion value chain engage with the private and public sector and have high-level discussions on how to drive the development of the fashion industry. This season was given a new twist with “The Gathering” an FBS Dinner, which saw members of Nigeria’s creative class gather to listen to an  insightful conversation moderated by Style House Files/LagosFW Founder Omoyemi Akerele with  Editor-in-chief of Grazia.it  – Tamu Macpherson, Visual Artist- Trevor Stuurman and Chief Executive Officer of the Commonwealth Fashion Council- Daniel Hatton. The discussion centred around “The Importance of Platforms in Fashion’s Ecosystem” with panellists emphasizing the need for Africa to drive its creative economy through telling its own stories, utilizing homegrown organic platforms and voices.

Beyond the runway, it’s great to bring to fore how fashion can be a source of job and wealth creation. Designers Consociate in partnership with Lagos Fashion Week, commissioned 5 designers from Nigeria, (Tsemaye Binitie, Meena, Clan) Ghana (Christie Brown) and Senegal (Tongoro Studio) to design shirts,  produced by beneficiaries of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council owned Human Capital Development Center (HCDC), an initiative managed by Style House Files as part of its commitment to the development of skills acquisition for the sector. The shirts were sold at #LagosFWRetail.

With the success of last years experiences tent, #HLFWNG featured over 20 brands at #LagosFWRetail curated in partnership with #SheTrades and #FETSWallet. The Creators Lounge by The Assembly in collaboration with Newton and David as well as the TECNO and Mitsubishi experience booths were a highlight for all guests who attended.

Day two welcomed the beginning of the runway shows, style enthusiasts paraded the grounds, enjoying the outdoor display by Newton and David which was the backdrop for Vogue Street Style photos.

Betty Irabor’s  “The Dew Collection” in collaboration with 12 designers including Toju Foyeh and Mai Atafo to create awareness on mental health was the first to hit the glossy black runway, followed by cutting-edge designs from Lagos Space Programme, DNA by Iconic Invanity fun and fearless SS19, Ladunni Lambo’s strong cultural representations, and a flawless close by Kelechi Odu, a menswear favourite.

Day three kicked off with a striking collection by Fashion Focus finalist Demure by Denike, Mitsubishi Eclipse collection with Sisiano, Ugo Monye’s Clan of Men, DZYN and Style Temple followed by larger than life pieces from JZO, Rich Mnisi and the easy breezy pieces by Tongoro, which was love at first sight!

Before the shows began at the tents on day 4, the Adara foundation in collaboration with TAN by Tiffany Amber launched a collection designed, hand painted and printed by 24 low-income women who as a result of the collaboration are benefitting an improved income and hopefully broader markets for their skills.

The final day of the 2018 #HLFWNG opened with House of Deola’s Lagos Fashion Week debut which lived up to its expectations. The collection was a reminder of her impeccable attention to detail with every piece infused with unmissable couture techniques, joining the line-up was  Fayrouz Presents: Green Access, an upcycled collection, produced following a training workshop in sustainable fashion, electrifying collections from Adama Paris, Eki Orleans, Elie Kuame, Maxhosa by Laduma hit the runway with Orange Culture, a finalist of Fashion Focus closing the show in grand style with The Orange Moon SS19 collection.

Heineken Lagos Fashion Week was brought to you by Style House Files and Heineken in partnership with FETS Wallet, Fayrouz,  NEPC, JC Decaux Gracelake and supported by TECNO, Mitsubishi Motors, Maybelline, Oando, and Garment Care.

Media Partners: BellaNaija, Business Day, Genevieve Magazine, George Britton, Guardian Life, Konbini, Pulse NG, Style Vitae, Ventures Africa and Zumi.

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