Do we agree or disagree? Well we agree, but not for the same particular reason giving by the headlining designer. For reasons that we explained a long time ago in an article entitled ‘Control Freaks Are Limiting the Growth of African Fashion Weeks’.
It seems that Abrantie’s critique developed through his experience of fashion shows in South Africa, of which he made a clear comparison between shows over there and that of Ghana, in his outlining comments “I have attended fashion shows in South Africa where they sent the invitations and everything to my team for free because they wanted our brand to be on their show. But in Ghana, fashion show organisers rather ask the designers to pay before they get on the show.” He Continued “even in South Africa, they take fashion shows very seriously—from the production stage, the models, to the commercial aspect. I attended a show there and it had more than ten producers, with one producer for each fashion brand.”
Although that part is true, but in a comparison of South African Fashion Weeks to the fashion capitals, SA itself is still far off the grid when it comes to taking form as a fashion week, again for reasons that were explained in the following article ‘Control Freaks Are Limiting the Growth of African Fashion Weeks’.
The article gives a clear cut understanding why fashion weeks in Africa can in no way be compared to that of main fashion capitals, not because of any inability to organize an event but simply because of the lack of unified structure organization.
However, besides the content exposed in the article ‘Control Freaks Are Limiting the Growth of African Fashion Weeks’, the truth of the matter is there is are many faults to be claimed by designers as to the limitations of fashion weeks and why African fashion show deserve more than a round of applause. Again explained and detailed in an article written a long time ago entitled ‘African Designers Need To Respect African Fashion Show Organizers A Lot More’
The aim of a fashion show is to take fashion to buyers who will see an economic interest and benefit from buying clothes due to popular demands by the public, created by the designers promotion and branding. Till today there is hardly one designer in Ghana that stocks in more than 5 boutiques. Neither do they have their production well versed even if they received buyers. And most of all, costs and expenses of fashion weeks are actually supposed to come OUT of the designers pockets and personal sponsors as they are the beneficiaries of fashion show events.
With the lack of appeal by African designers to their own nations, be it a fault by design, branding or promotion, obtaining the mainstream fashion weeks status becomes an illusion because the main economic wielding factor in fashion is not flowing, which derives designer to public. And one can see it when walking through Africa or even watching our movies. Meaning that by fault of the designers the fashion weeks, magazines, pr agents, and the fashion industry as a whole lacks finance.
In closing, a nations food industry makes money according to how many people buy food from the said nation. If sales are going well, this generates money for food wrapping, food tv shows, advertising food on tv, food pr companies, food magazines, chef training courses and so forth. If the people of the nation do not enjoy their own food at the hands of their cooks, then it won’t be a lucrative industry unless other industries invest or sponsor.
This is the African fashion industry, and the designers are the cooks, and despite how creative and great they are and how many people adore and buy African fashion, African designer brands are only just making the connection with the African market. Financial growth by designers spearhead any improvement and stagnate any limitation of a nations fashion industry, unless there is a government intervention.
Nevertheless, despite my overall fashion week critique, I do believe Ghana & Nigeria have various shows that meet international fashion week standard, Glitz Africa, Ghana Fashion & Design Week and various other events, depending on what bar with give to international standards. Once again for more insight on what a fashion week is, as opposed to what is orchestrated across the continent and non fashion capital countries, do read this article ‘Control Freaks Are Limiting the Growth of African Fashion Weeks’
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