Adama N’Diaye hit the fashion world once again with the Black Fashion Week concept. N’Diaye, founder of Adama Paris, Dakar Fashion Week and Black Fashion Week got a great deal of media attention thanks to her event’s choice of name. She stands for her great cause and is spreading it around the world. The first edition was in Prague, followed by Paris and recently Montreal. All editions have been a success and she clearly made a buzz by exposing Black and African designers. “Black Fashion Week aims to raise awareness of the contemporary black creation beyond African borders and show more diversity on the catwalk with models of all origins and creators from different horizons.” At first sight, may we all be inspired by the boldness and, most importantly, the perseverance exhibited by N’Diaye, whose work is effective despite the lack of resources and proper media attention at this time.
We’ve compiled our Top 3 Black Fashion Week Montréal Collections. The designers selected are Senegalese Adama N’Diaye, Ivorian Elie Kuame and Montreal label RUSH Couture by Claudette Floyd. We welcome their emphasis on looking for a signature as a designer and delivering nice collections with an array of ultra-feminine pieces, mix of materials, bold prints and patterns.
While we laud the courage and commitment to a beautiful initiative and cause, we still have to assess the content of the event. Is Black Fashion Week stifling boldness, creativity and innovation by prioritizing designers and models of color? We have to ask ourselves what our motivation is and how to achieve it without compromising the first goal. For Montreal, our questions are: was it a lack of money? Ressources? Time? Don’t get us wrong, this isn’t about all the designers present, but we were surprised of some of the collections at the Montreal edition — they were just “normal-already done-nothing special-déja vu.” To cut it short, there was nothing new here, it was all warmed-over.
Our concern is simply that some of the designers might corrupt the event by pulling down the quality level. It cannot credibly be proclaimed that because of lack of exposure that any designer and model of color should be part of the event. In order to help reverse the current trend, we have to focus on content, talent and creativity or it will run out of steam. Make no mistake about it, there’s all the potential needed to fill-up the lack of diversity and ethnicity on the international runway and create a favorable fashion environment.
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