Heineken Lagos Fashion Week is fast becoming the splashiest showcase of fashion on the continent and it attracts high-profile celebrities, influencers and press to the city every October. Consider this your cheat sheet to who will be popping up front row at top designers’ shows, what to watch out for on the schedule and who you’re likely to be rubbernecking at the tents come Thursday.
Lagos Fashion Week officially kicks off the SS 2019 season on Thursday, October 25 (not counting the exclusive, invite-only Fashion Business Series dinner happening tonight). In addition to the runway schedule mainstays—Lisa Folawiyo, Grey, Mai Atafo, Eki Orleans, Orange Culture, and Maki Oh—there are several new brands and runway returns that will certainly make for some exciting shows.
The Newcomers & the Returnees
After a fashion week hiatus, Deola Sagoe and CLAN are returning on Saturday at 3:00 p.m. Out-of-towners and newcomers from across the continent are turning up as well, with Anyango Mpinga on Thursday, Tongoro, Black Coffee , Studio 189 and Rich Mnisi on Friday and fan favourite Maxhosa by Laduma, TTYA, Elie Kuame and Adama Paris on Saturday. There are other new developments on the schedule including a few new group shows – the Lagos Space Programme, The Dew Collection (Fashion For Mental Health) and Mistubishi’s launch in collaboration with Sisiano. This is obviously in addition to the regular Fashion Focus showcase (there’s also a screening this year!).
In other great news? As a clear example of the growth of the platform, brands are starting to experiment with off-site private shows (Tiffany Amber) as well as a much stronger retail focus with two presentations by Temple Muse and an Alara Lagos event where they will spotlight their newly minted Alara Emerge Awards and a trunkshow on Sunday—the bad news? Almost all these events are invite only.
New location. New Name. Lagos Fashion Week is doing many things differently this year. Something to consider as you map out your LFW schedule: The new location is in Oniru – make your way to the tents early, because traffic is sure to be zero fun.
Of course the BellaNaija Style team will be outchea with all the tea and fashion week play by plays! (Stay tuned for social and site updates). However, Lagos Fashion Week and Style House Files have spared no expense in bringing a positively dizzying number of top international writers, influencers and publications in town for Fashion Week.
From South African media mogul Khanyi Dhlomo – Founder and CEO of Ndalo Media and Ndalo Luxury Ventures, Tamu McPherson (AllThePrettyBirds), Anum Bashir (Desert Mannequin, Man Repeller) GQ Alum and renown Afrofuturist Trevor Stuurman; Sebastian Emina, Editor-in-chief of The Happy Reader and Deputy Editor of @FantasticMan; Jacqueline Shaw of sustainable social enterprise African Fashion Guide, Liam Freeman, International Features Editor British Vogue to the beyond legendary fashion critic Suzy Menkes as well as writers from Highsnobiety, L’Officiel and Teen Vogue – there are so many opportunities for designers and BellaStylistas to mingle and really shine on a global stage.
The annual retail element of fashion week and official shopping experience is back – now called the simple and prosaic #LFWRetail, brands participating include Oluchi Orlandi‘s LuLu Lingerie, Afrodesiac Worldwide, Tilayo, Tyna Fit, leather goods brand Aprelle Duany. This is also the spot to shop the super chic ‘Designer Shirt Project‘ collaboration spearheaded by the Zara Odu helmed Designer’s Consociate featuring Tongoro, Clan, Meena, Tsemaye Binitie and Christie Brown GH.
The Creator’s Lounge
Conceived by Pepper Chikezie and in collaboration with Newton and David, this is a much needed space for press and content creators to (in her own words) ‘to chill ,recharge, connect, work and create during fashion week‘. As always the space is limited so if you haven’t already now may be a good time to request access.