By Funmilola Olukomaiya
Lagos Fashion Week returns for the fourth consecutive Season One showcase which provides the opportunity for a deeper exploration of concepts and themes from the October showcase.
This year, the theme is inspired by circular design, traditional craft and the need to adopt a more responsible approach to producing fashion on the continent. This season’s showcase will take the form of a three-week-long exhibition from the 3rd of April to the 26th of April 2020 titled ‘Woven Threads’ highlighting the work of ten select designers.
‘Woven Threads’ will explore distinct textile craftsmanship and its use of embroidery, weaving, spinning, and customization. The 3-week interactive project will host static fashion installations, salons, workshops, and fashion films showcasing the future of fashion beyond creativity.
Woven Threads is in collaboration with Fashion Open Studio for Fashion Revolution.
Now in its fourth year, Fashion Open Studio is a Fashion Revolution initiative with a purpose to shine a spotlight on best practice and innovation being led by fashion and textile designers, biotech start-ups and retail disruptors. Fashion Revolution is a global movement that runs all year long celebrating fashion as a positive influence while also scrutinising industry practices and raising awareness of the fashion industry’s most pressing issues.
Fashion Revolution Week is the #whomademyclothes campaign in April, which falls on the anniversary of the Rana Plaza factory collapse, which killed 1138 people and injured many more on 24th April 2013. That is the day Fashion Revolution was born. During this week, brands and producers are encouraged to respond with the hashtag #imadeyourclothes and to demonstrate transparency in their supply chain.
Lagos Fashion Week and Style House Files will present Iamisigo, Awa Meité, Nkwo, Emmy Kasbit, Threaded Tribes, Lagos Space Program, This is Us, Larry Jay, Bloke and Elexiay at Woven Threads.
These designers’ work highlights the link between the future of fashion and the preservation of textile craftsmanship across the continent as a foundation for cultural and socio-economic sustainability.
Commenting on the ‘Woven Threads’ showcase, Omoyemi Akerele, Founder Style House Files and Lagos Fashion Week said, Fashion can be a vehicle for socio-economic change and empowerment.
The value chain has the power to bring communities together but it’s still shrouded in mystery when it comes to transparency when it comes to the seemingly endless community of people who contribute significantly to designing, sourcing and producing the clothing we see on billions of people around the world.
The work of the designers they help reinforce our conviction that fashion can impact communities and change lives. Their model draws attention to the urgent need for the approach that everyone in the value chain ensures that every hand must benefit creatively and commercially from the process”.
One of the highlights of the Lagos Fashion Week Season I showcase is Fashion Focus Fund in partnership with Sunlight Nigeria. Fashion Focus Fund is the yearly business plan presentations by the 2018/19 Fashion Focus Africa finalists to determine the recipient of the Lagos Fashion Week Five Million Naira grant and the Sunlight Nigeria 5 Million Naira grant open to women-owned ethically produced fashion brands.
Amplifying their commitment to the Fashion Focus platform, Sunlight Nigeria will be providing two (2) women-owned ethically produced fashion brands with the opportunity to receive a grant of Two Million Naira each to support their business goals.
Fashion Focus Fund Finalists and Finalists for the Sunlight Prize will pitch their long term and short term business plans at a closed pitch presentation to select judges.
Another highlight is Fashion Open Studios by Iamisigo, Awa Meite and Emmy Kasbit. Taught workshops hosted by Nkwo, Yegwa Ukpo and Yemi Awosile and deep dives by Lagos Fashion Week’s Fashion Business Series to expatiate on the future of craftsmanship in fashion.