Just like each year, there have been new entrants onto the fashion scene and we have also seen an all most ‘no show’ from some of established brands. It was really exciting to see many others thrive to stay top of mind throughout the year.
One game changer for this year has been social media as it continuously play a crucial role for many fashion brands who have been able to build their brand presence online. They have created campaigns and contents that gave them a voice and made them match up to even established brands.
Touching on major happenings in 2017, the challenges and the opportunities as we look forward to a greater and more fulfilling 2018.
There were quite some designers who have worked real hard this year to keep their brand visible and grow more reach. The likes of Sima Brew with her stunning Red Carpet Gowns, Ophelia Crossland, West African Ambassador for Swarovski, Christie Brown showcasing at Lagos Fashion and Design Week, Nadrey Laurent rebrand from Totally Ethnik, Afromod Trends showcasing in South Africa, Charlotte Prive, Atto Tetteh, Abrantie the Gentleman winning
Designer of the Year Awards and a host of many others have had a great year as they worked at keeping their brand visibly all year through both online and offline.
This year also saw the return of DuabaSerwa with its Nsubura collection and subsequently showcasing at Glitz Africa Fashion Week 2017.
Without a doubt, the young fashion designers emerging have a lot to offer and I can’t wait to see what they add on in 2018. Designers such as Lakopue, LJ Couture, Qwame Owusu have equally had a great year as they have left quite an impressive impression on our minds.
Fashion Shows and Events
Fashion shows are known to be the biggest events on most fashion calendar anywhere. This year started off with Accra Men’s Fashion Week (AMFW) in May, Mercedes Benz Africa Fashion Festival (MBAFF) in July, Glitz Africa Fashion Week (GAFW) and Accra Fashion Week (AFWk) in October. These events have had their fair share of setbacks in terms of publicity, organization, venue and timing. Nonetheless, they managed to pull through their events successfully as we look forward a more revamped ones in 2018.
The graduate shows couldn’t be left out. Radford University, BlueCrest University, Joyce Ababio Creative College and Design, Riohs Originate and Dreams College of Creative Arts all organized their graduate shows in a grand style this year.
Other events that took place in the course of the year are Fashion Forum Quarterly Series, African Fashion Voices by African Fashion Guide, Jump on Glitz and crowning it with the Vlisco & Co launch at the Untamed Empire.
Fashion Media and Bloggers
The fashion industry couldn’t have survived without fashion media and bloggers as they brought us all we needed to know in the fashion world. From designer Lookbooks, Features, Events, Style tips etc these platforms have continued to curate and bring us daily contents. The likes of Debonair Afrik, TrendsandBlends, AuntieOboshie, Fashion Ghana, YaaSomuah, Ghana fashion marketing amongst others have been constantly on the radar throughout the year.
Hopefully 2018 will bring good fortunes in regards to more collaborations and unique contents, live coverage. Looking forward to a new year full of energy and great contents from these media platforms.
Awards are crucial for any organization in business to gain recognition for its products and services and the fashion industry couldn’t be left out of this. Winning awards allows you to distinguish your company/brand from competitors. This year, we witnessed only two (2) awards. The Glitz Style Awards and Afroma Awards.
Hopefully in the coming year, we will see Ghana Fashion Awards bounce back bigger and better or other industry awards that will recognize and reward great talent.
Challenges and next steps
The fashion industry in Ghana still struggles with many issues. First is lack of a body to regulate and support designer’s work and their creativity. No organization has been able to succeed in pulling the various stakeholders under one umbrella. With a fashion council or board, fashion designers and other creatives can begin to work effectively with support from government and other institutions and gain direction to be able to build global brands.
Also, with a fashion calendar which clearly shows which event is on which date, organizers will begin to take note when choosing dates for their event. That way, the incidence of having both GAFW and AFWk on the same weekend won’t occur again.
As we get ready to celebrate the Season and New Year, I wish all B&FT readers a wonderful season. I look forward to a greater 2018 as I bring you more exciting features, personal thoughts and news on “Fashion & More with Faith Senam”
Have a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year.
(Post originally published in my column in the Business & Financial Times Newspaper on 22nd December 2017)Faith Senam Ocloo
Fashion Public Relations
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