How the African fashion industry works.
Its shortfalls and opportunities
The African Fashion industry has come of age. Over 5 decades, it has gone through a lot of transformation holding from our history of colonialism. Before the colonial masters came into Africa, the clothes we wear identified us with our various ethnic cultural backgrounds. From the way we dress, our various countries of origin could be identified.
When Africa went through colonialism, its dress culture imbibed a lot of western influences brought in by the colonial masters. This to my opinion has turned out to be a positive development for the African clothing industry. Garments from Africa today are competitive because they are contemporary as a result.
In the African clothing industry, there is a lapse in the production and delivery circle. The way it works in Europe, America, Asia etc is that a Creative Director of a fashion label conceptualise and presents a collection in a fashion show from where orders are made. From wholesaling the clothes are retailed in various outlets from where they get to the final consumers.
But in Africa, there are no wholesalers, organised buyers or retail outlets. After the fashion shows, designers sell their garments one on one without properly channelled retail outlets.
There is a huge investment opportunity in retailing in the African garment industry. People in Africa have the great desire of buying African clothes directly off the shelves than the present practice of visiting a designer who takes your measurement and tailor the garment specifically to fit. The present practice is more expensive and time consuming.
Nigeria Fashion Week
Legendary Gold Limited
Legendary Gold Limited has been a vanguard in the Nigerian fashion and modelling industries. In its 18 years of operation, it has become the reference point in fashion and modelling in Nigeria.
Our major events are The Nigeria Fashion Show, The Nigeria Fashion Week, The Nigeria Fashion Awards and The Nigeria Model Awards. All these events are organised annually.
The local edition of The Nigeria Fashion Show has been staged since 1997 in Lagos and Abuja. The international editions started in 2000 in Paris and Milan in 2001. And since then, Nigeria Fashion Show has been staged annually in these 2 fashion capitals. The NFS has also been staged in Stockholm, Tel Aviv, Washington DC, Atlanta, Houston, New York, Dubai, Cape Town, Johannesburg etc.
The international events are organised in collaboration with the Nigerian Embassies in the various countries it has been held.
In December 2003, Legendary Gold Limited signed a franchise contract in Paris with the international global television channel, Fashion TV. This contract included the rights to stage The Fashion TV Model Awards in Nigeria in 2004.
Also in 2004, Legendary Gold Limited signed a contract to secure the rights for the New York based Ford Supermodel of the World contest.
In 2005, Legendary Gold Limited was appointed by the Federal Ministry of Information and Communications to produce fashion shows as part of the Heart of Africa project. We organised the fashion shows in Washington DC, Atlanta and Houston.
In 2007, Legendary Gold Limited got Nigeria endorsed as the 41st country approved to participate in the first World Fashion Week scheduled for New York , 2011.
As a result of our contribution to the growth and development of the Nigerian and African fashion industries, the President of Legendary Gold Limited, Lexy Mojo-Eyes was appointed member of the International Committee of the World Fashion Organistion.You can see details www.worldfashionweek.tv
Over the years, we have worked with the following local & international organisations.
- The French Cultural Centre, Lagos
- Franco Nigeria Chambers of Commerce, Lagos
- The French, Italian and Belgian Embassies in Lagos.
- Alta Roma, Rome. (Regulatory body for Haute Couture in Italy)
- Pret-a-Porter, Paris, (regulatory body for ready to wear clothing in France)
- Federal Ministry of Culture & Tourism.
- Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
- Produced and directed fashion shows for ‘Heart of Africa’ of the Ministry of Information & National Orientation in Atlanta, Houston and Washington DC.
- National Council for Arts & Culture.
- Italian-Nigerian Chambers of Commerce in Milan.
- Office of the Commissioner of Fashion & Tourism, Milan.
- UNESCO – Paris.
- Fashion TV – Paris.
- Various Italian, French & South African Designers etc.
- Various international modelling agencies in France, Italy, United States, South Africa etc.
- Ford Super Model of the World Contest – New York.
- Nigerian Embassies in France, Italy, United Kingdom, United States of America, South Africa, Sweden, Israel, United Arab Emirates etc
- The Nigerian Permanent Delegation to UNESCO – Paris.
- KLM/Air France, Alitalia, Kenya Airways etc.
- Produced and Directed Nigeria/South Africa fashion show tagged ‘Fashionably loud’ for the Office of the Vice President of Nigeria and broadcast by MTV Base.
- Produced and directed the Bayelsa Fashion Week in collaboration with the office of the First Lady of Bayelsa state
- Produced and directed the Benue Fashion Week in collaboration with the office of the First Lady of Benue state
Our international events over the years have given us the opportunity of working with top professionals worldwide.