(New York, USA) As the world prepares for the first ever World Cup on African soil in less than a week, twenty-three (23) year old Adiat Disu, the daughter of Nigerian ex-World Cup player Tajudeen Disu, prepares to rock and rumble America’s fashion industry with the first ever Africa Fashion Week New York (AFWNY). A parallel “reverse” World Cup history in fashion capital, dare we add.
AFWNY produced by Disu’s fashion production company, Adiree Agency, which takes place a day after the world cup ends (July 12th-18th, 2010), is according to Disu, intended to “break through the New York fashion noise” to bring Africa’s fashions directly to the Western masses.
Indeed while the continent of Africa and Europe enjoy numerous week long fashion shows aimed at showcasing Africa’s design talents, America/NewYork (SJP’s Sex and the City) fashion capital with (according to the US Census Bureau) over 44% of its population being the African diaspora, has been lagging.
“The fashion capital (New York), those surrounding the fashion capital and in the fashion capital need to understand [d]esigners from other cultures, said Disu to Ladybrille Magazine in answering our question “on why AFWNY?,” given the 2-3 African designers that now show at Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week since 2009. “We need Africa Fashion Week in New York to open the eyes in the fashion capital, which is such a closed and crowded industry, and to give these designers an opportunity, a week long, to showcase their stuff!”
Hoping to tap into the purchasing power of the cosmopolitan African diaspora in New York and across the USA, Disu’s AFWNY will be headlined by respected African design brands in the diaspora and from the continent including London’s Kosibah and South Africa’s Darryl Jagga. The event has confirmed the presence of prominent buyers and industry influencers and anticipates over 2,000 guests, within the week, including media, dignitaries, industry professionals and fashion lovers.
In preparation for the one week of stimulating and beautiful African design aesthetics, exhibitions, networking and shopping, among other planned events, Disu has already secured the support of the city of New York whose Mayor will proclaim July 12th-18th, 2010 Africa Fashion Week, New York. In addition, Disu has also commanded and received the support of popular and respected brands as sponsors including Revlon, Fela! Broadway Musical (nominated for 11 Tony Awards), Ladybrille Media Group, Inc., Skinny Water, Bisila Wines, BHF, Jamati,Arik International Airlines, Frontrow Style, Roommate Hotels and The Africa TV Channel.
While for many, youth might seem like an obstacle in taking on the experienced American fashion world,the contrary holds for Disu. A go-getter at heart who is not easily intimidated, although 23, Disu is no stranger to event planning and the fashion industry. The 23year old is a graduate of Bentley University, a leading business school in the USA, where she received a Bachelor of Science in Marketing. While at Bentley, Disu started the first ever fashion business organization, “Bentley Fashion Consultants,” an organization that still exists today. She has also acquired experience working with diverse clientele such as TJX, Inc., IBM, Showroom Seventh and Seventh House PR and Agent 0007 Entertainment, Korto Momolu and Duckie Brown.
Her acquired business skills and persistence is indeed what is winning her many supporters as she places Africa firmly on the map in the nation’s capital; coming off a global heightened attention on Africa during the World Cup.
Disu’s AFWNY will have stunning models, including some from Elite Model Management, New York, grace the catwalk. The go-getter intends to continue to rock and rumble the industry during the world cup and leading up to the AFWNY event. To that end, she has secured the graceful and cosmopolitan Metropolitan Pavilion as the venue for the inaugural AFWNY.
New York, USA ready to rumble? Ready or not, here comes Ms. Adiat Disu with Africa Fashion Week hoping to create a parallel “reverse” World Cup history in New York with the first ever Africa Fashion Week, New York.
Designers from the African Diaspora showcasing are as follows :
54 Kingdoms – Ghana
Atal Stella Uganda – Uganda
Arewa Designs – Nigeria
BebeGrafiti – Nigeria (Niger Delta)
Charlene Amankwah – Ghana
Chianu International – Nigeria
Côté Minou- Cameroon
Darryl Jagga – South Africa
Elikplim Gordon – Ghana
Fabulous Fingers – United Kingdom/ Nigeria
KiRette Couture – Cameroon
Kosibah – United Kingdom/Nigeria
Kozby World- Nigeria
Kumba Wear – Senegal
Lin-Z Inc. – African American
Osun Designs – Jamaica
Qétura – Nigeria
AFWNY tentative schedule is as follows:
Thursday, July 15th, 2010 Runway Fashion Show @ 6 PM
Friday, July 16th, 2010 Runway Fashion Show @ 6:30 PM
Saturday, July 17th, 2010 Trunk Show/Sample Sale @ 12 PM – 5 PM
Private African Soiree @ 10 PM
Learn more about AFWNY by visiting the website at http://afwny.com/.
BUY Tickets for AFWNY at http://africafashionweekny.com/fashion/ticket.
Founded in 2007, Ladybrille® Magazine is a California based pioneer digital publication demystifying the image of Africans in the west through contemporary African fashion and celebrating the brilliant woman in business and leadership, with an emphasis on the African woman in the diaspora. Our coverage includes stories on capital, access to markets, expertise, hiring and retention, sales, marketing, and promotions.