I arrived back from Lagos Nigeria after spending 3 great days attending the Arise Magazine Fashion Week and watching some of the best designers that Africa had to offer from around the world. As you may have seen below I did an initial review on the show and I feel no more on that need be said.
But to my great dismay and annoyance I came back to a number of negative reviews and comments that are floating around the web, Facebook, twitter etc and to put it mildly I am upset. My beef is not with members of the public or industry professionals that attended but by some of the comments of the designers that I feel are extremely ungrateful. Let me explain why;
Arise Magazine invited 50 designers from across the world to participate in AMFW and as part of the invitation they paid for the flights of the desi
gners as well as the flights for 2 friends or business associates to accompany them, they paid for 3 meals a day, they put them up in a 5 star hotel (their own room, no sharing) and furthermore they were not charged a fee to participate. The designers got to show their clothes to the fashion hungry, financially buoyant fashionistahs of Nigeria as well as receiving international exposure, as the AMFW was featured on ITV London Tonight, the Washington Post (who actually did live streaming of the event) Fashions Finest and so many other international media outlets.
Yes that's right all of the above was provided FREE and some designers had the audacity to moan and groan about the AMFW. Now hold on wait a minute, hear me out before you start asking what is my point – from the outset AMFW stated that they would choose 5 designers of their choice that they would fly to New York in September for the Arise New York Fashion Week gala show, which has become one of the hottest fashion shows at NYFW.
Now to the crux of the matter as to why I am upset is, as stated earlier a number of designers have been complaining about how the designers were chosen that would be going for NYFW and that AMFW had pre conceived ideas as to who they wanted to take and it was unfair and some of the designers feel slighted and that AMFW should have been upfront if they knew who they wanted to take to NYFW.PAUSE – RETURN
- Sorry people as I write this I had to go take a break and calm down before I continued as the words I would use to tell these designers about themselves would not be printable.
AMFW has the right to choose whomever they wish to go to NYFW, it is their money that they are spending so they can choose whomever they like and use whatever selection process they want to choose the 5 designers to go to NYFW, as far as I am concerned it does not have to be a fair and open process as the designer is not paying for anything. If the moaning designers don't like it then they can go into their bank account and come up with an average of $5,000 to $10,000 and find their own way to NYFW.
Even if the whole affair at AMFW was a shambles (which is wasn't) they still don't have the right to complain about anything that Arise did. In the rest of the fashion week world, designers have to pay a fee to be a part of the week as well as pay for pr, models and so much more out of their own pockets. Any designer that has participated in a fashion week and paid for it out of their own pocket would know how expensive it is.
I can tell you that AMFW must have spent at least 7 figures putting the fashion week together and designers not only got an all expenses paid trip but they also got to promote their business and talent at an international fashion week and for me that means don't be ungrateful, shut your mouth and use the talent God gave you to build your business and not moan and groan because you were not one of the 5 designers selected to go to new York – not everything in life is free.
Furthermore it is not good business sense to be openly critical as show producers like myself and others in the industry read your comments and will think twice about inviting you to participate in any of our shows and trust me if I were Arise I would never invite you to participate in any future shows.
PS: the five designers selected to represent Africa at the AMFW Gala in New York on September 14th 2011 during New York Fashion Week are Tsemaye Binitie, Jewel by Lisa, Bunmi Koko, Kluk CGTD and Pierre-Antoine Vetterello.
I can clearly remember 3 of the designers at AMFW Lagos and they are all worthy to go to NYFW along with any of the other 45 designers that participated in AMFW.
Hacking of Fashions Finest Website
Generally in my life I am an easy going person but when I get upset I get upset and it is dangerous to be around me. So I will say to the person or persons that hacked the Fashions Finest website and brought it down for two days you are soooo lucky I can't find you otherwise by now I would be on remand in Brixton prison for murder. I can't believe that after 8 months of hard work putting the website together and with many sleepless nights of putting the content on the site, which is ongoing, some lifeless, no good for nothing, I have nothing to do with my life, worthless fool decides it would be good fun to bring down some ones work. Fashions Finest is not the government or a big corporation website, so they picked on an easy target like FF. If you are a true hacker and think you got skills go bring down a fortune 500 company website, then I would have respect for you.
Anyway thanks to Zazel and the team behind Fashions Finest for working non stop for the past 2 days to get the site back up and running, you truly are superstars, also thank you to are avid fans and readers that sent emails and messages of concern that the site was down.
Hopefully my next blog would be more positive, tomorrows another day!