What a time to be alive.
Mere days after Cardi B’s blockbuster Fashion Nova collection raked in $1 million in one day, LVMH has announced Rihanna’s Fenty brand as their newest fashion acquisition, making Rihanna the first black woman at the helm of an LVMH maison (LVMH, which stands for Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy, is a French multinational luxury goods conglomerate headquartered in Paris that owns Louis Vuitton, Dior, Givenchy, Fendi, Celine and a host of other brands). Over the past 13 years, as publishers, we’ve seen a shift towards more points of view and a respect for all contributions–regardless of background.
The State of Fashion? A full on embrace of hip hop and the urban culture that has set the tone and the soundtrack of our lives for decades.
It all seemed to kick off earlier this month, as we celebrated architects Misa Hylton and Dapper Dan at the Tribeca Film Festival with the documentary Remix: Hip Hop x Fashion. The film delves into the indelible impact that hip hop has had on self expression, particularly the impact of women’s brash boldness in style. The documentary focuses on Misa Hylton, the creative eye behind the looks of style icons Lil Kim, Missy Elliott, Mary J. Blige, and others.
Just a few days later, the Olympics of Style aka the Met Gala took place. Attendees were told to adhere to a ‘Camp’ dress code, which refers to anything unnatural, artificial, or over the top. While the term was coined by Susan Sontag, the movement was made a reality by Black Drag Queens, a fact not lost on Pyer Moss and Lena Waithe who paid deference to them on the red carpet (the back of Waithe’s suit boasted the phrase, “Black Drag Queens Invented Camp.” The lines on their suits were lyrics from songs by Nipsey Hussle, Tupac, Nas, Drake, Meek Mill, J. Cole, and Kendrick Lamar. The absolute cherry on top were the tiny face sculptures of these famous rappers made by @JohnnyNelsonJewelry, used as buttons).
The aforementioned (Lil Kim, Mary J Blige, Missy, heck even Black Drag Queens) set the stage so that women like Cardi B and Rihanna could take the fashion crown.
From the beginning, Cardi B set out to be a fashion icon, and has taken the world by storm. The other night, at the Met Gala, she easily won best dressed with her dramatic Thom Browne gown, which encompassed the night’s theme in a bold fashion.
Days later, she paired down to a white skirt suit equipped with revealing zips and a neon onesie to celebrate her 2nd collection with rapidly growing fast fashion brand, Fashion Nova. The collection sold out quickly, raking in millions. The woman is on a roll.
Though we missed Rihanna at the Met Gala, we almost knew she had something up her sleeve. The Bajan princess who has been our Fashionista of the Year for decades has collaborated with LVMH on a line, making her the first black woman at the helm of the historic fashion power house. We’ve seen her selling power though her collections with Puma and with her Beauty line. Now it’s time for the Rihanna takeover.
These Bombshells show that anything is possible. And whether you’re from the Bronx or Barbados, if you have a distinct point of view and express yourself boldly and unapologetically, the fashion world will be at your fingertips.
A tendency perhaps frowned upon in the past, but now wholeheartedly embraced.
What do you think is the State of Fashion?