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2018 GTB Fashion Weekend: The thrills, frills and trends­­

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There is no other way to put this, but if you missed GTBank’s Fashion Weekend, you sadly missed one of the biggest events this year so far. It was two adrenaline filled days of pure, absolute magic as the best of the best descended in Lagos for the electrifying weekend that had fashion enthusiasts from all over the world (yes!), buyers, reporters and editors, models, designers and influencers coming together to celebrate and promote enterprise within the country’s fashion industry.

Here is a recap of everything you missed including the master classes and runway experience!

The Retail Experience
The bank wasn’t paying lip service with the theme of the fashion event, ‘Promoting Enterprise’. It demonstrated its commitment to growing SMEs, particularly in the fashion sector, in a sustainable manner, focused on empowering and growing the economy. The retail side of the event created an ultimate fashion experience where promising and talented brands showcased their products to a large and diverse audience of consumers, fashion aficionados and industry professionals. The over 80 brands selected, all ranging from textile, clothing and apparel, ready to wear footwear, jewellery and accessories, hair and beauty, crafts and many more, were not charged a fee to participate.

The Crafts Village
As in the past two editions, there was a crafts village headlined by Nike Davies-Okundaye, a batik and textile designer as well as the founder of Nike Arts Gallery. At the craft village, participants and interested visitors got the opportunity to watch live, the expertise with which artisans transform materials into fashion master pieces such as adire, tie and dye and batik and some of the pieces were sold at the event.
characteristic dramatic way. Monochrome, Cleopatra–like headpieces, sequins, dramatic hair styles, featured prominently in his collection.
Most impressive on Day 1 were Ituen Basi, Sukeina, Romeo Hunte and David Tlale.

Day 2
Lanre Dasilva Ajayi: she quickly reminded us why she is one of the best in the industry. Rebounding from a so-so outing last year, she put all doubts to rest as her collection was beautifully presented. Famed for her vintage style, Lanre didn’t disappoint as she flooded the runway with velvet, silk, chiffon, sequins, metallic on a large scale, all in vintage silhouettes. The addition of hairpieces added character to the collection.

Taibo Bacar: The dress and bag designer from Mozambique had quite an impressive collection which was old Hollywood glam and accessorized with his leather handbags. We expect those quaint bags to make their way into fashion mainstream.
Gert Johan Coetzee: The South African’s pieces were a collection of youthful looks; floor length red carpet looks, laid back casuals in floral, sequins and laid back colours.

Laquan Smith:  It was only fitting the New York based fashion designer brought the show to a close. Fresh off his debut last year, he was even more electrifying this year. From the very first piece, the audience went into frenzy and he didn’t disappoint expectations as he delivered beauty, class and the edgiest looks with his latest collection. His collection was to say the least, risqué and he proved that his designs were not for the faint hearted.

Street Style Trends
Street style was in top gear as attendees turned out in the most edgy, fashion-boundaries-pushing ensembles available and while we certainly approved of some, we were left confused by others. The fashionistas came in avant-garde style and struggle alte looks and as hot as the weather was, there were so many people in power suits, heavy trench coats, dramatic patterns and checks with colorful palettes, oversized outfits, colorful blazers, polka dots, ankle length boots, sheer dresses and hats, berets, stylish layering and ruffles.

There were a lot of stylish trends both new and old. Leather and pattern were everywhere, all manner of shades and fabrics. Bucket hats, berets, bikers cap and retro shades were surplus as well as bold belts, durags, fishnet socks and mini bags.

The event came to a close with confetti, fireworks and an after party and if you missed it, make sure you don’t miss next year’s edition as it promises to be bigger and better.


The runway, The Trends
On a positive note this year, the runway show started promptly at 7pm on both days and the wait to get in was unbelievable. Hopefully, GTB uses a bigger venue next year because it was a case of 22 inside, 222 outside. The runway shows, which ended each day’s flurry of activities, featured collections by ten international brands and three Nigerian designers. The well-coordinated show offered guests artistic insights into the modern world of Nigerian and global fashion design.

Day 1
Ituen Basi: The Nigerian designer opened the show and did she impress, paying homage to Afro beat by the late Fela. Her collection, which was a kaleidoscope of colours, featured a lot of fringes, bell-bottoms, ruffles and a bit of layering.
Sukeina: The Senegalese’s collection was a mixture of bold colours juxtaposed with white and black stand alones all complemented with partially sequined headbands and a heavy dose of fringe.
Romeo Hunte: His collection would be aptly described as fun, youthful, sporty with a huge dose of fur.
Adama Paris: The Senegalese designer is truly the queen of pastel as she has never failed to incorporate said colours in her collection, which had a lot of palazzos, lace, ruffle and see throughs, all in simple clean cuts.
David Tlale: The South African designer ended the show on the first day in his characteristic dramatic way. Monochrome, Cleopatra–like headpieces, sequins, dramatic hair styles, featured prominently in his collection.
Most impressive on Day 1 were Ituen Basi, Sukeina, Romeo Hunte and David Tlale.

Day 2
Lanre Dasilva Ajayi: she quickly reminded us why she is one of the best in the industry. Rebounding from a so-so outing last year, she put all doubts to rest as her collection was beautifully presented. Famed for her vintage style, Lanre didn’t disappoint as she flooded the runway with velvet, silk, chiffon, sequins, metallic on a large scale, all in vintage silhouettes. The addition of hairpieces added character to the collection.

Taibo Bacar: The dress and bag designer from Mozambique had quite an impressive collection which was old Hollywood glam and accessorized with his leather handbags. We expect those quaint bags to make their way into fashion mainstream.
Gert Johan Coetzee: The South African’s pieces were a collection of youthful looks; floor length red carpet looks, laid back casuals in floral, sequins and laid back colours.

Laquan Smith:  It was only fitting the New York based fashion designer brought the show to a close. Fresh off his debut last year, he was even more electrifying this year. From the very first piece, the audience went into frenzy and he didn’t disappoint expectations as he delivered beauty, class and the edgiest looks with his latest collection. His collection was to say the least, risqué and he proved that his designs were not for the faint hearted.

Street Style Trends
Street style was in top gear as attendees turned out in the most edgy, fashion-boundaries-pushing ensembles available and while we certainly approved of some, we were left confused by others. The fashionistas came in avant-garde style and struggle alte looks and as hot as the weather was, there were so many people in power suits, heavy trench coats, dramatic patterns and checks with colorful palettes, oversized outfits, colorful blazers, polka dots, ankle length boots, sheer dresses and hats, berets, stylish layering and ruffles.

There were a lot of stylish trends both new and old. Leather and pattern were everywhere, all manner of shades and fabrics. Bucket hats, berets, bikers cap and retro shades were surplus as well as bold belts, durags, fishnet socks and mini bags.

The event came to a close with confetti, fireworks and an after party and if you missed it, make sure you don’t miss next year’s edition as it promises to be bigger and better.

The Master Classes
The master classes provided a platform for ideas to be shared and nurtured while also providing fashion entrepreneurs the unique opportunity to learn from global industry leaders and experienced brands. Relevant topics addressing challenges and opportunities, fashion entrepreneurship, growth and profitability, physical and e-commerce retailing, fashion blogging, fashion journalism and so on were discussed.

Speakers included Dapper Dan (Making A Fashion Statement), Taofeek Abijako (Understanding the Industry: Starting Out), Nikki Ogunnaike (Diversity in Fashion), Nai’vasha Johnson (How to express yourself through hair), Julia Sarr Jamois (Authenticity in Style and Global Fashion Trends), Nicholas Kirkwood (the art of building an empire with heels), Anne Trevelyan and Stavros Karelis (The concept of fashion Curation) and as these global industry leaders dished out invaluable gems, the eager audience lapped it up.

While the master classes were in full swing, three designers, Jane Michael, Sevon Dejana and Abiola Olusola put up a presentation of their exclusive designs towards the entrance of the VIP section.


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