Thursday, May 30, 2019

Rihanna’s New Fashion Label Brings the Best of Business Cool

On May 23, at an intimate Paris pop-up store, Rihanna finally unveiled her highly-anticipated Fenty luxury clothing line under LVMH. Clad in a pristine white blazer dress with towering shoulder pads, she revealed the inspiration behind her collection, dubbed 'Release 5-19'. It’s about creating a style for women that makes them feel strong yet beautiful, the singer-turned-fashion-mogul told the New York Times. 'So in my case, and for this particular drop, that is making pieces that embrace my shape, but also make my waist look small.'

Her vision translates to a consistently bold and tailored silhouette that appears to be the core of the collection. From shirts to dresses, we see distinct corsets and power shoulders as a trademark. Suits are cinched at the waist by fanny packs, blazers are structured to show off feminine curves, and loose shirts are relaxed to show off some leg. Along with this, some utilitarian designs also make an appearance through Japanese denim jackets with cargo pockets. 

The pieces are reminiscent of trends from the past and present, most notably the resurrected androgynous or 'business cool' trend that have made their way from the office to the runway. Recently, we’ve been seeing a number of labels jumping on the bandwagon, such as Marc Jacob’s oversized suit that made a strong feminist statement, as one of Lady Gaga’s most iconic red carpet ensembles. Even ready-to-wear racks have started putting out their own variations of the 'borrowed-from-the-boy' look. The button-down shirt showcased on Woman Within is inspired by the famous boyfriend shirt, but with a signature style of its own. With a subtle feminine hem and a tunic-like silhouette, it flatters without drowning its wearer in too much cloth. Slowly but surely, these brands are helping to dispel the notion that girls belong in frilly skirts and dresses without pockets. 

And true to her ethos as an artist and businesswoman, Rihanna has ensured inclusivity on all fronts. The sizes offered up in her debut collection go up to a French 46 (an American 14), which is already a much wider range than most traditional luxury houses offer. This is something she made sure to prioritize, given luxury fashion’s flaccid history with inclusivity, as pointed out by Forbes' retail analyst Pamela Danziger.

The price range for the collection starts at around $200 for a shirt and climbs up to $1,500 for outerwear. Inarguably, they aren’t as affordable as Rihanna’s past entrepreneurial endeavors. The Glow Up notes that this has sparked some debates among fans and other consumers, who have since questioned just how 'inclusive' the brand actually is. However, buyers have to keep in mind that it is a luxury brand through and through. While Rihanna acknowledged that only a handful of her millions of fans could probably afford a $1,000 top, she explained that 'luxury couldn’t be something that cost 30 bucks.' She continued by saying that building a business based on quality costs real money. And compared to other luxury houses, her prices barely scratch the surface. Nonetheless, Rihanna says that LVMH has been supporting of her direct-to-consumer model. 

'Fenty has been my baby from the beginning, but the last few months have really been a learning process, both professionally and personally,' Rihanna shared in a statement. 'We have such a wealth of expertise at our fingertips now, with a core design team of 12 or so here in Paris who are truly the best in the business. It’s been humbling to watch them help me shape my vision to get it where we needed it to be. They inspire me to be better, and I feel like we are making it work.'

Credit: Fenty

No comments


Post a Comment