Saturday 28th September, 7pm Bormann-Moreno Circus’ front gate is finally opened to its awaiting public. The appointment was made for 6pm but the organisation was obviously playing hard to get. You know Fashion.
On your way to your seat you could have made a stop to the photo setup to immortalise the moment or have a quick look to a selection of exhibited pieces. I was not front row but I had a good seat from where I could fully see the stage or the arena to be more adequate here. Anyone – in the limit of the available seats of course – had the opportunity to be front row for 50€. There were main seats – mine – for 30€ and VIP ones for 50€. Offering an accessible event to the public is common practice for Adama Paris shows. The designer has always wanted to keep the fashion she promotes available to everyone.
“Contrary to what you may think, it’s a multicultural fashion, very diverse and very instinctive, without codes unlike the dictated colors and trends of the international fashion.”
From the “Black Fashion Week” to the “Black Fashion Xperience”
To give you a little bit of context on this event, the Black Fashion Experience is actually the evolution of the Black Fashion Week launched by Adama Paris 8 years ago. The message behind was to offer a seat at the table of the global fashion industry to the fashion designers from Africa. The first Black Fashion Week in Paris was pretty well welcomed in the fashion capitale not without controversy because of its name. Pointed out as community- oriented or cleaving, Adama Paris has always stated loud and clear that she created this event to give more opportunities to African actors to step into the global fashion industry. As she said “it’s not fashion made by black people for black people”. Instead, she wants to showcase a distinct fresh fashion: “Contrary to what you may think, it’s a multicultural fashion, very diverse and very instinctive, without codes unlike the dictated colors and trends of the international fashion.”
But “why the world Black?” will you ask? Simply, to represent the black culture that this fashion is inspired from. To reuse her own words that I admit looked cheesy the first time I read them: “It’s not about color, it’s all about culture.”. Then I made my research and grasped the concept afterwards: it’s fashion inspired by black culture for the whole world. And there is nothing wrong with naming that culture as what it actually is.
After a 3-year absence, Adama Paris made her comeback to Paris with the Black Fashion Xperience not to refer to fashion only but to a more holistic approach of black culture including music, art and lifestyle.
To get back to that Saturday 28th September, the show lasted about one hour. We watched the latest collections of eight designers including Adama Paris herself. I was completely excited to discover her latest collections and Tokyo James’ as well – the brand I discovered at Wish Africa event earlier in June. And just as expected, I prefered these two brands show amongst the others. But do not get me wrong, I enjoyed the whole performance. I discovered new designers I did not know before, which is always a pleasure. There were interesting alternative pieces from Mimi Plange or Sakia Lek. I loved the intense electric blue of Karim Tassi’s pieces. And also I found myself dreaming of an Orapeleng Modutle dress for the day I will get married.
On the guest list side, there were Parisian influencers such as Scheena Donia, Gaelle Prudencio, Margi Vandoren, Amah Ayivi and celebrities such as international model Maria Borges who popped up for a few minutes during the show.
The first Black Fashion Experience was an interesting start. I am curious to see what they will bring us more on the experiential side for the next editions. In the meantime, if you want to buy you can find some of the brands who performed at Adama Paris’ Parisian concept store Saargale.
Learn more details about the Black Fashion Experience here.
*the picture of the article cover comes from the Black Fashion Xperience Instagram