Harlem’s Fashion Row’s 15th Anniversary Style and Awards Show Opens New York Fashion Week and Inspires With “Future’s Past” Theme

Harlem’s Fashion Row’s 15th Anniversary Style and Awards Show Opens New York Fashion Week and Inspires With “Future’s Past” Theme

On Tuesday, Sept. 6, Harlem’s Fashion Row (HFR) hosted its 15th Anniversary Fashion Show and Style Awards at the General Grant National Memorial in Harlem, with the support of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton as the title pponsor for the event.

This year’s “Future’s Past” theme showcased the untold history of countless contributions, sacrifices, and innovations in a fashion that continue to elevate Black-owned brands.

(Image: (L-R) Anish Melwani (LVMH), Jasmin Allen (Hennessy), Lanessa Elrold (Louis Vuitton), Anne-Sophie Stock (Moet & Chandon) / Shutterstock)

Anish Melwani, chairman and chief executive officer of LVMH North America gave the sponsor presentation, during which he welcomed a new, more inclusive era in the fashion industry and saluted the contribution of diverse creative talents.

Guests were welcomed with gift bags featuring Dior Beauty products: Rouge Dior lipstick in iconic 999 shade, Forever Couture Luminizer, La Collection Privée Fragrance, and La Mousse ON/OFF Foaming Cleanser.

(Image: (L-R) Veronica Webb, Sergio Hudson / Courtesy of Deonte Lee)

The star-studded event featured red-carpet appearances from several industry notables, including Bevy Smith, Ebony Obsidian, Erica Campbell, Ty Hunter, Linda Fargo, and Veronica Webb. The designers who took the runway included Clarence Ruth, Johnathan Hayden, and Nicole Benefield. The presenting designers showcased memorable Spring 2023 collections. Jonathan Hadyen’s aim was mixed media, drawing a fine line between natural and nuanced, and offering a textural draw packed with dots. Curve appeal was Nicole Benefield’s approach as she went for shapes that were less linear and focused on softer lines. Clarence Ruth challenged the intersection of culture and Christianity, introducing a refreshing take on biker wear rooted in the absence of rebellion.

(Image: (L-R) Brandice Daniel (Harlem’s Fashion Row), Issa Rae (Actress), Shannon Abloh (Virgil’s Wife), Corey Smith (LVMH) / Courtesy of Deonte Lee)

During the event, HFR also announced this year’s Style Award recipients including its newest award in honor of the late Virgil Abloh: The Virgil Abloh Award presented by LVMH. Corey Smith, vice president of Diversity and Inclusion at LVMH North America introduced Shannon Abloh, who recognized the award’s inaugural recipient. Guests were thrilled to see Janet Jackson honored with the ICON of the Year Award at the after-party.

(Image: (L-R) Shannon Abloh, Issa Rae / Courtesy of Deonte Lee)

The full list of award recipients is as follows:

– The Virgil Abloh Award presented by LVMH: Issa Rae Actress, writer and producer.

– Designer of the Year: Sergio Hudson – luxury women’s wear designer.

– Editor of the Year: Robin Givhan – fashion editor and Pulitzer Prize winning writer.

– Stylist of the Year: Ade Samuel – celebrity stylist.

– ICON of the Year Award: Janet Jackson – actress, singer, songwriter, businesswoman, and philanthropist.

(Image: Courtesy of Lanscine Janneh)

To conclude the Style Awards, Louis Vuitton Americas awarded the Harlem’s Fashion Row ICON 360 grants to the three presenting designers, Clarence Ruth, Johnathan Hayden, and Nicole Benefield. Each was also assigned an executive mentor from Louis Vuitton Americas to guide and support their growth.

(Image: Brandice Daniel / Courtesy of Deonte Lee)

In 2020, Brandice Daniel founded ICON360 Inc., a 501(c)(3), to provide resources for Black designers and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) with a mission to achieve sustainable growth in the fashion industry.

Lanessa Elrod, Louis Vuitton Zone president and CEO of the Americas stated, “Through the partnership with HFR, our team at Louis Vuitton Americas is honored to help these talented and diverse designers grow and scale their businesses for the future, while continuing to foster equity and inclusion in the fashion industry.”

Following the Fashion Show and Style Awards, guests made their way to the after party held at the Jazz at Lincoln Center, in partnership with Moët Hennessy USA and Supporting Sponsor Amazon.

Guests were welcomed with after-party gift bags that included Briogeo’s Charcoal Shampoo, which is sold at Sephora, and mascara from the number one prestige mascara brand in the U.S., Benefit Cosmetics.

During the event, guests enjoyed live music from Cam’ron sponsored by Amazon Music.

“It was wonderful to see a beautiful showcase of Black and Latinx designers’ and creatives’ art at the intersection of diversity and innovation,” said Modupe’ Congleton, director, Worldwide Amazon Stores, Diversity Equity and Inclusion.

“At Amazon, we are continually excited to engage with communities to celebrate the culture and talent found within.”

During the after-party, guests sipped on cocktails featuring brands from Moët Hennessy USA’s iconic portfolio including Belvedere, Volcan, Chandon Garden Spritz, Hennessy VSOP, Moët & Chandon, Whispering Angel, Terrazas, and Cloudy Bay. The celebratory evening closed with a Hennessy X.O toast from Brandice Daniel, Jasmin Allen, SVP of Hennessy U.S., and Tiara Chesmer-Williams, vice president and head of Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity at Moët Hennessy USA.

For more information, visit https://www.harlemsfashionrow.com/.