Revitalizing the Economy through Fashion as Port Harcourt Fashion and Design Week holds this November
By Yemisi Suleiman
This November Africa will gather in Port Harcourt to celebrate its people, culture and heritage as the Port Harcourt Fashion and Design Week (PHFDW) 2021, sets to hold.
Organised by Ngozi Ferrari a former model and Chief Executive of Wave Model Management, the Port Harcourt Fashion and Design Week, she says is designed at empowering local fashion designers, facilitating market and network opportunities in order to ensure growth and sustainability of their business.
First launched in 2019 with the theme “Fashion…the new oil and gas” the essence Ferrari says was to let people know that outside of the oil and gas, which Port Harcourt is hitherto known for, there is another industry capable of shaping the economy of the state.
As this year’s event sets to hold on the 19th and 20th of November at the prestigious EUI Event Centre, Port Harcourt, Rivers state, Ngozi Ferarri who is also boss of Wave Events Global Ltd, speaks on expectations for the forthcoming event.
You had quite an interesting theme for your last event, what is the theme for this year’s event and what inspired it?
This year’s event is themed “Revitalizing the Economy through Fashion tourism” Again, fashion business has gone beyond promoting the industry alone but it also has the capacity to develop tourism and drive trade. The big capitals of fashion cities understood this a long time ago and have used platforms like this to promote tourism and drive trade in their various countries. Emerging societies are gradually embracing this trend and it’s a good time for us as a community to tag along
What are some of the exciting programmers’ lined up this year?
The PHFDW 2021 will comprise of a pre event cocktail, Runway shows, Exhibition and Masterclass and an After Party to round up the activities of the event.
Who are some of the showcasing designers?
This year’s event will feature international fashion designers from South Africa, Uganda, Kenya as well as the big names in homegrown brands including Ejiro Amos tafiri, Koffi Akatua from Gahana, Martin Kadida Tanzania amongst others. With support from Lush Hair, Vino Emporium, Ms Steph 2022, EUI Event Centre, and others, we are looking forward to a great show. It promises to be yet another world class event.
What’s the main objective of the Port Harcourt fashion week?
The Port Harcourt Fashion and Design Week seeks to expand the potential power of fashion as a tool to alleviate poverty, capacitate and empower local fashion designers and lifestyle brands, facilitating market and network opportunities in order to ensure growth and sustainability of their business as well as celebrating the people, the culture and sophistication inherent in them.
With the few editions you have done, would you say the aim has been met?
With the inception of the maiden edition of 2019 which was themed, “Fashion the new Oil and Gas”, we have been able to successfully establish a vibrant fashion community in Port Harcourt. It is in furtherance to achieving the various aims of the event that this year’s theme, “Revitalizing the Economy through Fashion Tourism ” was borne. The essence is to establish the potential power of fashion as a tool that can not only promote its industry but also have the capacity to promote Tourism and drive trade.
Is it open to only designers from Rivers state?
The event is open to fashion designers across the world. This year, we have Fashion Designers from South Africa, Uganda, Ghana and across the country
Before PHFDW what were you doing?
Well, I use to be a model with Legendary Gold where I also later worked as a model booker and was an active team member of the Nigerian Fashion Week then also produced by the same Legendary Gold Ltd before I proceeded to establish Wave Events Global Ltd. We produce the annual Top Model Nigeria, a scouting event for upcoming models, the Port Harcourt Fashion and Design Week and also own Wave Model Management- a model agency based here in Port Harcourt.