This issue was not premeditated. If you haven’t noticed, Neri has been on a content hiadus. We’ve been (heavily) preparing to relaunch for the #2020Vision issue in January. For the past 6 months we’ve been focused on fine tuning our marketing strategies, securing editors and working on Neri Media’s brand imaging projects. Then all of a sudden… KABLOW! and I’m blindsided by a client’s urgent request to capture video footage of Toronto’s premier cultural fashion event. The request was for no editing or post production, just the footage. It was a bit short notice but as a self-professed “clutch player” I was definitely down.
Two days before the event and we still had not secured media passes but according to our media correspondant True Daley, “when you have Jesus, Montreal hustle, and a fly outfit you can make anything happen.” Personally, I have always wanted to attend this show but it never seem to work out. Now I had the chance to not only see it but work in the media pit. After much prayer, emails and sliding into DM’s, we secured a single pass. Just one. That was all we needed. It was a go.
I arrived fully equipped, but I wasn’t ready. DSLR, battery packs, mic, tripod and SD cards, but I still wasn’t ready. The venue was very posh, throbbing with the deep commanding pulse of Afrobeat. The vibe was already, (I know, it’s overused but have to say it) LIT. After securing a great spot in the media pit and assembling my equipment, I felt really ready but I really wasn’t. I had no clue.
Did you know that you could overdose on beauty? Have you ever been dazed and confused at the sight of wondrous colour schemes and shimmering irridescence? Have you ever been dumbfounded by elegant, statuesque frames wrapped in ebony velour? Or held captive by the sautering of a model down a flanked runway? I wasn’t ready for the 4 days of this exquisite beauty barage called African Fashion Week Toronto. By the end I was spellbound.
Not Just a Reel
The show was way more than just footage and a reel. There were so many stories to be told. Stories of extreme luxury and decadence. Stories of models and their triumphs. Stories of our past and of our magnificent future. Stories that could only be told by those who wrote them in their ateliers, backstage, and on the runway.
So against my better judgement, having pushed back deadlines and disrupting personal goals, NERI presents to you The Fall Issue, inspired by Anna Wintour’s Vogue documentary called “The September Issue”, a title I aspired to use for the #AFWT2019 stories but doing this right will probably last through the fall.
First we’ll start with Belle of the Ballroom: Zna.K African Fashion the story (and our very first Neri Magazine Podcast Episode) of Zeena Kay, the British born, Cameroonian fashion designer who lit up the runway with her dramatic ball gowns. Next we’ll take a look at wedding drip in Bodacious Bridal featuring the best gowns from the incredible Ugandan designer Fatumahasha, Ashiru Couture and the House of Ruth. Our third story is also our 2nd podcast episode, an exclusive interview with the African Fashion Industry’s Rising Top Model Winner Roxanne La Kinoise. Last and absolutely not least we close The Fall Issue the way African Fashion Week Toronto was closed; with a BANG called Adebayo Jones and his beauteously indulgent luxury brand AFRICANA.
We hope you enjoy this series. I’m going to take a nap.
“When you have Jesus, Montreal hustle, and a fly outfit you can make anything happen.”True Daley