On Friday (May 22), designer Anifa Mvuemba singlehandedly changed the fashion game.
Her latest Hanifa collection, Pink Label Congo, debuted via Instagram Live using 3D models, who emulated the hip-swaying swagger and full-bodied beauty of Black women. The contemporary line was inspired by her hometown in the Congo, of which she debuted a film short about the issues facing the women and children of the country like illegal mining.
Nevertheless, the innovative digital show transported viewers to the Democratic Republic of Congo, with a floor-sweeping silk gown, a wide-legged denim suit, an off-the-shoulder ruched top, and other jaw-dropping pieces that reference the delicate power and femininity of the women of the Congo.
“I want these pieces to tell a story of meaning,” she told Teen Vogue. “I want them to remind us to be intentional about what we create. Not for clout or for Instagram likes, but for the sake of meaning what we say by storytelling through our designs.”
— niki. (@nikimcgloster) May 23, 2020
Amid the health crisis, designers will undoubtedly continue to lean on fashion technology to present their work to consumers. However, Mvuemba mapped the virtual runway show prior to the pandemic.
“The news came out about how serious things were and I started to feel a bit anxious about everything going on,” she said. “I started feeling like maybe it would be insensitive to create and share a new collection online while people were facing very difficult realities.”
I designed this floppy disk invite about a year ago. I had a vision and knew this would my invite. I was planning to show during fashion week this fall. Then the pandemic happened …..PIVOT #PinkLabelCongo pic.twitter.com/I1qjL9LsRI
— + (@AnifaM) May 23, 2020
Luckily for fashion fans, she forged ahead with the history-making presentation on Instagram, where she says her audience shows the greatest amount of support for her work. In return for the easily accessible, artful show, the internet exploded with praise of her overwhelming talent.
Prices for the nine-piece collection range from $115 to $499, with sizes from XS to 2XL. While every item is available now, the ship date is June 30, Congo’s Independence Day.