At tonight’s 2019 Fashion Awards, Rihanna took home the “Urban Luxe” Award for her LVMH-backed-brand Fenty. Not to get confused with Fenty Beauty or Fenty x Savage, the “Wild Thoughts” singer launched her luxury label 5 months ago and has consistently released unannounced collections that cater to the season at hand. Last year, the prize went to Off-White’s Virgil Abloh and according to Vogue, this specific award was created to “honor contemporary labels that elevate the concept of casual.”
Within the small community of black designers, there has been a categorization that their work will always be seen as less than. Categorizing our creations as “urban” while aligning it with the word “luxe” (which is short for luxury), can be interpreted as another way of marginalizing black fashion designers. Other categories within the awards show like Designer of the Year and Brand of the Year – which both went to Bottega Veneta, didn’t include a pre-descriptor on what type of designer or brand it was.
Nonetheless, Rihanna was all smiles as she accepted the award. Janet Jackson, who happens to be one of RiRi’s inspirations presented the award to the singer. Within the last few months of Fenty’s debut, the brand has curated pop-ups in Paris and New York and has been worn by every fashion girl in the industry from Cardi B to Rico Nasty.
Congrats to Rihanna!