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Brief Published: 8 Jun 2020

Digital Runway Brings Diversity to Fashion

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Congolese designer Anifa Mvuemba of fashion brand Hanifa presented her latest collection virtually via Instagram Live, with each of the virtual 3D models being both Black and fuller-figured. The product shots on Mvuemba’s e-commerce site are also digitally rendered sample images, proving that digital alternatives can be effective during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Pink Label Congo collection is inspired by Mvuemba’s home of Congo and was designed to celebrate the beauty of the country, as well as its women, which Mvuemba describes as its greatest strength. In a global crisis where social distancing measures have forced fashion brands to reconsider runway formats, as well as photoshoot practices, Hanifa has found a digital solution that still supports its brand’s core messaging.

While the virtual event became a necessity due to Covid-19, the brand also saw it as an opportunity to bring the fashion show experience to people who would otherwise not have the chance to attend. By launching the collection for free on social media, inclusivity was extended to a whole host of fans and customers, including the Congolese women the collection itself was celebrating. Twenty per cent of the proceeds from a T-shirt from the line will be donated to help support Congolese families against illegal coltan mining.

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In addition to the virtual runway, the product shots on the brand’s e-commerce site are all digitally rendered images, although the clothing purchased by customers are physical products. Through this initiative, Hanifa has proven that digital solutions can help to support physical products and its launches, while also providing a platform for inclusivity and diversity. 

For more on innovative digital solutions to the Covid-19 pandemic, see Covid-19: Fashion Industry Survival Strategies, and keep an eye on our Coronavirus: Updates & Brand Responses page for daily updates.

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