Black History Month 2021: Fashion Retail’s 8 Most Powerful Initiatives5 min readReading Time: 4 minutes
February marks the beginning of Black History Month in the US and Canada. It is dedicated to highlighting the countless accomplishments and contributions the African-American community has made to society across fields.
In fashion retail, the movement is honoured by collection drops, fundraising programs, increased visibility for Black creatives & much more.
If you’re looking for a way to show your solidarity with the movement, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite fashion initiatives & Black-owned fashion brands:
The brand marks the first luxury line helmed by a woman of colour at fashion conglomerate LVMH and has been breaking traditional barriers ever since to encourage accessibility in the fashion industry.
With clothing lines that embrace the legacy of black creatives, campaigns that are inspired by the 1960s Black is Beautiful movement and active participation in the BLM movement, Fenty is an incredible powerhouse.
Off-White launched the ‘I Support Young Black Businesses’ initiative recently. The quarterly fundraising program supports organizations that empower and uplift the black community.
100% of proceeds from capsule collections go to the cause selected every quarter.
The peer-to-peer social shopping platform spotlights sellers and buyers from the Black community in a recent campaign. Watch as they celebrate self-love, share their experiences and dive into their own individual identities as Black creatives and how it can be expressed through style.
What’s more, Depop will be using the hashtag #blackondepop to create space for black sellers and enhance visibility in the coming months, too.
For Black History Month, the classic American retailer teamed up with inspirational Black artists to design a series of graphic tees.
The capsule collection celebrates the spirit of activism and the energy of forward movement through powerful images and messages like ‘Stand United’ and ‘Black is My Happy Colour’ in bold, unmissable palettes.
5. Rent the Runway
Rent the Runway has pledged funds to support black designers and racial injustice organizations. The designer fashion subscription service is also committing that at least 15% of the fashion talent they feature and support are from the Black community.
Since their inception, Telfar has advocated the cause of representation for the Black community through fashion and it deserves a spotlight during Black History Month.
From debuting Black Owned Business Chairs at the NYFW to curating the single most socially important bag the world saw in 2020, Telfar is disrupting the fashion landscape one design at a time.
7. Christopher John Rogers
Black History Month would be a good time to make note of this SoHo based designer who is quickly rising up the charts as one of the top contemporary designers. With his signature bright colours, theatric and voluminous silhouettes and diverse model lineups, Roger has made it clear that he’s not one for the sidelines.
Fiercely outspoken about creating more room for the black community in the industry Rogers is actively ushering in a new future for black talent.
“I always knew that there was a possibility for me if I worked hard enough—that’s an important part of representation. The more you see yourself in things, the more empowered you feel to be able to go for those things”Christoper John Rogers to Vanity Fair
Net-a-Porter turns the spotlight on from inspirational women of colour who champion diversity in their work. The retailer also curates compelling culture picks in books, films and art, though their distinctive magazine style edits.
They are also increasing the number of black-owned businesses they’re supporting and stocking.
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