Jun 17, 2022
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LVMH North America links with Harlem's Fashion Row

Jun 17, 2022

Harlem's Fashion Row (HFR) announced on Thursday a new partnership with LVMH North America, which will see the two organizations work in unison towards a more diverse, equitable and inclusive fashion industry.

Louis Vuitton - Fall-Winter2022 - Womenswear - Paris - © PixelFormula

​Inspired in part by the legacy of Virgil Abloh, who died late last year at 41, the pact will see the French luxury maison's North America division invest in HFR and its initiatives; creating impactful change for the community of Harlem while opening new doors to the next generation of talented BIPOC designers.

Specifically, the deal will connect emerging Black designers to globally recognized luxury brands across the LVMH group of maisons, including Tiffany & Co. and Louis Vuitton, offering designers mentorship and activation opportunities throughout the year and beyond.

"Through this partnership, HFR and LVMH North America look forward to continuing their mission of giving designers of color access to individuals and organizations that can help shape their future," said Brandice Daniel, CEO and founder of HFR. 

"We've successfully introduced a wealth of diverse designers to a world-class fashion curriculum consisting of invaluable tools and resources to grow their businesses, and have educated Gen Z on how they too can change fashion's course. Conjunctively, we've created opportunities for youth to engage as early as high school, meeting the marginalized, particularly HBCU students, where they are in their fashion careers."

One of the supported initiatives is the HFR Icon 360 HBCU Summit. The HBCU Summit intends to transform the art and fashion programs at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) across North America by providing direct design expertise from industry experts that will advance the next generation of diverse creative talent.

In collaboration with HFR and North Carolina A&T State University's Art and Fashion Department, Tiffany & Co. will sponsor the Tenacity Talks 10-week lecture series—featuring key industry experts—on topics such as jewelry design and innovation. 

Likewise, HFR hosted its Designer Retreat; a three-day retreat that gathered more than 75 designers and featured several fashion speakers. During 'Industry Stops', designers were able to visit the North American offices of Louis Vuitton and meet with key executives, including Lanessa Elrod, zone president and CEO, and Thomas Haupt, SVP of U.S. retail.

"LVMH is committed to having a positive impact in our communities and realizing the path forward set by Virgil Abloh and others who helped foster equity and inclusion in the fashion industry by supporting and building a pool of diverse creative talent," said Corey Smith, vice president, diversity & inclusion, LVMH Inc.

"It is critical for LVMH as an organization to continue developing talent of color internally, while ensuring the relevance of our brands and our products in an evolving and diverse consumer landscape. We see this partnership with HFR as a wonderful opportunity to focus on values, culture, business and community all at the same time, as these notions are not mutually exclusive, but interconnected and reinforcing one another."

​Founded in 2007 by Brandice Daniel, HFR supports emerging talent and provides a platform for underrepresented Black and Latinx designers.

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