THE Ghanaian fashion industry is making big strides with designers making outfits for international stars while a number of events like Glitz Africa Fashion Week and Rhythms On The Runway have attracted some big names on the continent.
However, media personality and fashion designer, Kofi Okyere Darko popularly known as KOD, who organises Rhythms On The Runway says in spite of its success, events like his still struggle for sponsorship and has appealed to corporate Ghana to come to their aid.
“The journey has not been painless and it is because we do not have sponsors. I wish these corporate organisations will know the strength of some of these events and tap into it. It is like we are left alone which is worrying,” he told Graphic Showbiz.
KOD said the swiftness with which these companies book them for their end-of-year parties, should be the same way they show their commitment when they are needed.
“I wish that the rapidity with which they come to us when the year ends, they would use that same energy to respond to our calls when we come to them for sponsorship. It doesn’t only end at the fashion doorstep, even in the music industry as well,” he stated.
According to KOD, the lack of sponsorship played a role in their inability to make the show happen last year.
“We did not have any positive results from the people we went to for help so it did not come on and my team and I did not like it.
“You know you have a brand that you are known for and people would want to see you out there especially if it is something you plan to do annually. You will have people asking you why because for some reason they were waiting for it,” he disclosed.
In response to whether this year was different, KOD said no. “This year, it took the grace of God honestly. It is just a a handful of companies, mostly outside Ghana like South Africa Tourism that are behind this year’s event.”
Asked what this means to the industry as a whole he said, “it means in years that we do not hold it, we do not have money. And how are we going to sustain the fashion industry if we continue like this, especially at a time when the industry is booming and a lot is expected from us, we cannot let it die like that,” he added.
Talking about this year’s Rythms On The Runway themed: “The Year of Return,” which will take place at the Christianborg (Osu) Castle on Saturday, August 31, KOD said it will enhance the beauty of Ghanaian and African fashion.
“This year’s event is connected with artistic and creative designs across the continent. It will also create an avenue for local and international fashion designers to work, and promote the African continent. Clothing by designers from Ghana and other African countries will be on display,” he said.
There will be musical performances by Stonebwoy, Pat Thomas, Rex Omar, Obrafour and King Promise. DKB will be on hand to make the atmosphere livelier with some comedy.
Previous editions of the event saw the likes of Shatta Wale, Sandra Ankobiah, PY Addo-Boateng, Reggie Rockstone, Funny Face, Bola Ray, D-Black and Jon Germain model collections on the runway.
Rhythms On The Runway 2019 will be hosted by Nathaniel Attoh and Nana Aba Anamoah.