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-- By Semmi W.
On May 22 in Paris, Rihanna will make history. The 31-year-old artist and entrepreneur will debut the very first collection for Fenty, her luxury fashion label. Moët Hennessy - Louis Vuitton (LVMH), the parent company of Fendi, Givenchy and Dior will now also house Fenty. The partnership makes Rihanna the first woman of color and first female designer to have an original brand for the largest luxury conglomerate in the world. However, this isn't the only time Rihanna Robyn Fenty has broken barriers.
In 2015, Rihanna became the first black spokesperson for Dior, starring in its 'Secret Garden' IV fashion film. In 2018, she made herstory again by becoming the very first black woman featured on the September cover for British Vogue, a 103-year-old publication.
Though not formally trained as a designer, the Bajan pop icon has paid her dues.
Fenty will be the first Maison launched by LVMH since Christian Lacroix in 1987. The timeline above highlights many wins, but it does not reveal how Rihanna's very first creative collaboration with a fashion brand in 2013 was clowned by critics. At the time, her collection with River Island was called "a wardrobe malfunction" and a "horror show." Unbothered, Rihanna went on to serve as Puma's creative director and has successfully launched three verticals: Fenty Beauty, Fenty x Puma; and Savage x Fenty, a body positive lingerie brand, all while keeping up with her other job: entertainment.
Fenty will produce ready-to-wear items, shoes, jewelry, and accessories. Instead of being hired to promote other brands (and ultimately make them more money), Rihanna decided to stop playing the game of celebrity endorsement deals and just outright own a team.
A trademark for Fenty Skin has already been filed. And at her annual Diamond Ball last year, the former "Good Girl Gone Bad" hinted at a desire to launch a furniture line. She explained, "But I need time for that. I need time to drop something." New music maybe?
Riri's highly anticipated album is still expected to come out this year. Given her track record with handling multiple projects and a near demonic work ethic, dropping new music the same day Fenty showcases its very first collection is entirely possible. It's her house now, she can do whatever she wants.
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