The summer season witnesses HSBC Colombo Fashion Week celebrating its 14th year since inception and being one of the most celebrated fashion showcases in the sub-continent. This season, in line with its vision, CFW will expand the scope of the fashion industry with multiple initiatives that aim at developing and showcasing Sri Lanka’s fashion design industry to the world and to the fashion consumers of Sri Lanka.
This is something CFW has managed to execute successfully for the past decade. Since its inception this platform has aided the local fashion industry in gaining much needed momentum in aspects of fashion education, fashion retail, designer development, and in creating opportunities for designers to showcase their work internationally.
Hosted by Hilton Colombo, its base for the last few years, General Manager Manesh Fernando quotes “It’s been a great partnership that has benefitted all of us throughout the years, which has placed Sri Lanka on the global map as being a must visit destination not only for sun, sea, culture and adventure, but for fashion too. Hilton Colombo is also committed to the development of youth and such events as CFW provides opportunities for emerging designers and we fully endorse it”.
‘Celebrate Colombo’ is one of the themes of the week long activities that brings Colombo alive through the eyes of fashion and related industries. This also aims to showcase Colombo from the tourism perspective as a city that is vibrant and creative. The week of CFW will start from the 13th of March and will go on till the 18th and show collaborations with art, film, food, knowledge workshops, designer pop-ups, ethical fashion, and the emerging designer showcase.
This is an interesting milestone of ten years of association between HSBC who has been the principal partner of CFW and been an important part of that journey. Commenting further, Mark Prothero – CEO for HSBC Sri Lanka and Maldives, said “This year also coincides with our 125th anniversary in Sri Lanka which is a milestone year for HSBC. As we complete ten years of title sponsorship of undoubtedly the biggest fashion extravaganza in the country, we hope our customers will experience an exciting show this year. HSBC is happy to play an important part in supporting the upliftment of the fashion industry at large.”
Colombo Fashion Week has formed relevant and strategic partnerships with Sri Lanka’s leading brands and they all play an important role in pushing the annual event to international level, Colombo Jewellery Stores as the Official Jewellery Partner, Ponds as the Official Beauty Partner, Ramani Fernando as Official Hair and Make-up Partner, Olu Tropical Water and Wine World as the Official Lifestyle beverage partner, Etisalat as the Official Digital Solutions Provider, Vision Care as the Official Eyewear Partner, Leo Burnett Sri Lanka and MSLGROUP Sri Lanka as the official PR Partner, Quintessentially Sri Lanka as the Official Concierge Partner, and our partnership with The Residences at One Galle Face – all who share and extend their support towards the vision and aspirations of CFW.
“CFW is expanding the scope of the fashion industry by creating a unique platform that sharpens the focus for the development of fashion in Sri Lanka. This direction is based on the thinking that related creative industries co-exist and have a common denominator that leads itself to the overall development of the creative environment,” said Ajai Vir Singh – Founder and President of Colombo Fashion Week.
30 designers are set to showcase over a period of four days. Some of the international designers include Gaetano Navarra, Abraham and Thakore, Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, Bibi Russell, RimZim Dadu. The Sri Lankan designers list will feature Darshi Keertisena, Upeksha Hager, Charini Suriyage, Ramona Oshini, Maus, Dimuthu Sahabandu, Conscience, Meraki, Fouzul Hameed, Jaishree, Amilani Perera, Catherine Rawson, Peronie Stefel, Lovi Ceylon, Nilanka among others.
Emerging Designer Showcase
The Emerging Designer Showcase will see 10 high potential designers take the ramp, this is an exciting part of the week, where the next generation of designers showcase their talent. The designers have been mentored in honing their skills and guided through the CFW creative process, the shows will take place at a new location at the Hilton Colombo. This will be Day 1 of the shows, on the 15th of March.
Ethical Fashion Day
CFW will also be reintroducing Ethical Fashion Day this season, keeping in line with the founder’s vision of Fashion-For-Good or Good Fashion that brings about goodness in the society and to the environment. Ethical Fashion Day is scheduled for 17th March, it is one of the pillars of CFW’s foundation. The ideology of this is to celebrate fashion and its craft, and its connection as a whole with the environment. There will also be a series of ethical talks conducted by industry experts on the way forward for ethical fashion.
This has been one of the drivers of CFW to bring young and established designers to expand and enhance their skill sets conducted by experts in their fields. CFW carefully assesses the skill sets that need to be enhanced and creates workshops around it.
There will be two workshops to be held on 15th of March, – Fashion Styling and Fashion Illustration. Both workshops are being conducted by experts from India and US.
1-minute-Fashion Film Festival
This is a new initiative by CFW to enhance Film presentations. It’s a unique collaboration between designers and film directors to produce a 1-minute-Fashion-Films shot on a smartphone. It’s a film presentation of their ideation of Summer collections and the inspiration behind it. These will be shown as a Film Festival at CFW.
This is an interesting collaboration of Art connecting with Fashion under the theme ‘Second Skin’. This is a new concept of two creative fields connecting to create an interesting expression. Five major artists will present their interpretation under the theme ‘Second Skin’ on the 13th of March. This is first of its kind to be shown in Colombo.
Fashion + Food
Every season, CFW partners with premier restaurants in Colombo to curate unique, limited edition menu’s that will provide attendees and guests with fashion influenced gastronomical experience. Fashion + Food allows the chef to present their creative expression through interesting menu’s. Fashion and Food starts from 13th to 19th March at Lab and Graze Kitchen at Hilton Colombo, Cafe Francais by Pourcel, Rare at Residence by Uga Escapes.