Fancy with Fenty—10 Facts About Rihanna's LVMH-co-founded Brand

On May 24th, Robyn Rihanna Fenty, the international pop-star-turned-fashion-designer, will unveil her first Fenty collection in Paris at a pop-up store. This takes place just a few days before the actual online launch of the e-shop on www.fenty.com, set for May 29th. On this occasion, Jeremy O. Harris, a New York-based playwright and actor – who has de facto reinterpreted Rihanna's "Work" music in his script for "Slave Play" – interviewed the multi-tasking celebrity and fashion mogul for T Magazine. Here's what we've learned from it and what Rihanna had to say.



FENTY Release 5-19 campaign. Photo: Courtesy of PR. 


1. Fenty is a never-seen-never-done-before luxury brand

Pushing boundaries, what else. Rihanna is officially the first woman ever – and de facto, the first black woman – to found a brand from scratch together with luxury mogul Bernard Arnault at his multi-billion conglomerate LVMH. "I already had a relationship with them after the Versailles campaign (ed.: the Dior advertising featuring Rihanna as the brand's muse in 2015) and the makeup line (ed.: Fenty Beauty is partially funded by LVMH), so they (ed.: LVMH) extended the offer to me and it was a no-brainer because LVMH is a machine. Bernard Arnault was so enthusiastic; he trusted me and my vision."


2. Mel Ottenberg's former assistant is Fenty's new style director 

Jahleel Weaver met Rihanna in 2011, as an assistant to her prominent stylist, Mel Ottenberg, before joining Rihanna's design team at Puma in 2014. He has now been appointed style director at Fenty and has some interesting statements to make on the brand's creative process: "We’re thinking about each release as a different facet to a woman’s wardrobe and how she approaches dressing," he told T Magazine. "Luxury has been defined in the past as ‘one woman, one brand,’ (…) which is fine, but you think about how that relates to the modern woman. I don’t think she is just one thing, Rih being the perfect example of that.”


3. Fenty's concept as a whole makes an empowering statement…

"I use myself as the muse," Rihanna explained. "I feel like we live in a world where people are embracing every bit of who they are." As for the clothing sizes and fits, they will go up to 46 French size, which is the equivalent of XL, and are cut in a body-conscious way. "I love a corset," she stated. "We put a corset in a suit, a dress, a shirt, a denim jacket, and a T-shirt dress." She also advertises "affordable" luxury. With prices ranging from approximatively $200 to around $1,500, Fenty aims to be both a high-quality luxury brand and a people pleaser. Speaking of "people pleaser": the brand will only be sold online, via fenty.com, and via ephemeral pop-ups. There will be no classical, seasonal collections only, but regular ones with "drops" that are added throughout the year. 



FENTY Release 5-19 campaign. Photo: Courtesy of PR. 


4. …and supports the next generation of fashion designers!

"I like to think of my establishment at the Fenty house as a hub. So I am always looking at grad collections, who’s about to leave college, who wants a year here. And we’ve done that with a couple young designers and a couple new ones that are coming in. Even if you’ve never designed something in your life, you might have impeccable taste: I’m welcoming everyone’s vision here, because that’s what it’s gonna take. I can’t just think I know everything. I’m very smart with my control freak – a smart control freak. I welcome other people’s expertise. I love new, young talent." That says it all. 


5. Her approach to fashion design is an empirical one…

She is very conscious that being a designer is not a status, but a process. "I’ve been slowly evolving throughout the fashion world. First wearing it, buying it, being recognized for my style and then collaborating with brands. I never just wanted to put my name on something and sell my license. I’m very hands-on, so I wanted to take it slowly and gain respect as a designer," she told T Magazine.


6. …and her approach to life is both brave and funny. 

An avid learner and hard worker, Rihanna has always been aware of the necessity to challenge herself and do better: "I have a tattoo that’s written backward so I can read it in the mirror: ‘Never a failure. Always a lesson.’ (…) How you gonna learn without making mistakes? Did you believe your mom when she said, ‘Don’t touch the iron’? You had to touch it, right? You had to get burned."

7. She's now a European resident, kind of.

In order to be closer to her long-term boyfriend, the Saudi entrepreneur Hassan Jameel, and closer to Paris, where her LVMH-owned brand is based, Rihanna moved to London and spends her time between the United Kingdom and France. 


8. Rihanna's last name "Fenty" has a regal meaning, apparently. 

According to the interviewer, "Fenty" is a name of Spanish and Portuguese origins and derives from the word “infante,” used in the medieval times as a title for the children of royals. Queen Rih is positively shocked and just replied "Get out of here! That is tripping me out."



FENTY Release 5-19 campaign. Photo: Courtesy of PR. 


9. Her next album will be all about reggae…

Rihanna is exploring the reggae genre on her upcoming album. Date and name of the album are yet to be confirmed – although Rihanna admits that her fans (who call themselves "The Navy") urge her to name it "R9" (ed.: this album being her 9th one). Funnily enough, this move is reminiscent of the time when Snoop Dog moved to Jamaica and released a reggae album himself under his new artist name, Snoop Lion. We can't wait to hear it; after all, Rihanna is a lioness on her own. 


10. …but don't expect Lady Gaga or Drake to be on it. 

Sorry "Aubrih" fans, it seems a reunion is not happening anytime soon. As Rihanna put it herself: "I don’t see it happening. Not on this album, that’s for sure." As for Lady Gaga, the rumors of a collaboration and featuring turned out to be wrong. However, Rihanna says that she's not against the idea. 


You can read Jeremy O. Harris's entire interview here. And see Fenty's first collection here


SHARE
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
SIMILAR ARTICLES
Sophia Kokosalaki Dies
By Jessica Bumpus
The Greek fashion designer Sophia Kokosalaki has died. News of the London-based designer’s death...
By Jessica Bumpus
By Jessica Bumpus
The Greek fashion designer Sophia Kokosalaki has died. News of the London-based designer’s death was reported by the culture minister for Greece, Lina Mendoni, on Monday."It is extremely sad when a young person dies, a creative spirit, a dynamic and self-made woman who starred in the harsh and...
The Greek fashion designer Sophia Kokosalaki has died. News of the London-based designer’s death was reported by the culture minister for Greece, Lina Mendoni, on Monday."It is extremely sad when a young person dies, a creative spirit, a dynamic and self-made woman who starred in the harsh and competitive world of international fashion for a 20-year period," she said Kokosalaki, who had dressed...
Decoding Fashion's 2.0 Buying Trends
By Anissa Draa
In an ever-changing digital age and saturated luxury industry, modern-day customers who shop for...
By Anissa Draa
In an ever-changing digital age and saturated luxury industry, modern-day customers who shop for designer clothes and accessories – both on- and offline – are constantly on the look-out for authenticity and want to be engaged in new, unique ways. Anissa Draa, e-buyer at French department store...
In an ever-changing digital age and saturated luxury industry, modern-day customers who shop for designer clothes and accessories – both on- and offline – are constantly on the look-out for authenticity and want to be engaged in new, unique ways. Anissa Draa, e-buyer at French department store Printemps, discusses the status quo of fashion buying and its challenges and what it takes to perfect...
Beauty Built on AI
By Sofia Celeste
Interview with Cherry Pick’s Justin Stewart Now that the first artificial intelligence-engineered...
By Sofia Celeste
By Sofia Celeste
Interview with Cherry Pick’s Justin Stewart Now that the first artificial intelligence-engineered fashion collections are already on the market, there is no better time than the present for the beauty industry to dive in head first. Yoox, Amazon, Alibaba, and fast fashion retailers like H&M and...
Interview with Cherry Pick’s Justin Stewart Now that the first artificial intelligence-engineered fashion collections are already on the market, there is no better time than the present for the beauty industry to dive in head first. Yoox, Amazon, Alibaba, and fast fashion retailers like H&M and Zara have all invested heavily in artificial intelligence, an innovation that has been at the core of...
American Shoppers Stimulate EU Retail
By NOWFASHION
The latest edition of the Planet Shopper Index (PSI) – a quarterly rundown of the top 25 most...
By NOWFASHION
The latest edition of the Planet Shopper Index (PSI) – a quarterly rundown of the top 25 most lucrative source markets for European retailers – reveals that international shopper activity across Europe accelerated in the second quarter of the year, mainly driven by US shopper activity and a...
The latest edition of the Planet Shopper Index (PSI) – a quarterly rundown of the top 25 most lucrative source markets for European retailers – reveals that international shopper activity across Europe accelerated in the second quarter of the year, mainly driven by US shopper activity and a bounce-back of visiting nations’ currencies against the pound and euro.  In fact, a strengthened dollar...
Shanghai FW Kicks Off
By Jing Zhang
Outside of the four major fashion weeks, Shanghai has emerged as one of the most important...
By Jing Zhang
By Jing Zhang
Outside of the four major fashion weeks, Shanghai has emerged as one of the most important fashion hubs in the East. Though the country’s most established names like Masha Ma and Uma Wang prefer to show in Europe, Shanghai Fashion Week provides a platform for young, independent labels such as...
Outside of the four major fashion weeks, Shanghai has emerged as one of the most important fashion hubs in the East. Though the country’s most established names like Masha Ma and Uma Wang prefer to show in Europe, Shanghai Fashion Week provides a platform for young, independent labels such as Xuzhi, Oude Wang, and Shushu/Tong. It's also an occasion for foreign journalists and buyers to discover...
IPOs: Waiting for a Tech Unicorn
By Sofia Celeste
Just over a decade ago, investors with a penchant for luxury goods were reeling over the slew of...
By Sofia Celeste
Just over a decade ago, investors with a penchant for luxury goods were reeling over the slew of IPOs that rocked the markets – family-run businesses like Salvatore Ferragamo and Prada among them, following in the steps of Bulgari and Tod’s.That all changed after the financial crisis. Today,...
Just over a decade ago, investors with a penchant for luxury goods were reeling over the slew of IPOs that rocked the markets – family-run businesses like Salvatore Ferragamo and Prada among them, following in the steps of Bulgari and Tod’s.That all changed after the financial crisis. Today, trade woes, weak EU banks, Italy’s bad debt crisis, and political malaise continue to toss cold water on...
Chanel Unveils 19M
By Jessica Bumpus
It’s been a productive week for Chanel. Not only did the luxury French fashion house strengthen...
By Jessica Bumpus
By Jessica Bumpus
It’s been a productive week for Chanel. Not only did the luxury French fashion house strengthen its portfolio of specialty métiers, it also unveiled 19m: the very building that will become a hub for its Métiers d’Art, set to open next year.Located in the northeast of Paris at Place Skanderbeg,...
It’s been a productive week for Chanel. Not only did the luxury French fashion house strengthen its portfolio of specialty métiers, it also unveiled 19m: the very building that will become a hub for its Métiers d’Art, set to open next year.Located in the northeast of Paris at Place Skanderbeg, the 25,000-square-metre building designed by French architect Rudy Ricciotti will bring together 10...
Digital Influence Dominates
By Elisabeta Tudor
Today, more than ever, social media – and Instagram, more importantly – is undoubtedly the luxury...
By Elisabeta Tudor
By Elisabeta Tudor
Today, more than ever, social media – and Instagram, more importantly – is undoubtedly the luxury industry’s pot of gold waiting at the end of the rainbow. And Heuritech, a Paris-based company, intends to turn this pot of gold into valuable nuggets of market data.  In fact, the company just...
Today, more than ever, social media – and Instagram, more importantly – is undoubtedly the luxury industry’s pot of gold waiting at the end of the rainbow. And Heuritech, a Paris-based company, intends to turn this pot of gold into valuable nuggets of market data.  In fact, the company just released the Spring/Summer 2020 main industry trends across all four cities (Paris, Milan, London, and...