Ghana’s fashion industry remains in limbo as local fashion designers struggle to compete for customers who would make regular purchases or orders and not one off requests. Also, fashion shows have become ever more present in Accra from fashion school graduations to expensive hotels. Some even host top Ghanaian celebrities as models on the runway in order to draw attention to the fashion brand or designer. Some local fashion designers say it is very necessary, but the founder and Executive Director of Accra Fashion Week ‘Nana Addo Tamakloe’ stated in an exclusive interview with Shine Publications yesterday in Accra that, though using celebrities as models or brand ambassadors had benefits, it was not a need of the fashion industry in Ghana to increase revenue from sales.
Nana Addo Tamakloe is the
founder of Ghana’s most consistent fashion show since 2016 ‘Accra
Fashion Week’. The event which comes off twice in a year has each
edition tailored to the weather conditions in Ghana hence, they are
dubbed Chilly/Rainy and Summer/Harmattan. With quite some experience in
working both local and international fashion designers both in Ghana and
in the United Kingdom, Nana Addo Tamakloe believes that brand
reputation does not rely solely on celebrities affiliation.
“Having celebrities is like a brand guarantor. There are clients or people, just like with any other business who will trust your product or business because celebrities have endorsed it. They believe because these celebrities have a brand and are public figures, they won’t be dishonest and can’t run away if anything should go wrong. Celebrities also add popularity, but just because it helps doesn’t mean celebrities are needed. The same branding effect can be achieved with charitable figures or any respectable personality”, he explained.
When asked whether Ghanaian fashion designers have good works or clothing enough to convince the average Ghanaian to make regular purchases, he said yes Ghanaian fashion designers produce admirable works but needed to give more attention to marketing their brands. “Yes, our Ghanaian fashion designers are producing good stuff, but most people don’t just buy clothes, they buy brands. The designers just need to work on their brand appeal. Ghanaian designers are more focused on creativity instead of creating the desire for the clothes. For example they don’t take into consideration advertisement in major publications. They limit themselves to Instagram and social media promotion. They don’t consider getting the right type of celebrities; they are more focused on just popular faces . Just because people know you or think your work is good doesn’t mean they will buy. So give them a reason to”, he explained.
Fashion is under the Creative Arts in Ghana and has become an item on the entertainment menu as celebrities are gradually hitting the runway as models. This has added more glamor and excitement to many fashion shows but may also be deviating from the point of sales perspective.
By Jerry Wonder