That Rihanna reign just won’t let up! Friday, LVMH announced that our favorite bad gal will become the first woman to create an original, high fashion brand at LVMH. To take breaking the glass ceiling a step further, she is the first Black woman (and woman of color) to be at the helm of a LVMH house. Furthermore, LVMH hasn’t created a new brand in thirty-three years, with their last line being Christian Lacroix in 1987.
This is a huge move for Rihanna because House of Fenty will join major brands such as Dior, Givenchy, Celine, and Fendi. LVMH is the world’s largest luxury group and compared with Rihanna’s success from Savage x Fenty, Fenty x Puma, as well as Fenty Beauty, it will be no surprise that this line will be a breakout star.
House of Fenty will include ready-to-wear, shoes, and accessories. According to a statement from LVMH the brand “is centered on Rihanna, developed by her, and takes shape with her vision.” Rihanna herself is excited and realizes the impact. In a statement she revealed, “Designing a line like this with LVMH is an incredibly special moment for us. Mr. Arnault has given me a unique opportunity to develop a fashion house in the luxury sector, with no artistic limits. I couldn’t imagine a better partner both creatively and business-wise, and I’m ready for the world to see what we have built together.”
While there have been whispers about this deal since January and we spotted Rihanna in some sunglasses that looked like they could have been from Maison Fenty, this is the first time either has spoken out about the collaboration. This move shows an evolution of celebrity collaborations in our Instagram age. Rihanna is undoubtedly one of the most looked at and followed celebrities and her influence truly knowns no bounds. Her collaboration with Manolo Blahnik in 2016 crashed the site. Fenty Beauty made 72 million in one month. Bernard Arnault, the chairman of LVMH, said, “Everybody knows Rihanna as a wonderful singer, but through our partnership at Fenty Beauty, I discovered a true entrepreneur, a real C.E.O. and a terrific leader.”
The LVMH brand continues to push for diversity and using their large platform (the brand boasted first quarter revenues in April of $14.1 billion) to change the future of fashion. In 2016, they gave Maria Grazia Chiuri the role of Creative Designer at Dior. She is the first female designer to hold this position at the brand, same for Givenchy in 2017. In terms of racial diversity, they named Virgil Abloh the first African-American to head Louis Vuitton men’s wear in 2018.
While the fashion house will call Paris home, there has been no discussion regarding Rihanna showing her line at Paris Fashion Week or talk of a brick and mortar. While Rihanna has not shown a ready-to-wear collection since 2017, Puma being housed under LVMH, we can probably still expect the same Rihanna aesthetics, just taken to the next level.
What do you think of this brand launching? Can Rihanna enter high fashion? Or will her fate end like Christian Lacroix in 2005? Will you be buying these higher price point pieces?