THE moment dancehall act Dexta Daps stepped up to perform, many of the patrons at Friday’s opening night of Caribbean Fashionweek (CFW) forgot about the fashions which had gone down the runway earlier in the evening. The artiste — who is currently riding high, thanks to his single The Owner and its racy music video — made up for the less-than-inspiring collections which were presented.
Taking to the stage at just after midnight, Dexta Daps caused a rush towards the small stage set up at one corner of the lush Villa Ronai property in the hills of St Andrew. The predominantly female audience screamed and whistled as he opened with his breakout hit 7eleven, the enthusiasm resulting in a virtual sing-along.
A string of his hits would follow, much to the delight of his enthusiastic audience. Tracks included Jealous Ova, You and I, The Owner and his popular Shabba Madda Pot.
Prior to the performance, a total of six designer collections were sent down the runway. Among the designers were UK-based swimwear designer Bleau and Jamaicans Franz Christie, Zaid, and Kurt Campbell. NashWear, the winner of the CFW social media competition, also debuted its collection on Friday night.
One of the most anticipated lines was that of popular dancehall deejay Alkaline. The artiste chose CFW to debut his Vendetta Fam line of activewear. This collection featured sweatpants, joggers and hoodies for both men and women.
In general, the collections did not excite and lacked the wow factor of previous years. Poor execution and finishing were among the major flaws. Despite that, there were rays of hope. Womenswear designer Zaid continues to show improvement, and should be encouraged to build on his design, execution and finishing.
Among the models who graced the runway were a few names of mention. Topping the list was the current Pulse star, Vogue Italia cover girl Alicia Burke. Her exposure to international runways has certainly served her well. Mention must also be made of Tatjana Berg, the daughter of former Pulse supermodel Nadine Willis. Berg has decided to follow in the stillettos of her mother and is currently signed to Next Models in New York and campaign featured in a global advertising for Coca-Cola. Former Miss Jamaica Universe Sanya Hughes and the current holder of the title Isabelle Dalley also did model duties.CFW continued last night with collections by top-shelf designers including Meiling, Sandra Kennedy, Lois Samuels, and Pat Wright, as well as a performance by British-Ghanian recording artiste Fuse ODG. The event concludes tonight with presentations by Gavin Douglas, Tigerlily, Moncrieffe and The Cloth among the designers, and a performance by American artiste Ashanti.