Last night, the world of fashion descended on the Royal Albert Hall in London to celebrate global fashion and fundraise for the emerging talent rising through the ranks of the industry. There was a noticeable, and distinct sense of loss though – with the news of Virgil Abloh’s tragic passing, one of the industry’s own, breaking not even 24 hours before the event. The ceremony honoured Abloh in a powerful tribute with words by Idris Elba, and many of the attendees paid tribute to him on the red carpet.
Elsewhere, the biggest names in fashion made their way up the red carpet and into the hall, joined by a diverse group of TikTok royalty – there with designers, or invited on behalf of TikTok who co-hosted the event with the British Fashion Council. Major names from other industries included Kylie Minogue, who performed ‘Slow’, alongside Charli XCX and even Kris Jenner.
There was a common design denominator at the event though – Richard Quinn. As well as being in attendance, or perhaps in spite of it, Quinn dominated the red carpet. Billy Porter and his choreographed red carpet entourage were all in Quinn’s signature floral print, as well as Rina Sawayama, Kylie Minogue and crew, and most of the big TikTok attendees. We’re running down the major moments of the night, including our exclusive with Rick Owens.
VIRGIL ABLOH TRIBUTE
As somewhat expected, the tragic news of Virgil Abloh’s death took centre stage at the Awards last night. Billy Porter set the tone, opening the ceremony with an acknowledgement and recognition of the late great designer: “Virgil was an inspiration, and it is our responsibility to honor and carry forward every loving moment he brought to this industry”.
Edward Enninful’s emotional speech encapsulated the shock of it all: “His passing is as fresh as it is devastating. As a leader of change, the impact of his work cannot be overstated.” Coming from all angles, from the red carpet to onstage, tributes to Abloh were prevalent from beginning to end. Idris Elba spoke in a powerful tribute. One of the fashion community’s own, his pre-recorded video message felt especially poignant, and his presence was felt throughout the night.
Big names in the fashion community showed up and showed out. Guests included Edward Enninful, Anna Wintour, Naomi Campbell, Kim Jones, Tommy Hilfiger and countless others. From entering the red carpet to receiving the big awards, last night had a star-studded guest list and plenty of high fashion moments.
Never ones to be upstaged, TikTok co-hosting the proceedings last night meant a big showing from the apps top creators. Addison Rae, Bella Poarch and Abby Roberts all attended alongside the Vogue-proclaimed “best dressed man on TikTok”, creator Wisdm.
RICHARD QUINN MOMENTS
Speaking of the TikTok elite in attendance, most of them were adorned in full Richard Quinn. Bella Poarch wore a hybrid silk bustier / floral puffball dress with thigh-high boots, whilst Addison Rae gave old Hollywood glamour in a split-colour silk gown, complete with matching black silk opera gloves.
Elsewhere, celebrities such as Rina Sawayama were a vision in entirely Quinn florals, and even Kylie Minogue enlisted the designer for a custom bodysuit that she performed in. Billy Porter dripped in a head-to-toe sparkling suit, featuring a glistening checkerboard design and statement shoulder pads. His entourage, performing a choreographed piece for the paparazzi, were adorned in the designer’s signature florals, and quirky pieces from the Quinn archives seemed to be on every third person up the red carpet.
…Which brings us on to the awards. Taking home the BFC FOUNDATION AWARD was Nensi Dojaka. This award recognises an emerging designer talent, who over the last 12 months has had a major creative impact on global fashion and has received financial support from the BFC.
Tommy Hilfiger received the Outstanding Achievement award from Kris Jenner and Law Roach, and Kim Jones took home the Designer of the Year award for his work at the helm of Dior men and Fendi.
Accompanied by music star Griff, Simone Rocha accepted the Independent British Designer Award, whilst Ib Kamara came out on top in the ‘Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator’.
The Institute of Digital Fashion were out and about on the Red Carpet, debuting a world first by putting an AR garments on the awards’ attendees. Creating an exclusive digital garment in Lens Studios, IoDf founders Leanne and Cattytay said that this project “enables users to step into the metaverse and virtually wear fashion, expanding on the discourse around the power of digital fashion and how red carpet moments like The Fashion Awards can be accessed by users globally without having to be physically present”. Check out the garment on their socials.
SPOTTED ON THE RED CARPET
We’ve mentioned some of the major red carpet moments, but others included a notable appearance from Evan Mock, dressed in all Fendi ‘skiwear’. Other notable moments were Miss Jason in Harris Reed towering silver glitter heels, and Charles Jeffrey in head to toe LOVERBOY.
One of the last to grace the carpet, Rick Owens also made an appearance. He was just happy to be there – check out a clip from our interview with him here.