Organisers of Africa Fashion Week London 2013 on Thursday, March 28, announced Gambian-Senegalese model, Regina Manneh as the winner of the Face of Africa Fashion Week London (AFWL) 2013 competition, the Daily Observer can reveal.
Ms Manneh emerged the winner following a fierce competition on Facebook, with Nasai Forna and Vanessa Simpson, who respectively consoled themselves with second and third places.
Raised in Denmark, Sweden, Ivory Coast and lived in Dubai, the UK-based 24-year-old model and Interior Design student speaks English, French, Danish, Swedish and Wolof. Modeling since 2009, Manneh had walked at Los Angeles Fashion Week and Dubai Fashion Week.
Manneh's role as Face of Africa Fashion Week London will see her represent the event on all promotional material and social platforms. She will also have the opportunity to represent the organisation at major African fashion and entertainment events in the UK, as well as model on the runway at AFWL 2013, which takes place from the 1-3 August 2013 at Old Truman Brewery in Shoreditch, London. "I cannot thank enough all the well wishers who voted for me around the world. I am lucky to win because all the other contestants are very beautiful young men and women who can represent Africa very well. I am honored to compete with them and wish them all the best and continuous success in their modeling careers. I am happy to be part of young aspiring African models to make a breakthrough in the industry. Thank you Africa Fashion Week London for providing us a platform to showcase our beauty and modeling ambitions," Manneh said in a statement relayed to the Daily Observer. "We are very delighted to have another deserving young woman to represent this year's event and we do hope AFWL will provide Regina Manneh an equally fruitful platform for her career as it did for last year's winner, Edith. We look forward to Regina representing Africa Fashion Week London in the UK and beyond," said Ronke Ademiluyi, the founder and chief executive officer of Africa Fashion Week London.
Following the unprecedented success of their sophomore event in August 2012 which attracted over 20,000 visitors over two days, in a bid to grow bigger, AFWL has not only expanded to three days but also moved to a bigger venue, Old Truman Brewery F Block, organisers said. With Fifi Ejindu, the Nigeria-based architect and businesswoman, and Yinka Shonibare MBE, the London-based globally celebrated Nigerian fine artist as patrons, this year's event is set to see 100 designers on the runway and over 100 exhibitors spread across Old Truman Brewery's massive indoor space. The Africa Fashion Week London is once again set to be the biggest fashion event across Europe showcasing African and African-inspired fashion.
AFWL celebrates the work of African and African inspired designers in the UK. The annual event, which was debuted in 2011 and welcomed 4,700 visitors, followed its sophomore edition in 2012 at London Spitalfields, which attracted over 20,000 visitors.
Created by CEO Ronke Ademiluyi, AFWL aims to be the single biggest African event in the UK.