The runway at Broad Street Ballroom in the Financial District of New York City was aglow with bright lights and African beauty Saturday night for the 3rd and final night of Africa Fashion Week New York 2011. Produced by Adiree Fashion Agency - a N.Y.-based event production company owned by Adiat Disu - AFWNY celebrated its 2nd year with its much anticipated, invitation-only 3-night fashion event from Thursday, July 14 through Saturday, July 16 featuring 21 designers from all over the African continent. The weeklong festivities, which began on July 11, also included networking events and exhibitions. This year’s sponsors included PopDrum, AveYou, Makari de Suisse, and Avaloni Studios.
Though AFWNY started last year, this year it was officially endorsed by the office of New York City’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Of the endorsement, AFWNY released the following statement on its website:
The office of New York City's Mayor Michael Bloomberg will officially proclaim the week of July 12th thru July 17th Africa Fashion Week in New York City, a historical endorsement for Africans and African-Americans in the fashion and entertainment industry.
Africa Fashion Week NY is a luxurious, multi-day event which includes runway shows, exhibitions, and industry networking events- all with the purpose of raising awareness of the African/ African-American fashion & entertainment professionals in the New York and Tri -State area.
Accordingly, this nationally formed week of diversity centric fashion events will henceforth be celebrated annually from July 12th thru July 17th.
In creating AFWNY, Disu has courageously taken on a tough nut to crack: the New York City fashion scene. Amid years of constant reports that the fashion industry excludes Black models from runways, Disu has created her own avenue to showcase Black talent. Described by industry insiders as a fashionpreneur, Disu was quoted in an article published on StyleHouseFiles.com, saying that with AFWNY, she wants to “break through New York fashion noises and demolish stereotypes”. She said she chooses designers who share the passion of promoting African vibrant culture through fashion and she has made it her mission to give them a global platform to do so.
Judging by Saturday night’s show, we’d agree that she’s off to a great start. Check out our Photo Gallery  to view photos from the runway show.