Photo Courtesy of Instagram/@BadGalRiri

Rihanna was rumored to be launching her own line of sunglasses after she was spotted in a pair of shades bearing the Fenty logo. The pop star has introduced both a lingerie line and cosmetics line under Fenty name over the past two years.

But reports from, The New York Times suggest that Rihanna has her sights on a bigger venture more than Fenty glasses. The Barbados Goddess will reportedly team up with luxury fashion titan LVMH to start her own high-end fashion brand.

If the reports are true, Rihanna stands to become the first black woman designer at LVMH. Something with Rocnation and fashion that goes together. Jay-Z had his own clothing called Rocawear which he sold for $204 million back in 2007. Also, Kanye West has his Yeezy brand is reportedly worth over billion dollars. They are many rappers, singers, actors, and reality stars with their own lines at department stores.

Rihanna partnering up with a luxury fashion house is unheard of and quite groundbreaking. Luxury fashion houses one’s has been off limits to majority of celebrities. They wouldn’t even let Kanye West into the doors. Rihanna would be the rare celebrity to break this barrier in the high-fashion world.

Rihanna’s rise in the industry began with her 2013 clothing collection for the British brand River Island. But the success of her more recent undertakings, Fenty Beauty and lingerie line Savage x Fenty, has made Rihanna one of the brightest stars in an industry contending with Instagram influencers, the success of “street” brands, and one PR scandal after another. In Rihanna, LVMH has found a woman of color with influence, street cred, and a love for inclusion; she represents the way forward for fashion.

To those unfamiliar with her trajectory in the industry, Rihanna might seem like an overnight success story. In 2017, she launched the makeup brand Fenty Beauty, named one of Time’s 25 best inventions that year.

The makeup brand’s 40-shade foundation range appealed to Rihanna fans of all races, but the women of color traditionally overlooked by the cosmetics industry flocked to the brand. The month after its launch, Fenty Beauty’s sales quintupled the sales of Kylie Cosmetics, WWD reported. Savage x Fenty, the lingerie line she launched in 2018, also sold well while making inclusion a priority. The underwear comes in a range of “nude” shades and in some plus sizes.

But even before these groundbreaking brands debuted, Rihanna became a certified fashion influencer. She won the 2014 fashion icon of the year award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America. That year, she also partnered with Puma on a sportswear line. As creative director, she put on dazzling fashion shows for the athletic company and her influence as a pop star led to the shoes and slides she designed selling out.

The next year, 2015, Rihanna became the first black brand ambassador for Dior’s Secret Garden perfume. And in 2012, long before her lingerie brand was a thought, Rihanna sang at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. She’d previously performed at a 2008 Gucci fundraiser.

But the 2013 debut of her River Island collection at London Fashion Week was perhaps the first concrete sign she was serious about carving out a name for herself in fashion. She called the collaboration a dream come true.

“I have wanted to design my own collection for a long time and to present my collection for River Island alongside all of the other great design talent at LFW is a real privilege,” she said.

Rihanna collaborated with LVMH on Fenty Beauty through the conglomerate’s Kendo division. The success of the beauty line reportedly spurred LVMH’s CEO Bernard Arnault to consider even loftier ventures for the superstar. Forming a new brand marks a departure for LVMH, its first since the debut of Christian Lacroix in 1987, the Times reported. But Rihanna, apparently, was worth the risk.

She not only has nearly 70 million Instagram followers and a series of Top 10 hits, Rihanna has also used her brands to let the public know that both inclusion and representation matter to her. In addition, Rihanna has sent the message that she’s fully involved with her brands rather than just a detached celebrity lending her name to a business venture.

When Fenty Beauty debuted, Rihanna told Time: “I have 100 percent involvement in this process, which is what makes this so special and very fun. I have so much creative freedom from products to packaging, and that’s really the only way this brand will stay true to my vision for it.”

That vision, which has endeared Rihanna to even non-music fans, is why LVMH is likely counting on her luxury fashion brand being just as successful as her other enterprises.

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