Marian Kwei (formerly Kihogo) is a London-based Forbes & Vogue (press from over 40 titles internationally including The New York Times) featured stylist, editor at large, and consultant as heralded as a fashion trendsetter & style icon, digital media pioneer & icon, a social media icon & pioneer & icon and a social inclusion, diversity, and representation pioneer & icon.
She seeks to help make the world a more socially inclusive (with better representation) and environmentally conscious place with one engaging story (be that a magazine cover, editorial, red carpet outfit, advertorial campaign, or more) at a time.
A Style Icon and Fashion Trendsetter
The forty-one-year-old is of Ghanaian heritage. Born in The Gambia to Ghanaian parents, her mother is a former lecturer of Art and her late maternal grandmother was a dressmaker and creative.
Marian has been named a trailblazing force that changed fashion, a style icon who set trends in London and New York with a personal style that was an expression of the colours, prints, joy, and textiles of West Africa that meet the structure and tailoring of the West.
Italian journalistic agency, The Consul Press, cites Marian as one of the creatives from Africa who has influenced Europe with the colour and style of Africa since Yves Saint Laurent (in particular his 1967 ‘Bambara’ collection). The article likens Marian’s influence on fashion to the influence that the work of Matisse and Picasso had on Art.
Other titles that have highlighted Marian as a style icon and influence on fashion are The New York Times, The New York Post (who listed Marian in a best-dressed list with the likes of Anna Wintour of Vogue, Kelly Rowland of Destiny’s Child and other), Refinery29, Essence Magazine, Vogue Italia, Fashionista.com, Fashion Etc, Grazia Magazine, multiple online platforms, publications and other.
A Digital Media Pioneer and Icon
Marian has pioneered the digital fashion and culture medium having worked for digital titles that pioneered the way for online fashion magazines. As far back as 2009, Marian was working for titles such as Dirrty Glam Magazine which was a monthly online magazine that led the online fashion magazine sector. Featuring the likes of Sienna Miller, Emma Watson, and many more on its cover, this magazine shaped the way for digital media. Other online magazines that Marian worked with such as Glossy Magazine also shaped digital media, being one of the first to use the medium of video for features. This pioneering of digital media has been in keeping with Marian’s career even early on. She has contributed to the foremost pioneering publications and platforms online both in the West and of African origins such as Garage Magazine, PUSH IT Magazine, Obaasema, Style Afrique, and others.
A Social Media Pioneer and Icon
From 2009-2013 Marian authored an eponymously named site called Mariankihogo.com which featured the best in fashion, catwalk, art, events, trends, and more, the site went on to be listed by the best in the fashion press. Publications like The Guardian, The Evening Standard, Vogue, and many others featured the site in their best blog lists. Nominated for awards by Lucky Magazine, Cosmopolitan Magazine, and others, Marian saw her grace as the first mainstream magazine to feature bloggers and social media icons on its cover. The site was listed on the British Fashion Council’s recommended blog list. This was the case on British Vogue’s digital site too. The site led to collaborations with Dolce & Gabbana, Marc Cain, Marc Jacobs perfumes, St Martin Lanes Hotel, and others. The collaboration with Dolce & Gabbana led Marian to be the only black person to be selected by the Italian brand to collaborate with them on an international tour with social media icons which saw each icon style a window of their store. Marian’s work as a blogger was during a period of time when blogging was a new medium so she was instrumental in shaping the way of it to come.
A Social Inclusion and Representation Pioneer and Icon
Marian was a social inclusion and representation icon and pioneer being one of the few black women of African origin at events and in spaces that other black women had no access to. She was in these spaces as a result of her work when there was no representation of black women, African women, or women of colour. She seeks to change this so that the fashion and entertainment industry is truly reflective of society.
Marian has received press and features from The New York Times, The New York Post, NY Daily News, The Guardian, The Telegraph Fashion, Lucky Magazine, The Consul Press, Essence Magazine, LIFE, E News!, Ebony Magazine, Vogue Italia, British Vogue, Vogue Paris, Fashion Etc, Refinery 29, Fashionista.com, The Cut Blog, The Seattle Times, MSBNC, Yahoo, The Washington Post, Afrocosmpolitan, Fashion Monitor, MyLondon, Haute Africa, Forbes, Black Enterprise, Africa Insider, Afroelle, BBC Radio, Grazia Magazine, Company Magazine, News Ghana, Glam Africa, Ghana Rising and many many more.
She has been listed in Peer Index’s best fashion industry Twitter accounts, featured on panel discussions, sought for TV, hosted events, written for varying magazines and platforms, given expert commentary on fashion, style, industry, and sustainability articles, and others.