Africa Fashion week London 2014 Highlights
We have always been huge fans of AFWL but this time we didn’t get a chance to attend it. The Africa Fashion Week London is all about showcasing fashion designers who are inspired by the rich culture of Africa and incorporate this heritage into their contemporary design.
This year the show took place in Olympia London where 47 designers showcased their designs on the catwalk. Get to know the designers
Erwin Michalec: Erwin Michalec’s art and design has a mix of many ethnic influences. He is fascinated with Haitanian voodoo and strong connection between Polish and Haitian history. He is influenced by Black Africa (fascinated with Swahili Culture) and the Caribbean
Njema Helena: Established in Nairobi, Kenya, Njema Helena strives to create modern fashion with an African aesthetic for everyday life, while ensuring sustainable and fair production of all its products in Kenya. Cecilia Ostman, who graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York and has designed for international fashion labels including Ralph Lauren.
Izelia: Izelia is the creation of talented designer Isatu Harrison, who draws on her Sierra Leonean heritage to create a modern and sophisticated range of ready to wear pieces. Combining African wax prints with contemporary cuts, Izelia is a brand for those who want to make an impression in stylish and colourful outfits with high quality fabrics and precise tailoring.
MIA By Mia Nisbet: MIA By Mia Nisbet is an award winning up-cycled ethical womenswear brand merging the richness of African Textiles with western styling.
I.Kollection: I.Kollection was founded by Ihuaku Nweke out of a long standing passion for fashion when she started making jewellery in 2006 for friends and family. I.Kollection now designs and makes couture jewellery in precious and semi-precious stones as well as a newly launched line of clothing with design inspiration from all over the world particularly from the East and Africa.
Giberky: Luxury eveningwear brand based in London. Timeless, feminine and sophisticated collections designs using finest fabrics and worn by women of all ages.
Touch of Africa: Touch of Africa is an ethical fashion company specialising in bold, versatile African prints. The brand showcases womens and menswear for those choosing to shop ethically.
Glamelle Boutik: Glamelle Boutik, founder Laurette Lopo, studied at Manchester Metropolitan University launched her first line in 2010. Consisting of ready to wear and evening wear for ladies from sizes 6 to 16. Technical knowledge of a garment's proper fit and design, combined with their innate creative abilities, results in effortless and wearable line that reflect the kinds of women they are themselves; strong, sexy , fun and fearless.
Designs by Prelim: Zimbabwean born designer Preline Martha is the designer behind the Prelim Label. She started her fashion journey in Barnet college then moving on to Middlesex University to study her BA in womanswear fashion. A Prelim Design is always colourful driven with eye catching prints.
TheoDora: 'TheoDora' is a fashion brand created by Priscilla Aspiotis. Her luxury range represents graceful, elegant and feminine designs that are creative and suitable for a wide range of occasions and events. Priscilla specializes in bespoke/custom made women's clothing designed to meet the needs of modern women This gives them control over the choice of the fabric and design, making them stand out from the crowd.
V.K. Wise: Tropical, Creative, Lively, Vibrant, Innovative and Bold – just a few words to describe the VK Wise brand. Founded in 2009 and was later launched in 2012. Targeting strong women of class and elegance yet youthful at heart, they cater for women who are not afraid to stand out and be different.
Adama Paris: Originally Senegalese ,Adama, who was born in former Zaire Kinshassa, epitomizes the multicultural fashion designer of the new millennium. Adama lives between Los Angeles, Paris and Dakar and is very influenced by street fashion.
GKat fashion: GKat is a couture trendy, fresh, sexy, luxury womeswswear brand who strives to celebrate women’s bodies. GKat recognizes and respects all the challenges women face in life, all the changes their natural bodies have to go through. Prestige and passion are portrayed in their designs.
Roooi: Roooi is a luxury and lifestyle brand based in London . Roooi is known for crafting bespoke and ready to wear outfits for women , ranging from cocktail, bridal, evening and casual wear in the united kingdom and other countries in the globe. Roooi, being at the forefront of Africa’s best designers along side influential British and European fashion houses, shows the unique design elements of the creative director and his team.
Ambiance Couture: In 2012, after graduating with a Masters Degree in Management Accounting & Finance, Ambiance of Africa was launched with a vision to showcase and celebrate the contribution of African culture to the world of Art and Fashion.
NeedlePoint: Founded in 2006 but relaunched in 2010, Needlepoint is a ready-to-wear female label that caters to the personal style needs of its clients.Creative Director, Theresa Onwuka's pieces are timeless and the label is recognized for being heavily influenced by intricate embellishments and African prints
Sylvia Owori: Having established herself at grass-root level, Sylvia Owori is at the forefront of Uganda and East Africa’s fashion industry. The highly acclaimed African fashion label represents avant-garde, sophisticated style and uncompromising quality.
Zisu: Zisu introduces a brand for the passionate woman who is aware of quality products and not afraid of expressing her own individuality. Infusing high standard manufacturing, culturally inspired designs and affordable prices; Zisu distinguishes the elegant show stopping woman as a platform for cultural diversity.
TIR Fashion House: The TIR Fashion House was established to provide beautifully created African designs at affordable prices. The brand prides itself on its unique designs, against the backdrop of low quality clothing and expensive brands flooding African markets from overseas. TIR Fashion House creates its unique designs using the Ankara fabric. The designs are chic, trendy and often elaborately finished with embroidery, beads and lace.
Alabi Couture: Alabi Couture is a Lagos based luxury brand designer label of off the rack, ready to wear collection and couture collection for both male and female. Its wonderful spin on modern fashion with a very androgynous inspired bespoke twist and represents an interesting and visionary approach to unisex fashion. Their luxurious brand speaks class, confident and expresses more of the modern day fashion world.
RAAAH: Founded in April 2014, RAAAH is the brainchild of businesswoman turned fashion designer Rahima Mohamed. The brand creates elegant, cutting edge pieces that are pitched between High St and High End fashion labels. RAAAH endeavours to make sure that their customers ooze class, elegance and simplicity in the ready to wear creations or custom pieces.
Jazz Effects Design: Doris Gam Dede founded Jazz Effects in Port Harcourt in 2006, since then it has expanded out of Nigeria to showing in New York, South Africa, Germany and, of course, London. The ready to wear clothes are made for all women of all ages and Jazz Effects is fast becoming a powerhouse of African design.
Porjai Thai Printer: PTP has a professional design team doing variety of textile design, which mostly is exported to Africa. These beautiful designs have become so popular that once it caused chaos from the demand of people who want to be the first to own the new collection of fabric!
Modella B Designs: Modella B is a unique blend of classic African and European fabrics to create versatile looks for everyone and every occasion. Modella B once again shows that Africa fashion is on the rise.
Dearcurves: Dearcurves is an African inspired plus size, female fashion brand renowned for creating contemporary clothes for women UK sizes 14-26. Their signature aesthetics is the fusion of premium wax prints with western inspired fabrics to create stylish clothes for women with curves.
Vaishali Morjaria Creations: Born in Kisumu, Kenya, Vaishali completed her degrees in Birmingham, UK, and after appearing in a reality TV Show ' Catwalk Kenya' and she now represents Kenya as a multi cultural icon in many national and international fashion platforms. African and Indian inheritance influences her aesthetics in all her design concepts.
Eldimaa Fashion for Da Viva: Showcasing prints from our official sponsor Da Viva, Eldimaa showed why London loves Africa prints in an urban style. Inspired by Africa, made in UK, Eldimaa Fashion was established in 2009 by Elizabeth Eldimaa. The label focuses on creating timeless fashion pieces using African print, their ability to bring African fabric to the mainstream; is established though union of the African and Western culture. Specialising in women and mens clothing as well as accessories.
T.T. Dalk: Accomplished accessory designer from Lagos, T. T. Dalk’s must-haves are where simplicity, elegance and style converge to form a perfect brand with a fashion conscious intelligence on the current trends in footwear and accessories.
Thora Jewels: A new online fashion jewellery and accessories store based in the UK. Thora Jewels specializes in sourcing unique and stand out jewellery pieces and accessories.
Boutique Mahali: Exquisitely tailored and meticulously finished, Boutique Mahali was a favourite at AFWL. Drawing cheers from the crowd, the AFWL models were impeccable in their designs.
Anthi G: Born in Greece and lives and works in the UK, Anthi is an accomplished fashion designer and makeup artist. Fascinated by colour and texture she weaves magic into her designs.
Ade Bakare: Ade Bakare’s couture can be described as feminine classics with a touch of modernity. Strong influences from architecture and colour makes his designs a standout favourite.
Akua Sei: Think, design and create is Akua Sei’s mantra. Modern designs with a cultural twist.
Monis Fashion House: Her designs are inspired by nature, the fabric, the Nigerian High Society culture and by modern western styles. Monisola is popular for creating stylish, elegant and affordable designs.
Aamaa a la Mode: High end, classic yet contemporary designs are the hallmark of Aamaa couture. Again using Da Viva fabrics, Aamaa shows unique African designs which are a credit to the continent.