Thursday 11th of August 2022

Nairobi, Kenya

A New African Fashion Narrative Is Being Created, And Designers Think It’s About Time.

“African fashion is not a trend,” asserts Aisha Ayensu, the creator and creative director of Christie Brown. Ayensu founded her company in Accra, Ghana in 2008, fusing traditional designs like wax print and batiks with contemporary voluminous sleeve tops and corset dresses. We have been doing this for years; it was never a fad for us.

As part of a new exhibition at Britain’s Victoria and Albert Museum, the influential UK arts and culture institution, Christie Brown is one of 45 brands and designers wanting to help shape and change the narrative surrounding African fashion. From a traditional silk Kente engagement dress created by Ghanaian fashion designer Kofi Ansah to Rwandan brand Moshions

The exhibition looks at African fashion dating back to the 1950s, a period in time when countries across the continent started to break away from colonial rule, and highlights the importance of traditional prints like Kente Cloth as a signifier of wealth and status. These modern interpretations of ceremonial attire, traditionally worn by royalty, were created using wool and viscose.

Thebe Magugu, Rich Mnisi, and Mmusomaxwell, three contemporary South African designers, as well as the West African brands Orange Culture, Lagos Space Programme, and Iamisigo, who participated in the curating of their own displays, are also featured.

With Chanel hosting a fashion show in Dakar, Senegal later this year, Birimian investing $5 million annually in African and diasporic brands, and the rise of designers like Thebe Magugu, a recent guest designer at AZ Factory, and Kenneth Ize, a finalist for the 2019 LVMH Prize, attention is growing on African fashion.

According to experts, African fashion is still underrepresented and poorly understood in the West, with its range frequently being condensed and pigeonholed. Few large multi-brand shops carry African fashion; some, who depend on small-scale production and work directly with ateliers, have found it impossible to scale production to satisfy demand from international retailers, making it difficult for brands to sell outside of local markets.

There are few materials that adequately reflect the development and subtleties of the fashion on the continent, and fashion curricula rarely acknowledge the breadth and history of African designers.

There was internal acknowledgement of a void in the V&A’s holdings, according to Christine Checinska, senior curator of African and African diaspora textiles and apparel, who joined the institution in the summer of 2020.

When she joined, her duties included expanding the institution’s collection of African fashion fabrics and creating the Africa Fashion show. Although we have always gathered artifacts from the continent, Africa and its diaspora were underrepresented in our collections compared to other parts of the world.

As a museum, I believe it was already acknowledged that the fashion scene had such an impact that the museum wanted to address it.
The work that went into curating and putting this exhibition together, according to Ayensu of Christie Brown, was significant because she initially questioned the V&A’s aims. Making ensuring that it stayed true to who we are as African companies, according to her, is really important.
“We weren’t watered down, and looking at African design through a European prism was not the goal. It was about observing the diverse range of our work and the represented brands.

The exhibition featured many of the designers’ voices, and Checinska says it is a special element she was eager to include. A quote from each designer was exhibited next to a description of their product. Adebayo Oke-lawal, the creator of Orange Culture, is quoted as saying, “Clothing should be flowing and have the potential to be worn by any and everyone.”

Omoyemi Akerele, creator and director of Lagos Fashion Week and Style House Files, said of the exhibition, “This exhibition is essential because for the very first time fashion from the continent will be examined from a broad perspective which spans decades.

“African dress is something that has always been here; it is a part of who we are… There is an entire ecosystem of models, make-up artists, photographers, and illustrators in addition to designers.
According to Erica De Greef, co-director of The African Fashion Research Institute, the industry has always disregarded African fashion.

“The two terms ‘Africa’ and ‘fashion’ were not found in a book, let alone on a page together, and much alone in an exhibition title together, 20 years ago when I started teaching fashion in South Africa.”

A move, in her opinion, is an effort to “reverse the coloniality of the museum” and marks a fundamental and important shift in the field.

The need to decolonize the curriculum remains.
The display serves as a reminder that additional research on African dress is required.
According to Frederica Brooksworth, executive director of the Council for International African Fashion Education, “There hasn’t been a lot of knowledge published on African fashion for people to use, and not many people have had the opportunity to learn about African fashion” (CIAFE).
“I do think that a lot of people’s minds will be opened and their perspective of African fashion will alter as a result of this exhibition.

And I believe that many institutions will come to appreciate the value of decolonizing the fashion curriculum.

The next step should be to analyze the subtleties of African dress, according to De Greef. The range of clothing on the continent was not thoroughly investigated. She claims that more depth and nuance are required. “There are still a lot of the cliches, and some of the choices are still pretty vivid and colorful…

But what’s going on in Rwanda is different from what’s going on in Tanzania and from what’s going on in Mozambique.
Greef contends that while fashion varies across the continent, some of these outfits transcend the boundaries of couture and streetwear and are difficult to classify.

The worth of “Made in Africa”
Others still see a chance to expand their internet presence and change the perception of “Made in Africa” by fortifying their online platforms. The founder of the Senegal-based company Tongoro, Sarah Diouf, claims that accessing African fashion for a very long time was extremely difficult.
We solely engage in e-commerce, and because of the difficulty in obtaining African fashion labels for a very long time, this business strategy has allowed us to flourish in the larger fashion arena.

She continues, “Changing the perception of “Made in Africa” is a long-term topic of endeavor.”

For Diouf, whose clothing is entirely sourced and made on the continent, there needs to be work done to refute the myth that “Made in Africa” products are not incredibly important and alluring to domestic and foreign consumers. We are able to create clothing that is equally as good as European or any other fashion.

According to Diouf, this has an impact on Tongoro’s pricing approach. She decided not to price her clothing beyond $230 in an effort to expand her company into international markets and increase African fashion’s appeal outside of the continent. “Anything linked to Africa did not have a favorable image for a very long time,” she claims.

It was extremely important to me to give people the option to shop for African fashion and to encourage them to do so, therefore in certain ways, the clothing had to be reasonably priced.
Merchants on Long (MOL), a South African concept store specializing in African fashion, is the sponsor of the V&A’s Africa Fashion show and says it intends to maintain momentum by presenting a number of pop-ups and events starting in September throughout the UK.

In order to connect foreign buyers with African businesses, the company’s chief executive Hanneli Rupert said it is opening its e-commerce to the UK market.

The retailer is eager to expand its clientele and stock some of the fashion houses represented at the exhibition, including Tongoro.

Along with capital, scaling manufacturing for “Made in Africa” brands can still be difficult for companies looking for new luxury partners. Tongoro began selling on Net-a-Porter this month, which Diouf describes as both an exciting development for the company and a struggle because “everything is handcrafted in Senegal and we haven’t reached industrial level production, so for us it was a barrier.”

The long-term objective, which remains the same after participating in the exhibition, is to “dynamise the local retail manufacturing in West Africa, starting with Senegal.”
Christie Brown’s Ayensu, who has tripled her capacity since 2020 but still feels that it is insufficient, echoes the attitude.

“We want to expand up our operations to be able to satisfy the rising demand,” she says.
“That’s one area and issue we want to conquer.” We did an excellent job of figuring out what the customer wanted… The focus currently is merely on having a sufficient supply of the product and a larger distribution. You need funding to accomplish that, too. According to Ayensu, her company consists of 40% online and 60% brick-and-mortar sales.

International expansion is not the only goal for many aspiring designers, though. The brand is reaching new audiences, according to South African designer Rich Mnisi, thanks to the international attention the exhibition has received. However, the objective is to maintain local market expansion.

Initially, Mnisi explains, “our clothes were made for a worldwide market, but we chose to just concentrate on South Africa, and it was the best decision ever.” “Like most great brands, they first established a strong foothold in the neighborhood; this is what we’ll do.”

There’s still work to be done. The show is undoubtedly a significant accomplishment, but Diouf notes that it is only the beginning. “My daily job in the atelier, teaching the tailors, and attempting to maintain and improve the quality that we have, so that the brand keeps expanding over time, is what matters most to me,” she said.

Content courtesy of Vogue Business & NFH 

African Prints: A Celebration Of African Fashion

The late Ghanaian fashion designer Kofi Ansah famously said: “Without clothes, we cannot play our parts.” He first made news in the UK in the 1970s after designing an outfit for Princess Anne.

One of the more than 40 designers showcased in the V&A’s exhibition Africa Fashion, from pioneers like himself to the new generation looking to shake things up, is Ansah, a graduate of the Chelsea School of Art who would go on to launch Ghana onto the international catwalk with his innovative styles.

Most of the names will be obscure to anyone who does not follow the fashion industry, and a few are only well recognized in Africa, so this first UK display is long overdue.

The exhibition’s dazzling collection of clothes, along with the textiles, personal testimonies, photographs, sketches, and film that go with them, highlight the diversity and richness of African fashion as well as the difficulty of defining it across a vast continent with 54 distinct countries, each with their own history, culture, and influences. The exhibition’s prosaic title belies this.

According to lead curator Christine Checinska, “Africa Fashion celebrates the vibrancy and originality of a select group of fashion creatives, investigating the work of the vanguard in the 20th century and the creatives at the center of this multicultural and cosmopolitan scene today.”
“We hope that this exhibition will lead to a rethinking of the geography of fashion and affect the course of the industry.”

She cited the exhibition’s opening piece, a 2019 electric pink outfit made of silk and Cameroonian raffia, as an example of Paris-based designer Imane Ayissi’s work at the exhibition’s opening earlier this month. This piece “sits on the crossroads of fashion systems cementing Africa and its diaspora, blurring the borders between craft-making and couture.”

Beyond this striking display, one enters the first section of the exhibit, which is, in my opinion, the more fascinating part. It tells the tale of African fashion’s ascent to global prominence beginning in the middle of the 20th century through the eyes of several important figures, such as Shade Thomas-Fahm, a graduate of St. Martin’s School of Art, who transformed traditional print fabrics for modern wear and Chris Seydou, who combined Malian bògòlanfini cloth with opulent western

It’s also important to note Naima Bennis, who combined Moroccan and French couture textiles to produce, among other things, the female equivalent of the Maghrebi hooded cape.

In the post-independence era, the pioneers’ work matured to signify the political and cultural revolution that was underway.
A picture of Kwame Nkrumah announcing Ghana’s independence from British domination in 1957 while donning traditional kente robes rather than a Savile Row suit and the stylish youths shot by portrait photographers Seydou Keta, James Barnor, and others serve to highlight this period of pride and promise.

The “modern creatives” take the stage upstairs, where the museum transforms into a sort of store, aware of their background but actively upending expectations and prejudices.

Adebayo Oke-use Lawal’s of organza and pleated chiffon as part of his Orange Culture label questioning hyper-masculinity and Lukhanyo Mdingi’s fluffy white mohair ensemble from the legendary Angora goats of South Africa couldn’t be more dissimilar from our conventional perception of what African fashion is.

I really like the flowing elegance of Rwanda’s Moshions brand and the fitted Ankara prints worn by Lisa Folawiyo.
But the focus is no longer solely on design. Awa Meité’s focus is cotton, both in her clothing and in her attempts to promote Malian cotton workers, while Congolese designer IAMISIGO uses his “wearable artworks” to “decolonize the mind.”

Content courtesy of Camden New Journal & NFH

The largest exhibition of ‘African Fashion’ in the United Kingdom will open in London.

Britain is gearing up to host the world’s first and most comprehensive exhibition on African fashion in London, offering a glimpse into the continent’s cultural heritage and designers.

“Africa Fashion,” which opens Saturday at the Victoria and Albert (V&A) Museum, is the country’s first exhibition dedicated to the medium.

The show will provide a “glimpse into the glamour and politics of the fashion scene,” according to project curator Elisabeth Murray.

“Today, we wanted to celebrate the incredible African fashion scene. So, looking at the inspiration behind all of the designers, stylists, and photographers, “According to Agence France-Presse (AFP).

Objects, sketches, photos, and film from across the continent are included in the exhibition, ranging from African liberation years in the 1950s to up-and-coming contemporary designers.
Senior Curator Christine Checinska described the exhibition as “part of the V&A’s ongoing commitment to highlighting work by African heritage creatives.”

Global anti-racism movements, such as Black Lives Matter, have compelled the United Kingdom to reconsider its contentious colonial past, from museum collections and public monuments to history education in schools.
The V&A was founded in 1852, as Britain expanded its global empire under Queen Victoria, including in Africa in the decades that followed.

Checinska, on the other hand, claimed that African creativity had been “largely excluded or misrepresented in the museum, owing to the historic division between art and ethnographic museums arising from our colonial roots and embedded racist assumptions.”

The scene is set with a section on “African Cultural Renaissance,” which highlights protest posters and literature from independence movements that evolved alongside fashion.

The central attraction is “The Vanguard,” which features iconic works by well-known African designers such as Niger’s Alphadi, Nigeria’s Shade Thomas-Fahm, and Ghana’s Kofi Ansah.

Beadwork and raffia, among other African textiles and styles, are used in innovative designs with cross-cultural influences.
For example, Thomas-designs Fahm’s reinvented traditional African-wear for the “cosmopolitan, working woman.”

Other exhibits, such as “Afrotopia,” “Cutting-Edge,” and “Mixology,” look at fashion alongside issues like sustainability, gender, race, and identity.

The centerpiece, created especially for the exhibition by Moroccan designer Artsi, is a highlight.
It’s a work inspired by the British trenchcoat and Muslim hijab that explores how to “present Africa in England,” he told AFP.

Artsi emphasizes the beauty of African fashion, which “doesn’t come from a source of commercialized clothes,” in her “meditation on our common humanity.”
“It comes from a place of heritage and culture,” he added.

Content courtesy of Daily Sabah & NFH

African Fashion: David Ochieng, A Kenyan Fashion Designer, Uses Fashion To Make A Positive Impact On Kenyan Communities.

As an up-and-coming fashion designer, David Ochieng is creating waves. Ochieng, who put Kenya on the fashion map, remains in the community’s orbit, using fashion as a platform for social change.
David Ochieng, alias Avido, is an emerging fashion designer who mixes African designs with modern, airy tailoring. He was born in Nairobi’s enormous urban slums.

Lookslike Avido, his label, is commercial enough, with the option of customizing garments on the website. More than that, the label is devoted to Kibera, the community from which Ochieng hails.

It wasn’t simple for him to break into the fashion industry. Ochieng’s childhood was difficult because he was the firstborn in a family of four. His mother was the only breadwinner in the family.

She would do other people’s laundry and work odd jobs to help support him and his siblings. His condition was made worse by a lack of school payments.
He eventually dropped out of school while he was in form one.
Later, in order to support his mother and siblings, he would go from one construction site to the next, looking for odd jobs. He sought comfort in the new acquaintances he had made.
Unfortunately, the majority of those pals met disastrous ends: some began taking drugs, others were killed, and a significant number began to engage in criminal activity.

Ochieng’s soul searching was prompted by the fate of the majority of his companions. He would practice unheard sentences in open and lonely areas. He also moved to the Olympic area from Silangi.

Ochieng claims that this was his way of confronting his problems and beginning a new life.

“I didn’t know who to turn to for help. “You’d confide in someone, and then they’d start telling other people about your troubles,” Ochieng explained to OkayAfrica. “As a result, I began conversing with nature. I used to talk to myself all the time, even repeating my issues, and it was via this that I was able to join a dance crew.
We practiced every day in Kibera at an establishment called Olympic, which performs spoken word at weddings, political rallies, and other events. Many of the young people here are in great need.
“Drugs and criminality claim the lives of the majority of them.”

The dancers wore dreadlocks and dressed up in trendy clothes. They had no idea that their newfound pastime would be short-lived. Some of the dancers were mistaken for gangsters, resulting in their deaths.
As a result, his mother encouraged him to change his mind. She gave him two bucks from her paycheck one day. He chose to put the money into fabrics and thread for sewing.
That’s when his life took a change for the better, and he started his fashion design profession with the founding of Avido Fashion House in 2018.

“My dancing crew was a huge inspiration to me.” For our costumes, I would sketch them out.

“I discovered then that as much as I was expressing myself through dance and spoken word, I felt like I could express myself more through colors,” Ochieng explained. “I learned that depicting a person’s journey via fabrics while also displaying life lessons and hardships is magnificent.” In a sense, dancing propelled me into the fashion world.

“Fashion has allowed me to discover myself and gain a better understanding of life,” Ochieng concluded. “Fashion has also become a form of therapy for me as a way of recovering from my childhood trauma.”
Ochieng is now one of Kenya’s most well-known fashion designers. The streets of Kibera, he claims, inspire his creativity.

He also feels that Africa is a vibrant continent, and he wants the world to know that crime isn’t the main problem in urban slums.

“I’m trying to show folks how great Kibera is.” I’m not the only one with talent here; I’m sure there are some who are far more talented and superior to me, but they don’t have the opportunity to show it off “Ochieng explained. “What I’m trying to convey through the fabrics is the positivity and hope that we have here so that I don’t lose sight of my roots.”

Ochieng’s vocational training program, which he started, teaches tailoring skills to young moms and people with hearing impairments.

He feels that by empowering a woman, you are empowering the entire nation. He’s begun mentoring fifteen trained women, eight of whom have hearing impairments and seven of whom are young moms.

He has taken it upon himself to cover the education tuition of the brilliant students in his community in addition to the vocational training. He mostly targets orphans whose parents have died of HIV/AIDS infection.

He claims that if these pupils are not treated, they will wind up on the streets, succumbing to peer pressure, resulting in misidentified identities and possibly losing their lives.
“I needed someone to pay for my school costs, but no one was willing to help me.

“Paying school fees to the poor is a type of therapy for me,” Ochieng explained. “It feels like I’m healing the younger version of myself.”

He also sews school clothes for Kibera’s poor pupils. So far, Ochieng has given out 786 uniforms to students from various schools. The process begins with the identification of the recipients, in which he goes to schools at random and looks for students who have tattered uniforms and provides them with new ones.

With gratitude, Ochieng recalls the first person for whom he designed clothing: the late Ken Okoth, a member of parliament from his district. He went to parliament dressed in his clothing, bringing celebrities and other lawmakers to his work.

After that, Don Carlos, a prominent reggae artist, came to Nairobi to perform, and David approached the event’s organizer to ask if he could produce a custom shirt for him. Carlos was ecstatic when he spotted the shirt and offered Ochieng a partnership to promote his work in the Caribbean.
Ochieng has collaborated with musicians such as Romain Virgo, Usain Bolt, Bruno Mars, Ghanaian Stallion, Tarrus Riley, Connie, Inge-Lise Nielsen, Everton Blendah, and others as a result of that encounter.
His biggest break occurred when he was included in Beyoncé’s album Black King, which helped him launch his career.

Ochieng’s garments are now worn all over the world, from Africa to Europe, as well as the United States and the Caribbean. But, for him, African identity is paramount, as evidenced by his work and designs.

Content Courtesy of Okay Africa & NFH

Father’s Day: The Scottish Highland Distillery Glenmorangie Celebrates Father’s Day

Nairobi June 16th, 2022, Glenmorangie, a Scottish Highland distillery, held an exclusive single malt tasting event in Nairobi’s Sankara neighborhood, bringing together powerful fathers who are whisky enthusiasts.

The purpose of the event was to celebrate Father’s Day by immersing guests in Glenmorangie’s sophisticated refinement, a layered complexity that gives depth and substance to the compelling sensory tasting experience.

“Mr. Alexandre Helaine Moet Hennessy, Market Manager, Eastern Africa,” said Mr. Alexandre Helaine Moet Hennessy during his remarks at the occasion “We’ve been honing our skill at Glenmorangie for 179 years in our pursuit of the best whiskies.
We want to create immersive brand experiences by giving us the freedom to tell our tales and share our whisky with individuals looking to try Glenmorangie, Scotland’s Smoothest Single Malt Whisky.”

The tasting allowed whisky enthusiasts to participate in Glenmorangie’s incredible journey, as well as write and share stories based on their own experiences.

“Our father’s words of wisdom and advise shape who we are.
They instill in us the confidence to confront both the good and the terrible in our lives. We invite everyone who has been inspired by a parent or father figure to share their story as a brand because fathers deserve respect and gratitude.” “Mr. Helaine threw in his two cents’ worth.

Glenmorangie encourages you to raise a glass and participate in the discourse by sharing your favorite memories of your father or father figure.

About Glenmorangie

Glenmorangie has been lovingly distilled since 1843. William Matheson, our founder, was a visionary and a perfectionist.
He created a single malt whisky that is unparalleled in terms of delicacy, smoothness, and flavor complexity.
The dish is deceptively easy, but the level of attention to detail is incredible. We make an exquisite mash by marrying the clean mineral-rich waters of the Tarlogie Springs with local golden Scottish barley, which we distill in Scotland’s tallest malt whiskey stills to produce a purer, smoother whisky.
The necks alone are the height of a fully-grown adult male giraffe at 5.24 meters (nearly 16 feet).

What is the advantage of this fixation with height?
Only the finest and lightest vapors condense into our spirit, which we age in Missouri White Oak barrels. (It will take at least ten years.) These carefully selected casks, made from 100-year-old trees and seasoned for another two years after felling, provide a hue and a creamy smoothness of flavor that is complete perfection.
There are, of course, easier and faster ways to produce whisky.
There are many other single malts. However, once you’ve had a taste of Glenmorangie, you’ll never want to try anything else since we are adamant about how our whisky is made, no matter how much time or money it takes.

Drinking in Moderation:
The Glenmorangie Company promotes safe drinking and recommends that whisky lovers enjoy Glenmorangie whiskies in moderation and in accordance with daily alcohol consumption standards.

Content Courtesy of African Elite PR & NFH

Zari Hassan Arrives in Kenya to Debut Her Mega-Mansion Ahead Of Her All-White Party

Zari Hassan, alias Zarithebosslady, a Ugandan socialite and business entrepreneur, has landed in Kenya ahead of the Zari all-white party.
On Thursday, June 9, Zari will organize a party at the XS millionaires’ club, where she will meet her admirers and friends.

Her Kenyan hosts, including bloggers Kabi and Milly WaJesus, met her at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).

She told the press shortly after arriving in that she will be commissioning some houses designed by a company she has been working with during her visit.

“The party is for us to get together and meet some of my friends who we haven’t seen in a long time,” she explained. “But that will have to wait till I finish what I’m supposed to accomplish here.”

“I’m here to show you a mansion created by Fine Urban Construction and Interiors, and it’s one of those out-of-this-world homes you wouldn’t expect to see in East Africa.” As a result, I’ve come to reveal their work.”

The 41-year-old has been throwing parties, the most recent of which was in Dubai in May.

The mother of five went on to say that she has always been interested in real estate and that she came across a listing on the internet that encouraged her to contact the agency.

“I enjoy real estate, and this particular home occurred to be listed on the internet. “I was enthralled and went out to them, and that’s how we came up with the idea for this initiative,” she explained.

On Thursday, the curvy entrepreneur will hold an all-white party in Nairobi, which is likely to be glitzy and glamorous.

“All the ballers in Nairobi, get ready for an all-white adventure this Thursday 9th June at XS Millionaires Club in Nairobi. I’ll be there with some other ballers, so come on over and let’s pop some champagne together. “See you at XS millionaires club on Thursday,” she said on social media.

This will be the mother of five’s second time hosting an all-white celebration in Kenya, having previously done so in 2018.

Zari advised her followers to keep an eye out for season two of Africa’s first fan-favorite TV reality series on Netflix, “Africa’s First Fan-Favorite TV Reality Series.”

“I can’t say much about season 2, but I can tell you that it’s coming. I’m not sure who’ll be returning.” But it was a positive experience, having one of the most popular African shows on Netflix for six weeks in a row,” she remarked.

Content Courtesy of Zari Hassan, Fine Urban Construction and Interiors & NFH

Top 10 Black Fashion Designers: The Most Fashionable African American Designers

African attire is lively, life-affirming, and colorful. There are so many things to adore about fashion from this area of the world, and the fabrics made in Africa can be turned into almost any type of garment.

African American fashion designers are bringing a sense of life and vibrancy to other regions of the world through brilliant colors and attractive patterns. Many minorities’ voices would be suppressed and unheard if African American designers were not there.

Items like this African print Tunic are exactly what you’d expect from the top African American designers, and you’ll appreciate having this much color and flair in one piece of apparel.

D’IYANU African dress is akin to sending a statement out into the world. You must continue reading if you want to learn more about the most fashionable African American designers.

1. Kerby Jean-Raymond

Kerby Jean-Raymond is the creative force of Pyer Moss in New York. Jean-Raymond creates fabrics and apparel that use showmanship and innovation to discuss the black American experience.

Jean-Raymond draws on his Haitian-American roots to create vibrant and unique apparel that makes a statement about social issues and the history of minorities all over the world. The capacity of African American designers to create their brands for generations has been harmed by cultural appropriation and other concerns.

All of this experience, as well as the true nature of what it means to design for minorities today, is discussed by Jean-Raymond.

With this work in film, street art, and fashion, Jean-Raymond has brought attention to societal issues that affect African Americans and has made references to the Black Lives Matter movements.

Jean-Raymond was just chosen the global director of Reebok, and he will continue to use this media, as well as his other creative endeavors, to bring the voice of African Americans to fashion.

2. Aurora James

Aurora James is the creative director and founder of the fashion label Brother Vellies. This brand is dedicated to preserving and sharing indigenous African design principles and techniques with the rest of the globe.
James has worked in the fashion, media, art, and photography industries.

All of these abilities come together to create the unique and moving apparel that James is known for.
James is also concerned in supporting the ingenuity behind African designs and their style by generating and sustaining handmade jobs.

James’ efforts to combine sustainability with fashion design in her work are unique and special in the fashion world.

If you’re looking to invest in African culture and the voices of African Americans, this is the brand to go with.

James’ brand is usually associated with celebrities such as Beyonce, Meghan Markle, Serena Williams, and others. The brand’s mission is to make one-of-a-kind fashion goods that spread the African design message over the world.

James has a very unique and meticulous attention to detail, and her work is transforming how people around the world perceive African culture and fashion.

3. Dapper Dan

Daniel Day’s socially minded brand, Dapper Dan, is his creation. Since 1982, Daniel Day has owned and maintained this store, and he has worked with a wide range of celebrities, including Salt-N-Pepa, LL Cool J, and Jay-Z.

Daniel has also collaborated with Gucci to produce a fashion brand, and he has made a name for Harlem fashion around the world. Harlem has always had its own distinct sense of style, and there is no shortage of incredible inspiration in this Harlem-inspired apparel collection.

Dapper Dan is the fashion world’s voice for Harlem, and the business aims to make an impact in the areas of poverty reduction, crime prevention, and spiritual enlightenment.

This is a brand that is inspired by everyone who has struggled to overcome social injustice, as well as those who have been told that their culture is irrelevant and that they have no right to speak up.

Day’s personal life has been marred by sorrow and hardship, and his voice and vision, which tell the experience of African Americans through the centuries, communicate to everyone in the globe.

4. Carly Cushnie

Carly Cushnie is one half of the Cushnie design house’s founding team. Knitwear, tailored corporate clothes, and elegant and attractive female clothing were all celebrated by this brand.
Michelle Obama, the Kardashians, and Blake Lively have all been photographed wearing Cushnie.

This is a company that honors both the African-American experience and women’s empowerment.

Due to the pandemic’s impact on retail enterprises, Cushnie was forced to close its doors in late 2020.
That isn’t to say Carly hasn’t continued to design clothing and advocate for women’s and minorities’ rights.

Cushnie’s voice will not be hushed, and her talent and ability to create designs that allow women to embrace their femininity without compromise will continue to fuel her efforts in the fashion world.

5. Romeo Hunte

Romeo Hunte has his own lifestyle business that he runs and designs. This is a New York-based company that aims to develop both simple and complicated style.
Hunte started out as a buyer and personal shopper in the fashion industry.

As a result, he realized the need for a street-style brand that reflected African-American history and experience.

Hunte is constantly developing and curating his brand, with the goal of creating timeless styling. This is a free-spirited brand that clothes clients for black-tie events as well as casual daywear for work or lounging around.

Hunte’s designs have such a strong voice, and the brand’s colors, design choices, and styling vary and evolve with the social fabric of the United States.

Check out Romeo Hunte’s work if you’re looking for clothing that speaks to the heart while still creating a bold style statement. There are few brands that manage to be both edgy and restrained, and this brand’s careful balancing act of social commitment and style awareness is truly unique.

6. Laquan Smith

Laquan Smith had a successful year in 2021, with several celebrities wearing his designs on the red carpet. From celebs like Ciara, who look great in every outfit, to many accolades and magazine covers, there’s something for everyone.
Laquan Smith is a talented Black fashion designer to watch in 2022.

As a child, Laquan Smith observed his grandma and many other female role models.
His family sent him to art school in high school, and it was a life-changing event for him. He was turned down by FIT and Parsons when attempting to break into the industry.
Laquan e established a company called “LaQuan Smith 3D Leggings” and became known as the “leggings” person.

Things ‘took off’ once he modeled them, handed them around, and celebrities began to wear them.
Beyonce, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, and Kim Kardashian were all early fans of his unique work, which piqued the curiosity of fashion icons and risk takers.

The company has received acclaim for its never-ending archive of unique clothing and details since its formal launch in 2013. Smith has developed a thriving private order clientele that stretches from Lagos to London.

7. Christopher John Rogers

It’s simple to see why Christopher John Rogers is one of fashion’s most fascinating new names. The designer’s voluminous designs, crisp tailoring, and unashamed use of color have already garnered him a CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award and a legion of followers, including Zendaya, Tracee Ellis Ross, and Michelle Obama, after founding his eponymous label only a few seasons ago.

Rogers got the best of the year early after designing the much-discussed purple inauguration coat for Vice President Kamala Harris. The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) awarded Rogers the “American Womenswear Designer of the Year” honor, and his beautiful designs clearly speak for themselves.

Rogers’ high-end collections, which may sell for hundreds of dollars, are recognized for being vivid, flamboyant, and monochromatic.
He also has a Target limited-edition brand, Lime green, amber orange, and teal blue are among his favorite hues.

“One of my favorite tales is about a friend who was recently wearing a sweater I designed a few seasons ago. And it was just a striped, color-box jumper, to be honest “He was willing to share. “And I assumed it was nothing out of the ordinary, something I’d always wanted to witness.

“However, she stated that she had never received as many praises from any other piece of clothes in her life.

And I guess what I like about what I do is the way we use color and apply it to something that feels very practical.”
Rogers’ artistic vision has made him one of New York City’s most sought-after designers.
His climb to the top, however, has not been simple.

8. Jason Rembert

Jason Rembert, a celebrity stylist based in New York, has styled a slew of superstars on the red carpet and on magazine covers over the years.

Zendaya was photographed in one of his captivating designs for her Netflix feature, Malcolm & Marie, earlier this year, and his luxury fashion label, Aliétte, exploded.
John Boyega, Rita Ora, Issa Rae, Winnie Harlow, Michael B. Jordan, and Odell Beckham JR. are among his celebrity clients.

Vogue, L’Officiel, Paper, Essential Homme, GQ UK, Sports Illustrated, Variety, New York Times, and Billboard Magazine have featured Rembert’s work, as well as major campaigns for Samsung, Adidas, Moncler, Penshoppe, Giuseppe, and Google.

Rembert is noted for his ability to combine classic sensibilities with current components, a unique technique that gives his editorial, celebrity, and advertising collaborations a fresh perspective.

Jason Rembert was nominated Stylist of the Year at the 2018 Harlem Fashion Row Awards, in addition to being recognized to The Hollywood Reporter’s “Most Powerful Stylist of the Year” list.

9. Fe Noel

Big things usually start small, and Fe Noel was no exception. What began as a tiny experiment in Brooklyn has grown into a globally famous brand.

Noel’s creative and airy outfits have graced the silhouettes of powerful women like Beyonce and Michelle Obama. Some attribute Noel’s toughness and creativity to her New York and Grenadian roots, but we attribute it to her tenacity and creativity.

Fe Noel is a womenswear designer from Brooklyn, New York, who is inspired by travel, brilliant colors, and strong prints. She began her career at the age of 19, when she opened a brick-and-mortar boutique in Brooklyn for vintage enthusiasts and trendsetters.

That boutique sparked her ambition to help women embrace their femininity, which led to the creation of her namesake clothing and lifestyle fashion business, ‘Fe Noel.’

Fe Noel is a womenswear designer from Brooklyn, New York, who is inspired by travel, brilliant colors, and strong prints. She began her career at the age of 19, when she opened a brick-and-mortar boutique in Brooklyn for vintage enthusiasts and trendsetters.

That boutique sparked her ambition to help women embrace their femininity, which led to the creation of her namesake clothing and lifestyle fashion business, ‘Fe Noel.’

Fe’s Caribbean ancestry and large, close-knit family have had a big influence on her. She regards her mother and grandmother in particular in great regard, crediting them with demonstrating what hard work, determination, and humble hearts can achieve.

She enjoys assisting other young women start their own businesses in addition to creating, which she is able to do through the Fe Noel Foundation, a program for young girls who are interested in entrepreneurship.

10. Savage x Fenty

Business tycoon Savage x Fenty Think of Rihanna’s Midas touch: she constantly trying her hand at new entrepreneurial initiatives and blowing them up into empires.
Rihanna introduced a lingerie collection in addition to her Fenty cosmetics line, and it has been a huge success.

We may not know what’s next for Rihanna, but we do know that there’s no room for downward as long as Savage x Fenty continues to incorporate diversity into every creation.

The lingerie industry has been shaken, and sexy has been redefined, thanks to Savage X Fenty. The company encourages fearlessness, confidence, and inclusivity with affordable pricing ranges and a wide range of fashion-forward styles.
Savage X Fenty has something for every mood, vibe, and BODY, from everyday essentials to daring pieces.

“We want to make people look and feel beautiful,” Rihanna says, explaining that she approaches Savage X with the same mindset she applies to all of her projects: to create something new and fresh that everyone can relate to and be confident in.
“We want you to feel sexy while having a good time doing it.” Savage X Fenty has underwear for every mood, with everything from everyday necessities to more provocative items.


African American fashion is one-of-a-kind, These designers are always pushing the boundaries in order to create designs that effectively express the African American experience in the United States and around the world.

The challenges that affect African Americans are important enough for everyone to care about. Every design created by African American fashion artists is based on social justice and the ability of minorities around the world to speak up for their rights.

You support distinctive voices with essential tales to tell when you invest in African American designers. African American designers in the United States provide unique, remarkable, and authentic clothes and aesthetic aspects.

If you enjoy fashion and want to ensure that minorities have the same opportunities as others, you should invest in African American fashion.
One garment at a time, these designers are transforming the world.

Content Courtesy of EDM Chicago & op 

10 African Fashion Designers Changing the World That the World Should Know

African fashion, like African music and art, is experiencing a global renaissance, and we’re here to witness it. International superstars such as Naomi Campbell, Zendaya, Tracee Ellis Ross, Angela Bassett, and Beyoncé, who was seen wearing African designers in the visual cinema for her award-winning album, Black Is King, have helped to bring some of the continent’s designers to the forefront.

These designers are change makers in their own right, helping to improve Africa’s developing economy, advocating for fairness and climate action, and creating a new bar for African talent, ensuring that the rest of the world understands what Africa is truly made of.


Africa’s fashion is adventurous and revolutionary, just like its people. Nigerian designers Adebayo Oke-Lawal and Fola Francis, for example, are pushing boundaries and challenging gender stereotypes on the continent through their work. Anifa Mvuemba, a Congolese designer, is credited with being the first to create a 3D virtual fashion show for her Hanifa line, which went viral in 2021.
Ann McCreath, the founder of the acclaimed Festival of Africa Fashion & Arts, is the organizer of Fashion Revolution Day in Kenya (FAFA) and one of the pioneer fashion designers in Kenya.

According to Statista, the garment business generated $1.5 trillion in global revenue in 2021.

This means that the fashion industry’s success in Africa can have a significant impact on the continent’s economy. With Africa having the world’s highest poverty rate, investing in the fashion industry and other areas can assist to alter the lives of those who are poor.
A growing fashion business in Africa implies greater job possibilities, development investments, and global recognition for fashion designers as well as the local tailors, craftsmen, and entrepreneurs who work with them. Many African fashion firms are currently developing programs to provide resources, contribute to social development, and empower people interested in working in the sector.

This is an excellent time to learn more about, support, and invest in the African fashion sector, given its global success and the potential for economic growth. So here are eight internationally famous African fashion firms that are also helping to address some of the world’s most pressing issues that you should be aware of, follow, and support.

1. KikoRomeo

KikoRomeo, which means “Adam’s Apple” in Kiswahili, was founded by Ann McCreath in 1996 and will be celebrating its 26th anniversary in May 2022. Over the previous two decades, it has established itself as a heritage brand, largely regarded with influencing Kenyan fashion and training designers and artists.

Wearing KikoRomeo is like being a part of an exclusive club, with recognizable distinctive items that signify a shared interest and initiate a dialogue.

KikoRomeo is committed to sustainability, employing hand-dyed and hand-carved textiles as well as hand-carved trims from the African continent to ensure that each item lasts. Cottons, linens, and silk are among the natural fibers used in our materials.

The silhouettes are effortlessly graceful and meticulously designed. Our clients consider them to be pieces of art.
KikoRomeo keeps asking us what we can wear to appear good. The unexpected blending of colors and mixed media creates individuality and richness in the textiles when viewed in paintings.

2. Thebe Magugu

Thebe Magugu is a luxury self-titled label created in 2016 by Thebe Magugu, a South African fashion designer.

Magugu uses clothes to tell stories about his heritage and culture while also bringing crucial topics to light. In previous collections, he has addressed sexism in South Africa, the country’s apartheid heritage, and femicide, with President Cyril Ramaphosa calling gender-based violence as “the second epidemic we are battling” in November 2020.

Magugu won the LVMH Award in 2018 and has since been featured in Paper, Another Mag, Vogue, and other international media. Magugu specializes on women’s ready-to-wear clothing.

3. Imane Ayissi

Imane Ayissi is a Cameroonian model, dancer, and fashion designer who was born in 1969 to Cameroonian parents. Ayissi was a sought-after model who walked for prominent luxury labels such as Dior, Givenchy, Valentino, YSL, and Lanvin before launching his fashion business.

Ayissi makes haute couture luxury ready-to-wear items that are inspired by civilizations from all around Africa. Ayissi is also a proponent of environmentally responsible fashion, frequently employing natural and organic materials with minimal environmental impact.

4. Anyango Mpinga

Anyango Mpinga is a cultural pioneer who promotes intersectionality as a circular fashion guiding philosophy. In 2015, she launched her own Contemporary Sustainable label, which is known for reinterpreted white shirts, colorful designs that pay homage to her multi-cultural ancestry, and size inclusive styles that are balanced between androgyny and a bohemian aesthetic.

Her ethereal designs have been shown in cities such as Tokyo, Paris, New York, London, Milan, Bangkok, and Porto, and she has garnered countless awards. Anyango is a forward-thinking designer who is experimenting with new technologies to develop biodegradable textiles.
Her campaign Free As A Human, which she founded as a social venture, addresses the humanitarian and environmental crisis caused by the fashion industry’s exploitative labor practices.

5. Hanifa

Anifa Mvuemba is a Congolese fashion designer best known for a viral 3D fashion presentation in which she blended two of her interests, fashion and technology, in an epic showcase of her brand Hanifa during the pandemic’s peak in 2021.

Anifa, founded by Mvuemba ten years ago, is noted for its appealing ready-to-wear designs for ladies of all sizes. On November 16, 2021, she had her first presentation at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C., with nearly 20,000 people watching it on YouTube.

She’s also the founder of The Hanifa Dream, a program that helps women-led businesses “elevate fashion through passion, purpose, and social impact.”

6. Orange Culture

Adebayo Oke-Lawal, a Nigerian fashion designer, launched Orange Culture in 2011. Oke-beginnings Lawal’s are those of a real millennial, as he has been designing since he was 11 and self-taught via YouTube, and is now one of Africa’s most prominent designers.

Orange Culture is well recognized for their menswear, which has been worn by African superstars such as Global Citizen champion Davido, Rita Dominic, and Ice Prince, and was the first Nigerian company to have a store at Selfridges in the United Kingdom.

They provide mentorship and tools to budding fashion entrepreneurs all throughout Africa through their program, The Orange Mentorship, to help them develop their own fashion empire.

7. Christie Brown

Aisha Ayensu, a Ghanaian fashion designer and creative director, created Christie Brown in March 2008.

The luxury label, named after Ayensu’s grandmother, creates inventive and unusual ready-to-wear clothes and accessories for women. Ayensu reimagines traditional clothes and modernizes it for today’s audience when creating for Christie Brown.

8. Tongoro

Tongoro is a ready-to-wear womenswear brand that offers playful and unusual garments. It was founded in 2016 by Sarah Diof, a lady of Senegalese, Central African, and Congolese descent.
Tongoro, based in Dakar, Senegal, sources fabrics from artisans all across Africa, and Diof makes it a point to collaborate with local tailors in order to support the economic development of African craftspeople.

9. Ahluwalia

Priye Ahluwalia, the company’s founder, was born in London to Nigerian parents and an Indian mother. She creates award-winning ready-to-wear menswear, drawing inspiration from both her Nigerian and Indian roots.

Ahluwalia won the Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design the next year after being one of the beneficiaries of the renowned LMVH competition in 2020. For a majority of her designs, Ahluwalia employs old and dead-stock apparel (discontinued and vintage products that are no longer in stock).

10. Loza Maléombho


Loza Maléombho, an Ivorian fashion designer, was born in Brazil and has been designing since the age of 13.

She chose to start her own line in 2009 after interning at world-famous fashion houses in New York City.

Maléombho presently makes garments and accessories that blend traditional African designs with contemporary fashion, she also collaborates with Ivory Coast artisans, such as shoemakers and weavers, to incorporate their skills into her creations.

Content courtesy of Global Citizen & NFH

Rihanna Wears A Thebe Magugu Crocheted Outfit To Make A Grand Announcement About Fenty Beauty Africa.

Rihanna looked stunning in Thebe Magugu’s Merino Wool Fringe Knitted Dress while announcing the launch of Fenty Beauty in Africa.
Rihanna, a Grammy Award-winning singer and entrepreneur, debuted her Fenty Beauty cosmetics line in September 2017.

Rihanna stated that Fenty Beauty will be available in a few African nations, including Kenya, over five years later, and what better way to promote it than by wearing pieces by a South African designer?
The Work singer made her statement while dressed in a Merino Wool Fringe Knitted Dress by Thebe Magugu.

“Welcome to Africa Riri,” tweeted the South African designer on Twitter, adding that the collection was about “exploring the shifting face of African Spirituality.”

“The silhouettes in the collection combine traditional local wardrobe solutions like draping and wrapping with intricate and crisp tailoring. The collection honors the work of renowned textile and printmakers from throughout the world “Thebe explained the motivation behind the 2021 collection.

Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty Hits Africa 
Fenty Beauty will soon be available in Kenya, Botswana, Ghana, South Africa, Namibia, Nigeria, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, Rihanna said on Twitter on Tuesday, May 10th.

Fenty Beauty will be available on May 27th, according to the 34-year-old billionaire.

Rihanna Showcases Her Thebe Magugu Knit Dress.
Thebe Magugu welcomed Rihanna to Africa on Instagram on Wednesday, May 11th, following her Fenty Beauty announcement.

She wore his Merino Woll Fringe Knitted Dress with a detachable bralette from his Autumn/Winter Alchemy 21 collection, which addresses the “shifting face of African Spirituality,” according to the award-winning designer.

In March 2021, Magugu debuted the collection during Paris Fashion Week. The skilled designer told British Vogue that the collection was “such a niche sensation.”


Which Other Celebs Have Worn Thebe Magugu?

Thebe Magugu has been worn by a number of American celebrities in recent years. In an episode of her hit comedy Insecure, American actress and producer Issa Rae wore a Thebe Magugu gown.

Miley Cyrus flaunted her Thebe Magugu men’s suit while soaring through the sky in a private plane, while Kylie Jenner flaunted her wool suit.

Issa Rae

Miley Cyrus

Kylie Jenner

Adut Akech

Dionne Warwick

Content courtesy of The South African, Thebe Magugu & NFH

The First AMVCA Runway Show Will Be Hosted By Nigerian Fashion Designer Mai Atafo.

The first-ever Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards runway show will be hosted by fashion designer Mai Atafo on Sunday evening.
He’ll be joined by Miz Vick, the show’s host, to anchor the second day of this year’s AMVCA, which will run for eight days.

Africa Magic’s official Instagram page announced the hosts on Sunday.
The awards ceremony this year will last eight days instead of the previous one-day affair.

Africa Magic has planned an eight-day series of events in conjunction with MultiChoice to celebrate the 8th edition of the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCAs), which will take place on May 14, 2022.

Dr. Busola Tejumola, Executive Head, Content and West Africa Channels, MultiChoice Nigeria, made the announcement at a press conference, saying that the eight-day series of events will reinvent and bring exciting innovations to the awards, which were first held in 2013.
“We’re focusing on bringing the various qualities that make the African film and television industry genuinely magical to the millions of Africans who tune in every year to watch the awards.”

Fashion, technology, gastronomy, and African culture will all be celebrated at these carefully chosen events. There will be panel discussions and film screenings from our MultiChoice Talent Factory, as well as industry sessions and competitions for digital content creators and aspiring fashion designers,” she stated.
The eight-day festival will kick off on Saturday, May 7 with an Opening Night.

MultiChoice Talent Factory Day will take place on Monday, May 9th, with movie screenings and panel discussions led by MTF Academy students. On Tuesday, May 10th, Africa Magic will conduct a special Content Market Day for industry participants.

On Wednesday, May 11th, there will be a pan-African cuisine and cultural event.
On Thursday, May 12th, a Digital Content Creators’ Day will be held to raise awareness of the growing popularity of online content creators.
On Friday, May 13th, a special gala for nominees will be held, followed by the awards ceremony on Saturday, May 14th.

The awards event, now in its eighth year, last took place in 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was canceled in 2021.

The event kicked off on Saturday night with an inaugural gala that kicked off a series of activities leading up to the award ceremony on Saturday, May 14, 2022.
The runway event, which will take place tonight in collaboration with BellaNaija Style, is titled ‘Design for the Stars.’
The show will include a competition for nine aspiring fashion designers who have been taught by established designers such as Mai Atafo, Lanre Da-Silva Ajayi, and Adebayo Oke-Lawal.
For this edition, Africa Magic and its partners honor true African fashion and its significance in the development of the African film and television industries.

Content courtesy of Africa Magic & NFH

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