Last night’s Arise Magazine Made In Africa Spring 2012 Designer Collective runway show was nothing short of amazing and was fittingly presented in a theater since it had everything one would expect in a performance: anticipation, narrative, and some accidental drama followed by a triumph. While Hillary and I were busy naming off the looks that caught our eye, and reuniting with fellow writers, fashionistas and friends, viewers at home got a closer view as the show was live streamed. Missed the show? Watch the show here and learn about some of your new favorite designers below:
First Designer Shown: Asibelua (Nigeria)
“The collection thrives in contrasts. Expect a contemporary urban African mix of vibrant prints, contrasting textures and futuristic streamlined shapes.”
My faves? Those pants & prints!!! Any woman who can make a killer pair of printed paints will have my heart forever. Her mix of contrasts and use of luxe materials were also a winner.
Second Designer: Tsemaye Binitie (London/Nigeria)
“As a young label we are trying to break new ground and try new things…”
My faves? Well while Hills wants the white “Wonder Woman” bodysuit…I fell in love with the white feathered closing number. I can wear shorts underneath? It’s mine.
Third Designer: Bunmi Koko (London/Nigeria)
“The collection is formed on the seductive nature of the ‘sirens’ in Greek myths. Their irresistible beauty and enchanting voices brought sailors to their death in shipwrecks on their rocky island.”
My faves? The yellow & khaki cape-dress. End of story.
Fourth Designer: Lanre Da Silva Ajayi (Nigeria)
“Labour of Love is a mix of the architecture of Italy with the vibrancy of Africa – in particular Nigeria, which is evident in the choice of colours. Africans are not afraid to embrace bright and eye-catching colours. It’s part of the culture to stand out and I have taken that part of Africa and the architecture of Italy and brought them together in what you’ll be seeing in this collection.”
My faves? The embellished shift (second frock), the video does it little justice as it literally gleamed on the runway. I love a good shift dress, and if you add sparkles I’m sold.
Fifth Designer: Pierre-Antoine Vettorello (Paris/Ivory Coast)
“My collection this year will feature some very spectacular pieces contrasted with simple garments for everyday wear, infused with the elements above. Hats are also important to this collection. I worked with an atelier in Belgium that created some really arresting pieces based on my designs – though they are very light, they finish the silhouette perfectly.”
My faves? Sadly…nothing other than the hats.
Sixth Designer: Jewel By Lisa (Nigeria)
“A modern translation of Nigeria in the 60s: using traditional menswear and classic garments or pieces from that era as inspiration to create ultra-feminine pieces for today’s woman. As always you’ll see lots of exquisite hand-embellished ankara pieces (our signature) and of course our custom-made luxurious prints, which have been personalised for our inspiration. We’ve also expanded our accessories line with different types of belts and beaded bags.”
My faves? Everything! JBL is a definite Parlour fave. And I’ll take those clutches please…..
Seventh Designer: KLûK CGDT (South Africa)
“We wanted to show that Africa is more than curio. More than leopard. We have done a romantic collection using the colours we see around us and using very traditional fabric.”
My faves? The navy blue gown with the black feathered tassle. Classy rear cleavage? Yes please.
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