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Africa Fashion Week London You Decide....
Several Weeks ago we asked designers to enter their collections for a chance of winning a free showcase at Africa Fashion Week London, which will take place next month in Spitalfields.
Below you can read about the three shortlistees, see a few pics of their collection and then vote for who you would like to see on the catwalk!
And here are descriptions in their own words...
Baay Sooley and Laure Tarot
Winners of the Dakar Sira Vision 2012 young designer competition, Baay Sooley and Laure Tarot come from the world of art. They were involved in music, photography and contemporary art until they encountered the creative universe of fashion. Their brand Bull Doff has its origin in urban fashion. Finding inexhaustible sources of inspiration in the streets, they offer African Street Style collections, Made in Senegal.
The Tangana collection is thus inspired by Dakar’s urban environment and reveals a subtle union between fabric, traditional weaving and plastic material. These plastic elements, more commonly called Mbithie Mbithie, usually decorate public transport (Car Rapide) and the front of traditional restaurants (Tangana). Diverted from their primary function, they blend here in the everyday attire, merging the African and urban setting. While the origin and the role of the material are definitely African, the collection is directly inspired by Street art and therefore are collection is also international.
NearFar is an ethical fashion label working with tailors in Sierra Leone, inspired by the country’s beautiful landscape and vibrant population. On my many visits to the country I am always struck by the beautiful fabrics that line the streets. I saw there was a real opportunity to create something magical. Not just to provide an international market for tailors but to show the world Sierra Leone’s beauty and to dispel misconceptions of war. So in 2009 NearFar was born.
Our recent collection ‘NearFar Summer Resort 2012’ is inspired by the wild, unspoilt beautiful beaches that line the peninsular- some of the most stunning in the world. The collection uses bold bright colours taken from the streets of Freetown, and are coupled with feminine and playful designs to create a distinctive, and evocative collection perfect for high summer. From peplum tops and tailored jackets to 50’s style sundresses the NearFar Resort Collection offers a wholly original perspective on this summer’s ‘Tribal Chic’ trend with truly authentic roots.
The concept /idea for Umoja was sparked by a trip to Tanzania in 2010. After the up and the downs of living and working in Tanzania for two months it changed my views on so many things. As a fashion student visiting this amazing country ideas began to fly about using fashion in England to empower local people in Africa.
Once back to "real life" and the last year of my degree all I could think about was my time in Tanzania. Therefore my final collection was based on the inspiration from Africa, the local dress and an Africa book called Farm which was a collection of images.
With all this in mind Umoja come together and the first collection had been manufactured by SOKO (SOKO offers fair employment a safe environment, training and skills to some of Kenyans poorest people).
Creativity and innovation- are happening everyday across Africa, I'll be writing about the most exciting developments in our favourite contintent
What do you think? Comment below.