Friday, 11 June 2010

Celebrating the World Cup with African fashion

I am not usually a follower of football but with an event as big as the World Cup, it is very difficult not to get drawn in. I will definitely be watching England play tomorrow night armed with the obligatory glass of lager and England flag. This years venue for the world cup has reminded me not only about the amazing colours and vibrant prints that come from Africa but also the daily difficulties that many people in Africa face and the great fashion initiatives that have been set up in Africa. But the fashion is not just about bold prints, there is quite a lot more.

Whilst researching a post about ethical swim wear (coming very soon), I stumbled across some Afrochic which sells a range of luxury African designer fashion and supports local traders and designers. Suzaan Heynes is just one of the designers featured on the site. She is a Johannesburg based graduate of the London International School of Fashion and is known for her edgy Avant Garde designs.The piece from her most recent collection that really jumped out at me is the cowl necked batwing jumpsuit (and the belt).
Thula Sindi is another of the designers making a name for himself in Africa following an education at the National School of Arts in Johannesburg and a degree fashion design at London International School of Fashion. His designs are elegant and innovative.His latest collection features plenty of contrast including this cute floral dress combined with leopard print gloves.

Nassir Mohammed is quite an established Cape Town based designer whose clothes are worn by many of the South Africa TV presenters. His clothes are known for being feminine, flattering and very wearable (pictured below).

Lalesso was the label that I came across when looking for ethical swim wear. With some great designs in some of the bold bright prints that you would expect to see from African designers, this label is about so much more than it's attention to ethical manufacture and sourcing in Kenya. The Cape Town based brand which was formed by Olivia Kennaway and Alice Heusser has an idealogy centred on transforming East African heritage into stylish and current contemporary designs. This label caused me to take a big gasp of air before saying 'I love it' out loud, not only are the dresses gorgeous but they are within my price range.

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