Africa, the second largest continent on earth, covering a land mass of 11,668,559 sq mi(30,221532 sq km), with 54 independent states and a vast collection of languages,cultures and peoples, has gradually, since the dawn of the new millennium,rooted herself in the world of fashion. Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda and a few other African countries have over the years become notable go-to locations when it comes to fashion in Africa. With A-list designers, fashion icons and trend setters/influencers,along with shoes and other clothing accessory brands springing up everyday, it is obvious that the future of fashion in African as a whole holds a lot of pleasant surprises for us and a whole world of possibilities for the designers of tomorrow.
“Diamonds in the rough”, as the title goes(and for good reason too) is an article dedicated to the brilliantly ingenious African designers, who are of A-list quality but are yet to break out into the mainstream of African fashion. There is an innumerable and ever growing list of designers on the rise to fashion elitism and stardom so in this post as with other subsequent ones with the same title, we will be shining our spotlight on a few of them.
TOGINA FASHION: As the saying goes “ladies first”, we kick off with a female brand holding it down in the world of African female fashion brands. Based in the highly competitive, hustle driven city of Lagos Nigeria, Togina Fashion has built a reputation and prides itself for making stylish yet comfortable wears, both western and African inspired, for women. Making use of bold and vibrant colours, as well as a contemporary approach to designing, Togina Fashion isn’t holding back on its mission of creating an elegant brand for the modern day woman.
SADIQ FASHION: A Ghana based brand, whose roots can be traced back to Lagos Nigeria, Sadiq Fashion is a label that specializes in African inspired outfits and pays attention to detailing with the aid of masterfully embroidered embellishments as well as the use of some impressive fabric pleating techniques. Sadiq Fashion is certainly a brand to keep an eye on as the future of African fashion unfolds.
1703 CLOTHIERS: Another Lagos based brand in our spotlight is 1703 Clothiers. Akinsiku Olanrewaju, the CEO and creative director of this label is a “3D guy with a 3D brain” as he calls himself,because of his keen eye for colours. He has mastered the art of culture fusion and can boldly throw African prints into almost any outfit, semi-casual,corporate,African inspired or Western style attires. These skills makes him stand out in his niche and will most certainly grant him and his brand a place among the big names of fashion in no distant future.
ST MORGAN: A label with a number of collections in its portfolio,among which is THE BUSH MAN, the label’s most recent, is also in our spotlight. Simi Siwoku, the brand owner of this clothing line has a knack for thinking outside the box with his designs.Tapping inspiration from the most obscure and almost mundane aspects of everyday life, and ingeniously crafting interestingly bold designs that suit the modern day man, irrespective of his field of endeavor. St Morgan is without a doubt a brand to be reckoned with and to look out for in the future of African Fashion.
YUNG MOSCO FASHION: This brand based in the city of Ibadan, Nigeria is without a doubt another one on the rise. Its not much of a surprise that the Creative Director of Yung Mosco Fashion, Yung Mosco himself, approaches his designs with the flare that he does. He is after all from a family already grounded in fashion, his father owns a clothing line called DR Mosco fashion. With the inspiration gotten from the senior Mosco man, Yung Mosco is certainly going places, one of which will be a place of repute in African fashion of tomorrow.
Yes, fashion has come to stay in Africa and has become a culture. The future is indeed bright, wouldn’t you agree? It is obvious of course, designers like these, as well as many others, both the ones discovered and those yet to be, are gearing up with their measuring tapes, scissors, sewing machines and resilient ingenuity ,to take the world of fashion by storm in no distant time.
NOTE: This is the first edition of this article. We will periodically focus our spotlight on other designers and brands, so keep in touch and you will be kept up to date as we promote African Fashion. We are dedicated to taking it to the next level.