The ultimate competition for all creative enthusiasts, this year’s FAFA 2012 Emerging Designers Competition sees 17 finalists vying for the coveted top honour, a Capital Lifestyle Magazine digital media package worth Sh 250,000 and a chance to showcase alongsideAfrica’s elite fashion designers during the annual FAFA Fashion For Peace Gala Night 2012.
The winner of the Emerging Designers Competition Peoples’ Choice Award will be determined by YOU, and solely by YOU via the poll to the right of the page. Each person will only be allowed one vote per day. Public voting will commence Wednesday June 27th and wrap up on Friday June 29th 23:59.
Good luck to all the designers and VOTE for your pick! Here are the 17 finalists, in alphabetical order.
African fashion has come so far in the past decade or so, however there seems to be an unspoken expectation to use African print in our collections. Anil’s mission in this particular collection was to show diversity and impeccable workmanship in all aspects of design from the inspiration of the entire collection through to the construction and surface embellishment in order to show people that we as African designers are capable of much more. Anil wanted to show that inspiration could come from anywhere and everywhere, which is how he sees “REBRANDING AFRICA” is possible through diversity in design.
Anne started Kipusa around June of 2011 and have watched it grow from nothing into something that she and other people appreciate. Her FAFA 2012 collection was inspired purely by the shape and form of a woman. Anne wanted to create, classy yet sexy clothes for the curvy woman because often enough plus size clothing tends to be boring. Anne used taffeta silk, and tulle mixed with African print to give the dresses some pizzazz. It was wonderful to be able to create these pieces and she hopes that people get to love them just as much as she does.
ANNE SOPHIE ACHERA
Anne Sophie has worked for Liz Ogumbo for one and a half years where she learnt a lot on fashion design and production. Due to her relocation, toCape Town,South Africa, she felt it was an opportunity for her to continue pursuing fashion, only now under her own label, since she had a passion for it. Her designs basically bring out a bold, vibrant lady, lots of sophistication in it. She also expresses herself through the designs that she creates, from the choice of fabric to the final design. Anne Sophie uses a lot of African prints, as well as, sheer fabrics the likes of chiffon, organza and lace. The fabrics bring about elegance and sophistication.
Sophisticated, trendy and femininity are but a few words used to describe this fashion Brand. JIAMINI, is the brain child of Anthony Mulli who at the mere age of 16 years, set – out on this creative journey, whose vision is to create a world where anything is possible if you first believe in yourself. A passion for innovation and continuous search of rare materials as well as sophisticated techniques is part of JIAMINI’S creative DNA. Impeccable Craftsmanship, exceptional technique and a great influence of culture, JIAMINI offers Statement pieces portraying individuality, Creativity and Quality While At the same time creating employment for young women in Kenya.
Azra Walji creations are a collaboration label of high end fashion. Azra hopes to move the African fashion forward with creative new creations with a lot of uniqueness. Her designs always look western but with an African touch of ethnicity, authenticity and originality depending on the source of inspiration her collection of chick stylish wear with simple silhouettes, glamour, sophistication and elegance through its signature of details embellishment, rich coloured fabric and printed uniqueness of contemporary, ethnic fashion. Her range of design compromise of modern, ready to wear, cocktail, evenings and haute couture pieces. Azra’s designs always produce beautiful, elegant, sexiness glamour and vogue looks.
Seed of Hope Centres equip and empower disadvantaged teenagers throughout Kenya with training in Life Skills, Business Skills and Vocational Skills. Seed of Hope enrols students who have not been able to complete their formal education and nurtures them towards reaching their amazing potential. The inspiration behind this collection was a feather. Feathers are often seen as things of beauty, adorning various animals with amazing colour and style. When we think of peacocks and flamingos we see stunning beauty on display. We were inspired to replicate this in the ‘Manyoya’ collection.
Born in Russia, Galina has dreamt of becoming a designer since childhood. She designs and make clothes, bags, shoes and accessories for different occasions, but mostly weddings and dinner outfits. She loves mixing styles and fabrics, which is visible in her collection for FAFA’s Emerging Designers Competition. She used sack fabric and soft chiffon, chiffon and cotton with African print.Africais a great inspiration for Galina with her amazing callous, nature and unique in heritage.
James started designing in 2008 and have since participated in African Fashion Fair and FAFA 2010 before starting Itikadi. James is a designer, and for all intense and purposes, an artist. What I see in my mind I simply have to sketch it out on paper and once it’s on paper, well, it simply has to be made from fabric. I love what I do and that’s why I do what I love. For this collection James’ inspiration comes from the simplicity yet complexity of style. The use of leather and hetian fabric and the intrinsic designs that seem almost architectural yet elegant gives the look of uniqueness and one feels a need to find an occasion to wear it! What James loves most is the fact that different women can wear this collection, from the working class by pairing it with an official jacket to the lady who is attending a fancy event by throwing on a scarf and strappy heels to the artsy one going for a gallery show. The jackets and shorts can be for holiday or a night out.
Jamil believes that fashion is a creative form of communication, where we send out messages and feelings as well as having one’s own style by what we wear. It is important to spread the word of innovation and modernity through designs. Jamil’s designs are very innovative, creative, and new with a touch of my unique fabric manipulation techniques and ‘out of the box’ moreover, my work will exhibit elegance, sexiness and variety in terms of design and fabrication. I feel there needs to be a change in the perception of fashion in Africa as it displays encouraging potential to become a trend setter like Europe which succeeds in doing so to become “fashion forward”. Therefore I intend to create designs that are translated from European cuts with a touch of Africanism resulting in unique and diverse from the rest.
Marionloves to tell a whole story through his work, including lots of personality in each garment so they boldly stand on their own and speak for themselves. Moreover,Marionam patriotic about our land and local people, especially young girls whom I call Shujettes: female superheroines! Most of them do not have a loud enough voice to tell the world that they are hero’s everyday. I want to be that voice that communicated effectively through fashion, changing the mind set of these individuals at the same time and make them aware of their value and power. The point to this collection extends to ways we can promote our local material in turn, improve our economy. Leather is one materialMarionadvocates for. Let’s give animal rearer’s more reasons to cultivate leather and boost the agricultural sector purely though fashion.
Melody is inspired by nature and diverse cultures of, African, Kenya to be specific and also the Caribbean. Her collection is on a new Africa, one that is bold and full of life. The main colour is red, representing the universal colour of the world. Blood is something we all need to live and be you Caucasian, African, Indian, you need blood to survive just like we need each other. Globalization has brought about finding new identities within cultures you never knew and were foreign. Exchange of fabric, exchange of spice, exchange of fabric, my collection is about identity whether you have found new identity, accepted your own or striving for change. Melody identifies with Africa’s beauty, Africa’s uniqueness and Africa’s boldness, “Africa is elegance with an edge.”
MICHELLE NJERI CUTHBERT
Michelle always had a creative flair. When she was a young girl she used to practice wearing the Nun’s habit after being inspired by the film The Sound of Music. Michelle’s collection is inspired by experimenting with the layering of different weights of fabric, chiffon and jersey, solid, light and transparent. A new feminine garment shape is born through the effects of weight, fluid and draping, revealing layer upon layer of colour and small surprises through the cut outs. She is also using crochet in some designs as she feels that it captures many of the above attributes. The combination of modern fabrics and tribal embellishments leads to a garment that Rebrands Africa into practical fashion that women worldwide can embrace. This captures the essence of “Daughter of a Warrior”.
Nick was brought up around bold colors and prints and that’s where he drew his inspiration from, and from his mom for being a true African lady with an affinity for African fashion. Nick’s designs brings out the African feel and twits to modern designs that are chic. Nick designs for both men and women but recently he has been designing more for men. As an emerging Kenyan designer he chose to design mostly for men because men haven’t been considered much by many established and emerging designers. Nick’s designs mostly entail custom made designs because he believes in giving each piece a feel of individualism and stand out apple. As the theme for this year’s FAFA emerging designers goes (rebrandingAfrica), Nick’s collection is named (rebirth collection). He chose to call it the rebirth collection because he wanted to bring back color into African men’s fashion.
As a designer, Ogake’s biggest focus is on fabric. It inspires her because each fabric has a story. It has its limitations but it also has massive potential. I specifically love prints from all over the world. Even withinAfrica, there are so many different prints from different regions, and I appreciate how distinct they are and how prints can define people’s personalities. Ogake also pays a lot of attention to quality and finishes. It’s important to her that a garment looks just as good inside as it does outside. My dream is that one day we will be retailing affordable clothes made by us that are affordable but very unique to our market and environment. Ogake Mosomi’s collection defines her as a person in its vibrancy of colour and print, simplicity of the core shape, and celebration of the female form.
Pricilla’s passion has been fashion design since she was 13 years old, she has been thinking about going back to fashion full time. Pricilla’s translation of Re-branding Africa is, taking the African print and giving it a new look and placing it on international fabrics in moderation, unlike the way we have African fabrics with full print. She believes that our African prints are simple and attractive and can be used to a unique look to modern designs.
Susan Long started designing and making clothes out of colourful fabrics and waste materials while still at school. After working in market development roles for various NGOs, she made a first collection with former victims of trafficking in Vietnam. The FAFA collection is the first made in Africa and brings together colourful African prints with reclaimed leather. It is hoped it will be a starting point for an enterprise to provide skilled jobs in Kenya, through making beautiful clothes for a World market!”