Look by AAKS from Ghana who is participating in the Africa Fashion Festival.
The inaugral Africa Fashion Festival will debut in New Zealand on May 28th in Wellington and will give Kiwis an opportunity to experience the richness and vibrancy of African culture through the designs of some of Africa’s most esteemed labels. The festival is organised by Africa Design Journey through Australasia (ADJOAA) which is a social impact enterprise founded in December 2011 to promote established and high-end emerging African designers and artists in the Australasian region. “I hope the Africa Fashion Festival provides an outlet for all New Zealanders to experience the cultural richness and incredible artistic talent from the diverse and vibrant continent of Africa,” says founder Pinaman Owusu-Banahene.
The talent on the runway comprises of six international African designers including; Nana Brenu of 1981, Laurence ChauvinButhaud of LaurenceAirline, Akosua Afriyie-Kumi of AAKS, Afua Dabanka of Mo-Saique, Nana Osei Boating of Bohten and Nana & Afua Dabanka of MONAA. Each of these designers has achieved international success participating in globally recognised industry events such as Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa, Berlin Fashion Week and Pitti Uomo. Not to mention having their gaments featured in international publications such as Vogue Italia, Marie Claire and Elle SA. Alongside the more established designers, two local emerging talents, Chido Dimairo and Zainab Sokona-Whyte will also display their creativity on the runway.
Aside from celebrating fashion, Africa Fashion Festival aims to empower first and second generation Africans in New Zealand to connect with their heritage in addition to its unique development focus. “A key diferentiator of the festival is the associated ethical initiative – think ‘fashion for development,’” says Ms. Owusu-Banahene. The festival will also support the establishment of three key social initiatives for young Africans in New Zealand and across parts of Africa, in collaboration with the designers who are showcasing their work:
– A mentoring programme to empower young Africans in New Zealand to engage in their communities.
– A year internship for three design graduates with the Social Impact Enterprise ADJOAA and one of the participating designers.
– Supporting education in Africa through a book club initiative with schools in the countries of the participating designers.
Tickets are available online now through Africa Fashion Festival’s website.