For Black History Month 2018, we’ve been spotlighting a diverse cross section of our designers whose identity informs their practice.
Dotun Abeshinbioke (Fashion Futures 2013) Owner, SPOT
For the boldest and baddest, SPOT redefines earrings using unconventional materials and hand-crafted elements, inspired by African culture. We’re proud to announce that SPOT is available now at FAD Store.
“SPOT was a result of being determined to combine my love for fashion with my new found technique, laser cutting. Also deciding to work with a new material, acrylic sheets. From this a series of earrings were designed and created for what was initially a school project. The design that stood out the most was the Iridescent Africa Earring, people continually ask about it. The idea of earrings in the shape of Africa is not new but what made this pair different is the iridescent acrylic it’s made from, the reflective material draws attention and stands out.
What are our values? .
AUTHENTICITY – the inspirations and background o the brand are true of our experiences and heritage.
MADE BY US, FOR US – all products are designed and produced by me; future products will be made by local Nigerian artisans.
CREATIVITY strong visuals are essential; our brand isn’t complete without visuals that tell a story.
COLLABORATION teamwork makes the dream work! We’re always here for an exciting collaboration, whether it’s a shoot or event, especially with other female entrepreneurs.”
ConCrete exhibition will feature 13 talented women of colour artists who are pushing the boundaries in their practise. From radical protest, to representation and to abandoning femininity entirely, these artists propose a diverse range of genres, personal methods and rich context. In this innovate presentation, see artworks that project a mutual message on what it means to be a women of colour artist in 2018.
Fashion Futures 2009, Designer, Sabode
Sabodé is a innovative conscious brand, focused on dressing souls and protecting auras. “Being of Nigerian & Togolese parentage, my design process is inspired by colour and texture, that usually informs the silhouette and style of design I create. I pull ideas from my Mum’s 90s wardrobe the way she would mix and match her style alternating between the Western 2-piece suits and traditional attire in contrast to my Dad’s d.i.y and customising approach. They both were in sync with there taste for quality, durability and luxury, their eye for detail and tactile aesthetic is what I inherited.
My interest has progressed into African spirituality & wellbeing when it comes to art, fashion and lifestyle which also plays apart in my design aesthetic when it comes to colour, fabric and graphic design. Viewing clothes as armour means that I am more specific in my design process, my aim is to evoke purpose, confidence and character as I envision the garment to be a form of protection for the wearer”. The clips showcases WOHI ONYA ‘Stylish Woman’. Created for the woman who knows how to marry comfort with style. This look is styled with minimal and androgynous shapes featured in the oversized Organza Kimono and Bogus Shorts paired with the reversible Yoni Top a fitted bodice with lace-up back.
Fashion Futures 2018
“An anecdote that best fits my garment is the story of a Ghanaian, female warrior, Yaa Assantewaa. She fought British imperialists that tried to steal the sacred golden stool which was highly revered by Ghanaians. She is empowering because she led a tribe of Ghanaians and resurrected confidence within the land. This unapologetic patriotism is expressed through the busy, sporadic placement of colours, adinkra symbols and fabrics.”
Fashion Futures 2007, Desiner OlaOla
“It wasn’t always obvious to me how my identity influenced my designs and I think that’s because there are a lot of influences and they are subtle. When I tell people I’m a textile designer they assume I must design wax fabric and seem pretty disappointed when I say I don’t. My Nigerian influence in my designs is probably how I use colour, mark-making and mix patterns. I love how colours are used so boldly in African fabric. Also how pattern is worn in a variation of pattern mixing and clashing but is still very harmonious. My Western influence is probably in how I curate the collections and finishing processes.”
You can find Ola’s unique patterns on bags, jewellery, stationery and phone cases, available now through FAD Store
2009 FAD Competition, Director, Korlekie
“Derived from the brand’s heritage in Ghana, the name KORLEKIE means ‘Queen Of Eagles’ heralded by the Ga-Adangbe tribe in Eastern Region, Ghana.
Our products are built on principles of modernisation of traditional craft techniques such as knitwear, fused with pioneering technology and methods to create truly stunning, sustainable pieces of clothing.
Korlekie is proud to design in the UK. Our designs are committed to pioneering excellence in craft and sustainability in quality to make our clients feel truly special and empowered investing in our designs.”
Fashion Futures 2013
Tihara Smith’s beautiful graduate collection paid proud tribute to the Windrush Generation, combining traditional Caribbean crafts such as raffia embroidery with elegant silhouettes and covetable accessories.
Tihara and her muse, grandad Lazare, feature in ‘Mother Country’ – 20 real life stories about what it means to be both Caribbean and British, edited by GalDem deputy editor @Charlie Brinkhurst-Cuff, is available here