Friday, August 31, 2007


dorothyduncan are a company that sells a dare to live attitude and lifestyle though unique and exclusive pieces by independent fashion designers from various parts of the Africa.

"...dorothyduncan is an online boutique that carries a collection of chic, eclectic, and culturally inspired pieces from independent fashion designers around the world. their mission is to serve the woman whose style is distinctive, daring, and inspired by offering edgy, dressy fashion pieces that add flair and personality to her great wardrobe of basics..."

Their website says "...Dorothy and Mandy are the co-founders of dorothyduncan. For two friends who had always wanted to work together, this turned out to be the perfect ad-venture for allowing them to combine their love for fashion and their entrepreneurial skills.

"...Our mission is to sell a dare to live attitude and lifestyle. At the heart of dorothyduncan is the idealistic appeal of being true to oneself and living the best life possible.

Our products are designed for women of all ages, who already feel great on the inside and want to look just as amazing on the outside. dorothyduncan aims to serve women who identify themselves as distinctive, daring, and inspired. We offer edgy, dressy fashion pieces that add flair and personality to an already existing wardrobe of basics.

We carry unique and exclusive pieces by independent fashion designers from various parts of the world. dorothyduncan adds spice to your wardrobe by offering a collection of chic, eclectic and culturally inspired pieces.

At dorothyduncan, we believe in living life by one's own rules. Our intent is to share this philosophy and infectious dare-to live attitude with our customers.

Dorothy is from Kenya. Mandy is from Guyana. They both live in Canada..."

Photos courtesy of dorothyduncan website.

aRUDE Magazine

aRUDE is a New York fashion-Art-Photography magazine founded by Ike' Ude'. His Androgenous/erotic style of art is very impressive and has brought him recognition in the international world Fashion-Art-Photography.

The website Indepth art News says"...From his provocative Cover Girl series featuring photographic portraits of himself on the cover of popular magazines to his writing on sexuality and identity, the work of Nigerian-born Ike Ude explores a world of duality: African/postnationalist, photography/performance artist, artist/spectator, male/female, mainstream/marginal, seduction/narcissism, and fashion/art..."

MC Magma also says "...Ike' Ude' Was born in Lagos, Nigeria. He is an artist, aesthete, writer, and publisher of New York based aRude magazine.
After studing in Nigeria and United States, Ude' started his artistic career, first as a painter, in the late 1980s. In the early 1990s, he began using photography to explore and deconstruct issues of representation and identity. His ongoing research has broadened the scope of his inquiry beyond the conventional parameters of photography to engage forms of mass comunication, including magazines, video, film, and television..."

Monday, August 20, 2007

Craig Native

According to his website Native is a streetwear brand launched by Craig Native in 2000, who derives from the Cape Flats in South Africa. Historically these area were plagued by apartheid and poverty in the old political system. A diverse mix of cultures mixed with ghetto lifestyle and improvisation in everyday life, is what led to the birth of Native.

Graphics are the big part of the collection and are derived from very African iconic images like wild animals, vegetables, African tribes and particularly everyday life in South African society..."

Photos courtesy of Craig Native.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

New African Design

The rundetaarn website says that "...New African design is haute couture, streetwear, graphics, ceramics, furniture and industrial design - combining cutting edge design with traditional crafts and visions of building a new and better Africa.

The exhibition will present 30 designers of 12 nationalities addressing issues such as: cultural strength and identity, empowerment, sustainability and low-cost housing, improving living conditions through design.

Many African designers have a great social awareness, and their product development often takes place in collaboration with craftsmen from rural areas. Local women from the Limpopo area weave the seats of Haldene Martin’s famous café chairs, while the industrial design group XYZ is developing life-improvement products such as a hand-driven radios and condoms with built-in applicat.

The exhibition will showcase design from Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda and Zimbabwe. After the launch at Rundetaarn, the exhibition will proceed on a world tour ending in South Africa in 2010 – the year South Africa will be hosting the FIFA World Cup..."

Images courtesy of the rundetaarn website.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Azza Fahmy

Azza Fahmy's website says "...Since 1969 Azza Fahmy Jewellery has become one of the foremost luxury jewellery brands in Egypt..."
"...Azza Fahmy was born and raised in Sohag, in Upper Egypt. She graduated in interior design from the Faculty of Fine Arts and studied jewelry craft at the City of London Polytechnic before becoming the first female apprentice to several of the best jewelers in Cairo..."

This "...Cairo-based jewellery designer who developed from an artisan selling to a small circle of friends, to the founder of a business which employs 180 people and has showrooms in Egypt, Jordan and Dubai. Drawing from a range of Egyptian, Arab and Oriental traditions,her instantly recognizable pieces in silver, gold and semi-precious stones have long been favourites with Arab Royalty an celebrities..."

"...Azza Fahmy's jewellery uniquely blends the mystique of the ancient world with the cutting edge of the new. In her signature pieces the finest stones are set in gold or silver inlaid with gold and inscribed with Arabic calligraphy. Her exclusive lend of the very best of traditional classic style and modern is key to all four collections - culture, exclusives, fashion and gifts and to her bespoke jewellery too..."

Excerpts and Photos of this article are from the FT and the Azza Fahmy's website.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Design a Uniform, Shape a School

The African Leadership Academy is a world-class boarding school opening outside Johannesburg next year with the aim to develop a new generation of African Leaders.One of the the core elements of their philosophy is that young people cab and will change the world.

They are selecting a design for their school uniform by organizing a pan-African competition open to students and schools from all over Africa . They believe that by doing this, they will be living their belief that young people can be given great opportunities for impact and trusted to deliver on them.

The competition will be judged by a panel of internationally renowned African fashion designers.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Akua Adoma's Nana Boateng

Nana Boateng's website talks about his love for fashion and how he had to decide to be a designer rather than an athlete.The Sartorialist blog which according to Time magazine is one of 100 top Design Influences describes Nana as "...a guy that loved life and used his clothing as a way of expressing that joy..."

Akua Adoma also says "...A Ghanaian proverb instructs: “Let not what you cannot do tear you from what you can do.” These ancient words undoubtedly resonated with the gifted designer Nana Boateng, as in 2001, he pondered a major decision to make a radical career shift to fashion. Up to then, the Ghanaian, New York-bred designer’s sights had been set on athletics: once it became evident that this would no longer be a viable option, the designer looked about him and drew inspiration for his nextsteps from the powerful, stylish women of his family.

Nana’s aunt, Afia Akoto, studied design at the highly-regarded Scuola di Moda Ida Ferri in Roma. Ms. Akoto has in fact made her home and livelihood there for the last twenty years, and was Nana’s entrée to the concept of meticulous tailoring, clearly evident in his work since. The innate sense of style routinely displayed by Nana’s mother, Akua Adoma, had an invaluable influence as well. Mrs. Adoma is also an artisan of the exquisite lace used in the traditional clothing of Ghanaian women. It was no stretch for Nana, then, embark upon this career shift, and simultaneously to honor the legacy of his family’s women by naming his firm Akua Adoma.

The shirt collection, presented in Roma and London, was exceedingly well-received. The attention garnered provided the impetus for the line’s growth. Nana then turned his attention to the vast United States market. He soon established an atelier in the
luxury capital of Beverly Hills, where his sophisticated turn on men’s suiting has gained an intensely loyal following amongst Hollywood’s style elite.

Sony Pictures Entertainment provided the catalyst for Nana Boateng’s West Coast success. The relationships forged at the film conglomerate enabled extensive exposure for the Akua Adoma line, through costuming for major films and executives alike.

With an inborn design compass, a sensitive world-view shaped by his Ghanaian ancestry
and the classic eye of the revered European design tradition, Nana Boateng is infinitely well-suited to conquer the 21st century fashion universe..."

Excerpts and Photos courtesy of Akua Adoma. website


According to RunawayAfrica the founders of Bezemymalian are "...Both 24 years old, Bezem and Mai Lan are fashion designers. One is Franco-Vietnamese; the other is of Russian and Togolese origin. They have directed their talents in creating costumes with a strong ethnic influence. Inspired by their multicultural descents and their frequent trips to their homeland, they have mastered traditional crafts and techniques of Asia and Africa (embroidery, weaving, dyeing, painting)

Self-taught, they started creating their own pieces, while majoring respectively in the History of art and in Vietnamese. They decided to take a course in the making of historical costumes.

While attending university, they stepped foot in the entertainment world, contributing to different projects as costume designers for feature films, plays, musicals, carnivals… They had the opportunity to expose their work at several competitions for young designers, including "Le TrophÈe de la mode". The prestigious jury composed by representatives of l'Oreal, Hermes, XulyBet, and Galeries Lafayettes awarded them first prize. They also obtained a grant from La Maison Hermes.

Encouraged by this success, Mai Lan and Bezem conceived a unique and colorful world presented in a series of festive events. At their shows, dance and music performers, sharing similar influences, sport their pieces on stage.

Their goal is to associate this ancestral craft with modernity

In our cosmopolitan society, Mai Lan and Bezem stimulate, on European youth, a new interest in their roots..."

Photos courtesy of Bezemymalian