There’s been a heated debate going on in the blogosphere (…does Facebook count as a blog?) about the current worldwide trend in African Prints. I believe the buzz began last year with Marc Jacob and Louis Vuitton’s use of the Maasai print for their men’s 2012 Spring/Summer collections.
I didn’t buy it. And even now still think that neither did justice to the strength exuded by that bold Maasai print. Maybe the designers (experienced as they are) just didn’t know how to work it, maybe it was the models who didn’t sell it, maybe seeing it on a runway in Paris drained it of all it’s authenticity. Either way, I thought that was that, until I began seeing Hollywood celebrities with Ankara, Kitenge, Khanga and Leso prints on their outfits. What really got my attention though, were the comments from fellow African designers, bloggers and fashion enthusiasts…
In a nutshell. NO, please note that not all ‘Tribal Prints’ are African. And YES, it is definitely a plus to see African culture in the limelight and on the world’s stage. YES, there will be opportunists as there generally are where money is to be made. But NO, they won’t last. They simply don’t have what it takes to outlast the trend and go on to build a strong brand. Vision is a most powerful thing. So what do we need to do as designers? Keep at it. Stay true and true to our course. As bloggers? Step away from the magazines, movies and music. Get back to what’s real and begin appreciating our own. We cannot purport to give, what we do not have.
Still on the topic of trends… Albino models. Stunning. They make for simply stunning models. Came across Amina Adams of Knitwear Models (Kenya) earlier on in the week. Speaking as one who’s generally not a fan of trends, here’s where one has actually been an eye-opener for me; I just didn’t know it was a possibility. Definitely looking forward to incorporating Albino’s in my product photo-shoots future. Can’t wait.
Albino models. Win.
Sat in for Baby Banda’s 1st Motherhood Workshop last weekend. Being surrounded by 1000+ pregnant women is an overpowering feeling; everyone was glowing like a 100 watt light bulb! Now, imagine my shock when at the end of it all I hear my name being read out as a winner’s of the Palmer’s Hamper. Me. Not-pregnant, not a mother, there by work default, me. And then MC, Tahidi High’s Ms. Morgan asks… “How far along are you?” Surreal!
I won again this weekend at The Mingle; courtesy of HP, i’m now the proud owner of a lovely big, white, branded umbrella. (It’s the simple things really). I’m on a roll. God’s on a roll – this unmerited favour of his amazes me!
Me. I win.
Wishing you many winning moments this week too.