Thursday, July 19, 2012

Dakar becomes the Capital of Franco-African fashion

It may not have all the allure of New York or Paris but Dakar is quickly making its name as a force to be reckoned with in fashion stakes.

The recent 10th annual Fashion week in Dakar attracted an international audience to showcase what they got in terms of African collections. It is a decade since Senegalese designer Adama Ndiaye unveiled first show. The city has now earned itself a unique title-Capital of Franco African Fashion.

This is a very important milestone for this country and everyone who is an associate of high-end African fashion.

Helen Jennings, fashion analysts says that 2012 event was attended by the godfathers of the African fashion who cemented the Dakar’s reputation.

Jennings who is also the editor of Arise, A London-based fashion magazine that campaigns for the African fashion, pointed the important difference between English and French inspired fashion in Africa.
“The Anglophone Africa is more westernized on the whole and hence gets more attention from the international community, while Francophone designs, though still contemporary, veer towards more traditional styles, especially the North African kaftans and Senegalese Boubou.”

If you are an African fashion enthusiast, you understand well that this must be a refreshing change to see such influences on the catwalk. It also helps the same collection to have a placer in international markets.

However, Jennings added that Dakar was not the capital of African fashion. There are other capitals such as Nigeria and South Africa which are the host of Arise Fashion magazine and Africa fashion week runners respectively.

It’s very interesting to see how growth has taken place in the African fashion industry in the recent past. In fact it as become a wider economic boom on this continent, as Jennings says.

While Africa was previously seen as a source of anthropological inspiration for international brands only, the homegrown talents are now standing up to be counted too and riding wave of interest in Africa’s cultural and economic ascension. 


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