Highly anticipated, the African Fashion Collective 2009, did not disappoint! Not only did this show have a group of internationally wonderful African/Black designers, but it also had an all-star cast of minority models ranging from Sudanese Alek Wek to U.S. born Tyson Beckford. But, topping them all, and calling the crowd to its feet in a standing ovation, was the pregnant Grace Jones.
The show began with the world renowned label: Xuly.Bet a
collection by Lamine Badian Kouyatè of Senegal. This is a collection
for the confident woman, as models strutted on the runway in tightly clad black
and red leather dresses, fur coats, and barely there tops. The collection was
a crowd pleaser, a hodge-podge of skin and funk.
Second in the line up was Tiffany Amber, whose collection was a filled with classic shapes mixed with the vibrancy and prints from traditional African prints. Wonderfully and carefully stitched beadwork added femininity to the vibrantly bold hues atop the raw silks and taffetas.
Stoned Cherrie followed next with a collection that had an obvious 1950s flair. Designer Nkhensani Nkosi displayed a wonderful use of light wools, silks, and jacquards to achieve very tailored and demure silhouettes. Suede knee- length pencil skirts were paired with silk ruffled blouses in colors ranging from browns to fuchsias.
Momo, a collection designed by Fati Asibelua finished the night by mixing classic glamour of the 1920s with African culture. Prints of grey giraffe and leopard were mounted on sheath, knee length dresses and cardigans. Subtle colors of coppers, browns, and golds danced throughout the collection that was very sleek, feminine, and well tailored.