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African Fashion Designers showing at Paris Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2014 [FEB. 25 - MAR. 05]

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From New York to London, skipped Milan and now its time for Paris Fashion Week, the city of love truly, as it currently hosts the LVMH Prize competition, were 2 African Designers, both Nigerian – Adebayo Oke – Lawal of Orange Culture, and Amaka Osakwe of Maki Oh in competition for the 300,000 euros. They have made the Top 30, and will be presenting to Forty experts in the Fashion Industry on the 26th & 27th of February, 2014.

As butterflies tingle in their bellies, we know Fashion Week pros like Lanvin’s Creative Director – Alber Elbaz, Ethical luxury line – Maiyet, and new-to-Paris Fashion Week, from senegal – Sophie Zinga are prepared and looking forward to debuting their Autumn/Winter 2014 Collections in Paris. See the schedule below:

Lanvin: Thursday, 27th of February. Strictly by Invitation. 8pm:


Sophie Zinga: Friday, 28th of February. Venue: 20 Rue de Richelieu 75001. Time: 9.30 – 17.00:


Maiyet: Saturday, 1st of March. Venue: Grand Palais, galerie Sud Est, avenue Winston Churchill. Time: 8PM:


If you know of any other African Fashion Designers showing during Paris Fashion Week, please send an email to so we follow them up.

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Who’s HauTe: Interview with Senegalese Womenswear Designer, Sophie Zinga Sy of Sophie Zinga

Written by . Posted in Blog, Buy, Designers, Features.

Self-confessed minimalist and our current design crush because we live for minimalism, Sophie Zinga is a Senegalese Parsons-trained fashion designer and creative designer of her eponymous label. She considers herself a citizen of the world and her designs are a distinctive blend of her artistic experiences, which are an eclectic cocktail of her voyages. Of course we collated random questions to ask the designer, not just about the label but about herself

HFA: Who is Sophie Zinga?
SZ: I am a 27 year old fashion designer born in Senegal, raised between the United States, Kenya and Senegal. I have a background in development and economics and studied Fashion Design at Parsons. I currently split my time between Dakar and New York.

HFA: Has fashion designing always been in the plan for you?
SZ: Honestly, not really. Well actually in my head it was, but I always said in another world that I’d be a fashion designer. As a youngster I was a bit of a nerd and strived to always be first or second of my class. I read any book I could get my hands on and was generally studious. I wanted to save the world, which led me to be profoundly be interested in politics, public health and economics. However I always found myself magnetically attracted to beauty and fashion. In 2005, I started blogging about all things fashion and sometime in 2009 I decided to apply to Parsons. For me it wasn’t worth going into fashion if I did not get into the best design school.

HFA: What was it like schooling in Parsons and how did it help in honing your design skills?
SZ: I think schooling in Parsons has really thought me discipline and also gave me the opportunity to really immerse myself fully in the world of fashion, which is a highly competitive environment. As a design student at Parsons you’re thought how to make a garment from beginning to end. From concept, research, sketching to making the actual garments. As a fashion design student you could walk into a class at 2am and find students working on projects. That rigorous routine is what I have kept with me until today: Hard work and perseverance.

HFA: We take that you are a lover of art and culture having described yourself as a ‘citizen of the world’. Has this impacted your outlook on life and approach to design?
SZ: Yes, I really mean it when I say I consider myself a citizen of the world and I try to truly immerse myself in different countries every time I travel. I’ve been in and out of planes since I was 10 months old and moved every 3 years to a different city. I identify as Senegalese but I picked up bits and pieces of culture and experiences from all the different cities I’ve lived in and I feel at home both in New York and Dakar.
My approach to design is embracing all cultures while still infusing my African roots in the design process. It all starts with an idea or inspiration and I let it come on its own in the most natural way. As an African designer people like to usually put us in boxes automatically and I refuse to be put in. I am fashion designer, no more, no less.

HFA: What is your personal mantra, if you have one?
SZ: Whatever in life you choose to be, be the best at it. Be good to everyone, even those who haven’t been good to you. The universe works in amazing ways. I strongly believe in Karma and the power of being positive.

HFA: Sophie Zinga is your eponymous fashion brand. What did you take into consideration before naming the brand?
SZ: My full name is Sophie Nzinga Sy but while naming the brand I wanted my customer to identify herself with it whether she’s be European or African or from Latin America. I think Sophie and Zinga is a beautiful juxtaposition. I am Senegalese but my parents who are Pan-Africanists named me after Queen Nzinga from Angola who fought against Portuguese invasion.

HFA: Who is the ‘Sophie Zinga’ woman?
SZ: The Sophie Zinga customer embodies a strong beautiful woman who understands her body and knows how to dress depending on her event. She dresses tastefully dressed whether she’s in gala, a board meeting or just jet setting in between her travels. She’s socially conscious, well travelled and likes to be a step ahead of trends while adding her own touch to her wardrobe with accessories. She’s that best dressed woman in understated luxury.

HFA: We can’t help but fall in love with the aesthetic of your brand; how you are able to keep you designs minimalist and still infuse rich culture and travel experiences into you work. How do you do that?
SZ: Thank you, it comes naturally to me quite honestly. I myself am avid supporter of the “less is more” mantra so it naturally reflects my design aesthetic. I also proudly infuse my African roots because it is part of who I am. I think the brand’s aesthetic is a reflection of myself.

HFA: Do you have muse(s)? Can you tell us who they are?
SZ: I have several muses. This season my girl is a globetrotter; she’s socially conscious and is aware of international trends. She loves being best dressed at all her events and adds her unique touch to her outfits. I find inspiration from the women who are close to me whether they are artists, entertainers or just friends.

HFA: Can you remember your first fashion show? What was it like?
SZ: Yes, it was in 2012 at the Pierre Hotel in Manhattan. It was during the 1st Ladies luncheon in New York and I remember being super stressed. I am a perfectionist so I wanted everything to look pristine. In the end it went very well and Senegal’s First Lady who was attending the event came to congratulate me.

HFA: What inspired your most recent collection?
SZ: The rose and its texture inspired my Spring/Summer 2014 collection. I was also inspired by Malian tie-dye techniques, which I infused my own way onto French Alencon lace.

HFA: What is your favourite piece/ensemble from the collection?
SZ: The alencon tye dye lace gown and the one shoulder Jumpsuit.
HFA: Where do you see the African fashion industry and Sophie Zinga in the next five years?
SZ: In the next five years, I see African fashion in a much more mature stage. I think right now everyone is watching African fashion evolve and the rest of the world is starting to see the tremendous potential that African fashion has. Investors are gaining more interest but have a lot more work to do to collectively to create a real industry with more magazines, editors etc..

At Sophie Zinga, we hope to be stocking in big name department stores worldwide. We would also like develop our accessories section starting Spring/Summer 2015 and eventually start a diffusion line in a couple of years for a more price friendly choice for customers who’d like to wear our pieces. We would also love to design a capsule collection with Zara, H&M or Topshop.

HFA: What can we look forward to from Sophie Zinga in the near future?
SZ: We are currently getting ready for our Fall/Winter presentation and will be presenting it during Paris Fashion Week on February 28th. We are excited because it is the brand’s first fall/winter collection yet to date. We are also working on revamping our website and creating an online store. Keep up with us at

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Spring/Summer 2014 Collection: House of Nwocha.

Written by . Posted in Blog, Fashion Shows, Features.


Review to follow shortly


A Special presentation called the Cocoon:


Review to follow shortly


Photo Credit: Insigna Media

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JUMIA: Trends from New York & London Fashion Week’s Spring/Summer 2014 to look out for.

Written by . Posted in Advertorial, Blog, Buy, Features, Trends.

After a lot of speculation into what trends will follow through 2014, we saw some old fashion trends coming back to rock runways and people picked up the trends fast. Some of the trends included red carpets favorite Great Gatsby from the 60’s movie, Monochrome, Color blocking, Pastels and more 60’s twist trends high wait skirts.

This year, from New York to London Fashion Week, trends we spotted are different and refreshing. It will be about the colors, which have been flocking the runways during this Fashion Week season.

In Nigeria, we have also seen familiar trends as the rest of the world. Nigerians are very trendy; from rocking best fashion trends on red carpets to buying the latest gadgets (Mobile phones).

JUMIA has highlighted the trends that we should look out for this year, following the recent Trend rave on Fashion:

Jumia Trends color-matchupJumia Trends Color-spottingJumia Trends Fab-and-FlareJumia Trends lace-everythingJumia Trends PastelsJumia Trends prints instinctsShop all the latest Trends now Here

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South African Designer, Black Coffee collaborates with African Dance Show ‘Full Moon’ in Celebration of Vuyani’s 15th Anniversary.

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The show which is intended to evoke emotions and stimulate the senses, so a collaboration with the conceptual style of Jacques van der Watt of Black Coffee seemed a great match. “Jacques is a phenomenally creative mind who uses his designs to extend the themes of my work. He is a multi-dimensional thinker who speaks to notions of form, ecology and beauty. Full Moon will tap into environmental issues and will also touch on notions of the divine.”

For their fifth production together, Van der Watt is aiming high with the costumes.

The clothes are integral to the story, says Magoma.

“We work well together – his dance is vibrant, modern and edgy. The costumes set the mood for the production,” says Van der Watt. ”They’re designed specifically for movement and flexibility. They become part of the landscape of the narrative.”

Magoma met the designer at a fashion show more than a decade ago. “I was taken by Jacques’ versatility and his bold designs. Like me, he isn’t afraid to push the envelope. We both defy rules to create our own forms and aesthetics while remaining current and unique,” says Magoma.

Costume design is not new to Van der Watt. ”It’s my little secret that I started in productions,” he says. ”Nobody knows that my first job was at Egoli – doing wardrobe. I worked on more than 100 episodes. It gave me a very broad learning curve in terms of different kinds of clothes, but, as anyone who’s worked in television before will understand, it nearly killed me.”

  • Full Moon premieres at the Joburg Theatre on April 30


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DHL Exported – A Designers chance to show at New York, London, Milan or Tokyo Fashion Week. Applications end on the 2nd of April, 2014.

Written by . Posted in Blog, Buy, Events, Fashion Shows, Features.

DHL, along with IMG Fashion, is launching a new program, DHL Exported, to support the fashion industry worldwide. This unprecedented program was created to help designers who are already established in their local market to further their global footprint via the world’s most powerful fashion week platforms. Designers from around the globe are invited to submit an application package and select a foreign event of their choice: Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York, London Fashion Week, Milan Fashion Week or Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Tokyo. A committee of regional experts will review applicants and decide which designer demonstrates the most promise to benefit from debuting their collections at the event.

DHL Exported

DHL will sponsor a chosen designer for two consecutive seasons at each of the four Fashion Weeks. Designers will receive a guaranteed spot on the schedule along with a funded and produced runway show or presentation. DHL will also underwrite all logistic costs of producing the collection (i.e. international shipping and exporting of hard goods) as well as exporting the collection to New York, London, Milan or Tokyo for the designers’ runway debut.

The application process will be open from February 17 – April 2, 2014 and winners announced at exclusive press events in New York, London, Milan and Tokyo in May.

DHL will support the designers’ journey from the outset of transporting fabrics and supplies for the collection to shipping the completed collection to the runway. DHL Exported is supported by IMG Fashion, the British Fashion Council, Camera Nazionale Della Moda, and Japan Fashion Week.

DHL Exported Fashion Week

To be considered for the program, the designer must fulfill the criteria below and fill out the following application:

  1. Has been in the business of fashion design for a minimum of 7 years
  2. Has demonstrated the ability to produce collections to a high level of consistent production
  3. Can demonstrate international sales growth
  4. Has a business strategy for international growth

To findout more about the program, and fill out the registration form, please click HERE.

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Ghanaian Produced Fashion Label Della, Collaborates with Vans on New Shoe Collection

Written by . Posted in +Men, Blog, Buy, Features.

In exciting collaboration news, LA based, Ghanaian produced fashion label Della has collaborated with shoe manufacturer Vans. The collection consists of six vibrant designs with the fabrics handmade by artisans from Hohoe, Ghana. The shoes come in low and high cut, styled in colourful Batik designs.

Della is a socially responsible fashion line that helps provide jobs, skills training as well education in Ghana. Their products are handcrafted using authentic textiles sourced in the Volta region of the West African country.

Innocent Ndlovu is the Men’s Fashion Editor of HauTe Fashion Africa. Follow him on Twitter @IamInnocentN and Instagram @innoegram. 

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Taibo Bacar, MaXhosa by Laduma, Thula Sindi get Eco-Friendly for the Earth Matters, Fashion Matters Fashion Show at The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art on the 22ND of February, 2014.

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The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art will host some of Africa’s hottest designers at “Earth Matters, Fashion Matters” a fashion show and concert at the museum Saturday, Feb. 22, from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Katie Rost, a Vogue 100 model, will emcee the already sold-out event.

Global Fashion New York Inc. is producing the provocative show, which will feature eco-friendly fashions inspired by the exhibition, “Earth Matters: Land as Material and Metaphor in the Arts of Africa.” 10 Designers from across the African Continent such as Thula Sindi from South Africa, Taibo Bacar from Mozambique, KibonenNY from Cameroon, Chouchou Lazare from Gabon, MaXhosa by Laduma from South Africa, Patience Torlowei from Nigeria, Mushana from Uganda, Kenema from Sierra Leone, Abai Schulze from Ethiopia and Sindiso Khumalo from South Africa will interpret with eco-friendly fashions inspired by the “Earth Matters” exhibition.

The exhibition is on view at the museum through Sunday, Feb 23:

Earth Matters, Fashion Matters at the Smithsonian

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South Sudan’s Ajak Deng & Angola’s Maria Borges styled by Ghana’s Edward Enninful for W Magazine’s March 2014 Issue shot by Steven Klein.

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For the March issue of W Magazine, it’s all about the Sexy & Scary, and the editorial styled by Ghana’s Edward Enninful ‘Warrior Stance’ depicts the city and the models in a very eerie New York City. See stills from the amazing shoot here, with two of our favourite African Fashion Models: Ajak Deng & Maria Borges, in their wildest transformation yet:

Ajak Deng:



Maria Borges:


Hair by Orlando Pita. Makeup by Kabuki.

See more from the editorial, HERE.

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London Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2014 [Day 3] : Funlayo Deri

Written by . Posted in Blog, Buy, Fall/Winter, Fashion Shows, Features.

London/Budapest based Nigerian fashion designer, Funlayo Deri recently presented her Autumn/Winter 2014 collection during London Fashion Week. The collection consisted of textured fabrics, minimal in construction with intricate patterns. Feminine and elegant, the collection ranged from ‘woman at work’ to evening gowns and her version of the LBD in blue and white crocheted like fabric.


Innocent Ndlovu is the Men’s Fashion Editor of HauTe Fashion Africa. Follow him on Twitter @IamInnocentN and Instagram @innoegram.

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