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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Mandla No. 2: Tribal Village, Urban Jungle

The cold, grey and wet UK weather has left me craving the vibrancy and hotness of a tropical climate. However, what I crave even more is the exoticism of Lagos, Jo'burg, Nairobi and Accra from the catwalk to MY wardrobe!

Image: Enjoythekiss

 Tribal / ethnic themes have become a consistent feature in the Spring / Summer collections of recent years.
For many followers of the fashion tribe, the delivery of exotic colours and prints provides a seasonal departure from the wintery, muted tones but, for many global tribes, the palettes, drapes, pleats and structured silhouettes are a way of everyday life and not just a seasonal trend.

So called African print is leading the ethnic charge, which provides a spotlight for established and
emerging designers on the continent but, mainstream appreciation would be better served by acknowledging the regional and tribal disparities of the prints and textures between countries.

There are tons to explore and this is a (small) selection of my favourite ranges.


Nigeria's leading designer already has a select Hollywood following and her current collection explores geometric & digital patterns in pleated and draped silhouettes.

Images via Jewel by Lisa


Burberry Prorsum S/S 2012 lends more to accented statements than commitment to the trend. 
That said, the accents are strong with some pieces likely to become iconic of the within the mainstream trend.

Images: Burberry


 The UK High Street remains true to it's shopping roots with notable, on-trend pieces and if you're looking for budget friendly prices, then take a look in-store or online. River Island will ship outside of the UK, and ASOS Africa was my favourite go to when I first moved to NYC and was trying to find my shopping feet! 


 This week, ASOS Africa launched their fifth collection produced in collaboration with SOKO Kenya, who provides
sustainable business for local craftsmen.

Image: ASOS


Tie-dye Kaftan; Image: River Island

Coral, tribal platform heels; Images: River Island

Beaded Holdall; Images: River Island

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