Following a successful day one of Ghana Fashion & Design week, day 2 saw a flurry of textures, a myriad of prints and a menagerie of styles that were spring / summer perfect.
Opening Day two was Brigitte Merki and her “Zauberhaft” collection, inspired by A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which featured natural references and whimsical designs which had a fairy-feel about them. Using a mixture of African cloth and lighter materials such as chiffon, Merki was able to create a range of looks in-keeping with her mystical woodland theme.
Joining Brigitte Merki in her romantic theme was Mina Evans, who followed with her “Twisted Romance” collection. The current trends of peplums and pleats were heavily used in this show, making a appearance on each piece, producing interestingly feminine silhouettes.
From Nigeria, Alali Boutique tantalised our fashion taste buds with a mixture of mesh, drapery and polka dots, on occasions mixing the three components together. A favourite piece was a white, high-low dress, with a mesh insert of polka dots down the front of the chest which exhibited continuity throughout the piece as the lining of the white skirt was blue and green polka dots, it was subtle and pleasantly unexpected.
1981 unveiled its debut collection, which was full of clean tailoring in neutral colours and lightweight materials which made the line spring / summer 2013 ready. Littered with classic pieces, the collection would effortlessly stand the test of time on any continent. The Italian designs were minimalist and aptly titled “Prologue”, the collection aims to set the tone for the label’s style and future collection.
Strategically fusing intricate black lace with bright, bold prints, a previously rather dangerous mix, Coccolily showcased a fun and flirty collection. The lace inserts supplied a tasteful sexy edge to the pieces, and it was this surprising marriage of two previously foreign materials which brought a balance to Coccolily’s line. The lace insinuated without being revealing, which is exactly why the collection worked.
Morts & More brought British tailoring to the catwalk. Sharp lines created simple, clean-cut silhouettes for both the men and women. Leather collars were incorporated into the classic suit jackets, as we’re the appropriate Ghanaian flag pocket squares which were worn throughout the show, apart from one navy and red suit which had a Union Jack tucked into the left breast pocket. The pieces successfully updated the timeless suit, without overstepping the mark and becoming too garish.
Mimi Lee London experimented with a slew of textures from Leather and Ostrich feathers to Lace and Tulle for their “Skin” spring 2013 collection. A leather dress with a peplum skirt and horizontal mesh inserts demanded attention, a silk floor-length kimono seductively skimmed the floor and bright chiffon dresses whispered by. Nevertheless, one dress stole the limelight: a fine white mesh creation with cleverly placed embellished flowers that bafflingly enough managed to remain demure.
AFG’s Trade Not Aid provided a glint of humour for the show. A mission at Ghana Fashion & Design week is to promote ethical fashion, a concept at the core of Trade Not Aid. The collection was purely t-shirts, which featured clever slogans such as: “Touch Me…I’m Organic”, ” 100% African” and “African Grown and Sewn”.
Christie Brown’s Resort 2013 collection provided a spectacular finale to the two day event. Collaborating with Grace of Grazia Fabrics, who create prints through a batik/tye dye process, to give birth to a stunning collection, which made one rethink ones opinion of tye dye (the seventies did not give it a great reputation). The prints were used on a range of styles from a pencil skirt and bralette two-peice, to a mini t-shirt dress, to a floor length gown. However, I cannot go without mentioning the stand-out dress of the show and the well-deserved final piece to close Ghana Fashion & Design week, a long-sleeved, white floor length gown covered in fine, intricate bead-work, which was not complete without its melted orange tye dye and blue batik train. It was a fabulous end to an impressive two days.