On Wednesday 17th October, Kitenge proudly represented Tanzania and promoted the African textile industry at Bristol Museum’s Fabric Africa Fashion Show.
The event, which coincided with the museum’s Fabric Africa exhibition, celebrated African textiles and culture. One hundred lucky members of the public attended the fabulous free ‘Black History Month’ event.
The event was hosted by the hugely entertaining Vanessa Kisuule and was opened by the Lord Mayor of Bristol, Green Party Cllr Cleo Lake, who visited our stall and met our founder, Sian. It was an absolute pleasure to meet her and hear how she supports talented up and coming fashion designers in West Africa.
Kitenge’s Founder, Sian, with the Lord Mayor of Bristol, Cllr Cleo Lake
Before the fashion show began guest speaker Jacqueline Shaw, founder of Africa Fashion Guide, explained about the history of wax print fabrics and raised awareness of the numerous traditional African textiles such as kente from Ghana, mud cloth from Mali and kanga from Tanzania; just some of the textiles used to make today’s African print dresses and skirts.
Then the event that everyone had been waiting for…the fashion show, which supported mainly local designers of African heritage including: Grace Ekall, SLG Designs, Corrine Willis Couture and Panashe. Each unique design was mesmerizing particularly against the backdrop of such an impressive building.
Kitenge showcased eight colourful looks including a ‘his and hers’ matching outfit in the same unique African wax print! The men’s shirt was paired with black jeans and trainers while the African print skirt was beautifully styled with a black bandeau top, a denim jacket, black high heels and a matching beaded necklace displaying how versatile African print clothing can be for any occasion.
Matching Kitenge Men’s Short Sleeve Shirt & Women’s Maxi Skirt (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
Our popular Red African Print Pencil Skirt also graced the catwalk and received lots of love! Flattering African print skirts such as this look great with a tight plain coloured top tucked inside the waistband. Don’t forget to accessorise with bold statement jewellery and footwear to suit the occasion!
Kitenge Women’s Red African Print Pencil Skirt (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
Next up was one of our beautifully tailored African print tops worn simply with skinny jeans, strappy heels and a black beaded bracelet to match. This versatile look can easily be worn to work, casually or to social events.
Kitenge Women’s Yellow African Print Top (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
Our bold and vibrant Brown African print trousers wowed the crowds with a simple black, lace off the shoulder top and high heels. Our quirky unisex trousers are extremely comfortable and make great travel and lounge wear for a more casual look.
Kitenge Unisex Brown African Print Trousers/Pants (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
Last but not least were our fashionable women’s African print dresses featuring the Yellow African Print Flare Dress and Gold African Print Pencil Dress. We loved the amount of sass on the catwalk particularly in this video!
Kitenge Women’s Gold African Print Pencil Dress (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
We didn’t want to leave out the men so closed the show with our best selling Green Floral African Print Long Sleeve Shirt. Our African menswear collection has gone from strength to strength since it first launched in 2015 following our successful women’s African print clothing collection in 2014.
Kitenge Men’s Green African Print Long Sleeve Shirt (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
The atmosphere was incredible and there was such a buzz after our fashion show had ended. We were so grateful to receive such great feedback and support from so many of the visitors.
After the fantastic fashion show finished guests enjoyed listening to Afrobeats by Dee J Neyo, browsed the stalls and exhibition. They were keen to support the African textile industry now that they had a better understanding about it. It was great that they were asking if our fabric was original and where it comes from.
Kitenge Founder, Sian, standing in front of our stall beside the catwalk (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
Happy customers browsing Kitenge’s stall after the Fabric Africa Fashion Show (credit: Barbara Evripidou)
Big thanks to Christelle Pellecuer who did a fantastic job curating the fashion show and all the models and back stage crew. Also to Bristol Museum for having us and making us feel so welcome.
While you are here why not take a look around our colourful and unique African boutique online. There is currently an end of season sale with up to 50% off all items and free UK delivery so why not grab a bargain! We also ship worldwide.
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The Fabric Africa exhibition runs until 19th May 2019 at the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery. Free entry!
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