The top international designers will exhibit their latest creations at a prestigious event aimed at showcasing African fashion.
The Hub of Africa Fashion Week 2015 is taking place at the Millennium Hall, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 21st-23rd October. Among the highlights will be a catwalk show featuring creations from 15 world-renowned designers of African fashion on 22nd October.
Mahlet Teklemariam, the founder of Hub of Africa Fashion Week, an annual event since 2010, says there’s a growing interest in Africa’s fashion and garment industry. She believes designers in Africa are reaping the rewards by exploring the global fashion market by taking part in international events such as HAFW.
Many international companies are drawn by the rich African textiles, including woven cotton with a range of intricate and rich designs. A particular favourite is African wax print fabric, which has become popular in the international fashion world. A few years ago, it was popular mainly in Africa, but it’s now spreading across the globe. The colourful textured fabric has become a favourite among fashion icons, with celebrities adding it to their collections.
Celebrities Love African Fashion
Among the A-list celebrities who favour African prints are singers Rihanna and Solange Knowles, who have been photographed wearing the Nigerian Deola Sagoe collection. Singers Gwen Stefani, Alicia Keys and Beyoncé have also been photographed sporting African prints at events worldwide.
Local designer Fikirte Addis, a self-taught seamstress who started sewing in Addis Ababa as a youngster, using her mother’s sewing machine, has seen her designs attract huge interest in the international market, with an ever-increasing number of sales abroad. She believes the “amazing products”, coupled with Africa’s rich traditions, are ensuring success for African designers.
Fikirte will be taking part in Hub of Africa Fashion Week, alongside Sara Mohamed of Next Design School, high fashion photographer Antonio Fiorente and fashion journalist Eskedar Kifne.
In staging the 2015 event, the organisers of HAFW are again partnering with Origin Africa. For the first time, HAFW is also teaming up with Africa Sourcing and Fashion Week to showcase the top African designers. This year’s event will be the biggest ever in Ethiopia, with more than 200 vendors hosting exhibition stalls and almost 4,000 participants taking part in all the events.