Front Row with Deola Sagoe at AFI Joburg Fashion Week 2018.
Signaling the start of a new fashion calendar, the unequivocal AFI Joburg Fashion Week 2018, pioneering in luxury African fashion, is set to take place from 4 to 7 October 2018, and Nigerian born designer Deola Sagoe- a visionary with a unique approach to her craft; will lead a showcase on 05 October, following her creative evolution in the fashion industry over the years. What a better way to appreciate her trends and movements which have shaped the course of a modern woman.
Deola Sagoe Ltd, has recently undergone re-branding to simply, Deola.
The startup story of this leading lady of the African haute couture fashion scene is one that could rival any Paris catwalk story. With top models, A-List celebrities and famous society personalities making up her clientele lists, Deola Sagoe, founder of haute couture fashion house Deola, is an entrepreneurial success story of note, putting the Nigerian fashion scene well and truly on the global map.
With humble beginnings from MNET Face of Africa/Africa Designer in the years 1998 and 2000 respectively, Deola has left a global footprint across the various continents. She has since won the MNET Anglo Gold African Design Award, and has been nominted by the legendary US Vogue Editor, Andre Leon Tally as one of four designers from Africa to show their work at New York Fashion Week 2000.
In September 2014, as the first African designer, she continued to lead the way in showcasing her own stand-alone show at New York Fashion Week. In 2006, Deola Sagoe was appointed ambassador of the United Nation’s ‘Catwalk the World: Fashion for Food Campaign’, Deola featured her Collections in a series of shows across the globe.
Deola continues to beguile audiences with her originality and vision. Her global appeal is derived from her fashion identity – a tapestry of cultural heritage, local, nearly lost techniques, revitalized and modernized, making them accessible to today’s woman. Bespoke Deola pieces are essentially sculpted around the body of the wearer, thus the designer’s cut and form genius become transformative on the wearer. Fashion-conscious women worldwide, spanning from Africa’s first ladies to renowned personalities including Naomi Cambell, Thandie Newton and Lydia Hearst have adorned Deola collections.
“African designers need to celebrate their cultural roots and fashion history in order to become globally competitive.” Says Deola.
The woman entrepreneurship dynasty in the fashion business continues through Deola’s three daughters who in 2011 together with Deola founded their own CLAN label, a crisp, original, dynamic brand producing meticulously designed occasionwear, which ranges from staple pieces that every women should have in her wardrobe to trendy workwear and luxurious evening wear.
At the heart of the company, headquartered at the luxurious Deola Sagoe flagship store in Victoria Island, Lagos, is the atelier where the numerous crafts people expertyly busy themselves with pattern making, tailoring, embroidery and embelishment. The span on the fashion value chain, from design to retails, is all nucleated within the building.
With the theme, “Tropical Galactica” set for AFI Joburg Fashion Week 2018 Deola and Clan will open a designer runaway for attendees to experience a sweeping Tropical Rainforest from the heart of Africa; only this time, with a curiously striking infusion of the Outer-Space.
“I often fuse African cultural style with a modern approach to design. I love the dynamism of creating modernity out of something that is steeped in history. I think it’s what gives my collection such a cultural mix.” Says Deola Segoe
Tropical Galactica – Theme for the South African show
DEOLA brings to you her very own Tropical Rainforest from the heart of Africa. But this time with a curiously striking infusion of the Outer-Space.
Through her eyes, we see the glorious home to vain pit vipers, boa constrictors, birds of paradise and freckled orchids become riddled with the enigma of some extraterrestrial super-beings,+ who may or may not be on a mission to visit the Garden of Eden.
Delphyne Gorgon and Lady DiamondBack are here to show up Eve’s notorious crime of all eternity to be mere child’s play. They’ve come well equipped with Spicy Galaxy powder, a wink of the Eclipse and some Unicorn Tears Kryptonite.
Girded with corselletes and donned with fiery fringing and state-of-the-art Nigerian technology textiles from the future in vivid hues, contours, and textures, these women are ready to give the exotic skins on the wild papillons a run for their money and make the hairs on the sabre-tooth tigers stand on end.
We are in the wild with the morning dew-drops, the murky crocodile swamps and the superhuman fashion killers from outer-space. There is only one way this could end and truly we are about to see it.
SHE, The POWERWOMAN
This collection unveils the delicately moulded, full flavoured persona behind today’s woman.
The clothing is imbued with power shoulders and super structured silhouettes which portray the solidly built and essentially rugged side of her persona, and with pretty lace infusions which give her the comfort to embrace her softer and more alluring side.
These multi-dimensional pieces bedeck the wearer with a sculpted almost austere quality but at the same time with an effortlessly captivating and magnetic allure. She is absolutely a force to be reckoned with. She is beautiful. She is fearless. She possesses a huge awareness of self. SHE is self-sufficient and SHE is her greatest superpower.
The collection is also characterized by triangles which represent sacred female energy and evoke strength. Triangles have a solid base – and no matter how much pressure you put on any of their sides, it is impossible to break them. This is today’s woman. Despite all the challenges of today’s world she is resilient and she sources everything she needs from within.
As such, this collection is a tribute to the free expression of the spirited feminine energy that is pronounced in our society today. Barriers are being broken and new territories being permeated by a reawakening of the dynamic high-powered female anima. She is no longer defined by all the things she looks like she should be, but all the things she looks like she should not be – a protector, a breadwinner, a leader.
As Nicki Minaj puts it, “sometimes you gotta be a beauty and a beast” and SHE wears this persona extremely well with guile, tenacity and a somewhat unsettling ease.
Facebook: Deola Sagoe