An upcoming exhibition at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum will focus on ‘African Fashion’ and will showcase the trailblazers who shaped the African fashion industry, as well as the current talents taking it in new directions. Getting long overdue attention will be Nigerian designer, Folashade Thomas-Fahm, known as ‘Shade,’ who defined Nigerian style in the 1960s and was known for her use of indigenous fabrics.
Organisers say Thomas-Fahm’s re-evaluation of indigenous textiles and silhouettes chimed with the coming of independence for many African nations and women, symbolizing an affirmation of African identities. As well as pioneers, the exhibition will celebrate today’s ground-breaking designers. Checinska highlights Nkwo Onwuka as a designer to watch. Her Nigerian brand NKWO aims to reduce textile waste by creating limited edition pieces from upcycled denim, end-of-line fabrics and cutting-table waste.