Parsons New York graduate Bridget Awosika finally drops her first full collection –styled by yours truly- as a designer featuring architecturally sound pieces that bear traces of Africa without being gaudy. Upon first look at the pieces the amount of quality handwork and exactitude of craftsmanship is evidenced.
The designer who values functionality and individuality -probably a trait she acquired working at Donna Karan and Giorgio Armani whilst in New York- worked with skilled Artisans in producing the collection which feature a range of interesting fabrics amongst which stands one that is quintessentially Nigerian in origin and African in nature, the ‘Aso oke’.
Many fashion insiders would argue that the African batik print is not indigenous to the continent but rather produced for the continent by Europeans and Asians. The Aso-oke fabric however is made for Africans by Africans in Africa, and it is slowly taking a reasonable chunk of the local fabric market, thanks to modern techniques involved in the production.
Asides the Aso-oke Fabric Bridget Awosika also worked with chiffon, tulle, dutchess satin, crepe and cotton fabrics.
Detailing in the collections displayed a witty use of accordion pleats, sexy drapery and cut out patterns on the fabric that had the skin disguised with tulle or in one case, exposed at one side of the hip. The signature cuts followed through on other pieces and appeared on the bottom of one of the trousers in the collection.
The colors palette was a mixture of neon pink, turquoise, grey, lime, white and the chic black pieces which were amongst my favorites. Black allows you to explore shape and texture to a degree that is often not possible with the presence of colour. The tonal range was executed wisely and fused with the vivid detailing which includes folds, accordion pleats, sequins and exposed zippers achieved cohesion. The intimate folds and lines of the fabrics against the body created a sexy vibe which the designer divulges unofficially, that she wanted to attain with the collection.
Texturally exciting fabrics, ostensibly harsh details and architecture come to mind when one views the collection. With many collections which come and go due to fashions frenzied pace and planned obsolescence, this would be one to struggle with our will, if only to retain a whiff of it in our minds.
You probably would not notice that the pink fabric in the dress above below is Aso-Oke
Aso-Oke in turquoise
Pleated Aso-Oke and custom dyed Dutchess Satin.