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African Fashion for All at London Fashion Week 2013 by Amanda Epe

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IMAG1043 (1)Ronke Ademiluyi the founder of the largest African fashion event in Europe had the visions to promote emerging and established designers; to connect the diaspora with Africa and to develop cultural exchanges from Europe to Africa. This year in addition to her event AFWL she has made history in taking African Fashion to London Fashion Week, the first collective of African fashions showcased in LFW. For the third year running Ronke’s  AFWL show moved from strength to strength with over 100 designers showcasing their outfits on the runway and a further 100 exhibitors displaying their merchandise around the concourse at Brick Lane The Old Truman Brewery for a three day extravaganza of artistic fashion wears and accessories with African inspirations in August.  .

With pan African designs the wealth of creations across the continent portrayed its diversity, a short list of six labels including TOTE and MISSY EWA designs graced the catwalk in The Grand Connaught Rooms on 14th September. Eye catching labels at Fashions Finest London Fashion Week where DEBBY AFRICAN STITCHES who takes consideration in tailoring clothes for the unconventional models of all shapes and sizes. ZARITA COUTURE was one that I found portrayed exceeding elegance and style and needless to mention the elegant works of SASCHA collection to make it onto the catwalks of LFW.

A new initiative to support future designers was the African Arts and Fashion Banquet held at The Dorchester, Park Lane last month, to enable emerging artists with start up grants through this fundraising event.

The abundance of creativity in the young African migrants and those of African heritage is empowering however their talents are not always showcased due to challenges faced by individuals of minority backgrounds. But Ronke Ademiluyi is creating change and surmounting challenges in so doing platforming African Fashion designers to a global stage for African fashion for all.

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