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    Boutique Fashion News — african print

    Look of the Day: Effortless Glamour

    This look is for those seeking effortlessly glamourous. Combining exquisitely tailored separates and muted classic colours, with flattering feminine silhouettes, you won’t go wrong wearing this to that special outing.

    The jacket is created by contemporary label, M’OYO with high quality leather and genuine wax print cotton. Buy it here.

    Brass accessories, by Kenyan label Embody,  provide just the right stamp of elegance. Get these from Sapelle here.

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    Look of the Day: One Times Three

    One of our most popular items, the peplum belt, is back this season. A versatile accessory that can take you through the week from classy formal to relaxed casual occasions. The one we’ve featured here is available in sizes small to large. Our styleboard demonstrates just how well you can upgrade your contemporary look with just a touch of African print.

    Shop it here.x-3

    Look of the Day: Maxi-mising your Sunday Best

    l-34Our Stylist has picked this look for those days when nothing else will do but your Sunday best. Whether it’s for a posh afternoon tea or a wedding, we think this look, accentuating the beautifully-coloured, flattering maxi skirt from Kutowa, is elegant and confident. This versatile skirt looks just as fabulous with a black chiffon top for the evening as it does here with a demure cream number.

    Get this look from Sapelle.com:

    • African wax print Chitenge maxi skirt, Kutowa Designs
    • Double Leaf Brass Earrings, Riri Jewellery
    • Coral & Turquoise Necklace, Miss Chi
    • Top, Shoes & Bag: Alexander McQueen, Chanel and Louboutin (we said nothing but the best!)

     

     

    Sapelle Announces ‘FROM KENYA W LOVE’ Pop Up Shop in London’s West End

    Dates: Fri. 8 to Sat 30 November Address: 53 Monmouth Street, London WC2H 9DG Opening Times: 10:30 to 7pm Mon-Sat; 11:30 – 6pm Sun Shop: Ladies & Menswear from top labels such as Anna Adero, Jamil Walji, Katungulu Mwendwa, Kaveke, KikoRomeo, Kooroo, Riri and Sapelle’s lovely new Winter Collection.

    Jamil Walji

    Jamil Walji

    Building on the success of two previous pop-ups in London this year, we’re excited to announce the launch of a third pop-up from 8th to 30th November, 2013 entitled ‘From Kenya w Love’. The boutique will be located in the heart of London’s West End and is a collaboration with FAFA, a body promoting the best of Kenya’s and Africa’s contemporary fashion designers.

    9-1

    Katungulu Mwendwa

    “Our last two London pop-ups far exceeded our expectations. Not only did we get our online customers visiting from around London, but we had a fantastic reaction from passing footfall. Women walked in and shopped who’d spotted the vibrant and original prints and textiles fused with modern Western styling, and they loved the tribal jewellery,” says Sapelle.com’s CEO and Founder, Daphne Kasambala.

    JOHN-KAVEKE-ARISE-MAGAZINE-FASHION-WEEK-2012-6

    Kaveke

    The pop-up showcases Kenya’s top labels, both ladies and menswear. Sapelle.com will also be featuring its Winter collection, including pieces from suppliers around Africa. Shoppers should expect to find a wide range of ethical tribal-inspired Fashion and Gifts for day and evening. The collaboration is part of a celebration of Kenya’s 50th Independence with charity partner Wherever The Need, who’ll be holding a gala dinner & cultural showcase called ‘Festival Kenya’ in London on 21st November, 2013.

    KikoRomeo for Men

    KikoRomeo for Men

    Kasambala and FAFA’s Ann McCreath and Hebret Lakew, have worked together since the launch of Sapelle.com in 2012, and have wanted to collaborate on something like this. “We ‘re utterly thrilled by this chance, and have called the event ‘From Kenya with Love’ because, after the horrific terrorist attack at Westgate Mall, we want to highlight the positive, loving and hugely creative side of Kenya.

    Anna Adero

    Anna Adero

    Kenya’s a country that loves its rich and vibrant culture, and one of the continent’s leaders in fashion. The opportunity to pop-up in the prestigious Monmouth Street is the perfect ending to the year, and a chance for shoppers to shop exclusively from labels not found anywhere else in the UK.” There is a schedule of events including a launch party, workshops, a Gentlemen’s shopping evening, late night shopping and a Press & Stylists cocktail event. For details, contact info@sapelle.com or visit www.sapelle.com.

    Kooroo

    Kooroo

    Riri Jewellery

    Riri Jewellery

    Sapelle Winter Range

    Sapelle Winter Range

    Tina Lobondi Teal wool & wax print coat-2-edited

    Sapelle Winter Range

    Moyo red jacket-edited

    Sapelle Winter Range

    FT.com Features Lagos Fashion (& My Two-Pennies’ Worth, Of Course)

    Nkwo

    Nkwo

    Whenever I read something positive about Africa – and especially about African fashion – written in the mainstream press, it lifts me up. Literally elevates me. For those not paying attention to what the media covers in terms of Africa, being uplifted by one news article might seem a rather exaggerated response to something so seemingly trivial.

    But when you’re fully immersed in the business of promoting something as original and beautiful, and as yet relatively unseen on the global scene as African fashion, this is a small victory. To anybody who ever doubted it, I can wholeheartedly attest to the fact  that only a tiny part of what’s reported about Africa is positive; and in the fashion press, African fashion barely gets a mention at all.

    So waking up this morning to read this FT.com article by Melanie Abrams entitled ‘Lagos: Global Fashion Hotspot’ – which quotes me on why Nigerian luxury brands are doing well – has totally made my weekend.

    I met Melanie Abrams when she attended our Clerkenwell Pop Up Boutique in the Summer. She was interested in Nigerian fashion and what it had to offer the high-end international fashion market. She was curious about why Lagos had emerged as a clear leader in the luxury space, as opposed to other fashion capitals on the continent.

    Talking to her raised in me some interesting observations, and highlighted the huge opportunity that Lagos has to carve out a niche on the global luxury fashion scene. Economically, Nigeria alone has enough of an emerging middle class (and a substantial super-rich class) to fully sustain labels such as Jewel by Lisa, Lanre da Silva Ajaye, Iconic Invanity and Nkwo (to name a few) – and the majority of these designers’ customers are indeed home-grown.

    Jewel by Lisa

    Jewel by Lisa

    However, not only can these labels be desirable to Nigerians and other Africans, there’s also an international appeal to the diverse colours, textures and silhouettes that draw from centuries of culture and craftsmanship, which these designers are taking advantage of. What’s evident in Nigerian and also African popular culture (whether music, film, art or fashion) is that there is a certain pride in the influences inherited from past generations which perhaps wasn’t there before.

    No longer is the West the only source of inspiration to creatives across the continent. I remember growing up in a time when youth culture valued American music over local, and did our best to emulate every fashion trend coming out of London and New York. But thankfully attitudes have changed, and this new-found pride is what will drive the exportation of fashion, art, music and even film to the world.

    What remains now is exposure beyond the shores of Africa. Proper exposure: an alternative viewpoint, a steady drowning out of the negative vibes that are so often linked, bound even, to ‘Brand Africa’, and permeate even the editorial desks of fashion magazines.

    Lately we’ve seen high profile individuals like Michelle Obama and Beyonce Knowles don Nigerian labels with pride. And so must this trend continue. Which is why an article such as this (and many more of the same please!) are crucial to getting the global consumer to appreciate, trust and embrace what’s coming out of Africa as legitimate and worth a look. We must move from featuring Western labels using African designs as inspiration as a one-off, to covering African labels doing that as a matter of course.

    Sapelle isn’t a player on the luxury fashion stage, but I believe that continued exposure to top African labels and changing mindsets in the luxury space will see benefits flowing to the mid-market players we work with, who have lots to offer in terms of beautiful, original, relevant fashion for everyday wear.

    So hats off to you, Melanie Abrams and FT.com. And thank you for making my weekend!