The pride among citizens of Africa and those with African heritage in the diaspora is at an all time high. From fashion to music, arts and film, millions are proudly expressing their take on what it means to be African. A young budding Ladybrille entrepreneur Chidi Nwaonu joins the list with the launch of ‘Proud To Be African Clothing.’
“‘Proud To Be African Clothing’ was founded in London in December 2010 to showcase the beauty of African design and African clothing,” said Founder Chidi Nwaonu in a press release to Ladybrille Magazine. “Whenever one sees images from Africa in the media, the images are generally negative, however this is a different reality from the Africa that I and others grew up in. Last year I saw a presentation by Chimamanda Adichie to TED on the ‘The Dangers of a single story‘ which covered exactly the same points about the dangers of seeing a situation from only one perspective, so I resolved to put my money where my mouth is and put out a product that carried a positive message of Africa everyone could wear and relate to that gave the other side of the story.”
The initial summer collection consists of designs from renowned artist and poet Inua Ellams (www.phaze05.com) and eminent cartoonist Tayo
Fatunla (www.tayofatunla.com). “When I was asked to design for the project, I searched for a single iconic image to pair with the slogan ‘Proud to be African’. But nothing besides continent worked, confirming my belief that Africa is beyond a single story or concept and its narrative is beyond the sum of its parts,” said Inua of being a part of the project.
Proud to be Africans Clothing’s first collection consists of 3 designs on male and female T shirts, unisex hoody’s, children’s T shirts and babies’ bodysuits. The T shirts are made from 100% reactive dyed cotton; the male t shirts have a crew neck style while the female T shirts have shaped side seams to give an exquisite flattering fit. The baby’s and children’s clothing is made from 100% organic ethical cotton and fits kids from 0-18 months (for body suits) and 2 to 12 years (T-shirts) The garments are priced competitively in order to spread the ‘Proud To Be African’ message as far as possible and also move African designs into the realm of urbanwear.
The designers and founders hope that the African themed designs will find their niche not just in African fashion, but in ethical, hip hop and casual wear. With Proud To Be African Clothing, the message is the product and the product is the message. Proud to be African is offering 10% discount on its merchandise as part of its official launch. Check out the site and support our young entrepreneur!
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Proud To Be African Clothing
Founded in 2007, Ladybrille® Magazine is a California based pioneer digital publication demystifying the image of Africans in the west through contemporary African fashion and celebrating the brilliant woman in business and leadership, with an emphasis on the African woman in the diaspora. Our coverage includes stories on capital, access to markets, expertise, hiring and retention, sales, marketing, and promotions.