There was something very unique about the Spring/Summer 2012 collection shown by Xclamations. Something beautifully authentic, local yet easily exportable internationally. Let’s call it “Utilitarian chic.” If we have all wondered who could potentially help us translate the Nigerian design aesthetics abroad, Xclamations would have to be added to the mix of brand labels that can. Kaftans have been interpreted into modern silhouettes that take more shape. Design details are obvious with little teases of ankara added to neck lines, pockets, dress and pant hems. A kaftan jumpsuit clearly referenced the sexy 70s but also said the label is interested in helping Nigerians and the global fashion industry change the way they look and think about Nigerian and African fashion.
The level of comfort guaranteed in rocking Xclamations’ 21st century kaftan is sweetly obvious. The designs are perfect for the Lagos fashionista, the super casual Berkeley, California woman, the African-American woman interested in remaining in touch with her African ties and Hollywood’s celebrity headed for a causal shopping day at Rodeo drive in Los Angeles.
Things got a bit awkward when the label tried to combine ankara with silk charmeuse tops. We think while it was clever to mix and match different fabrics together, the feathery sleeves on the ankara-silk charmeuse dresses, we felt, was a bit much. A better edited story line especially in the sleeve area, would have probably kept the design aesthetics clean yet still interesting.
Overall, a solid narrative of the Nigerian and African woman that is local yet global. We love!