Who remembers when Hollywood based Nigerian designer, Chris Aire, first showed at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week? Back then it was a novel idea. No one had ever shown as an accessory designer on the runway. We also remember when Anglo Gold, out of South Africa, showcased its beautiful gold designs much in the same format that Chris Aire did and that Anita Quinsah now does. Now, with Quinsah, like the other aforementioned brands, she has even had celebrities such as Alicia Keys rock her designs.
However, as most fashion insiders and the designers who have their pieces worn by celebrities know, that is not enough. In fact, many times, a celebrity wearing your designs does not necessarily convert into sales. It brings recognition and awareness but you have to focus on the primary target audience who you want to purchase your designs. You have to sell accessibility as much as you sell glamour and style to this core demographic. How do you do that? You tell their stories, which is essentially your story, so you can attract the kinds of persons that will resonate with and be emotionally connected to your design ethos/aesthetics.
We believe Anitah Quinsah gave us just that in her Spring/Summer 2013 collection. First, she designed very simple dresses in mostly black and blue color hues. This meant the attention was firmly focused on the accessory designs, where it needed to be. Next she focused our attention on the accessories that were nothing short of art pieces which told a rich Pan-African tory yet was versatile enough to draw parallel inferences of the native American story. We were reminded of African cultures ranging from the Massai people found in Kenyan to Ethiopians, South Africans and Nigerians.
Neck pieces were big and bold, telling stories of a rich legacy of African strong warriors yet stayed topical with today’s modern times.
We saw beautiful embroidery in hats and embroidered flowing long dresses. We saw intricate design details in the jewelry showcased ranging from colorful beads to stones, chains, shells and so much more.
Anita Quinsah’s hand crafted pieces spoke to us with a strong and unique perspective that showed strong craftmanship in wearable art pieces.
-Photocredit: Kola Oshalusi/Insignaonline.com