The highly anticipated fourth edition of African Fashion Week Houston kicked off on Monday, September 18th with an intimate opening reception hosted by KG Smooth of Magic 102.1, and culminated with the very grand FOSE Kitoko Fashion Show (hosted by MC PC) on Sunday, September 24th, benefiting the National Breast Cancer Foundation and the Houston Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. The collections presented at the Kitoko showcase brought out the royalty, the glamour and the charm of African influences through a mesh of both clean and bold fabric selections, sophisticated evening ensembles, and a variety of abstract yet edgy attire that infused the traditions of African cultural fashion into contemporary and stylish garbs.
Ashley Turner, the first daughter of the City of Houston, graced the green-themed red carpet with an original matching gele and skirt combination created by Julie Ihe of Nma Couture, who along with fellow designers, including Adeàrà (Adeola Mosanya), Adot Design (Teshalech Tadesse), House of Takura (Annette Njau), Kachi Designs (Chigozie Anaele), PR Customs (Marlor Mitchell), and Rocky Boston (Rocky Boston), presented their collections before a nearly sold out room of attendees last Sunday night.
On Friday, September 22nd, the Ankara 4 Seasons fashion showcase (hosted by Lulu of Akellochic) was a sizzling display of variable cuts and degrees of colorful Ankara prints wrapped and strapped into eloquent, yet exhilarating pieces modeled on the runway. The collections presented at the Ankara 4 Seasons fashion show include African Queen Fashion (Fitam Coulibaly), Ask Detola (Detola Olaniyi Adeoso), Classic Beginnings (Eugeney Bailey), Effects Couture (Alero Hans), Kachi Designs (Chigozie Anaele), MasterPiece Boutique (Tonyela Arphul), and The Cultured Market (Annette Njau). The newly minted runway show was soon followed by an exciting roof-top silent after party at the Aloft Hotel in Downtown Houston. A variety of DJs mixed the hottest tunes as patrons selected their choice of jams on a special set of headphones provided.
Another notable group of fashion designers who graced the stages of the Kitoko and Ankara 4 Seasons showcase were the talented and promising student fashion designers from the Art Institute of Houston. A total of ten designers were selected from a group of over 40 students this past summer to present their collection during the fashion week series. The Project AI program, established in 2016, is an educational partnership between AFWH and AIH that gives students the creative advantage and professional experience needed to gain momentum in the world of fashion.
African Fashion Week Houston is proud to recognize our official sponsors and community partners for this year’s fashion week series, including Wazobia African Market, Fiesta Food Mart, Southwest Airlines, Simema Strategy Partners, VOSS Water, Silver Eagle Distributors, Stella Artios, Art Institute of Houston, Ogun Art + Wine, Boisson Custom Made Drinks, Scentsy, 86and90.com, Kristy Grand – Personal Shopper, Ablsolute Vodak, Fireball Whiskey, Nashrox Entertainment, Fotos By Ben, This Girl Friday, Evomah Communications, Grate Productions, Emergent Business Solutions, AfroVibes Radio, among others.
Photo credit: Evi Greene