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5 African Inspired High Fashion Collections

African fashion is vibrant and stylish - so much so that even European fashion draws inspiration from this cultural wear! Take a look at some of our favourite high fashion moments influenced by beautiful mother Africa. 

The Heart of Africa Campaign by Louis Vuitton

Led by designer Kim Jones, Louis Vuitton’s Spring/Summer 2017 menswear show paid homage to his childhood spent in Kenya and Botswana. Here, Jones portrays Africa as the birthplace of modern civilisation. Although the focus was travel, it’s clear that Africa with its luxurious use of exotic skins and prints stole the show. Jones created beautiful outerwear with crocodile and ostrich, Masai-inspired checks, and a savanna-bleached, sand-blind palette with buff, taupe, and beige colours. This collection truly is an African masterpiece that can be admired regardless of one's own culture.

Ghana-must-go by Celine

In 1983, the Nigerian government instructed all illegal aliens to leave the country, most of whom were Ghanaians. Because these Ghanians were given little time to move back to their home country, they packed what they could into large checkered bags. Thereafter, these bags were known as ‘Ghana-must-go’ bags or ‘Ghanian sacks’. 

However, it wasn’t until French fashion brand, Celine assimilated the print in their 2013 Autumn collection to pay homage to this movement. Coats, shirts, skirts and handbags were all decorated in black, red and white and blue, red and white checkered print. 

What’s more, other brands like Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga and other high fashion designers have all drawn inspiration from this African essential. 

Maasai Tribe Collection by Louis Vuitton

The Maasai people are a Nilotic ethnic group from Kenya and northern Tanzania. They are known for inhabiting Great African Lakes as well as their stunning traditional wear. The customary ‘Shuka’ is a blanket of vibrant red and blue hues, worn in various styles by the Maasai people. To pay tribute to the tribe, Louis Vuitton designed their Spring/Summer 2012 men’s collection around these stunning traditional wear. 

Immigration & Africa by Valentino

Thousands of refugees from Nigeria, Eritrea, Mali, Senegal, Gambia and many others, trek across lands and oceans to seek sanctuary in southern Italy. So, Valentino designers, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli crafted an entire fashion show to show respect and admiration for these brave African travellers. Piccioli says “The message is tolerance. And the beauty that comes out of cross-cultural expression.”

As a result, Piccioli and Chiuri created a beautiful fusion between Italian and African traditions. These include geometric patterns, fringe and feather accents, embroidered wildlife scenes and white ceramic, bone-inspired jewellery - all reminiscent of tribal Africa. To represent the Roman side, the white ceramic jewellery’s original gladiator framework and a revamp of Valentino’s gladiator sandals, with added ebony heels and studding.

Basotho Blankets by Louis Vuitton

The Basotho or ‘Sotho’ people are a Bantu ethnic group from our very own country, South Africa (as well as Lesotho). The Basotho have inhabited the region since around the fifth century CE and are closely related to other Bantu peoples of the region. Moreover, their traditional wear is characterized by colourful, printed blankets and assimilated by Louis Vuitton in their 2017 menswear collection and made it luxurious!

Where to Buy Designer Accessories in Africa

We know that getting your hands on high fashion items can be tricky when African markets are flooded with counterfeit products. That’s why we’re here! Luxity is the largest and most trusted luxury reseller in all of mother Africa. Shop online or visit us in-store at 1 of our many shops. What are you waiting for? Shop till you drop!

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