New York Fashion Week SS 2023 took place from September 8th to 13th, barely four months ago.
A diverse lineup of African designers made their debut or return, from runway shows to exhibition showrooms.
Oshobor Presented Minimalist Looks Made from Waste Materials
The brainchild of Peter Oshobor, Oshobor showcased stunning creations made from waste yarn and fabric offcuts.
Launched in 2020, the Nigerian sustainable brand exemplified its zero-waste philosophy that blends slow fashion, traditional crafts and cultural narratives. Oshobor was brought to New York by Upscale Magazine and Art Meso.
“It’s a stepping stone for me, and I can’t wait to see the opportunities it brings,” Oshobor said.
Sukeina Mixed Tribal Motifs with Sculptural Silhouettes
After working at Christian Lacroix and Madame Sonia Rykiel in Paris, designer Omar Salam launched his label Sukeina in 2012.
The Senegalese designer presented sheer looks at NYFW 2020, including origami dresses and flapper-style pieces. Salam incorporated African tribal patterns into his Fall 2022 collection.
Head of State Balanced Nigerian Style with Modern Tailoring
When Taofeek Abijako created Head of State in 2016, it wasn’t yet a full-fledged brand. But in 2017, the then 19-year-old became the youngest designer to showcase at NYFW.
Now based in Brooklyn, Abijako uses Head of State to bridge his Nigerian roots with his American upbringing. Traditional embroidery or silhouettes meet modern styling.
Studio 189 Promoted African Artisans’ Skills Through Design
Founded by actress Rosario Dawson and Abrima Erwiah, Studio 189 spotlights African craftspeople by incorporating their indigenous skills into sustainable luxury fashion.
Their 2019 NYFW debut collection blended West African batik, weaving and indigo dyeing techniques with trendy tailoring.
Kílèntár Took Inspiration from African Materials like Cowrie Shells
Launched by Michelle Adepoju in 2019, Kílèntár is a contemporary Nigerian womenswear brand with bright colors and artisanal touches like handwoven fabrics.
The young brand showcased at the Black in Fashion Council Discovery Showroom alongside other African labels.
Korlekie Blended Ghanaian Textiles with Chic Knitwear
Korlekie founder Beatrice Korlekie Newman has attracted celebrity fans with her modern take on traditional Ghanaian crafts.
Intricate crochet and knits are cut for sensual silhouettes.
Onalaja Crafted Intricate Beadwork and Handwoven Textures
Onalaja belongs to a new wave of luxury Nigerian fashion brands.
Founded by Kanyinsola Onalaja, the line spotlights Nigerian artistry through lush fabrics like handwoven aso oke cloth and coral beadwork.
Parsons Grad Tia Adeola Headlined With Provocative Looks
Nigerian-American Tia Adeola presented her signature sultry, Renaissance-inspired collection featuring sheer fabrics and ruffle detailing.
The Parsons graduate has garnered a cult following with her young, edgy perspective.
Canada’s Fumi the Label Championed Bold Hues and Sophistication
Known for its vivid colors and elegant drapes, Fumi the Label was created by designer Fumi Egbon in 2016.
Showing at NYFW marked a major milestone for the fledgling contemporary label that’s a celebrity favorite in its home country.