Dionne Gooding Pop Up Shop!

Online shopping is fab but nothing beats the experience of actually getting the feel of the goodies you fancy before parting with your cash. That's why I'm such a huge fan of pop ups. It's like the internet has come to life!

Shoe and handbag designer Dionne Gooding has got in on the pop up action, just in time for the gift giving season. You can expect heels and clutches loaded with colour and prints.
Her pop up space is already open and will be till the 22nd November. Monday to Friday, 10am till 7pm. She will be selling her wonderful shoes and handbags at:
9 Eldon Street
Moorgate
London
EC2M 7LS

If you can't get to London, you can still shop her collection at http://www.dionnegooding.com/. What are your thoughts on pop ups? Share all in the comments below or tweet me!

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Designer Spotlight: Zekaryas Solomon

Hey Guys, Billy Here

It's finally cold over here in the states and I'm on a mission to find the perfect jacket for this season. Through this online shopping adventure I have created for myself, I came across an Eritrean designer by the name of Zekaryas Solomon. When I saw his work, I stopped, stared and became obsessed with his craft. The clothes he designs are so creative and different, it's actually quite refreshing to see that someone is doing something new, that is meant to be worn on a day to day basis. Solomon initially studied architecture before he transferred over into fashion and it definitely shows in his work. As someone who also was initially pursuing a career in architecture, I noticed that the structure of his clothing had some architectural influences in it. The lines and angles of his pieces are quite distinct and precise and the way they fit the body shows that every angle of the human body was taken into consideration. His studies were definitely not in vain.

I would also go on a whim here and say that Solomon also had an interest in history. Some of his clothing reminds me of a modernized version of the clothes found during the 1800's. From the type of buttons he uses to the styles of the harem pants and waistcoats he creates, I see a modern take on clothing they wore during the Civil War which I've never seen done before.
I look at his work and I just see wearable art. I see a masterpiece with a story to tell. There's different aspects and so much detail that I could look and decipher it all day. It's the way it makes me feel, think and inspires that makes me consider it to be a masterpiece. What do you guys think of the work of Zekaryas Solomon? Sound off in the comments below.
Billy Busari
@BillyBusari

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Style Icon: AbenaLove

AbenaLove

Tell me a little about yourself: I'm a primary music teacher by profession but I have developed a love and passion for fashion, beauty and hair.

Describe your style in 3 words: Simple, Sophisticated, Chic
Fashion Loves: I love monochrome (you can never go wrong with a black and white ensemble), Ankara prints (I love how they are being incorporated into today's fashion in a way that is very modern and chic), Structured pieces that create an amazing silhouette; and bold colours because they look amazing on our beautiful complexions!

Fashion Loathes: When people wear clothes that are too tight or dress inappropriately for their body size and shape (everything is not for everyone); Less is more (not a fan of outfits that look too busy...be it with a ton of accessories that don't compliment the outfit, or too many prints going on at once...some people need to learn to edit their looks); Outfits that show off too much and leave nothing to the imagination.
If you could have one item in your wardrobe right now, what would it be: Only one?? That's impossible!! LOL. But probably a pair of patent black Christian Louboutin Pigalle 120 (as uncomfortable as they look); an oversized Chanel jumbo bag; AND a large Hermes Birkin bag (Yup! Any of those would do! lol).



I love how simple and chic AbenaLove's look is and how she rocks so many different hairstyles! My favourite look is the one directly above. It's such a classic look that can easily take you from the office straight to cocktails. Below are a couple of ways to get the look.
Get AbenaLove's Look
Look 1

Look 2

If you want to see more of AbenaLove's looks and find out more about her style, you can check her out across the following media channels:
Instagram: @odo_abena 

What do you think of AbenaLove's style? Share your thoughts in the comments below. If you would like to be featured as a style icon, please email me at amudat@hotmail.co.uk

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AW13 ASOS Africa Is Here!

I always look forward to ASOS Africa collections. They are usually loaded with fun affordable designs that are inspired by modern Africa and most importantly ethically produced. This season I am practically jumping with glee at the Masai-inspired collection.

Variations of the traditional Shuka fabric (plaid-esque) have been re imagined into a selection of cool sweatshirts, pinafore dresses and pencil skirts. This plays quite nicely into the tartan trend that looks to rage on for the rest of the season.


I love the combination of the Shuka inspired prints with leopard print, just so pretty.

If plaid is not your kind of thing there is also a gorgeous elephant print which has been used across shirts and dresses.

Fans of the SS13 collection will be pleased to know there a few pieces left and they are currently on sale! I've styled up a couple of the sale pieces in ways you can wear all through winter.
ASOS Africa Style
Look 1
ASOS Africa Maxi Dress £30, Matalan Camo Parka £35, USC Wedge Trainers £20
Look 2
ASOS Africa Printed Jacket £27, Uniqlo Polo Neck Sweater £19.90, House Of Fraser High Waisted Jeans £29.99, Mo Saique Ankle Boot £380

You can check out the full AW13 collection by clicking HERE! Share your thoughts on ASOS Africa in the comments below or tweet me @amu_dat.

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Get To Know Bespoke Binny

This is a little deviation from all the fashion and hair talk that usually occurs on this blog but I had to share the lushness that is Bespoke Binny! I am at the point in my life where I really want my own place, so I have become fascinated with homeware.

Bespoke Binny provide a beautiful range of Ankara inspired homeware for the modern home. The brand is based in London and each of the pieces are handmade to order.
Kwesi Tangerine Cushion Cover £14


African Wax Print 20" x 12" lumbar pillow / cushion cover- green pyramids
Green Pyramids Lumbar Cushion Cover £10

Royal blue African print table runner
Royal Blue Table Runner £12
The cushions and table runners are gorgeous but I'm particularly impressed with the lampshades. I'd want one in every room!
Handmade Lampshade - 30 cm - Sunshine Yellow African Print Fabric
Sunshine Yellow Lampshade £30

Gyasi handmade African print lampshade - 30 cm
Gyasi Lampshade £30
In my fantasy two bed flat in leafy Hampstead, Bespoke Binny pieces are dotted about the place adding a touch of Africa to an otherwise minimalist space. Sigh that is the dream. You can check out the full collection and get shopping at http://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/BespokeBinny.

What do you think of the collection? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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From Runway to Sidewalk: Afrocentric Twist on NYFW

Hey Guys, Billy Here.

If you remember, my last article was about my favourite pieces and outfits from the past New York Fashion Week where designers debuted their masterpieces for the Spring '14 season. As promised, I've taken pieces from the fashion show and have given them an afrocentric twist by adding pieces from afrocentric brands and designers. View them below and let me know what you think in the comments.

Nautica Meets Ohema Ohene
For this look I decided to use the pants that the model is wearing from the Nautica showcase and added the Ohema Ohene cardigan from their recently added fall collection. The maroon coloured shirt is to be worn under the cardigan but can be replaced with a t-shirt of your choice that compliments the colours of the cardigan. I added the wood beads, the wood watch, and the Toms sneakers to give a humbling touch to the style. The fabric from the cardigan shows so much culture that it only felt right to add earthy natural pieces to complete the look.

Ricardo Secco Meets Dent De Man
For this set I used the leather shirt from the Ricardo Secco collection and I added the shorts from the clothing line Bite by Dent De Man. My inspiration for this look was urban New York, something the likes of Drake and 2 Chainz would wear. People have started wearing the classic mustard yellow Timberland boots again, pairing them with shorts, and I surprisingly like it. I accessorized with a gold chain, a gold bracelet, a gold watch and a pair of yellowish/brown sunglasses. I made sure to use shorts that were different in colour and loud because even though there is gold, leather and bright colours in this outfit, I wanted it to stand out despite the other pieces. If you did not want that “feature” to your outfit, I gave an option of an alternative hat that would tie the pants into the outfit.

Libertine Meets Ohema Ohene
For this set I used the blazer from the Libertine collection and paired it with trousers from Ohema Ohene. This semi-casual look is meant to embrace the spring weather and add a pop of colour to a look that has the potential to be....simple. Similar to the “Ricardo Secco Meets Dent De Man” outfit, I've made sure the pants stand out in this outfit, making everything match naturally other than the pants. I would leave the blazer unbuttoned so you can see the shirt and wearing the shirt tucked in so you can see the belt is optional, but I would leave it out.

As always let me know what you think in the comments below and/or tweet me at @billybusari.

Billy Busari

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Style Icon: Annabella Lewis

When it comes to style icons we tend to look to celebrities who granted bring that fashion on the regular but what about women just like us? Women without personal stylists, who do the 9 to 5 and still bring it. So with that in mind, I've decided to dedicate a few posts to fabulous women who I think have great personal style.

Annabella Lewis

Fashion loves: Anything black and white (my favourite colours to wear), anything print and details details details.
Fashion loathes: Not dressing for your shape or size, mixing prints and getting it beyond wrong, and wearing thin leggings with your goodness and mercies on show with crop tops.
Wardrobe Wishlist: A lush pair of leather gloves, I neeeeed them!

This is how you do grown up florals
Love this print and the nude accessories are perfect
Office chic has never looked so cool
I love all three looks but I'm most inspired by the  look directly above. Swap the strappy heels for brogues and the shades for a smart satchel and you are office ready. Take the look into the evening with a pair of killer heels and an oversized clutch. Below I've put together a mood board of pieces you could use to recreate this look.
Get Annabella's Look
Look 1
Matalan White Fitted Shirt £14House of Fraser Hedonia Cropped Jumper £35, Christie Brown Ghana Jacquard Trousers £300Kurt Geiger Black Clutch Bag £200, Mo Saique Sandals £280
Look 2
Shirt and Jumper as above, Agnes&Lola Batik Trousers £40The Cambridge Satchel Company Crocodile Effect Satchel £130, Brother Vellies Suede Shoes $195

What do you think of Annabella's style? Share your thoughts in the comments below. If you would like to be featured as a style icon, please email me at amudat@hotmail.co.uk

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Menswear: New York Fashion Week

Hey Guys, Billy Here

This past week here in America was New York Fashion Week. Fashion designers from different backgrounds came out to the Mercedes-Benz sponsored event to showcase their masterpieces for the Spring '14 season. Though most of the designs I saw were womenswear, there where a couple of outfits for men that really stood out to me. Here are a couple that caught my eye:

Todd Synder:
I really like the way he mixed formal pieces and casual pieces to make a casual outfit. If I'm going to be honest, some of the outfits did look a little awkward, but the ones above really came together.

Ricardo Seco:
This past season and this current season I have seen leather being used for pieces other than jackets and I am completely here for it! Whether it's just a little accent or the whole article of clothing is leather, I absolutely love it and when I saw Ricardo Seco's showcase outfits I pretty much jumped out of my seat! I'm looking forward to Spring '14!

Nautica:

Nautica showcased some great knit sweaters for those chilly spring/summer evenings on the beach.

Libertine:

I was fascinated by the printed suit jackets and trousers Libertine showcased. I especially liked the ones with the stamp effect. They're  something I had never seen before which is always good.

J. Crew:

Of course J. Crew impressed with their semi-formal style. I honestly didn't see much of a difference between their showcase and the pieces they sell now, but it still reached the high standards in style that J. Crew is known for.

These were a few of my favourites, if you want to check out the ones I left out and other runway showcases click HERE and let me know what you think. For my next article I will be showing you how you can style outfits using these pieces with an Afrocentric twist, so stay tuned for that. As usual you can tell me your thoughts on the mentioned runway photos above at vadedfashion@ymail.com or tweet me @BillyBusari.

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Get To Know My Miry

If you are forever on the hunt for beautiful heels with an African flavour, then your search is over my friend. I stumbled across Paris based brand My Miry on Facebook of all places and I'm in love. The brand under the direction of designer Sara Coulibaly uses Ankara fabric to create elegant heels that have a timeless appeal. The concept of using Ankara to create footwear is not unique but what sets My Miry apart from the competition is the attention to detail. Luxe touches on each pair and the addition of different textures are what sets this brand apart.

The tortoise shell effect on the heel of the Amber shoe is just gorgeous, perfect for adding a touch of luxe to an evening wear look. My favourite pair has to be Crystal. I've had a love affair with perspex accessories for a while now so this is right up my street. I would keep it simple and team it with skinny jeans and a grey marl tee.

For ladies craving heels with attitude, then the Diamond pair are for you. They are all sorts of fierce, the metal corset detail at the back is just divine. As far as sling backs go, I've never been a fan but the Ruby pair have brought me round. They have a deliciously feminine quality that is reminiscent of 50's styling.

To find out more about My Miry and shop the collection click HERE. What do you think of the collection? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Trans-Seasonal Styling Tips

It's a very awkward time of year, summer is on its way out but it's not quite autumn. Deciding what to wear on a daily basis is becoming a tricky business. I know too well the pain of stepping out to bright sunshine in a cute as a button sundress and strappy sandals only to be greeted with freezing winds and the sound of rolling thunder. Then there's the problem of being over prepared. One too many layers and you end up sitting in a pool of your own sweat. Not a good look.

So here are a few helpful outfit ideas that will help you get through this awkward period without losing your cool.
Off Duty Chic
*Taibo Bacar skirt available at Sapelle. Ngu messenger bag available at Bot i Lam. All other items can be purchased from brands' website.
Midi skirts are brilliant trans-seasonal pieces and this one from Taibo Bacar is just gorgeous. Team your midi with a chunky cable knit and peep toe booties for a cool laid back look. Scarves are autumn essentials and you can't go wrong with any of the fab options from Urbanknit.
*Chichia dress available at Agnes&Lola. Nakate necklace available at Sapelle. ToTe Collections bag available at ankarabags.com. Mo Saique boots available on brands website.
Your favourite summer mini dress can be updated for autumn by teaming it with skinny jeans or leggings. Toughen up the look with leather accents like the fab Mo Saique ankle boots. This look is perfect for a night on the town.
Lazy Sunday
*Moran Plimsoles are available from The Afropolitan Shop. Mawusi headband is available at My Asho Market. All other pieces can be purchased from the brands' website.
With the weather still being fairly mild, shorts are great option for lazy girl styling. Team your favourite printed pair with a plain tee and sweatshirt. Shake things up with fun printed accessories like the hobo bag from Della (look out for a post on the L.A based brand).

How are you dressing for this awkward in between stage? Share your thoughts and tips in the comments below!

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Candy Collection By Sika Designs

The new on-line exclusive offering from Sika Designs is a lot of fun. Appropriately named the Candy Collection, it is loaded with playful prints in vibrant colours. Like previous collections, you can expect the elegant 50's inspired silhouettes that have come to define the brand.

I adore the Poppy coat. The classic 60's cut lends it a timeless appeal and that in your face print will brighten up the dreariest of winter nights.

My favourite print in the collection is the blue and red striped wave pattern used across the Soda pieces. I love the colour combination and the intricacy of the pattern. The Soda dress is right at the top of my wish list.

Not feeling all that colour? Then check out this beautiful jet black hand cut lace dress. It's stunning and as far as LBD's go this is the best I've seen in a long while. 

What do you think of the collection? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Meet The Team

Founder & Editor: Mariam  Bashorun
Writer, fashion lover and the biggest advocate for lazy girl styling. 
Loves: Avocados, double beds, clashing prints, t-shirt dresses, Alt-J and when my hair lays just right.
Loathes: Diets (but needs must), butt cheeks hanging out of shorts, dry ends and bootcut jeans. 
Favourite Look: T shirt dress, chunky heels and a big 'ole fro.
@amu_dat

Menswear Writer: Billy Busari
Our resident menswear aficionado, style icon in the making with a serious bow tie fetish. 
Loves: Accessories and shoes
Loathes: Don't have any, as long as you have creativity, you can make anything look good.
Favourite Look: Tee with skinny pants, a jacket or cardi with boots or sperry's.
@thiskiddbilly
www.vadedfashion.tumblr.com









We are on the hunt for contributors so if you are a fashion/beauty/hair lover, send us an email at amudat@hotmail.co.uk stating what you are interested in writing about and an example of your writing. All applicants will be considered and responded to, so don't be shy!

My Asho Relaunch

One of the first online boutiques I discovered in my quest to find out more about African fashion was My Asho. It has always been a great space to find a mix of high end and high street pieces that suit every budget. Now it's gotten even better!

The site relaunched with a brand new layout that is much easier to shop and a fabulous new AW13 collection to boot. They have pieces in from the fab new collection from Christie Brown Ghana and the lust worthy Eredappa.


For ladies such as myself looking for a more affordable fashion fix, check out My Asho Market. Here you will find exclusive designer collaborations with brands like YouMeWe, Bestow Elan and Toju Foyeh.


There's also a selection of accessories produced just for My Asho Market. The head jewellery from CUP Accessories are gorgeous and how snug do the headbands by Mawusi look?


Check out the site at www.myasho.com and share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Made By amu.dat

Welcome to made by amu.dat, a small collection of hair accessories hand made by yours truly. I have been toying with this idea for some time now and it's finally here! Stylish headbands made using ankara and flexi wire, perfect for hiding a multitude of sins and adding a touch of Africa to your look. 
You can get yours at my online shop by clicking here or on the shop tab above. There you will find these lovely headbands as well as a selection of beautiful vintage jewellery (my other passion). 

Styling the headband is incredibly easy, just wrap it round your head and twist into whatever fun shape you fancy! 

Celebs Rock African Designers Part Two

What do Robert Sheehan, Beyonce and Angela Simmons have in common? They enjoy a nice bit of African design. All three celebs have been spotted in pieces from some of my favourite African designers.

Actor Robert Sheehan looked devilishly handsome in Dent De Man at the premiers of 'The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones'. Not sure about the flip flops though.


106 & Park presenter Angela Simmons was spotted enjoying the beach in Andrea Iyamah swimwear and she looks stunning! I'm sure we'll be seeing her soon in a couple of the gorgeous to-die-for pieces from the FW13 collection.

Beyonce has already shown her love for good African design and she is at it again. She has been spotted with the Omoni bag  from US based brand 2 African Girls. Look out for a post on them soon!



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Mens Grooming: Carols Daughter Olive Oil Infusion Treatment Review

We've decided to give our male readers a little more to enjoy from amu.dat, so here's the first in a series of male grooming videos courtesy of our menswear blogger Billy Busari.

In this instalment, Billy is looking for a product to help him manage his ever expanding fro. He will be reviewing Carols Daughter Olive Oil Infusion Treatment. A helpful vid for anyone with natural hair problems, check it out!



Have you tried Carols Daughter Olive Oil Infusion Treatment? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Got male grooming questions, need a little advice? Tweet Billy: @BillyBusari

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Andrea Iyamah FW13 Collection

Andrea Iyamah won me over with her fantastic swimwear collection, so I was more than a little excited when her FW13 clothing collection dropped. The monochrome collection of gorgeous evening wear oozes glamour with more than a hint of sex appeal.
I love mixed textures so the feather and leather detailing across the collection just wows me. It lends the collection an edgy modernity, coupled with a timeless appeal.
PREORDER,-,Lian,andrea iyamah, leather dress, pencil dress, feathers, fall collection, jumpsuitPREORDER,-,Dita,andrea iyamah, leather dress, pencil dress, feathers, fall collection

The highlight of the collection for me has to be the jumpsuits. Beautifully chic and elegant, they would be my go to for any formal occasion. The black jumpsuit is my favourite, from the fringe detailing across the halter neck top to the wide leg finish on the trousers. I just can't get enough.

PREORDER,-,Iva,andrea iyamah, leather dress, pencil dress, feathers, fall collection, jumpsuit

Cut out detailing has never really been my thing but I would make an exception for these dresses. The midi length and high neckline on both dresses keep the whole look tasteful.

PREORDER,-,Michelle,andrea iyamah, leather dress, pencil dress, feathers, fall collection, clean, cut out, fashion, designerPREORDER,-,Cass,andrea iyamah, leather dress, pencil dress, feathers, fall collection, jumpsuit

View the whole collection and pre order now from the Andrea Iyamah website www.shopandreaiyamah.com

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Womenswear: AW13 Essentials

I don't know about you but the trends for AW13 so far have been a massive yawn fest. Winter pastels? Meh. Tartan? Not again! The upside of having such uninspiring trends is the freedom to really express your personal style and to indulge in the basics that define your autumnal wardrobe. This season I have decided to turn a blind eye to all trend forecasts and opt for a classic winter wardrobe that will never lose its edge. Below are the essential pieces that go into making my classic winter wardrobe.

The Printed Jacket
Printed jackets are a great antidote to the numbing dullness of the winter months. They look great on their own or layered under an oversized coat.

The Statement Jumper
Add a burst of colour to your jeans and boot combo with a fun jumper. Go for a bold colour, embellishments or an outlandish print.
*The June Shop sweater can be found at Styles Afrik.

The Midi Skirt
I love a midi skirt all year round but it is a firm staple over autumn and winter. Bodycon jersey numbers are great for running around in. Opt for lux fabrics and embellishments, if you are dressing to impress.
*The Taibo Bacar skirt can be found at Sapelle.

The Winter Sun Dress
This dress has all the flirty fun of a sun dress but can be layered up against the inevitable chills. Wear over a long sleeve tee and team with a chunky cardi for a cute back to school look. It's best to opt for a dress with a fit and flare shape, this allows you to keep waist definition despite the layers.
*The Lalesso dress is currently on sale for £14.99 from £45 at Africa Batik!
*The Jessique Designs dress can be found at Anglo Nubia.

The Turban
I am the proud owner of a moisture loving afro, so I much prefer the silky feel of a turban rather than that of a conventional knitted hat. You can jazz it up with a sparkly brooches for a 70's inspired evening look.
*The one pictured is from ASOS Marketplace but there are loads of options from simple styles like the one above to vintage crushed velvet on Ebay and Etsy. 

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Fun @ Africa at Spitalfields

The August bank holiday marks the end of summer and what better way to send off summer than with a touch of African fun! Spitalfields Market got an African makeover on bank holiday Monday for the Africa at Spitalfields Mini Market.

I took the family down and we had a really lovely afternoon. The market was brilliantly organised with lots for everyone to enjoy. The young ones ran off to enjoy the drums and got crafty painting their own musical instruments. I perused the market vendors looking for new brands that I could sink my teeth in to and I was not disappointed. Below are the brands that caught my eye and are on my ones to watch list.

Y.A.M - Young. Ambitious. Motivated

I love reworked vintage pieces so I was instantly drawn to this stall. They had the usual offenders in the form of washed denim jackets and shirts but they also had great logo tees, snapbacks and leopard print lined hoodies.

Will be keeping an eye on this brands movements as I need a YAM tee in my life.

Follow them on instagram/twitter/facebook @wegoyam












MNBO Intulo Yane

Finding Africa flavoured accessories can be difficult especially when it comes to footwear so I was delighted when I came across MNBO. They offer custom made matching handbag, shoes and jewellery in a style and print of your choice.
I suggest future African brides take note, this service will come in handy when pulling your trad look together on your special day and for kitting out your bridesmaids.

Get yours through their facebook page facebook.com/MNBOIntuloYane











Psalmist Jewels

Another beautiful accessory find in the form of leather and ankara box satchels and rucksacks. These I loved for their unique shape and gorgeous prints plus they are practical. Great for adding a touch of Africa to your day to day look.

You can shop the brand at www.palmistjewels.co.uk


















LOLO&MANGO

My tee collection is impressive but it is missing a LOLO&MANGO number. Their collection of hand appliqued Kente and Ankara unisex t-shirts are fab. You can go for understated with just a pocket detail or more overt with printed panels across the front and back.

Find out more and shop the brand at www.loloandmango.tumblr.com

















Mythology

Another great find if you are looking for something with a fashion forward urban wear flavour. I liked the selection of bleach dyed tees with Ankara detailing but my favourite had to be the light cotton jumpers. These bad boys were made from Ankara with stretch jersey cuffs and collars.
I loved them so much, I got one for my AW13 wardrobe. I'll be doing a post on my autumn essentials where it'll be featured in all its glory.

Follow on twitter/instagram @mythologywear













Tribal Gem

Not so much a new find, more an old favourite. It was great to see Tribal Gem showcasing their fab collection. I still have mad love for their Kente and leather collarless jackets, would be great for AW13. They also have a great selection of crop tops that would be perfect for now and blazers to brighten up your work wardrobe.

Find out more and shop the brand at www.tribalgem.co.uk















Fashion aside, there was lots for the family to enjoy. My mum and auntie found love at the Varo food stand where they stocked up on tinned moin moin. There was a really cute story telling area for the kids and the food stalls were serving incredibly yummy Caribbean and African foods. I finally got to sample a jollof chicken wrap from Zoe's Ghana Kitchen, delicious! I also indulged in some jollof rice and suya from Mama Suya, so good. All in all it was a great day and I can't wait for the next event.

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