Koshieo: An African Legacy

As far as the fashion industry is concerned culture is an integral part of it. Our clothes are a source of
non verbal communication which sends a message about who we are and where we are from. The
inspiration being drawn from the motherland is endless, from their traditions to their food to the scenery.
As an African of Ghanaian descent I did not value my culture, it took me coming to America to
realize that there was a lot of richness, color and beauty in the Ghanaian culture. As a fashion designer I
know the power a piece of clothing wields. I love the transformative quality of dressing up, I want to tell
stories with my pieces. I like to create distinct styles that has a signature in each creation. I found that
people love to dress a little bit differently from one another depending on their understanding of
elegance and comfort and that is what I am seeking to infuse in the fashion world while also leveraging
on using African fabrics. I get a lot of inspiration from Ghanaian fabrics and culture and I use them a lot
in my designs. From the traditional style of dressing, the beads and the lifestyle, the length and breadth
of inspiring trends from Africa is immeasurable.
KoshieO is a brand that uses the delicate craftsmanship of Ghanaian artisans by supporting their
immense creativity and hard work. The line also seeks to continually teach the traditions and heritage of
Ghana and indeed Africa by constantly working with African prints. I usually merge my American influence with my African background to create
stories with my designs as seen in my Adinkra Paisley collection. It is a mix-match of classic prints from
Adinkra Symbols(illustrative symbols) and Paisley, also created are beaded scarves made from silk that can be styled either
as a neck tie or a fashion accessory. It is no longer news that African designers are being recognized in global market, this has helped to keep the brand relevant with regards to putting out collections that
are appealing and accessible to the international audience. Little wonder why KoshieO caught the
attention of the late Franca Sozzani(editor-in-chief of Vogue Italia) and also designer Roberto Cavalli
during their trips to Ghana. By mixing both western and African culture the brand has been able to
create pieces that understand the future of global fashion consumerism.
It a known fact that a lot of designers, artists and photographers have gotten inspiration from Africa to
create aesthetically pleasing works an example can be found in Tory Burch’s 2013 spring collection
where she used jewelry from Ghana, fabric from Guinea etc. to create pieces that take you back in time
to a town like Accra or a small village like Kanfarande. Safe to say that a lot of designers vibe with this
inspiration and have also created designs using African prints and themes thereby paying homage to the
continent.
In recent years there has been an apparent interaction of shifts in fashion and culture and it is essential
to realize that fashion is made by different people living in different cultures and different locations. But
who better to tell our story? It is definitely better to tell our own stories

Posted by nina D