Written by Joana Chemel-PICHA | Image Credit: Kat Grudko, PICHA
Did you ever think about seeing the end of the 2020 pandemic year? Well, if you are reading this then YOU MADE IT!!! The Holiday Season is almost here and a lot of people have counted so many losses but a lot more are also counting so many gains of being alive and having survived the pandemic. And that calls for celebrations, reflections, appreciations, showing more love and care to self and others.
Here are a few ideas on where to look and how to get some authentic Afrocentric items as gifts.
Cards and Images
PICHA does it best this season with an amazing collection of authentic images for the Festive Season Collection.
StyleTech by Teshie (Kenya)
Styletech by Teshie is a fashion brand founded in January 2018 by Teshie Ogallo, a 25 year old fashion designer from Nairobi, Kenya. Combining her passion for Fashion Design with her degree in Computer Science and Information Systems at Styletech by Teshie, she designs, produces and sells ready to wear, trendy Afrocentric clothing apparel for the young and modern man/woman.
Threaded Tribes (Ghana)
Threaded Tribes is a clothing and visuals brand founded by a young Ghanaian Awurama Mankatah that emboldens the carefree and unique nature of distinct members of society. Reinforcing and encouraging the “freedom to be you” through Comfort and Style, while connecting people into a tribe – a community that shares similar traits and tastes in garments and ideas, giving them not only a comforting sense of familiarity but also a good feeling about owning a piece from a luxury brand.
Maison Chateau Rouge (France)
Maison Château Rouge is a pop and lifestyle brand that celebrates the district of the same name, in the 18th arrondissement from Paris. Inspired by an African heritage, the brand symbolizes the meeting between several cultures. Through its creations, the brand presents African culture in a contemporary spirit. The collections are designed and developed in the Château Rouge district in Paris. The production is carried out between Paris, Abidjan, Bamako and Dakar. An independent project led by the Fofana, Youssouf and Mamadou brothers, Maison Château Rouge brings together a team united by common values around economic social responsibility. Thus, the brand is part of a larger social project called “Les Oiseaux Migrateurs”.
Ditiro Mashigo (South Africa)
Fashion and textile designer Ditiro Mashigo has a quiet confidence. Born in the Limpopo town of Lebowakgomo, Ditiro moved to Pretoria in 1994 where she graduated from the Tshwane University of Technology. After losing her first job, Ditiro launched into textile design. Now, her brand Serati Ltd Label offers a surface design service, and high-craft, upcycled and ready-to wear clothing. Inspired by her dreams, Sepedi culture and nature, Ditiro believes that young people in the fashion, art and design sector have a role to play in the development of South Africa.
Arts and Craft
Faty Ly (Ceramics from Francophone Africa)
Faty Ly is an entrepreneur with more than 20 years of experience in the world of crafts, design and gastronomy. Faty is the designer and founder of the eponymous brand FATYLY, a lifestyle brand that contributes to preserving African cultures as a heritage to anchor them in the collective memory.
Faty Ly’s passion for ceramics began in the late 1990s and materialized with the opening of a gallery in Dakar, in 2001, a space dedicated to crafts with the contribution of West-African artisans. Faty’s collaboration with artisans and leading manufacturers has enabled her to promote more than ever, the highest standards in craftsmanship and savoir-faire for the design of lifestyle products inspired by African cultures
Suzanne Zahr is the owner and creator of an Architect-led, Design-Build practice on Mercer Island. Her firm takes a symbiotic approach to designing and building creative environments. Suzanne empowers her team to bring creativity and ingenuity to life in close collaboration with residential, corporate, and retail clientele. In the SKIN Exhibition, she showcases the black skin as part of the identity of Africans. Get a gift card or make a purchase.
In the midst of a decade-long career selling ideas wrapped up in shapes, colours and alphabets, Brand Designer and Creative Director, Nana Kwadwo Duah, emerges as a visual storyteller obsessed with the power of the African spirit, intellect and image through Brandinkra
Black Owned Everything™ (USA)
Black Owned Everything™ is so much more than a platform or a marketplace. It is a medium for creating meaningful and long lasting participation. Founded & Curated by Zerina Akers for ‘When The Trend Is Over’.
KAEME (Akan phrase for ‘forget me not’; literally translates as ‘remember me’ )is a premium Ghanaian company specializing in personal care products such as shea soufflé, liquid black soap, soy candles and African-print toiletry bags. Inspired by the joy of unforgettable memories and cherished experiences, each product is crafted to captivate the senses and make a lasting impression.
*All images are credited to the individual business websites