A brief insight in to locally made clothing and local designers.
What makes an item of clothing authentically Kenyan? Should the hem of a t-shirt have a cut of kitenge to be considered local? Or a dress to be made entirely of the colorful and patterned fabric?
The simple answer is any piece of clothing designed and made by a Kenyan makes it authentically Kenyan.
Fashion is an art and that gives it the quality of being unbound by what people think it should be. Though there are rules, like any other art these rules are made to be learnt, stretched and redefined.
This past week we visited a Pop In shop at #80 Muthithi Rd. comprised of various local and exciting brands.
All the brands were under one roof, in a snug room with clean white walls. Music from local DJs set the ambience to what was essentially urban and street with a hint of luxury.
Here, you could get your jewelry by Koincidence and House of Theluji, bags by Suave KE, sleek bomber jackets by Negative Form Alexis and Bongosawa and custom t-shirts by Mago Got You.
We also got a chance to meet up with a few designers who explained to us the creative process behind their work.
Kui from Koincidence took some time to show us her voodoo necklaces, as she explained to us that all her pieces are one of a kind. That means if you buy one from her, you are the only one in the world with that particular piece! How cool is that? We eventually bought a unique piece from her which had a carving of the goddess of fertility with a hamsa hand. Blessings all around!
We also fell in love with a particular bomber jacket which was a brainchild of Bongosawa and Kyalo & Co.
The fabric is made of khaki with cut and sew pieces in red and black on the sleeve and the breast.
To order for one simply head over to #80 Muthithi Rd and place your order.
Magati Maosa from Mago Got You had his custom tees ready for us to see. His graphics often included an alien being with a third eye on the forehead to symbolize the illumination and emancipation of the mind.
Here he is as we got some candids of him as he spoke passionately of his work.
The theme was similar with each and every piece. Thought had been put behind each item of clothing and it was definitely inspiring to see the incredible work local urban designers are putting out.
We look forward to seeing more stores housing these creative minds and seeing the culture grow.