African-based news, lifestyle & popular culture platform that brings you stories and information concerning Africa and the African diaspora. Set up in 2010, Dynamic Africa is a rich content-driven creative space with a Pan-African outlook established as an expressive platform for African experiences, African culture and African stories.

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Posts tagged "style"

With “The Walking Dead” back on TV screens for its fifth season, it’s great to see Danai Gurira’s beauty, style and talent highlighted in stunning editorials.

via Byrdie

Fashion Lookbook: Maki Oh Spring 2015 RTW Collection.

Watching the progress of Nigerian designer Amaka Osakwe’s clothing label Maki Oh, a play on her first and last names, has been one of the most rewarding experiences in African fashion and design.

Always keeping her feminine appeal and awareness intact, where last year’s Spring 2014 RTW collection was an exciting mish-mash of colours, cuts and silk sensuality, she returns this year with a range that sees a complete aesthetic departure from where she was a year ago.

Using a palette that includes a similar shade of indigo, inspired by Yoruba Adire textiles, that she made use of in her Fall/Winter 2014 RTW collection, Amaka’s Spring 2014 RTW line is a mixture of exquisite simplicity and classic simplicity. Not that any of this is new for Amaka. We’ve seen her take on similar silhouettes as far back as her Fall/Winter 2013 collection - one of her best to date.

See more images from this collection.

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Adonis Bosso in “Courtside” for Hello Mr. Magazine.

Basketball inspired courtside editorial featuring Ivorian model Adonis Bosso.

Photography: David Urbanke.
Styling: Randy Bince


We may be going out on a limb here but we think we’re pretty sure of ourselves when we say that Tebogo Mahange is undoubtedly one of the most stylish people in South Africa, at least as far as our exposure to social media is concerned.

Tebogo first came on our radar through a previous Dynamic African we’ve featured, photographer Cedric Nzaka who’s behind some of Tebogo’s photos. Although we couldn’t quite figure out how to define his style, that’s exactly what we love about him. Beyond boxes and beyond barriers, we couldn’t help but want to know more about the mind behind the threads.

In a few words, how would you introduce and describe yourself - who is Tebogo Mahange?

Tebogo Mahange is a 21 year old Marketing Management student and an Urban Street-Wear Model. I am a creative. A visionary whose had a critical eye and my own opinion regarding aesthetics and design, particularly clothing. 

You’re someone who wears many hats, literally and figuratively speaking. Describe a day in the life of Tebogo Mahange.

A day in my life would involve seizing the day ‘Carpe Diem’ - whether it be attending classes on that day, shooting, going to meetings or just hanging out with friends. 

Africans often find themselves defined largely by their “African-ness”, both a positive and a negative depending on the context, you’re never just what you do. Does your South African, or perhaps even African, identity play a role in your style choices? Is it something that you remain conscious of when sourcing inspiration?

To a certain degree, yes. No matter where you go your style will always be inspired by your roots. No matter the amount of influence the Western Culture might have on us it all traces back to where I am from, who I am, and where I’m yet to go. It’s something that happens subconsciously because I am an African.

How do you think South Africa rates on a global scale when it comes to fashion? Who are some local leading fashion and style pioneers you’re aware of?

South Africa is a country that has originality and diversity in its fashion industry. While fashion brands and other retailers appear likely to expand organically, we are on the right track of growing and expanding into bigger, wider markets internationally. 

When it comes to fashion pioneers, I would have to go with Dion Wang who is a South African fashion analyst and has been for 20 years and counting. 

Designers, none other than David Tlale. He has played a vital role in the country’s fashion and is still continues to break barriers that African designers often face. 

Bloggers, believe it or not but I hardly visit blogs unless it’s to check myself out, haha (inside joke). But from the ones I’ve checked out locally one of my favourites would be from Cedric Nzaka of Everyday People Stories. The way he captures South African street style whilst simultaneously paving a way for future movers and shakers in our local youth community is honestly amazing. I love his work! Cedric is also one of my favourite photographers to work with. 

As for brands, we have quite a few that are still on the rise and other that have a good standing position in the game, but we are still growing in this highly Westernized fashion industry.

How important is personal style to you? How much does your look define who you are?

Personal style is very important to me. Although they say ‘imitation is a form of flattery’ I strongly advise people out there to always find their own personal style so that you don’t go around looking like a duplicate of someone else. Whether it be someone you look up or just taking what you see on social forums like Tumblr. Be different.

My look defines everything about me. It’s who I am. It’s how I actually started modeling for street-wear brands in the first place. It was my personal style/look that attracted the public to me and here I am now using my personal style as a tool to inspire and create for the youth.

You have some pretty visible tattoos, can you tell us a bit more about them? How are they usually received by people?

Man, my love for tattoos started at a very young age although I started filling myself up with them last year. Basically, the pieces I’ve got up until now are creations my tattoo artists and I come up with together. I could have easily searched the net and copied and pasted someone else’s work onto my body but that wouldn’t differentiate me from the masses.

The way my tattoos have been perceived can easily be broken down to how the younger generation and the older generation see it. The youth sees them as cool, new, hip, different. The older generation, our mothers, uncles, elders in malls see the artwork totally differently because of the stereotypes that come with it. There’s always the good and bad side of everything.

Are there any current or future projects you’re working on? Can you share some info about them with us?

At the moment, our team of creatives and I are currently working on a new personal project called RepublicCouture. It will be launched towards the end of this year and it’s something I’m really excited about! It’s been over a year in the making. I’m just glad we are almost at the end of the road before dropping our first line of products.

Lastly, what are five things you can’t leave the house without?

1. My iPhone (that’s like my life companion, haha). 

2. Clean pair of sneakers, mostly my Vans (I hate dirty shoes) 

3. My shades 

4. Earphones. (I enjoy listening to music no matter where I’m going) 

 5. Any of my oversized garments. 

Thanks so much Tebogo!

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Steven Onoja of Ostentation and Style.

Always immaculately dressed with a distinct dapper-ness and stylish sartorial flair, Nigerian-American menswear blogger Steven Onoja is undoubtedly one of the leading faces in the world of personal style and online men’s fashion blogs.

Whether suited up or styled down, Steven may appear to embrace a more conventional and classic look but he always manages to go beyond the confines of traditional upscale men’s fashion by adding personal touches that make his style both unique and distinct. What we love best is that each ‘shoot he undertakes tells a story that brings the dynamics of his aesthetics to life.

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Revisiting the “African-Urban-Man” Style: Sapeurs by Amira Ali.

“White people invented the clothes, but we make an art of it”, a phrase commonly used and referred to the Sapeurs, Congo-Brazzaville’s self-confessed modern day dandies. The phrase coined by Sapeur godfather Papa Wemba.

Sapeurs, French slang for “dressing with class” take their name from the acronym SAPE, for Société des Ambianceurs et des Personnes Élégantes. Gentlemen’s club for the dapper, it’s a sartorial subculture consciously emulating its colonizer, layered with ambience and new expressions. The Sapes profess “La Sape” is an “art for ‘real’ gentlemen”. Living by an agreed aesthetical rule, their savior faire and modish use of the body and expensive dress with meticulously matched colors is a radical yet subtle form of protest, which in recent years has received international attention. Seemingly, the symbol of the Sapeur par excellence receives more notice on its aesthetics and less on meaning.

 In this extravagance buzz, the Sape’s fashion statement and bold flair is producing a post-modern phenomenon of the “African-urban-man” style and elegance. Sapologists, “gentlemen who live by a creed with a strict code of honor and morality”, are said to contest circumstances poised through the beautification effect of chic dressing. A belief that “it’s not the cost of the suit that counts, it’s the worth of the man inside it.” A performance and embodiment of sophistication, Sapeurs are prototypes of vibrant icons consciously portraying the embracing of a subcultural lifestyle.

Fascinated by this culture, the western world, beyond its ahistorical representation of Africa, has taken on the Sape as its new ‘western’ media phenomenon. In 2011, though an oddly placed feature the Sapeurs stole the spotlight in Solange Knowles’ “Losing You” video, shot in South Africa. But discovered long before Solange’s video, they have been introduced to the world colorfully as a ‘society of tastemakers and fashionably elegant’ stylistic inspiration to photographers.

The latest is the Guinness advertisement campaign; a break from the prototypical brand marketer’s portrayal of Africa, its approach takes on the exposé of the urban-debonair-man. A post-modern embodiment of style and sophistication, and a commitment to the “Society of Elegant Persons of the Congo” (La Sape), yet again, they add style, charm and vividness to a campaign that would otherwise be ordinary. These gentlemen referred to by Stephen O’Kelly, Guinness’ marketing director for Western Europe, as a “truly inspiring and unique group of men” are the featured ‘stars’ of Guinness’ recent advertising campaign, “Made of More”.  

A fashionable depiction, the Guinness ad artistically captures the extravagance of the everyday working Sapeurs as they transform from their day job to a cigar wielding, European-three-piece suit, silk socks, and fedora wearing men. Aesthically well crafted, a fine image is displayed of the urban-elegant expensive-looking of gentlemen. Yet, on the far side of this captivating documentation and splendid dress there is another side to the story of the Sapeurs living in Bakongo. These men are described as not being economically wealthy, and in fact some are said to rent items of clothing in the name of ‘ambianceur’ and fashion ‘worshipping’ or even take small fee(s) in exchange for a photographer’s glory –a snapshot of their dapper image. So, besides the undoubtedly rich spirit it may be a wonder, “what of what of the image we see of the Sapeurs is ‘true to life’?” A contrast of their ‘real-life’ far removed from our sight, the world is nonetheless left to experience the Sapeurs through the lens of photographers and cinematographers who bring out their mode par excellence alive. And perhaps, such depictions can be representational of the (re) construction attached to African cultural movements that permeates the western mainstream landscape. 

 All photos by Ruddy Roye :: a Brooklyn (New York) based photographer specializing in editorial and environmental portraits, and photojournalism. You can find more of his work here

Fuzzy coats, loose bottoms, button up shirts and tartan prints are must-haves for autumn in this Fader Fall 2014 fashion editorial.

Styling Mobolaji Dawodu.
Styling Assistance
Elsa Lam, Anh Mai, Megan Soria.
Allie Smith using Nars.
Photography assistance
Chris Grosser.

Style Inspiration: Siki Msuseni Elle SA Style Diary.

Cape Town-based fashion insider Siki Msuseni let’s us into her wardrobe for five days and gives us these five fabulous outfits!

Photos by: Niquita Bento.

(via ELLE SA)

Kanye West keeps it simple, but casual cool, for his cover and editorial feature in the August issue of GQ magazine photographed by Patrick Demarchelier.

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STREETCHIEF Lookbook Pre-Fall 2014: “Area Boys Collection”.

Whilst many of us are familiar with Kente fabric being used in contemporary fashion, no one does it quite like STREETCHIEF. For their latest collection, the menswear fashion brand have once again found ways to incorporate Kente-inspired prints into street wear garments - from button-up shirts to white-rimmed vests.

View their Summer 2013 Lookbook.

Model: Joseph Adamu (thedapperhomme)
William Ukoh (willyverse)

Summer’s in full swing with South Sudanese model Aluad Anei in her latest editorial for S Style magazine’s June 2014 issue, photographed by Rayan Ayahs and styled by Nadia Pizzimenti.

Styled by Mobolaji Dawodu - A Visual Catalog.

There’s a cinematic quality to almost every Mobolaji Dawodu styled and or photographed photo. So many of the images he has styled, photographed - or both - look more like something out of a film still than 2-D fashion magazine pages. This signature of his, that is both visually classic and communicative, is part of what makes Dawodu’s work so intensely captivating. Making use of subjects that always have an air of effortless cool and mystique, Dawodu is able to draw you to his images, through the use of aesthetic qualities, leaving the viewer highly intrigued as to the narrative that inspired it. It’s no surprise that Dawodu’s foray into the world of costume design, with films such as ‘Restless City’ and ‘Mother of George’ under his belt, has been beautifully successful.

Hailed by Complex as one of the most stylish men in media, Dawodu is the style editor-at-large at the Fader but has had his work appear in such publications as Vanity Fair, i-D and Paper, and worked on projects for PUMA, Nike, Kenzo, Converse and Apple. Born in Nigeria to a Nigerian father and American mother, much of his work has been influenced and informed by his bi-coastal background. 

Kesse Donkor for Lazy Oaf.

Up-and-coming British-Ghanaian model Kesse Donkor features in UK designer Gemma Shiel’s independent graphic and illustration label Lazy Oaf’s Summer ‘14 lookbook photographed by Katie Silvester.

TODAY’S STYLE INSPIRATION: Men in print suits.

So I might be just a little bit obsessed. Whilst we all know everyone loves a man in a suit, there’s nothing quite like up-ing the ante a little and getting excited by a man in a suit with fabulous daring prints!

STYLE ICON: Jackie Burger.

She’s the South African creative behind the country’s very own edition of ELLE Magazine so naturally, Jackie Burger is an incredibly stylish woman. Her style is classic, chic, elegant, a mixture of feminine and small doses of masculinity and, most of all, timeless. Never seen without her frost-coloured signature hair, as much as it stands out, Burger never lets anyone part of her aesthetic outdo another. You can’t help but pay attention to every single detail of what she wears.

Jackie Burger is by far one of the most stylish women in South Africa and perhaps the most recognizable fashion face in the business.

Can someone at ELLE SA please get her on instagram?