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Mozambican Fashion Designer Taibo Bacar Defining African Fashion

Taibo Bacar is an award-winning Mozambican designer, whose stunning creations have been setting African fashion boards alight for a while now. His latest collection for Autumn/Winter 2013-14, entitled ‘Fit for A Princess’ has captivated imaginations with its innovative use of Capulana fabric combined with sumptuous lace trimmings and embellishment. Capulana is a traditional cloth worn in Mozambique and is similar to other popular African print fabrics worn across the continent such as wax cloth and kitenge. Taking the urban princess as his muse, the ‘Fit for a Princess’ collection was inspired in Rome and is a journey from Africa to […]

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Planet Botanicals Natural African Inspired Skin Care Brand

As the seasons change from cold to warm, colds and flu become all too common and unfortunately for me I have been bedridden, trying to shake of a particularly nasty cold, and generally feeling sorry for myself! As one to shun medication for as long as I possibly can, I tend to prefer natural goodness and remedies in essential oils and soothing herbal teas to get me well, as well as aiding overall day-to-day wellbeing, so it always good to get to know new products. I recently came across Planet Botanicals, a US-based natural African inspired skin care brand whose luxurious products, comprising […]

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Traditional Moroccan Artisanal Skills Meet French Style

The beauty of traditional Moroccan artisanal skills is combined with French style to create a range of contemporary North African inspired home decor including linens, soft furnishings, and interior accessories, under the brand Scènes de lin. Based in Marrakech, Scènes de lin was created by designer, and textile industry veteran Anne-Marie Chaoui, who in 2000 opened the doors to a beautifully appointed showroom in the district of Gueliz. Anne-Marie had relocated to Marrakech, inspired by the city and artisanal crafts of the city, and set up a local workshop working with highly skilled Moroccan artisans and craftsmen, in addition to employing […]

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The Sankofa Center African Print Textiles Inspiration

The Sankofa Center is a not-for-profit arts-based organisation in Ghana that uses traditional African dance and music to promote an understanding of HIV/AIDS within the communities in which it works with. To help support the Center’s programmes and services, a boutique was established that utilises the skills of a cooperative that was specifically set up by the Center to produce a range of products including; clothing, personal and household accessories made with African print textiles; the proceeds of which are invested back into the organisation. It was through one of their current stockists, VivaTerra, that I came across the Sankofa Center’s range […]

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  • This popular Africanisim beautifully illustrates the pioneering spirit of togethernes. It highlights how working and collaborating with others can propel you to new heights. Building a business rarely happens in isolation. Atelier Fifty Five seeks to to shine the light on African brands, and this includes extending a hand by sharing our knowledge and expertise to help African brands become the best they can be. So let us go together. Sign up to the Atelier Fifty Five Academy mailing list and join a community of ambitious creative business owners dedicated to creating brands that make their audiences sit up and take notice.⁣
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.  #quotes #inspirationalquotes #motivationalquotes #africanproverb #brandstrategy #creativeentrepreneur  #entrepreneur #mycreativebiz  #brandbuilding #africanstartup #africanbusiness #makeithappen
  • Preserving traditional skills the Kayla cushion by Frida 54 highlights the art of Tritik, a process of knotting and sewing that results in a variety of symmetric patterns. Handwoven with 100% cotton from the cotton mills of northern Cameroon the textiles are dyed with handmade dyes using ancestral techniques. [📷 credit: @frida_54 ]
  • Values . Respecting the design [📷 credit: @atelierfiftyfive]
  • Infuse your interior style with the colourful elegance of African beaded necklaces courtesy of The African Woven Necklace light shade by @moderngesture. The design features graduating circular hoops each hand wrapped with colourful woven thread bands. Handcrafted in Cape Town, South Africa by designer Candice Lawrence, the lighting is available in the  Atelier Fifty Five shop. [📷 credit: @atelierfiftyfive]
  • Eight years ago I started a blog as a place to document the interesting things I was discovering with regards to the design and creativity emerging from Africa. From the moment I created my first blog post little did I know where the journey would take me. Fast-forward to present day I have not only been privileged to witness the development of an industry, but to also have an active role in creating awareness about it.

On this journey, I have seen Africa’s design industry grow from a handful of names from a handful countries to a continent wide-reach. Some names that were just starting out have become internationally respected leaders in their field, whilst behind them, a new generation of names are coming up and claiming their place in the industry.

To say that it is an exciting time for African design and creativity would be a gross understatement! We are in a time of rapid advancement and unbridled creative expression, that is setting the foundations and standards for future generations to build on. And like many other emerging industries in Africa, creativity is opening up opportunities to those who are willing to seize them. And seizing them designers are!

And as Atelier Fifty Five begins a new chapter it is an opportunity for me to renew my commitment to supporting the development of the African design industry and helping those I work with and write about, and work with to fulfill their potential for creating world-class brands. 
I invite you to visit our website to discover more. [Link in bio]

Tapiwa, Founder Atelier Fifty Five
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Instagram @ atelierfiftyfive