As part of Cameroon’s burgeoning fashion industry, women’s wear designer Maison D’Afie‘s interesting take on design has helped promote the country as hub of West African fashion. The label’s Winter 16 collection which debuted at the 2016 London Fashion Week, best illustrates the level of success it has achieved since it started in 2009. The label describes the collection in its show notes as thus,
“Our feminine aesthetic remains very present in this collection’s theme of a gentle yet engaging lady, which makes it appealing to every facet of a woman’s personality. The collection lingers seductively between hardness and gentleness creating a closet-defining capsule summarized as a confident lady with a deliberate (intentional) sense of style.”
Maison D’Afie has similarities to ‘classic’ labels like Diane Von Faustenberg and Carolina Herrera who remain uninfluenced by seasonal trends and external pressure to transform and instead design to dress an ideal classic woman.
Using satin and iridescent silk chiffon the label takes on many long favored silhouettes elevating them with their techniques. The wrap dress is de-sleeved, and belted, the shift is given a waistline and squared at the shoulders. The label even tackles coats, experimenting with silhouettes and taking out lapels. Contrasting shades of brown and green provide the tableau on which the label builds, using extensive embroidery to create abstract motifs. It is these motifs that truly elevate the collection, providing a truly interesting conversation point.
Maison D’Afie proves that sometimes the absence of wild experimentation can be just as valuable to helping a brand distinguish itself.