As Africa moves towards a more cosmopolitan fashion climate, more and more niche brands are springing up to meet the oddly specific wants of a new fashion elite. New Ghanaian fashion label Moda Bertha is one of such labels. The swimwear brand, started by Bertha Amissah joins the handful of swimwear brands providing well designed swimwear and coveralls for the summer crowd. The label’s name Moda Bertha hails from the designer’s sojourn in Italy and her admiration of Italian design.
Moda Bertha’s collection, Ahwene Pa goes in an interesting direction for a debut. The label avoids prints altogether, choosing instead to favour brightly coloured stripes and strong colour blocks. Offering a collection comprised almost entirely of coveralls is also inspired, in West Africa where strong religious pressure means women are more likely to dress ‘modestly’ even at the beach. Amissah elevates the tunics, kaftans and maxi dresses with plunging necklines with complex applique embroidery, fringing and colour blocking with eyelet lace. She also touches on the off-shoulder trend that has swept through fashion cities in West Africa.
The collection could have strongly benefitted from strong afrocentric elements, as a way to affirm the label’s heritage. But it is understandable that Amissah chooses not to. There have been a recent spate of swimwear collections done in part or wholly in African inspried print wax, she might have simply chosen to join that race.
Models- @seltydaikwor , @angelinayaks