Nigerian fashion brand, Fruché has released a follow up collection to its Spring Summer 2019 tagged “Free Spirits II”.
Talking about the SS20 collection, Creative Director of the brand, Frank Aghuno said: “In Nigeria, citizens are prohibited from wearing camouflage print because it is seen an act of rebellion. Young people who express themselves through style have limited options because of how our society thinks.”
For this collection, Aghuno explores the duality of self. He “juxtaposes masquerades and camouflaging in relation to the extroverted side of human beings, often times a performative version of self that wants to be seen, to belong, as opposed to the introvert in us all who is constantly aware of self and most times in hiding.”
“Akwa Ocha was used in the collection. Akwa Ocha when translated from igbo to english means white cloth. It is indigenous to the Anioma people of Delta state otherwise referred to as Delta-Igbo; where Aghuno is from. Akwa Ocha is made from locally produced wool and is usually made into a wrapper. This fabric is worn mostly during important occasions like weddings, meetings and funerals. The cloth, which is hand-woven by women, is very strong that it can last for hundreds of years.” the press statement reads.
Aghuno believes that african mythology should not be demonised but rather appreciated like others around the world. According him his “grandmother was Nne Mmuo (‘spirit mother’ who leads her children). This title was bestowed on her at a very young age. It is one of the principal characters of this masking ensemble. Mmuo masquerades being seen as celestial bodies/ spirits also signifies the importance they have in igbo tradition. Inspiration also came from religious dressing to depict african traditional religion and Aghuno’s catholic upbringing. we explored silhouettes inspired by cassocks and nuN’s habits.”
Nigerian Artist; Dricky Stickman hand painted the words “Freedom is my birthright” on a shirt made with locally produced cotton. We hand dyed Adire silk and cotton fabric with symbols and colours inspired by Mmuo masquerade costumes and Ben Enwonwu’s Agbogho Mmuo paintings. Handwoven Asooke fabric indigenous to the yorubas as well as hand-beaded pieces inspired by red coral beads usually worn ceremonially by the Igbos. Puff sleeves inspired by igbo women’s cultural attire and also Chantilly lace and end of line denim which were sourced locally.”
Shoes made in collaboration with @kiingdaviids
Creative Direction: @frankbydesign_
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