Malawi’s couture trends made one big upward curve as 2013, Malawian designers and models witnessed the birth of the first ever Fashion Week.
With pieces hand-selected by Malawi Fashion Week team, the event, which brought together local and international fashion and accessories designers, showcased Malawi’s fashion industry, lasting three days.
It also allowed renowned and flourishing models, as well as retailers, brands or clothing shops to display their latest clothing designs and collections.
The existence of the fashion week is an assemblage of cream and most creative fashion designers in the country which projected authentic Malawian designers to the world with the honour of the models who set the pace for the industry.
So, the beautiful lobby of the Bingu International Conference Centre was given a contemporary makeover when a collection of breathtaking designs strutted up its aisle in the inaugural Malawi Fashion Week.
The much publicised event kicked off in high spirits, decked out with a glow of fairy lights and the bellowing music of good musical performances.
For three days, an eclectic mix of colourful, imaginative prints, bursting with gorgeous tailored looks, filled the room.
Garbs used from locally sourced fabrics and timeless shapes to compliment any figure, overstated ruffles, exaggerated A-line dresses and high pencil skirts coupled with tailored jackets all featured as a taste of Victorian grandeur.
Splash dresses and skirts with edgy cuts and bright injections of colour, using popular cuts dressed up with mix and match materials the designs manage to be bold and unique whilst also remaining easy to wear.
The show came to a climax with the structured garments of many designers. Chic styles and timeless, standout shapes showed the impressive craftsmanship that went into every piece.
Eye-catching deep red linings and daring thigh high cuts drew attention to just the right amount of flesh. The decadent dresses would make a stunning party outfit for any woman.
Male accessories gave a modern twist on stylishly tailored suits and jackets. An open, sleeveless, boldly checked red shirt sauntered down the catwalk, concluding a fun collection.
The models, gave out their best. It was amazing how they strutted on stage with confidence, making awestruck poses when many of the local models were ramping for the first time.
Wow is all that can be said about the designers. For sure, it was not an easy process to come up with colourful, breath taking designs for the first year of MFW. To say the designs throughout the three days were mind blowing is an understatement of the century.
The drive and push to make this event a success that it was will never be forgotten.
The legacy lives on and the hope is, the designers have started reaping from their sowing.
Modelling is not an easy career to break into more especially in a country like Malawi where it is regarded as a waste of time.
All too often ones hard work, passion, and dedication are dismissed and go unappreciated because the person is just a blank slate. But the models that participated in MFW are more than that. From the very first appearance to the end, it was a dream come true to many.
And it looks promising that every event thereafter that these models will participate will only make Malawi know that they have officially arrived on the fashion scene.
Perhaps it did not come as a surprise when one of the models leggy Thembi Zimba participated in the Toyota Motor show in Johannesburg.
These some of the fruits of the event. However, months after the show, some models are yet to get their dues.
Some, including South African model Neetasha Singh who spoke highly of the event at its closure, are suing the organisers for non-payment of fees.
Aside that, MFW was generally a success. A feast of wonderful designs satisfied every fashion hungry guest and made for an enthralling evenings enjoyed by all.
So the saying goes, don’t let a couple of barking dogs steal your joy, especially when you have hundreds of silent ones standing behind you who have your back. This is only the beginning. If you missed out, don’t worry, look forward to next year.