By Ange Theonastine Ashimwe

The number of online searches for the term ‘African Fashion’ has literally been on a non-stop upward signaling anyone who’s been paying attention, that there is something big going on here. Whatever shit is happening, I must say, it is beautiful, and I’m frankly in love with it.

If you haven’t drooled over east and central African glitz, glamour, beauty, and more, this year’s Swahili Fashion Week promises you unseen trends and leading at the very forefront of the fashion of the region.

Swahili Fashion Week is the biggest and largest annual fashion event in the whole of East and Central Africa providing a platform for fashion and accessory designers from Swahili speaking countries to promote a ‘made in Africa’ theme. It was founded and created by a celebrated Pan African couturier from Tanzania, Mustafa Hassanali, back in 2008.

In Swahili Fashion Week, plus size women are celebrated in a fashion industry that has in the past drawn criticism from for not being inclusive.

Event organizers mentioned that the expected effects are the creation of sparkling tools by the use of locally designed featuring yellow, green, red, purple, and blue tones to match the event’s motif.

East Africa’s premium fashion show will take place this December, from 6th to 8th at Serena Hotel, Dar es Salaam. The organizers also announced an award for in-region talent, saying: “the award themed ‘Vazi la Taifa kwa Mtazamo wa Vijana’ which when translated means ‘National Dress from Youth Perspective’ will show youth perception of what national dress should entail – what pervades their mind when National Dress is mentioned.”

During this fashion show, there is also a Swahili Bazaar, which captures the spirit, style, and essence of East Africa. Here, accessories, pieces of art, and hand-made clothing among others are exhibited.

When it comes to fashion, all signs point to Africa as the next big thing, and East Africa’s premium fashion is a symptom of that trend.

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