He is a Ghanaian-born, Italian-based, designer, Nana K Brenu, tried to find a harmony between his African culture and heritage and his European and American training and education. Fashion became a by-product of Mr Brenu’s eternal love for art.
After completing a degree in Latin American and Caribbean Studies the turning point came when a dear friend insisted he apply to Parsons School of Design. He was accepted on a scholarship and his colourful, creative journey began. When asked in an interview with afrobougee.com about his 1981’s collection and what inspires him, he said it is the diverse cultures, the different personalities, the landscape, the vibrant colours, the simple but complex traditional architecture and the traditional craftsmanship.
His 1981 collection was conceived in 2012 by in his quest for equilibrium between two highly contrasting genres of style. The first being his Ghanaian heritage characterized by vibrant colors and bold prints in contrast to his modern minimalistic design sensibilities that is highly influenced by modern art, design and architecture including the main principles of minimalism.
In a departure from the use of bold prints and colours typically associated with African designs, 1981 is influenced by the impact of the complex simplicity of the monochromatic geometric designs of traditional Ghanaian symbols. Although traditional by conception the designs have a very original, and modern feel.
The highly original and unique design philosophies of 1981 are based on the notion that design should reflect who you are, where you are from and where you have been. In other words clothes are the storytellers in the journey of our lives. This concept is reflected through Nana’s Ghanaian background, design studies and work in NYC and Milan.
Mr Brenu says his biggest achievement so far will be finally opening the brand’s first flagship store in Accra, Ghana. It took a giant leap of faith as most brands wait a long time before opening their own stores. He considers the challenges to be finding a middle ground between being creative and at the same time being commercially viable.
FASHION: Ashanti Beads and Villi’age Elevating The Ghanaian Culture In America.
Every human trace, nation and continent have that rich historic culture they are always noted for. The customs, arts, social institutions, achievements, way of dressing, eating and communication of a particular nation, people, or other social group. You can't make mention of culture and ignore the power of fashion associated to it.
Fashion is a hungry animal that digests the “now” in the blink of an eye and then continues to roam on, looking for the next best thing. Fortunately, because data is now more readily available to analyst groups and brands, trend forecasters are able to predict further into fashion’s future than ever before.
Finding the perfect pair of hoodies to suit that occasion is an essential shopping goal. The hoodies, the tribal name wrist bead, sweaters, tee, SKI mask that can be styled all year round, no matter the weather condition.
In this thought-provoking visual story, georgebritton.com reveals the fastest growing African-American fashion, beauty, art, and commerce trends that is emerging for 2019 and beyond.
I present to you, ASHANTI BEADS and its subsidiary company, VILLI'AGE. This is a Ghanaian based American fashion company that is geared towards elevating and connecting Africans, precisely the Ghanaian diaspora living abroad to their rich culture that has been in existence for decades and to enable them have a feel of their culture.
Clothing brand, Ashanti Beads and Villi'age has the objective of spreading the culture and educating Africans through their fashion and social media pages by producing cloths that have the 'Adinkra' symbol, (Gye Nyame) meaning 'Except God' originated from Ghana printed on it. This fashion brand is also geared towards emboldening the African-American to be proud of their rich culture.
Ashanti Beads and Villi'age have products such as Tribal Name Wrist Beads(female names), Tribal Name Wrist Beads(weekend male/female), Tribal Name Wrist Beads(male names), Villi'age ''LOVE'' Black Tiger crew neck sweater, Villi'age ''GYE NYAME'' Hoodies, I LOVE ACCRA TEE, Villi'age ''LOVE'' Crew neck, White/Gold Villi'age Tee, White Villi'age Tee, Fly Africans Long sleeve, Villi'age SKI Mask, Villi'age Love WindBreaker Suit, Kwame Nkrumah Villi'age Collection, Villi'age White Logo HeadBand and a lot more.
Ashanti Beads and Villi'age have supported brands such as Polo Lacoste, Gucci etc to attain higher heights in the fashion sector. You can reach Ashanti Beads and Villi'age on their social media handle; Twitter @ashantibeads, Instagram @ashantibeads or get them on the internet www.ashantibeads.com
Fuse ODG Launches Beautiful Line Of Black Dolls, “Nana Dolls” At Game, Accra Mall.
Ghanaian-British Afrobeats singer, Fuse ODG is encouraging parents and guardians to desist from purchasing white dolls and get dark skinned ones for their daughters so as to promote Africa.
The musician strongly believes, African parents having dolls made to represent their skin colour will ignite the feeling of self-love and ensure their kids appreciate their race while they grow into adults.
Launching the ‘Nana Dolls’, at the GAME shop in the Accra Mall, Fuse ODG observed how white dolls are prominently featured in toy shops all over the world. He further bemoaned that Western culture has dominated the world, leading Africans to abandon their values due to inferiority complexes.
He explained that the lack of black dolls indirectly and directly promote a self-hate agenda where Africans feel they are “not adequate or good enough to be replicated in the least kind of format”.
“It’s nice for our kids to see these kind of toys that look like them and feel like queens, princesses and feel like they are beautiful as well. This is why these toys are so important. They promote self-love,” the artiste maintains.
Fuse ODG reveals the dolls will also educate the kids as they were made and named after some prominent female African leaders such as Yaa Asantewaa, Nehanda, and Miriam Makeba.
He expressed his excitement and urged all to visit GAME shops across the country and grab a Nana Doll - a unique Christmas present for their loved ones, nieces and daughters in support of the “New Africa revolution”. In a land full of Barbies, choose Nana Dolls.
About Nana Dolls
Born Nana Richard Abiona, Fuse ODG in his pursuit of a “New Africa” while paying tribute to dark skinned historic leaders, decided to make the ‘Nana Dolls’.
The initiative, inspired by the historical black African women who demonstrated bravery, confidence, among other attributes was announced in 2016 by the afrobeats artiste. Fuse ODG in an earlier statement disclosed the Nana Dolls will inspire the younger generation to know their history and the significant traits they possess.
“Nana means Queen or King and these dolls represent power, bravery, confidence, leaders and many great attributes that the younger generation need to know that they already possess,” Fuse stated.
Fuse ODG’s love for Africa cannot be overemphasised as he recently launched the ‘This is New Africa’ (TINA) Festival to change the bad narrative of Africa and place the continent on the world map. He is confident the TINA Festival will create the platform for Africans to retell their real stories.
The maiden TINA festival is scheduled for Friday January 4, 2019 at the Round Pavilion inside the Ghana International Trade Fair Centre.
The music festival will bring together the African home and abroad to appreciate the uniqueness of continent through music.
Artistes lined up for the event include Fuse ODG – the originator of the TINA Festival, Ghana’s award-winning rapper, Sarkodie, Joey B, one of Africa’s finest hiphop artiste, Stefflon Don, Lethal Bizzle, and some underground artistes.
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