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Beauty: Shea Radiance Luxuriously Whipped Shea Butter

Shea Radiance [Nigeria] [Image source: Shea Radiance packaging – African Digital Art] I like the look of these little tubs of Shea Butter from Shea Radiance, they remind me of ice-cream tubs and with names like Chocolate Truffle, Sweet Vanilla, Rainforest Spice, Pomegranate, Coconut Cream, Citrus Blossom and Lavender Bliss sound good enough to eat.  Shea Radiance is a family-owned manufacturer, founded by Funlayo Alabi and her husband Shola Alabi who started making natural skincare products from unrefined shea butter in response to the specific health needs of their young children. Aromatherapy and botanical extracts are blended with the shea butter […]

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Food & Drink: Dorah Sithole Cooking from Cape to Cairo

Dorah Sithole [South Africa] [Image source: Tafelberg] Whether it’s a steaming plate of sadza ne nyama, a beautifully fragranced lamb tagine, spicy jollof rice or a Sunday roast; our favourite foods done just the way we like it provide a source of comfort, reminding us of Mum’s good home cooking and with Mother’s Day in the UK a week away, on Sunday 3rd April what a good day as any to get together, cook up a feast and honour our Mothers as we make them feel extra, extra special. As the flurry of gift buying gets underway if your Mum […]

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Accessories: Sunny Rose Intriguing Designs

Sunny Rose [Nigeria] [Image credit: Sunny Rose – CoutureLab] I don’t know what the exact inspiration behind the Sunny Rose bag designs currently on CoutureLab is, but for me I am reminded of sea creatures, and can’t help but think of graceful anemone and brightly coloured jellyfish floating amidst colourful coral reefs. Nigerian-born but now living in Switzerland, Sunny Rose creator Maureen Okogwu traces her love of accessories back to her childhood of often rummaging through her mother’s wardrobe. Maureen set up the luxury accessories brand, Sunny Rose in 2006 after a successful career as a model. Named after the first names of her father […]

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Jewellery: Bold Accessories by Tebazile

Tebazile [Nigeria] Expressive and free-spirited, Tebazlie is an eclectic collection of timeless handcrafted statement pieces. The highly wearable jewellery collections serve to mix the colours and textures of traditional West African and European motifs, produced in semi-precious stones and metals. Bold designs in the form of necklaces, cuffs, collars and rings are inspired by vibrant colors and indigenous patterns of Africa. [Image credits: top, necklace – Tebazile; bottom, ring and cuff – Tebazile] Tebazile’s founder, Elizabeth Dankaro speaks of an enchanting process of discovery with a hint of playfulness seen through unusual gemstone combinations and understated elegance. Tebazile has enjoyed steady growth and rising popularity over the last few years, with […]

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Accessories: Fabulous Footwear by Ella Brown Couture

Ella Brown Couture [Nigeria] [Image credits: Ella Brown Couture] Launched in 2004 by Adefunke Adegbola, Ella Brown Couture is about showcasing glamour and ultra luxury – think beautifully crafted shoes lavishly sprinkled with sparkling Swarovski crystals, and gleaming cabochon gems or surrounded with luxuriously pleated fabrics, flamboyant flowers, delicate petals and beautiful bows. Designed with the women who appreciates style and luxury in mind Adefunke’s attention to detail delivers through the exquisite touches. Ella Brown Couture is based in Los Angeles quite apt given the glitz and glamour of Hollywood starlets. [Image credits: Ella Brown Couture] To complete your show […]

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Lifestyle: The Perfect Invitation by Ijorere

Ijorere, The Invitation [Nigeria] Ijorere’s creator, American born Ola-Tokunbo turned to her Nigerian heritage for a name that would neatly sum up her offerings and clients expectations. Meaning a ‘Day that is grand’ Ijorere is the perfect name for a company helping you announce your special day to the world with style and elegance. Invitations should set the style and tone of your event, heightening your guests anticipation and here Ijorere’s creations do not disappoint. Ola-Tokunbo’s beautifully handcrafted invitations designed to celebrate diversity are adorned with exquisite embellishments, intricate patterns and textures, luxurious fabrics and lashings of ribbon. Ola-Tokunbo’s inspiration comes […]

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Fashion: Duro Olowu Master of Prints

Doru Olowu [Nigeria] [Image credits: AW 2010 Duro Olowu] Simple silhouettes brought to life through a vibrant mix of silk prints, sharp tailoring, and intricate draping techniques are the hallmark of a designer described on CoutureLab as one ‘who has fun with creatively mixing colors and prints’. Fashion designer, Duro Olowu launched his eponymous line in 2004, the highlight of which being his now-signature empire-waist and billowing sleeve ‘Duro’ dress in bright prints and luxurious fabrics. The ‘Duro’ dress drew the attention of Vogue whose American and British version’s named it ‘Dress of the Year’ in 2005. Of Nigerian and Jamaican parentage and raised in […]

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Travel: Obudu Mountain Resort

Obudu Mountain Resort [Nigeria] [Image sources: Localyte and Skyscrapercity] Deep in the tropical rain forest of Cross River State you will find Obudu Mountain Resort, an ultimate ‘get away from it all’ destination nestled high among the clouds in the scenic mountains on the Oshie Ridge of the Sankwala Mountains and close to the border with Cameroon. For the energetic adventurer looking to rejuvenate mind, body and soul the Obudu Mountain Resort is the place to take the time and breathe in the fresh mountain air whilst hiking amid the lush green vegetation, all thanks to the high altitude and temperate climate which makes it […]

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Fashion: Luxurious Fabrics and Intricate Embellishments Defining Luxury African Fashion

Tiffany Amber [Nigeria] [Image credits: Tiffany Amber] Launched in 1998, Tiffany Amber is a womenswear fashion label dedicated to creating feminine and effortlessly stylish pieces that reflect Nigerian designer and founder, Folake Folarin-Coker’s heritage. Luxurious fabrics and intricate embellishments are key elements Folake describes as defining the style of her label, and establishing her as a leading figure in contemporary African fashion. With two stores located in Lagos, Tiffany Amber is all about offering its clientele timeless elegance and I for one especially like the bold jewel tones of the fabrics, colour combinations and the way the clothes float down the runway. […]

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Accessories: Stylish African Print Clutch Bags by Urbanknit

Urbanknit [Image credit: Urbanknit – etsy] Starting out by making accessories for friends and family, Dolapo James of Urbanknit has gone on to create a much coveted collection of stylish vibrant clutch bags. With, a love of bold colour and pattern evident in her use of much loved African Print textiles. [Image source: theshopfloorproject] With each bag handmade by Dolapo using vintage style snap clasp frames, her style is a combination of prim and proper Englishness brought bang up-to-date with a refreshing funky twist of bold African pRINT fabrics like Adire, Ankara and Aso-oke. The fabrics used are mainly from Nigeria, which […]

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Textiles: Anthropologie African Bedding Inspiration

Anthropologie Bedding [Africa Inspired] [Image credits: Yoruba Quilt, Anthropologie] I am a fan of US-based store Anthropologie, loving its quirky bohemian style with a dusting of romance and was thrilled when they finally opened two stores in London, the first one in October 2009 and then the second earlier this year. Browsing their online store I came across a range of African inspired bedding and interior accessories that they state is drawn from Yoruba and Northern Sotho cultures, although I may be wrong in saying, I feel the fabric inspiration relates more to the Dutch Wax cloth popular in West Africa.

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