Arise: Promise of Africa Collective Spring 2010 – New York Fashion Week

Chanel Iman was all smiles down the runway and Tyson Beckford drew loud applause during his modeling turn in a festive 20-minute show featuring four young African fashion designers.

Sponsored by Arise Magazine and the ThisDay Group, the second Arise: Promise of Africa Collective Spring/Summer 2010 show included looks by Jewel by Lisa, Tiffany Amber, Eric Raisina and David Tlale. In New York, where black is often not only the color of choice but a seemingly mandatory wardrobe requirement, the collections injected some much-needed vibrancy on a rain-soaked day. Jewel by Lisa, helmed by Nigerian designer Lisa Folawiyo, lived up to its company’s name with appropriately placed accents that complemented – but did not overwhelm – colorful pieces, including a mustard paisley print trench embellished with crystals on the back. Folawiyo’s love of circles, however, was what shone through, particularly through a blue circle fitted shirt paired with skinny trousers.

Fellow Nigerian designer Tiffany Amber favored flowing fabric, whether in sleeves or an entire dress. Slightly less successful was Eric Raisina’s women’s collection; a silk top with crochet necklace and pleated pants seemed out of place compared to the Malagasy designer’s dressier fare, and his use of fat fringe sometimes overwhelmed silhouettes. But the collection most likely to be embraced commercially in the Big Apple was South African David Tlale’s assortment of men’s and women’s looks, favoring warm tones from light cream to beige to brown.

Photos: Arise Spring 2010 – New York Fashion Week
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Video: ARISE Spring 2010 – New York Fashion Week
video by Yuan-Kwan Chan / Meniscus Magazine