A few days ago, I got a Facebook message which was of particular interest to me as the topic was ‘Red Carpet Style’ for the BAFTA’s no less. What interested me the most about the query was the individual wanted me to recommend African, UK-based designers.
Now it is my personal opinion that formal attire (namely evening gowns) created by a lot of African designers, based in the UK or otherwise fall on both extreme ends of the fashion spectrum. That is, they are either über (and I mean U-B-E-R) Afrocentric Glam or they are low-key, and by low-key, I mean simple, pretty Ankara-print cotton dresses.
Having said that, there was 1 Nigerian, UK based designer that came to mind when I read the individual’s request- Tsemaye Binitie.
Although he has designed many a spectacular black evening dress experimenting with luxurious fabrics like Guipure lace, silk and organza, which would be perfect for the BAFTAs. If I was to recommend a dress for the BAFTAs, I’d prefer to take the colourful leap that Michelle Williams took when she wore that glorious canary-yellow Vera Wang dress to the Oscars in 2006-
With this bold vision in mind, the Tsemaye Binitie dresses I would recommend are-
Now I know the trend is to wear floor grazing dresses to the BAFTAs, but I would love to see this dress worn to the BAFTAs-
I just adore the asymmetrical detailing, draping and folds on the dress. I also love this dress because there are many ways one can play with it to make it have the razzle dazzle Red Carpet factor-
1. Jewellery– I believe the neck should be kept bare with this piece so as not to detract from the magic that is happening with asymmetrical sleeve. However a pair of statement earrings, bracelet and ring can be worn.
2. Bag and Shoes– When looking for something fabulous to hold and the perfect shoes to adorn your feet, I would keep going down the Statement Route. J’adore this Black Swan-esque, feather clutch-
Jewel-encrusted accessories would also work a treat with this dress.
3. Also I would like to see something happening around the waist line of the dress, perhaps I would pin a bejewelled vintage brooch or maybe I’d place it a bit higher-in her hair perhaps? For this I would have to have the client directly in front of me.