Lupita Nyong’o, Solange, Issa Rae and Beyonce have joined the list of high profile people who have publicly sported the Maki Oh label.
Heads turned and tongues wagged in 2013 when Michelle Obama, then First Lady of the United States, wore a little known label (at the time) called Maki Oh, for an event at the Sci-Bono Discovery Center in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Since then Lupita Nyong’o, Solange, Issa Rae and Beyonce have joined the list of high profile people who have publicly sported the Maki Oh label, owned by Lagos-born Amaka Osakwe.
Osakwe’s work is rooted in Nigerian culture and her runway shows display references to life in Nigeria, project messages of female empowerment, and feature only women of color.
The clothes blend Nigerian craftsmanship and materials with Western silhouettes. Osakwe is achieving this mix by reviving the Nigerian art of adire (cloth dyeing) which helps her creates patterns that have specific meaning.
“Clothing used to be a form of communication,” she says, according to Fast Company. “Cloth would allow you to make a statement, like, ‘I’m happy that you’re here,’ or ‘I’m sorry about what I did earlier.’ ”
Osakwe is listed amongst Fast Company’s “Most Creative People of 2017” as she expands global distribution of Maki Oh. She is also working on a more affordable ready-to-wear line.