Former top model and renowned Ethiopian designer Anna Getanah once again hosted the African Mosaique fashion show aimed at promoting designers from across the continent while raising money for vulnerable children in Ethiopia
ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA (REUTERS) - Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa recently played host to some of the continent's top and upcoming designers. The African Mosaique, is an annual fashion event that showcases African designers while raising funding for vulnerable children in Ethiopia.
Founded by former top model and renowned Ethiopian designer, Anna Getanah, the show is part of the former model's South Africa based enterprise also called African Mosaique, set up in 1995 to celebrate African contemporary design and inspire upcoming talent from the region.
"African Mosaique started as a non-profit initiative to bring African designers together not only to showcase but also to provide them mentoring and training so that they could hopefully network, they can meet and travel because within Africa we are not as mobile. I had the opportunity to travel to 30 countries across Africa from my childhood and I have learned so much. It has really inspired me and that is why I always love and enjoy developing pan African collections," explained Getanah.
Senegalese designer, Adama Paris has been working in the fashion industry for 12 years. She makes clothes for the contemporary African woman using traditional Senegalese fabric. Paris believes African fashion has come into its own and can have a much greater impact on the global fashion scene.
"What we are trying to do is use our own fabric. That is what I am trying to do. That is what Shaldem(a South African designer) is trying to do. You know this fabric is from Africa, from Senegal, the inside also. And it is important for Africans to just promote our own culture and our own fabric because that is how we are going to take over the world. And that is how we can show them that it can be made in Africa by Africans and sold all over the world," said Paris.
21-year-old Nahom Tamiru studied fashion design in India. He says he designs clothes from simple and light fabrics that can be worn for various occasions. Tamiru believes the fashion industry inEthiopia has improved over the last few years and is much stronger now that it was in the past.
"Today, the fashion industry is very good in Ethiopia compared to three or four years a go. Our people have a good understanding of fashion these days. All in all it is very good."
Audience members like Berry Tadesse also added that African Mosaique has helped improve the quality of the local fashion industry.
"Today's event was fantastic. It is one of the best compared to annual fashion shows here inEthiopia in terms of the stage, lighting and staffing. Even the quality of the designs is perfect especially compared to the shows we are used to having," Tadesse said.
Getanah was born in Sweden and began modeling as a teenager. Her career spanned more than a decade during which time she worked with acclaimed designers such as Christian Lacroix, Yves St. Laurent and Ralph Lauren and graced the front covers of the worlds top fashion publications.
Since quitting modeling and taking up designing, she has worked as an advocacy for a range of charities and development funds including the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).