Style

Awale Studio's New Ivorian-Made Collection Is Giving Us the Warmth We Need This Winter

Check out the latest from the Ivorian fashion brand.

Awale Studio returns with their latest cultivated and crafted in Côte d'Ivoire collection just in time for winter slaying.


The Ivorian-based fashion house has been on our radar since they dropped their summer collection back in July. This time around they've exchanged bright and breezy tie-dye designs for warmer tailored looks that'll make fresh additions to any winter wardrobe with their new collection "La Bonne Ecole."

The philosophy behind their clothing is simple:

"Awale studio tells stories. Stories about girls and boys, clothes and everyday life."

"As always, I worked on basic cuts. Simple and very wearable designs, building an effortless and comfortable collection with a twist of chic, says Awale creator Jad Fardon. "All shot with an analog camera. Here, round collars, pleats and straight cuts go alongside t-shirts, sweaters, hoodies, and double belts, in reference to those teenagers who want to show-up in their underwear."

Check out the full "La Bonne Ecole" collection below.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

Image courtesy of Awale Studio.

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(Photo Courtesy of Awesome Tapes From Africa)

Antoinette Konan, Vanguard of Ivorian Music, Gets a Comeback

The singer and percussionist is getting a reissue via Awesome Tapes from Africa.

Prepare your ears and ready the dance floor for the return of the "Queen of the Ahoka." Awesome Tapes from Africa (ATFA) is reissuing the queen Antoinette Konan's eponymous 1986 album in the coming weeks. For music aficionados, crate diggers and those new to Konan's music alike—this is excellent news.

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(Photo courtesy of Andy S)

Ivorian Rapper Andy S Delivers Hot Fire in ‘Mi-Temps’

Following a year-long hiatus, the rapper kicks off a new chapter with her latest single.

Get ready for a rapid-fire delivery from Andy S, a 22-year-old rapper from Abidjan, Ivory Coast who personifies "spit fire."

The rapper debuted a new track last week, called "Mi-Temps," a heavy hitting French rap that has quickened lyrics spilling over a looped chant echoing in the background. The passion and cadence with which she spits the chorus evokes trap vibes—perfect for jumping up and down, and shaking your hair in rhythmic defiance. "Mi-Temps" was produced by Ugandan/South African producer Mark Akol and mixed by Sipho the Gift.

Mi-temps is slang for "half-time" and the rapper says this in the description underneath the track:

"I had disappeared a little bit from the scene... I didn't feel well, I needed a break. Thank God this half-time was positive for me I worked in the shadows on quite a few projects. 'Mi-temps' is a big freestyle to blow the whistle of this new chapter."

It makes sense as Andy S has been gone for over a year. Her most recent track on her YouTube channel is "Hey Hey (This is a freestyle)" from July 2018 and she's been quiet ever since. Hopefully we hear a lot more from her in the future and this is truly the new chapter she says it is.

Check out the new single, "Mi-Temps," and watch a video from last year displaying more of her lyrical prowess, "2k18," below:



Andy S - 2K18 (Directed By Ben Sangare) youtu.be

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Several People Have Been Killed During Protests in Guinea

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Photo by Hamish Brown

In Conversation: Lemn Sissay On His New Book About Re-claiming the Ethiopian Heritage Stolen From Him by England’s Foster Care System

In 'My Name Is Why,' the 2019 PEN Pinter award winner passionately advocates for children in the institutional care system, and in turn tells a unique story of identity and the power in discovering one's heritage.

It took the author Lemn Sissay almost two decades to learn his real name. As an Ethiopian child growing up in England's care system, his cultural identity was systematically stripped from him at an early age. "For the first 18 years of my life I thought that my name was Norman," Sissay tells OkayAfrica. "I didn't meet a person of color until I was 10 years of age. I didn't know a person of color until I was 16. I didn't know I was Ethiopian until I was 16 years of age. They stole the memory of me from me. That is a land grab, you know? That is post-colonial, hallucinatory madness."

Sissay was not alone in this experience. As he notes in his powerful new memoir My Name Is Why, during the 1960s, tens of thousands of children in the UK were taken from their parents under dubious circumstances and put up for adoption. Sometimes, these placements were a matter of need, but other times, as was the case with Sissay, it was a result of the system preying on vulnerable parents. His case records, which he obtained in 2015 after a hardfought 30 year campaign, show that his mother was a victim of child "harvesting," in which young, single women were often forced into giving their children up for adoption before being sent back to their native countries. She tried to regain custody of young Sissay, but was unsuccessful.

Whether they end up in the foster system out of need or by mistake, Sissay says that most institutionalized children face the same fate of abuse under an inadequate and mismanaged system that fails to recognize their full humanity. For black children who are sent to white homes, it often means detachment from a culturally-sensitive environment. "There are too many brilliant people that I know who have been adopted by white parents for me to say that it just doesn't work," says Sissay. "But the problem is the amount of children that it doesn't work for."

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