Photos: Kate Bomz's Fashion Week Picks From Joburg + Lagos

Earlier this month African cables were buzzing with a diplomatic bru ha ha between two powerhouses on the continent, Nigeria and South Africa, when 125 Nigerians aboard Nigerian-owned airline Arik were refused entry into Johannesburg and deported due to concerns from South African authorities on the “validity” of yellow fever vaccination cards. Not to play up on clash of the titans but on a more fashionable March Madness note, Johannesburg and Lagos both hosted high-profile "fashion weeks" during the SAME week in March.

The Johannesburg Fashion Week announced a new crown sponsor, lauded and reputable Mercedes-Benz, and a new home at Hyde Park, a wealthy suburb with a luxury clientele. Often criticized for being a spectacle, the Jozi fashion week has matured in the business of fashion with promises of local and international exposure and what all fashion designers need, a return in investment; buyers, buyers, buyers! The Mercedes-Benz Johannesburg Fashion Week took place from March 7th to 10th featuring 27 South African based talents. See Kate Bomz's fashion picks from Johannesburg below:

* Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Joburg 2012 #MBFWJ

Photo Credit: Simon Deiner/ SDR Photo & Africa Fashion International

Arise Magazine, Nigerian-owned and the only African outfit to continuously showcase African design on the world stage at The Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York announced its second fashion week on the continent in Lagos featuring  77 designers spanning  from different African countries; think Botswana, Eritrea, Mozambique - even the Caribbean, St. Lucia, Jamaica, Martinique, and India! The African Diaspora inclusive, world inclusive, and continental inclusive extravaganza Arise Magazine Fashion Week ran in Lagos from  March 6th to 11th. See Kate Bomz's fashion picks from Lagos below:

*Arise Magazine Fashion week #AMFW

Photo Credit: Kola Oshun/BellaNaija & Arise Magazine

Also digging these individual pieces spotted in different collections at #AMFW

On an eco friendly note check out (yes, independent of both fashion weeks) the cutest, quirkiest latest release from eco fashion award-winning, Tanzanian designer Chichia London in collaboration with Made By Africa below.

"Chichia for Made by Africa SS12 collection is a range of ethically produced high quality garments using a combination of cotton blends and locally sourced organic cotton jerseys with African printed cloth that brings new life to the perception of everyday basics."

For more on African designer's departure from tired cliche's, read Hannah Pool's piece in The Guardian "African fashion is about more than zebra print" here.



Sarkodie Is Not Feeling Any Pressure

The elite Ghanaian rapper affirms his king status with this seventh studio album, No Pressure.

Sarkodie is one of the most successful African rappers of all time. With over ten years of industry presence under his belt, there's no question about his prowess or skin in the game. Not only is he a pioneer of African hip-hop, he's also the most decorated African rapper, having received over 100 awards from close to 200 nominations over the span of his career.

What else does Sarkodie have to prove? For someone who has reached and stayed at the pinnacle of hip-hop for more than a decade, he's done it all. But despite that, he's still embracing new growth. One can tell just by listening to his latest album, No Pressure, Sarkodie's seventh studio album, and the follow-up to 2019's Black Love which brought us some of the Ghanaian star's best music so far. King Sark may be as big as it gets, but the scope of his music is still evolving.

Sonically, No Pressure is predominantly hip-hop, with the first ten tracks offering different blends of rap topped off with a handful of afrobeats and, finally, being crowned at the end with a gospel hip-hop cut featuring Ghanaian singer MOG. As far as the features go, Sark is known for collaborating mostly with his African peers but this time around he branches out further to feature a number of guests from around the world. Wale, Vic Mensa, and Giggs, the crème de la crème of rap in America and the UK respectively all make appearances, as well as Nigeria's Oxlade, South Africa's Cassper Nyovest, and his fellow Ghanaian artists Darkovibes and Kwesi Arthur.

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