The Fall ’13 collection is titled ‘Ideals 103’, and through it, Maki Oh explores the rules governing ‘sacred ways of dressing’ in Nigeria, as well as the ways of circumventing them. The simple shapes in the alluring collection portray a subtle complexity as they play the sensual game of hiding and revealing.
‘Ideals 103’ sees blacks, creams and adire blue tones paired with pastels – mint, lilac and buttercup. These come to life in brocade dresses, hand-dyed scarf print blouses, devoré silk velvet dresses, quilted silk velvets, silk-cotton mix skirts, and vinyl thread hand-embroidered on sequined fabric.
The collection expresses a distinct interplay of textures, colours and form. Its silhouettes and colours are inspired by a fusion of traditional Nigerian womenswear, Akira Kurosawa’s ‘Dreams’ and the carnality of Stanley Kubrick’s ‘Eyes Wide Shut’. Its embellishments take direct inspiration from J.D Okhai Ojeikere’s ‘Hair Style’ photo series in which he features ‘thread’ – the West African hairstyle (popular in the 60s to 80s) achieved by wrapping black threads tightly around partitioned hair.
Prints and embellishments in the Maki Oh Fall 2013 collection highlight ‘thread’ as being more popular among the extremely prim and proper in present day Nigeria. In contrast, the collection’s slip dresses, ‘faux denim jackets’, concealed slits and transparent panels come together to play the sly role of evading the austere code of dressing.
‘Adire’, the traditional Yoruba hand-painted and hand-dyeing technique, features again this season, in handed-down visual proverbs such as ‘Omi’ – “the water may dry up but the path remains the same” and ‘Egungun Eja’ – “there is no fish without bones”, while bespoke hand-painted ‘Oh! lines’ act as visual expletives.
And view the MUST WATCH 1min 19secs VIDEO (Directed by the Designer) of the inspiration behind the specially created Adire designs from Maki Oh’s Fall ’13 collection – ABSOLUTE GENIUS
READ the review of Maki Oh’s Fall ’13 collection on STYLE.COM.