maki oh | spring summer '18

February 09, 2018

To turn what could be basic pieces into art is a gift- one that Amaka Osakwe, the brains behind Nigerian womenswear marque MAKI OH, evidently possesses.

words by: Vane Karolle

Amaka is a storyteller. A successful one. Very often, she taps from the well of her Nigerian roots to craft distinct pieces, what with some of her more recent deliveries like the Maki Oh SS17 assemblage- an obvious nod to the lavish lifestyle of Nigerians and their love for Owambe, then peep her AW17 collection- set on a typical Lagos Night in which various modes of public transportation such as Lagos' infamous Danfos and the Okadas are spotlighted.

Seeing its first appearance at the recently concluded New York Fashion Week, Amaka's SS18, throws back to her girlhood in Lagos, delivering a 29-piece effort. Adire, Silk, Frills, squiggly chalk-like patterns, earthy tones - all signature elements of the Maki Oh brand dittoed, the brand's unique style is maintained. A fresher approach is taken with the use of gleeful hues such lemon yellow and tomato red- with frocks, Amaka prefers to call the "Auntie give me cake dresses", a slang used in describing togs worn by younglings at fizzy soirees in the designer's native; contrasted by a somewhat dominant albeit favorable bluesy feel. In this collection, you'll find a heavy play on frills, uneven sleeve lengths, mixing and matching of patterns & fabrics- each technique bring life to each piece. Look 14 served as a spice to the collection, an unusual Maki Oh delivery of the oversized blazer.

While we are encapsulated in Amaka's Lagos childhood reverie what with her nod to yard joues like Tinko and Suwe (Hopscotch), one could say that the collection's appeal to not just the African continent but the western world as wells what makes Maki Oh stand out. Having watched the brand grow, one can say for sure that the collection's functionality is not peculiar to just its SS18, from the humble beginning that was Maki Oh's SS14, the brand has maintained its relatability up on till now; it's no wonder it boasts a clientele with the likes of Solange Knowles, Michelle Obama, Lupita Nyong'O to name a few. 

With every collection, Amaka ups the anté, etching her name in fashion history, even better putting Africa, Nigeria specifically on the global fashion map. Amaka says change your style, then another one.

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