Kenyan fashion designer John Kaveke unveiled designs from his Kaveke label at the Spring/Summer 2012 London Fashion Week, which opened Friday, where he took center stage for International Emerging and Independent designers.Kaveke was one of seven ‘A La Mode’ designers at the Charing Cross Hotel in London’s Strand. Introducing his stunning Swords of the Savannah Collection to an audience of consumers, press and buyers. A La mode" is an important platform for rising international talent making their way into the international fashion stage.
The Woodvale Groove Fashion College in Kenya and Instituto Europeo di Design in Barcelona graduate, said his Swords of the Savannah collection were inspired by Askari Kangas who were locally recruited African soldiers who fought and died gallantly in both the world wars for British, German, Belgian and Italian armies.
Kaveke said he worked really hard on the show for the past two months adding, “I am really happy that I took part in this, but me being here has come at a cost, my partner and stylist Eddie Kirindo and make-up artists Muthoni Njoba could not make it as they were denied visas.”
The new collection is mostly in white and blue, with designs that celebrate the kanga fabric and is quite different from any of his previous works.
“This is me at my most creative, and the military detail is a nod to those brave and valliant soldiers who played such a crucial role in the various empires and also ultimately began the process that led to the independence of my country, Kenya,” Kaveke elaborated. This was also the first time Kaveke unveiled Sandstorm bags, a brand he is keen to work with in the future. The bags were designed as safari travel bags, with modern looks and textures.
On the catwalk Kaveke chose STL’s Lookie Lookie mixed with house tracks saying he likes her style and chose it to go along with his new works.
Behind the Kaveke brand is style guru Connie Aluoch, fashion stylist Eddie Kirindo, body paint and make-up artist Muthoni Njoba, photographer Emmanuel Jambo and Brussels based make-up artist Saima Rashid-Bargfredde. The chunky beaded jewellery, inspired by Turkana and Maasai cultures, were designed by Patricia Mbela of Poisa.
Connie who owns the Connie Aluoch Style House added, “It was a very emotional show, the thing that most people commented to us was how vibrant and colourful the collection was and I was very proud of Kaveke and how hard the team including Quintessentially have worked to make this dream come true. The sky is the limit and I now see that we can have a Kaveke in the New York fashion week as well.”
The guests at his show included actress Genevieve Nnaji, celebrity designer and stylist Zed Eye, buying director for David Pun Harvey Nichols, model Lauren Budd and West Ham Footballer John Carew among others.