Constantly charged with a search for deeper sense of self and identity in clothes, leading Nigerian womenswear brand Maki Oh is back again with yet another poetic and exploratory master piece. Only this time, it is on a subject far more familiar and closer to home; a black woman that we all wake to every morning. Either as one’s self, mother, sister or wife.
What does a woman mean to you? Is your definition singular or diverse just like the colloquial word ehn? One word with so many variations of meaning depending on the context used. It is with such multitude of dimensions to a three lettered word like ehn that Maki Oh seeks to approach the subject of womanism and being a black woman today despite the perceived coolness of being one today and the barrage of social media savvy slogans such as ‘queen’, ‘magic’ and ‘kinging’ that we have managed to associate with being a woman today. Maki Oh strips it all down to “when a black woman wakes up in the morning and draws breath, what immediately ensues is the daily fight against the external push to limit her dimensions.” That Maki Oh seeks to explore with her Fall 2016/2017 collection, especially in a woman’s barest and loneliest forms, when all the complexities and self imposed affirmations of being a queen or magic are stripped down to a realization of external limitations and boundaries.
Largely characterized by themes of resistance, calm, realisation and acceptance this collection is anchored strongly on frills, ruffles and layering, some of the signature Maki Oh elements, but also smartly complemented with pleats, tracing and plisse inserts which ultimately uplifts the entire collection to something extraordinarily thoughtful. Appliques of matte eye-like white and black sequins were put to good use as symbolic of a larger theme of sight and knowingness, just like pearls were the final bow that tied the collection into an assimilative performance of elegance and hyper-femininity that is required of black women.
You ask our fave piece? Without a doubt must be the midi length camo epaulette shoulder passant dress with sequined appliques paired with the form fitting boot cut pleated pant with dotted pearls.