In her collection for the Fashion Fund, finalist Abiola reflects on her personal journey of escaping domestic abuse. In her silhouettes, Abiola applied ruffles around the shoulders and neck, symbolic of a weight on the shoulders and a restriction in physical and emotional freedom. Her content portrays the heavy emotions prior to the escape, and the eventual joy and sense of self worth that follow.
The collection and the content presentation of Marthe Sharon are based on her fascination with and the extensive research she has carried out on the tradition of Ebassa – a cultural dance from the Bafia tribe of Cameroon. Details and shapes in the garments of the collection are inspired by several aspects of the Ebassa, such as sound elements of the music, movements of the dance and details in the clothing worn during Ebassa.
Central to this collection is the encounter between the Vlisco fabric and the symbolism and identity of Cameroon’s traditional community of women. The Sudano-Sahelian cotton weavings and their somber Koranic embroidery meet colourful Vlisco designs in Anne-Beatrice’s silhouettes. The collection and content also reinterpret the traditional helmets and horn masks known to Cameroon, and honour Nobel Peace prizewinner Nadia Murad. Anne-Beatrice staged a performance of a fashion show in the Bayam Sellam area, where target fashion clientele is located. The performance led to awe, appreciation and spontaneous participation, demonstrative of the love for local traditions and new interpretations.