AMAZWE by Uber Dandy Kimono

  • Tia Oguri

Entitled Amazwe, this is the Summer 2020 collection of Afrofuturistic yukata – the first collection designed by Uber Dandy Kimono. It combines different elements from multiple countries which is also the basis of the design studio. The owner, Tia Oguri, is a South African living in the UK who wears traditional Japanese kitsuke as well as wears Samakaka – an Angola print fabric. The Wafrica yukata collection uses printed fabrics designed by the House Fabrosanz. For UDK, these are both very versatile elements by themselves in addition to both being frequent subjects of cultural appropriation. It was a conscious decision to use these two in conjunction with each other, particularly as wax prints have the upper hand with modern day figures and body shapes. This is in part due to the width of the fabric bolts being able to accommodate for European sizing including the wide variety of body proportions. Traditional tribal prints of South Africa are the inspiration used by the House of Fabrosanz for their prints. These bold, graphic prints are wonderful designs which have contributed to the success of the collection alongside being inspiration for modern, futuristic styling of Japanese traditional kitsuke. This compilation of two timeless characteristics merged together brings a bright, fresh take into the kimono world. A showcase of the Afrofuturism which played a part of the collection’s inspiration. Moreover, the collection is highlighting the unique properties of each cultural attribute. Furthermore, the collection brings a 21st Century take to help encourage more people to wear kimono as part of their everyday attire. Amazwe is a UDK collection which brings together several cultures together harmoniously. Hopefully, Amazwe, along with future collections, will help promote the appeal of kimono to the European market.