Drawing from the designer’s West and Central African roots, Maison d’Afie brings a refreshed and refined interpretation to classic silhouettes. With a preference for customized breathable fabrics, the brand uses old reliable mediums of craftsmanship working with small groups of artisans in Cameroon, India and across mainland Europe, to create elegant streamlined dresses with unexpected eye-catching details. Since launching in 2010, the brand’s beautifully crafted pieces have slowly gained international acclaim landing digital press features in ELLE, British VOGUE, FORBES and several highly praised blogs.
Maison d’Afie strives to offer its clients well-tailored elegant pieces with a strong cultural flavour, which transition smoothly from season to season and with which they can fall in love over and over again. With sustainability as a fundamental value, Maison d’Afie upholds that quality over quantity is the only true way to counter the pressures that exist within the fashion industry and is a more responsible approach to society and the environment.
There is immense power in a name; Afie is the short form for Affiong a name from the Calabar tribe of Nigeria which means, to have a flair for creative expression with one’s hands. Sarah Divine Garba is the creative head behind Maison d'Afie and named the brand after her mother a dressmaker in Cameroon and founder of “Afie of Douala” a dressmaking business she ran in the 1980s and 1990s.
Born and raised in Cameroon, from a very early age, Sarah was exposed to her mother's creative universe, filled with texture, colour, and prettiness. Playing seamstress in her mother’s Atelier as a little girl were the formative years that gave her an early understanding of cut, fit and proportions which she further developed working alongside her mother in her older years.
Her childhood fascination for designers such as Jacques Fath, Jeanne Lanvin and Jean Louis Scherer from whom her mother took references continues to inform her work which is now known for its mid-century finely tailored pieces. Sarah trained as a Chartered Accountant in England, a more secure route chosen by her parents but the 2009 credit crunch revealed that this path was not as dependable as expected and prompted her to follow her true passion. While building on the foundation set by her mother Afie, Sarah continues to hone and refine her skills in fashion while building a brand that reflects her journey and beliefs.
Visit the Website: maisondafie.com
CIMONE is a new ready-to-wear brand, by Creative Director, Carli Pearson.
Carli studied for her MA in Fashion Womenswear at Central Saint Martins under the discerning eye of the infamous Louise Wilson, where she honed and refined her purist approach to design, whilst still exploring the boundaries of structure through silhouette.
Upon graduating, Pearson was offered a position with Stella McCartney, where she worked for the next seven years, working her way up the ranks to Senior Designer.
Her next move was to New York to become Design Director at Alexander Wang, followed by Head of Show Collections at Pucci in Florence, before becoming Head of Womenswear at McQ Alexander McQueen. There, she was instrumental in bringing the very first McQ catwalk collection into fruition to critical acclaim.
Since then she has consulted for numerous brands, both nationally and internationally. She finally launched CIMONE in 2016, where she was able for the first time to bring her extensive and eclectic work history together one roof.
As a result, CIMONE is a truly unique melting pot of international influences and experiences – a combined vision of many different cultures and aesthetics.
We are extremely proud to announce that CIMONE is part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Gala Exhibition “Heavenly Bodies” running from May-October 2018, in which a full look from Issue 03 will be showcased.
Her vision for CIMONE is a self-assured, forward thinking brand underpinned with integrity.
At CIMONE we believe in the preservation of design and craftsmanship.
We aim to create pieces that are loved and cherished for years to come – pieces that can be passed on from generation to generation.
In a fast paced world, we want to encourage a slower approach. By investing in our pieces, you are investing in good design, thoroughly researched and developed, with exquisite attention to detail. These are not just clothes for now, but for all time. To buy everlasting.
We aim to inspire the love for a single piece; to admire it as a hollow sculpture. We believe that clothing can outgrow the confines of “adornments for the body”, instead hanging proudly as a pieces of art.
We see each and every customer as a museum curator; preserving the art of fashion - engaging with their CIMONE piece as an object of beauty.
With this ethos, and the collaboration of our customers, we hope to achieve sustainability thorough thoughtful, considered buying and investment. A CIMONE product for now, and for tomorrow.
With this in mind, we are rejecting the traditional seasonal structure. Products are instead released in ‘issues’, each consisting of a selection of new products, with the range varying in size. The CIMONE customer is international – we know that Autumn/Winter and Spring/Summer are not always applicable. With our new Issue based approach, we can allow for a fluidity between seasons.
Items in each issue will be available in a specific selection of fabrics in a limited edition. When they are gone, they are gone. Alongside these product ‘drops’, we will continue to offer a selection of our (and your) favourite CIMONE products from past issues in The Vault, refreshed an ever-developing roster of fabrications. Special sizing and fabrication requests are accommodated through our dedicated Bespoke fitting service.
CIMONE was created to feel like a heritage brand, reawakened for a modern society.
Our studio functions and serves the customer like the atelier of yesteryear, working exclusively with specialist professionals, handcrafting and developing each garment in house. Underlying each piece is a strong emphasis on finesse, where every detail is carefully considered. Each item has been lovingly nurtured and considered throughout each stage of production, and no compromises are made to achieve the highest quality.
Combing irreverence with haute styling, traditional techniques and craftsmanship, we honourably merge the old with the new. Modern materials and innovative production methods reinvent the familiar melding raw experimentation with a polished aesthetic. Fabrics are manipulated and treated in experimental ways – all in house. Above all CIMONE is luxury with a youthful spirit.
View the Website: cimone.co.uk