We are so excited to announce we'll soon be revealing our most recent collection with prints designed by Glasgow based print designer Aimee Kent http://www.aimeekent.co.uk/ The collection consists of dresses and soft separates along with a small home ware range, the striking yet delicate prints are influenced by African flowers and give the collection a wonderful fresh spirit.
Aimee came to our attention through the Ethical Fashion Forum Fellowship 500. A network that unties brands, designers and retailers with a focus on fashion and sustainability. Aimee was born in Kenya and grew up around African textiles and wider cultural influences. Travel, foreign architecture and adventure inspire her designs and are made using a combination of traditional screen printing, hand painting, resist techniques and digital textile design. Aimee has previously collaborated with Henrietta Ludgate, EMI Music, Marc Ross and Niki Taylor. She is committed to ethical production and only uses ethically sourced materials and eco friendly screen printing techniques which prevent by-product pollution. The combination of Aimee’s eco friendly processes and our ethical stance in providing economic opportunities for young adults and promoting self sustainability means that this collection is a match made in ethical heaven!
The beautiful Jani Necklace was evolved from a simple idea by Mary Sinaida one of the Artisans at Johari Designs. Mary's creative piece was inspired by leaves and the finer detail of the jewellery was created by colleague Mary Wavinya.
Mary Sinaida came up with the idea during a regular brain storming session with the Johari Design girls when they are asked to suggest new ideas to add to the Johari collections. The production manager, Lydia Khalumi regularly involves the girls in idea generation and concept development of new designs. This is an exciting activity that helps the girls to improve their creativity skills as well as build up on their overall design and production expertise.
Mary Sinaida first came up with the design on paper which the production manager approved. The prototype consisted of leaf-like pieces made out of brass joined together with brass rings. The sample was beautiful and appealed to the rest of the Johari Designs team and then Mary Wavinya suggested adding line detail to the leaves. This fine detail by Mary Wavinya really enhances the natural leaf design.
In September 2011 the Johari girls were tasked with designing Napkin Rings for the new Johari at Home range. This intricate Napkin Ring was designed and expertly crafted by Mary Mwihaki. Mary is 22 years old and has been working at Johari designs for four years and works mainly on jewellery production. The Napkin Ring is now available to buy as part of the Johari at Home range.
Mary has also designed the stunning Haki Necklace, made from intricate brass circles the Haki certainly adds a striking touch to any outfit. Mary is a very talented young woman and we can't wait to see what she designs next!
The team at Johari designs have been busy creating new clothing and accessories to add to the Johari collection. Look out for the release of this in June.
Julia Smith at Johari
London-based Julia Smith is a women’s-wear designer who cares where clothes come from. In 2006 Julia completed an MA at the London College of Fashion, where she specialised in sustainability. She was then invited to work for Alberta Ferretti in Italy for 1 year. After which she headed to Ghana to work on a fair-trade design project, with women’s co-operative Global Mamas and Topshop. Julia then continued to work with Marian Essel, a highly skilled batik printer in Ghana and they formed a co-operative where her designs are printed and produced for the commercial brand ‘Julia Smith Made in Africa’. Working with Marian, Global Mamas and Topshop has helped introduce fashion made in developing communities in Africa, to the UK high street. Julia has been able to pass on some of her design skills and market awareness to the people she has worked with in Ghana and also through Marian help sponsor local children to go to school.
Julia designed a Spring/Summer 2011 collection for Johari and more recently has designed a 'A Bugs Life'; the collection for Spring/Summer 2012. Working with Johari Designs in Nairobi the collaboration has produced a fantastic selection of separates and dresses. The collections are being sold through retailers in the UK and online websites. Profits from the sale of Julia Smith at Johari will help to support children on the Johari Foundation’s Miale Programmes with their educational, social and basic needs.
Julia says “I am committed to working with small, community based businesses both at home in the UK and internationally I want to encourage people to consider where their clothing comes from and know that their purchases are making a positive impact on the lives of others. I’m out to prove that ethical fashion can maintain the cool aesthetics of fashion”.
Bugs Life Collection:
Spring/Summer 2011 Collection: