Ashley Alexis McFarlane is the woman behind the brand Asikere Afana. Pronounced ah-see-che-rey ah-fawna, it means sugar machete in the Twi language of the Akan people in Ghana. The name is a reflection of her ancestral roots; the Maroons in Jamaica who spoke Twi along with other African languages. The Toronto-based designer was one of eight whose collection was selected to be part of a showcase at Africa Fashion Week New York’s first inclusion into the official New York Fashion Week schedule. On September 11, 2015 the fashion industry got a glimpse into what African Fashion is all about.
McFarlane’s collection sources fabrics from Africa and is 100% fair trade. It’s very important to her to have a product that not only reflects a sense of culture and style, but also serves as a way to help build sustainable clothing production in Ghana.
This was a first for the designer to put on a presentation of this magnitude in her career. Having only been in business a few years, being invited to participate in an even this scale was a major accomplishment. Being small-business owner, it certainly can be a big financial undertaking to present a collection at New York Fashion Week. Anyone who has run a fashion business understands how much work, time and money goes into creating and showcasing a collection. This is why McFarlane made the decision to launch her indiegogo campaign to raise funds. Although the campaign is titled 50 Dresses to New York Fashion Week, the fundraising hasn’t closed now that the event is over. You can still help her reach the goal. Click here for more details: ASIKIRE AFANA NYFW Indiegogo.
Shop the website at: asikireafana.com
Shop the website at asikereafana.com