A Celebration of African Culture & Style

By Portia DePina


To kick-off this year’s Miami Fashion Week, and in honor of Black History Month, local event planning company and promoter of African culture, Ankara Miami, is hosting the first ever African Fashion Week in South Florida.

Ankara Miami Fashion Week (AMFW), a red carpet event, with sponsors such as Macy’s, will feature an array of designers, with pieces made of Ankara, a traditional West African cotton fabric.


A cousin of Indonesian Batik fabric, Ankara, is hand-dyed and printed with vibrant colors and tribal patterns, characteristic of African style. Such patterns have been on the rise in the global fashion world with the increase in ethnic themes and motifs these past few years. In response, established and emerging designers from countries like Ghana and Nigeria, have been flexing their creative muscles to churn out innovative styles, infused with street and haute couture elements. Western designers are already deep into the African trends –  beads, feathers, and tribal elements, showing up everywhere in jewelry, clothing and accessories, since 2010. Rumor has it, we’ll be seeing even more African-inspired fashion this summer with the “AfroJap” style, a hybrid of African details and Japanese street style.


Ankara Miami Fashion Week will feature both, local and national designers. You can expect to see traditional garb like “dashikis,” as well as bold statement pieces with a modern twist. Shapes will range from geometric and edgy, to utterly over the top sexy, curve-hugging, and feminine. Nothing at all boring about this style fusion. You can also expect to see some fresh takes on braided hairstyles with the local salon, Natural Trendsetters, handling the models’ hair. In addition to the fashion, there will be live art, performances, and vendors at the show.


AMFW is a 4-day event, beginning on Thursday, February 19th and concluding with a pop-up shop on Sunday, February 2nd. See: Event Listing. AMFW will be hosted at different venues in the South Florida, including runway shows at Toyota of North Miami and Kovens Conference Center. Get to know Ankara!