Africa Fashion Week arrives at Olympia London

Models wearing the latest Africa inspired fashions, will be sashaying down the runways at Olympia London for Africa Fashion Week London (AFWL) this week. The exciting two day show combining catwalk shows and fashion exhibitions from designers inspired by African fashion takes place in its new home, Olympia London from this Friday 8 to Saturday 9 August.

AFWL is a growing brand that aims to capitalise on its success by strategic choice of venue and a bold new market positioning. With numbers growing from 4,000 visitors when the show launched in 2011 at Gibson Hall to 20,000 visitors in 2012 at New Spitalfields, organisers are seeking to consolidate success and strengthen perception of the show amongst a wider audience.

Ronke Ademiluyi, the show’s founder, said: “Africa Fashion Week London was born out of a passion and desire for change, to provide a much needed platform for emerging and established designers to showcase African inspired fashion to the world. We’ve chosen Olympia London as the venue for 2014 because we think it has the prestige and the location to attract the right audience for our brand vision; including influential fashion buyers, writers and trend commentators.”

The show will offer catwalk shows from leading edge designers and boutique stalls filled with affordable African fashion. Top designers showcasing collections on the catwalk include British designer, Ade Bakare from Nigeria and Adama Paris from Senegal. A new name to watch is emerging designer, Tsholo from Botswana, gaining a following for her non-conformist fashion approach. Other catwalk shows will feature designers such as Sylvia Owuri (Uganda), Vaishali Morjaria (Kenya) and Pear (Thailand). Shows take place in the afternoon and evening on Friday 8 and Saturday 9 August.

A new addition for 2014 is the AFWL Market Place, featuring African and African inspired designers working in the UK. Held within the AFWL 2014 Exhibition, it provides showcasing space for over 50 designers and brands.

Anna Golden, Commercial Director for Olympia London, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Africa Fashion Week to Olympia London. It’s our most stylish and contemporary space and the perfect ‘blank canvas’ for a fashion show. It gives AFWL the opportunity to grow in future because of Olympia West’s links to Olympia Grand and Olympia Central. We look forward to hosting this innovative and pioneering show and to encouraging its longevity within the venue.”

Notes to editors

Tickets, including VIP, can be purchased from the Africa Fashion Week London website tickets give Lounge access, champagne reception and front row seating to the catwalk shows. Tickets are also available for the AFWL Awards and Charity Gala, to be held at The Dorchester Hotel on Sunday 10 August.

About Olympia London

Olympia London is more than an exhibition venue, conference centre and live-event space. It’s an inspiration. Against a backdrop of grand Victorian architecture, the seven connected spaces inspire engagement and enjoyment.

The recent £30 million redevelopment of Olympia West and Central has provided the venue with new-found flexibility for events of every size, bringing modern facilities and British heritage together.

Olympia London presently operates alongside Earls Court, with shared staff and values. Together our businesses are recognised in the industry for exceptional levels of customer service and support, and our numerous awards are testament to our clients' satisfaction.

About Africa Fashion Week London

AFWL provides and produces professional showcasing platforms and creates opportunities for established or up-coming African inspired designers. AFWL is about supporting fashion and new designers, and creating economic growth within the fashion industry. Founded by law graduate and entrepreneur, Ronke Ademiluyi, in 2011, the show was created to bridge the perceived gaps between African fashion and global fashion trends, in London and other fashion capitals of the world. Combining runway and fashion exhibitions shows in three days of perfectly paced, illuminating expos, Africa Fashion Week London is the biggest African inspired fashion event in the UK. The event has hosted the creations of over 200 African and African inspired designers from across the African continent and the diaspora.

- ends -

For further information or for press passes to the show please contact:
Belinda Liversedge, Communications Manager, Earls Court and Olympia London / (0)20 7370 8838