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Africa Fashion Week London 2019 + Mary Martin London

More Than Many Sparrows

Mary Martin London stole the 5pm show with a colourful menswear collection.” Africa Fashion Week London official spokesperson

Multi award winning fashion designer Mary Martin took the capital by storm at this year’s Africa Fashion Week London. In a truly electrifying performance – for performance it was, combining art, design, choreography, fashion and music – she set Freemason’s Hall in Covent Garden alight. It may have been Mary’s inaugural men’s collection but the Queen of Couture couldn’t resist adding a showstopping feminine finale. Wrapped in a body stocking covered with one of Mary’s own prints, ‘Slaves in the Woods’, Aidia strutted her stuff to thunderous applause. The crowd went wild!

Only Mary would have her very own soundtrack. Music’s in the veins: her daughter Celetia is a singer songwriter (vocals for Groove Armada; lyrics for Janet Jackson). Freemasons’ Hall rocked hard to an Afrobeats hit by DeJavu. The song? ‘Mary Martin London‘. She acknowledges it’s been a lot of work designing and making her first ever menswear in the space of a few months. “Blood, sweat and tears!” The raunchy collection is dedicated to the 400 year anniversary of the first African slaves landing in America.

One of the designer’s favourite models Howey Ejegi closed the men’s show to yet more thunderous applause. The crowd went even wilder! Mary Martin Men, both on and off the catwalk, is brave, bold, brilliantly conceived. It somehow simultaneously captures movement and silhouette, definition and intangibility, light and shade. Just as she revolutionised the couture dress, so Mary has produced a collection that celebrates the male form through novel and exciting reinventions. The interplay is very very sexy.