Video: Kinshasa, the city where fashion never sleeps

Junior D. Kannah, AFP | Models present creations by stylist Carine Pala during the 2nd edition of Kinshasa Fashion Week in Kinshasa on July 18, 2014

Kinshasa’s third Fashion Week kicked off on Friday, with 19 Congolese designers presenting their collections to both local and international audiences. FRANCE 24 met two of Kinshasa’s top designers ahead of the annual event.


Forget Paris, Milan or New York City. The place to be for fashionistas on the last weekend of July is Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Kinshasa Fashion Week includes traditional catwalks, as well as showroom exhibitions to allow local designers to network with media and international buyers between July 24th and July 26th.

A designer for 14 years, Lydie Malingumu eagerly awaits the start of the annual event. The designer for Marcia Création keeps her customers coming back by creating dresses inspired from traditional wedding outfits, while injecting her own personal style.

“I try to modernise my work with a European touch, I try to mix lace with muslin and raw silks. Then I try to add a bit of glitz to make it more glamorous”, Malingumu told FRANCE 24.

She will showcase her work at Kinshasa Fashion Week alongside Samy Okaso, one of Congo’s most respected designers.

“The world needs to know that there are good fashion designers in Congo. Did you see the equipment we have? European designers use exactly the same kind”, says Samy Okaso. The designer explains that he aims to use fashion to promote a positive image of his country.

“Congo is not just about politics, it’s also about people who work and want the country to move forward”.

Watch our video report by clicking on the picture above.

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