Black Fashionistas of Leicester 2006 image

Black Fashionistas of Leicester 2006

Reported in the African Caribbean Citizens Forum by Aisha Kibibi Thomas…

STYLE UP exhibition took place from 25 November 2006 and finished on 28 January 2007. Style Up was a new and innovative exploration of fashion among Leicester’s African and African Caribbean Community from 1950s to the present day.

This exciting and vibrant exhibition celebrated the fun and drama of fashion styles and trends and looked at the diverse expressions of identity within the city’s Black community. The exhibition was curated by the Leicester African Caribbean Arts Foundation Ltd and Dare to Diva Productions and Leicester New Walk Museum.

Commenting from an informed perspective, Wolde Selassie, the Chair of LACAF observed, “African/Caribbean dress can be very colourful, exuberant and flamboyant. That is in the eyes of those looking in; to us it is quite natural.”

Carol Leeming of Dare to Diva Productions states, ‘African Style and body adornment sensibilities have consistently influenced the whole world, coming down from Egyptian ancients to David Beckham’s hair.’

The exhibition displayed a collection of photographs, artefacts, garments and accessories from Leicester’s African Caribbean Community with various eras 1950 – to present day. A special feature being a cutting edge women’s designer collection titled ‘Masai Banquet’ from Leicester Designer Daniel Corey.

Fashion Style and all it influences have come a long way amongst the African Caribbean Community and has had a great influence on an abundance of other cultures from all walks of life.

This exhibition was a first of its kind featuring the African Caribbean Community of Leicester and highlighted a variety of different styles not only within the fashion but also within the diverse music and cultural life style that has shaped past present and future.



African Caribbean Citizens Forum, Rapport Magazine, Winter Edition, 2006 – 2007, p. 1.

Donated by Carol Varley: African Caribbean Citizens Forum