Sara Khembo Alfazema
Sara Khembo Alfazema

By Sara Khembo Alfazema


Sizzling Fall Fashion for Men and Women


 Dedicated to personalized style, this feature presents male and female readers with inspirational ideas on how to wear African Textiles for everyday occasions. 





When August draws to a close, it marks the end of a season dedicated to backyard get-togethers and long nights under the stars. But the real transition comes right after Labour Day, then reality hits us as we get back into the swing of early mornings and traffic jams. Deep sigh! Allow me to stop myself from dwelling on what’s imminent because the glass is half full. To make your transition back smoother, I’m going to give you insider tips that will leave you looking hotter than July!

For this fall, I want to steer you away from the conventional colours and block prints; by demonstrating how you can incorporate *kitenges into your wardrobe. You’ll see styles from Mozambique, Ghana, Nigeria and South Africa that can be worn throughout the week. Fortunately, you don’t have to travel that far to look great; I’ve sourced outfits from Ottawa based retailers.

* (n): is a Swahili word for printed African fabric typically made from cotton. Call it chitenge, kanga, pagne, lappa, or Ankara, it’s all the same.


Setting the right tone for the week



Photo Credit:  Hibo: HiboPhotography , Shirt: Craft Africa Depot & Model: SaraPhotographer: Dunica Shamoy Photography MUA: Sadia Saddzi Wamunyu Hairstylist: Chantal Gravelle Model: Kuncy Zhu & Outfit/ Design: We Are Kings Inc.


When I walk into a fabric store, I get overwhelmed by the abundant selection of kangas pilled and hung all around the shop. I simply cannot choose one! So I’ve started using an old make-up trick to help narrow down my choices, based on my undertones. If you’re a chocolate baby like me, wearing prints saturated in Mahogany, copper and evergreen will bring out the warmth in your skin tone. But if you’re just as sweet and of a fairer complexation you might opt for prints concentrated with violet, blue and yellow.

Regardless of shade or creed, go out and show the world how good you look in Ankara!


Walk into the office making a statement.



Photo Credit: Photographer: @saginesemajuste & Model: King Hector B Jr & Outfit/Design: We Are Kings Inc. Hibo: Hibophotography & Model: Sara

Mondays are usually when the big meetings with the bosses occur, so it’s definitely when you want to look your best. If you want to stand out for the right reason, don’t overdo your look. Keep your colleagues attentive by accenting your upper body with popping colours. Then Bring balance to the rest of your outfit by wearing solid colours with minimal detail.



Turn up and turn heads on a Tuesday



Photo credit: : Hibo: Hibophotography & Models: Sara and Fayola  Photographer: Tina Picard, MUA: Antonia Bejide & Model: James McDonald & Outfit/Design: We Are Kings Inc.


This look will help you communicate with your bae, in case you’re the shy type. There is nothing more attractive than confidence! Find a bottom piece with fragmented lines and unfamiliar shapes for an eye-catching look. Then top your off your outfit with a single tone shirt, keeping your accessories minimal.  When you look this good, you don’t have to say anything. Just walk past their desk, putting your best stride forward. After you catch the eye of a special someone, allow them to give you a compliment. You deserve it!



aka Hump Day



Photo Credit: Photographer: Cayden Young & Model: Alende Al & Outfit/Design: We Are Kings Inc. ; Hibo: HiboPhotography & Model: Sara


A mid-week brain jam may have you thinking that it’s already Friday, but sadly it isn’t! If you’re already burnt out by Wednesday, I don’t blame you. I am here to help you out. Keeping Wednesday simple won’t interfere with you looking great. When my bantu knots, end up being knots I know what to do. Kitenges are great for hiding bad hair days, simply wrap and go. Not only does a hair wrap protect your locs from harsh elements, it’s fiercely ravishing! But if it so happens that your hair is cute but you didn’t have the time to iron your shirt, then I also have a cover up for you. Wear an oversized blazer with large patterns to divert looks away from your shirt.



The day before the next



Photo Credit: Hibo: HiboPhotography, Dress: Craft Africa Depot, & Model: Fayola; Photogragher: Racinescreations (Marjorie Lubin) & Model/stylist: Greg Ntore & Outfit/Design: We Are Kings Inc.

You’ve met the tight deadline and you’re in the mood for celebrating! Give yourself a two-in-one special by dressing up for the day and night. That way you can meet your friends directly after you knock off.  Quick tip: Changing your and accessories can add an extra layer to your already chic look. Transitioning from your day look can be as easy as trading in your loafers or flats for a sexy heel (ladies) or a brogue shoe (men).



 By Golly, is it that time already?



Photo Credit: Photographer: Tina Picard, MUA: Antonia Bejide & Model: Sean Chi & Outfit/Design: We Are Kings Inc.; Hibo: HiboPhotography & Model: Fayola


For the 7 day sapeur who refuses to dress down, wear an ensemble that challenges uniformity. Maximize your look with a contoured suit and keynote colours. For those who love to rock the Canadian Tuxedo, be yourself and a tad more. Instead of wearing a flannel shirt, wear a top with dynamic patterns and bold imagery.



Ahh freak out! Dashik-i C’est chic-y


Photo Credit: Hibo: HiboPhotography & Model: Fayola


In recent years dashikis have been a summer staple for melanin-millennials to dawn at AfroFest, AfroPunk and everywhere else. But the cozy cotton shirt remains a timeless garment due it’s sheer beauty and cultural significance. It’s worth the buy to invest in a dashiki with monochromatic tones so you can extend its wear into the fall.

About the writer

Sara is a writer, producer and collaborator; born on the Songhees Territory of “British Colombia”.  For those itching to know her true background (where she’s really from) –  she takes pride in confirming that she is very Canadian and as much as she is an indigenous woman of Southern Africa. In addition to living in BC, Alberta and Ontario, she’s also been based in the UK, Mozambique, Swaziland and Kenya.