Fiona Mapengo- Selfless Fashionista

Fiona trench

There is always more to the story than meets the eye. Last March I received an award from Alliance Francaise and International Women’s Day Uganda for being the Most Supportive and Outstanding Designer. Behind the scenes though I stood on the shoulders of giants. Today I would like to introduce you to one of those Giants. Fashionista Fiona Mapengo is a recent graduate of the Makerere University Industrial Arts program. She is technically brilliant regarding pattern making and extremely diligent with garment construction. She is continuously up grading her knowledge and learning new techniques. And most fascinating of all- she is a master at beading and embellishing evening wear garments- by hand. She does it with such speed and efficiency yet produces the most beautiful results. I was blessed and honored to have her support creating a collection I dedicated to my sister who passed away in February 2012. Fiona spent hours at my workshop helping me problem solve and construct garments. She was there for me when I had an emotional break down minutes before the fashion show. She was there for me right after the show when I had orders I needed assistance filling. And generally she does all this with such humility and selflessness. There is still heart and soul left in the fashion industry and I am blessed to have connected with Fiona.

Fashion’s Crying

Skirt lengths will always be a debatable issue when it comes to fashion. Every season designers get inspired by different silhouettes and likewise different lengths of skirts and trousers. There is a huge difference between debating an issue and setting a law that prevents us from even broaching the topic in our design aesthetics. Do I advocate for skimpy clothing and supposedly immoral dress? NO. Do I believe in freedom of speech, choice and dress? YES. Now upon my return to my beloved country, about half my wardrobe will be illegal. And mind you my shortest skirt is just above my knees. My shorts are mostly not even Daisy dukes but modest and acceptable. So what of those other fashionistas who occasionally like to wear something that reveals their knees? FASHION is crying because when did style and self-expression become criminal?

Claire Tendo

There is something magical about what happens when former models design their own line of clothing. Suddenly fashion becomes comfortable yet chic. Affordable yet luxe. Because as models they have become very aware of what clothes work on what types of bodies and also just how affordable it can be to be stylish. Claire Tendo’s line of trendy contemporary womenswear uses soft stretch fabrics combined with beautiful African prints for that cosmopolitan woman who wants to look good at work and go out for cocktails come 6pm. And the best part is… Claire Tendo can model her own clothes. After all she is still a stunning statuesque Ugandan beauty. Here she is wearing a zebra print inspired dress from her latest all black and white collection.

Kawaii Thursdays

Kawaii means cute in Japanese. This week we bring you Morag in her cute Lulu skinnies. She had fun playing dress up in the studio and fell in love with the Obi belts. Come pick yours up and why not take a few extras to give as gifts to your friends! Available by custom order to Uganda clients only. Place a custom order on our website or contact us directly at annaclare.lukoma@lulubylukoma.com

Fashion’s Learning

Style is an attitude. It is not about a dress, shoes or earrings. Do you ever meet someone and find their outfit breath taking but not know what exactly makes it so? For instance did you ever see someone in a white t-shirt and cut offs or jeans looking sublime? That is a matter of style. Wearing your clothes and not letting your clothes wear you. Today I am introducing you to Doreen Lwanga. A uniquely stylish young mother, academic, activist and marathon runner. What I a admire about this fashionista is the fact that she has held on to her individuality even after becoming a mother. And she stands strongly by what she believes. For instance her son follows a strict diet of no fast foods and no artificial juices. He is also on a tv diet. And let me tell you he is the calmest toddler I have ever met. We at LULU are proud to be part of her wardrobe.