TANZANIAN DESIGNER CATWALKS FOR HIS COLLECTION AT THE 2020 SWAHILI FASHION WEEK
Ramadhani Yusuph Shagile prominently known by his stage name in the fashion industry as Romy Jaytz is a model and founder of the fashion house ‘The African Brand’.
Just like other designers in Africa, the Tanzanian based designer’s dream was to showcase in one of Africa’s biggest fashion shows such as the annual Swahili fashion show. This year, The African Brand joined other fashion houses in presenting their work in front of hundreds of thousands at the Swahili Fashion Week which was hosted virtual from the
In an exclusive interview, with My Afrika Magazine, Ramadhani tells us how he managed to create a collection which is in line with this year’s Swahili fashion week’s theme, ‘Make Africa Beautiful’.
TR: Romy when did your passion in the designing industry began?
RS: My passion for clothing design began, since 2016 when I was doing modelling.
I was very interested in designing but I did not know how to start, but I really wanted to be different image hence, I did some research for a long time and I really wanted to know more about costumes used in Egyptian movies and other European countries.
TR: December was a special year for you as a brand as you were showcasing at the Swahili fashion week. What did it mean showcasing at the event?
RS: It is a dream of every designers to participate in Swahili fashion week because it is a great platform, that brings together designers from different countries in the world.
As a costume designer it was one of my biggest dreams to participate in that forum. In fact, after just participating my life has changed dramatically, substantial.
TR: What story line did your collection in the show told and what was its name?
RS: The story behind my collection, is about the heritage and beauty of Africa, if you look at the history every African country has an exciting story based on the kind of life our ancestors lived in the past and until now, we live by celebrating the kind of life our ancestors lived and as the days go by.
The history of the black man is increasingly dominating the world to the European countries.
That inspired my collection and I named it ‘The African Heritage’.
TR: What type of fabrics did you use and where did you import them from?
RS: I often use heavy curtains or heavy blankets in my collection to choose the type of quality the fabric I want to purchase, and I visit second-hand markets but often I have the challenge of moving around for up to two days, to choose the type of fabric I need.
TR: From your view how did your collection went, hand in hand with the theme of the event?
RS: The theme of the event says “Make Africa Beautiful” and if you look at my collection it’s about the beauty of Africa. I made sure that I prepared a collection that would match the theme of the event.
TR: Romy besides taking part in the event as a designer you took part also as a model. How did you feel, cat walking for your own brand?
RS:(Lol) By professional, I am a model and I have studied and catlwaked for a long time before I started doing creativity.
Modelling is also something that is in my blood sometimes, when I watch a fashion show I get thirsty and crave to walk on stage … but often when I am exhibiting my clothes on stage, I take part in the ramp to show what my designs creative. I really enjoy it.
TR: Who are the other models that took part in the ramp representing your collection?
RS: I had the opportunity to show my creativity at least I had to use only two mode, Jackson Buluma and Sango I had to support them on stage, they are one of best models and they did a very strong and good perfomance as they represented my collection in a professional manner.
TR: You have dressed and designed for a number of prominent people in Africa can you state some of them?
RS: Yes, my brand has designed and dressed some well-known people these include: Diamond Platnumz, Rayvanny, Zuchu, Harmonize, Mimi Mars, Lady Jay Dee, and Beauty Pageant Queens.