My African Inspiration

PEOPLE, CULTURE, BEAUTY, CREATIVITY & FOOD

It’s funny, as an immigrant child, I was so excited to come to England because it was new and it was different. I was happy to leave Zimbabwe, despite it being my home, and when I got to England, I was a little reluctant to talk about where I was from. Not because of the country itself, but of what followed after.

As this was at the peak of the political crisis in Zimbabwe, and not really wanting to discuss politics or what was wrong with the country’s president as a 15-year-old, I avoided talking about my background. Now, however, as an adult, I couldn’t feel any more proud of where I am from. Moreover, I had an “Aha!” moment when I realised how uniquely wonderful it is to come from Zimbabwe. Whatever its current tribulations, it’s just so beautiful and bountiful.Coupled with the knowledge of the early civilisation of Zimbabwe is my own fond experience, including growing up not needing to buy fruit – particularly during the blissful holidays I spent at my grandma’s house. And Zimbabweans, in my experience and borne out by my research, are hella smart and creative. Zimbabwean sculpture, as one example, is world-renowned.

So when someone asks me what inspires me about Africa, well – ahem – issa lot.

It’s everything from the people and their cultural beauty, and the natural beauty of the countries – Ethiopia has the most understated magnificence in its vistas – to the vibrance of the society in full flow and, of course, the food – even if, for me, west African food bangs a lot more than southern!

The generosity, the resilience, the fun and the fashion all play their part. And in fashion particularly, there are so many talented designers, with one of my faves being Orange Culture. I could list so many things that inspire me, but the question is: what inspires you about being in Africa? Whether or not you are African, and whether you’re visiting in body or spirit, there is always that thing that you take away.

DM us on Insta and tell us about your African inspirations!