Nyorh Agwe is a Cameroonian fashion designer based in New York who explores her Cameroonian identity through artistic, eclectic and beautiful creations. Her brand is a women’s lifestyle brand that reflects Nyorh Agwe’s cross cultural experiences as an African girl growing up anywhere except Africa. The Nyorh Agwe brand is for a woman who is bold, sophisticated, funky, and fearless. Individuals like Nyorh Agwe who embrace their diverse culture are changing the perception of Africa abroad and popularizing African fashion.
Nyorh Agwe was born in Yaounde but has lived in Italy, returned to Cameroon for a few years and finally settled in the United States. In 2011 she attended Parsons School of Design in New York to pursue a fashion design career and graduated in 2014. While at school, fashion lured her to discover more about her Cameroonian roots.
As her thesis, Agwe wove a collection called “M’ba M’etta“(We the Metta People), which was a personal exploration of the disappearing traditional crafts of the Tugi people of northwest Cameroon. For the collection, Agwe dyed different fabrics like cotton and silk with raffia and created amazing colorful pieces. View whole process here.
“The collection is my own physical link, through arts, to a culture and to people that I did not have the chance to know too well. It is almost a proclamation that I am Metta and as such it is my duty to not just watch my culture disappear or become underappreciated. The collection is a reminder to others as well as to Metta People just how special we are,” says Nyorh Agwe.
Nyorh Agwe brands reflects both the desire of the Nyorh Agwe customer as well as of the artisan who creates the product. The brand’s goal is to support and sustain the hand craft of artisans in Metta Culture by providing jobs as well as an outlet to continue their skills and stories.
With her latest collection “Leftovers” Agwe combines both traditional ancient handwork from the Metta culture with more modern techniques reflecting American pop culture and society. “Leftovers”, is a collection of handmade accessories and apparel made from recycled materials from her previous projects. The beauty of her collection is the uniqueness and spontaneity of her products.
Figures such as Nyorh Agwe and Jeffrey Kimathi, are a reflection on the positive influence of the African Diaspora on development of African fashion. The African narrative spreading around the world in the form of fashion, movies, literature and such and the African Diaspora has been vital in this transformation.
Images Courtesy and Subject to Copyright © Nyorh Agwe