From cutting-edge fashion designers making waves around the world to local shops selling the best fabrics and beads, here are the best places to shop
Run by the delightful Titi Ademola, this boutique sells dresses, traditional kaftans, bags and shoes. See p51 for an interview with Titi. Titi has demonstrated her prowess on the international stage with bold yet wearable designs that sculpt traditional African designs into confident contemporary styles. She takes much of her inspiration from the amazing array of fabrics available in Makola Market. The boutique has a great selection of children’s clothes too, with colourful batik designs. There’s a new shop that has opened on Third Lane under the Oxford Street Mall.
A design-savvy edit of home accessories, furnishings, art and decorative items can be found inside this vast and airy space, curated by Nada Moukarzel (see p57 for an interview with Nada). You’ll find chunky sofas, gilded mirrors, reclaimed leather chairs, eye-catching artwork and some fabulous African-themed ornaments (some by local artists), all wonderful to browse. More than 40 brands are on offer at La Maison, with highlights including architecturally designed tulip vases, hand-blown chandeliers from Damascus and china tea sets. There’s also a selection of jewellery and fragrances, including La Maison’s own signature scented candle, called LOFT. It’s an eclectic collection, and a successful combination, and the building itself, one of the most original in Accra, makes it a worthwhile destination. A new La Maison emporium has also just opened inside Icon House. Keep an eye out for exhibitions too (sign up to the digital mailing list), especially if Ghanaian artists are involved. Other location Icon House, Stanbic Heights, Independence, North Liberation Link, Airport City (030 278 9031). Open 10am-7pm Mon-Sat.
Having gone from the corporate world to one of cutting edge fashion, Renée Q Boateng has expanded from the back of her car to a new boutique by the Trade Fair. Renée’s clothing line quickly caught our attention, in particular, her bespoke T-shirts. The shirts can be custom made – chooseyourcolourandruffleand she’ll put it together. For now the RenéeQ label is exclusively in Accra, however internet orders (www. reneeq.com, www.facebook.com/ ReneeQstyle) continue to flow in and purchases can be shipped worldwide (we last saw her clothing in the streets of Toronto). The shop also sells her jewellery accessories – freshwater pearls, crystals, contemporary or traditional beads and custom-made couture pieces. She is also a talented make-up artist and stylist and her team work from the pleasant shop.
Dutch-owned Vlisco was established in 1846, and has since spread its colourful Dutch wax fabric designs across the world. Like Woodin, it sells clothing and bags, but the appeal is really all about the fabrics, which tend to be louder and more colourful than Woodin’s comparatively muted offerings. Of the two stores, the Accra Mall is the flagship outlet.
While the Christie Brown label has been exciting fashion folk for a while, it celebrated the official launch of it first boutique in Accra in February 2012. This high-design store is a sophisticated shopping venue where ladies with an eye for the stylish things in life can browse premium clothing and accessories. Christie Brown specialises in incorporating African prints into wearable high-street trends. Think statement jewellery, business chic and cocktail elegance. Since the brand was launched in 2008 the label has appeared on international runways and been stocked in boutiques in both Africa and abroad.
Viva has been supplying high-end clothes and accessories to the label-conscious urbanites of Accra for more than two decades. There’s good reason for the boutique’s continued success, primarily in the form of the broad selection of haute couture designs being showcased. The top floor has an extensive range of shoes and bags from the likes of D&G to coo over. There’s also a small menswear section. Viva also has a branch in Marina Mall.