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Renatha Hoga

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Fashion Design, Freelance Stylist, Podcaster

Leicester England

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To me fashion is a diverse platform that enables people to communicate and discuss cultures, traditions, values and current affairs. Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo and raised in England I’ve had to navigate between the two cultures in order to create my own identity. Although this is not a new concept for many, I have the conviction to openly celebrate this experience within my work. As a designer the process of deconstruction and reconstruction play an integral part in my technical language because I am trying to merge two identities to create an alternative way of dressing.

I have been able to explore this idea within my practice by navigating cultural and political themes. This was conducted through a Congolese subculture influenced by colonial fashion and re-imagining their dress and style in a more precolonial indigenous way. Subsequently, a collection of garments was designed that celebrated African and Western forms of dressing by combing effortless draping and tailoring techniques to represent the coming together of two cultures.

I hope to use my practice to diversify the fashion industry through cultural integration and counteracting the negative social effects of improper fashion practices: for example, creating interesting construction and draping techniques that combine two different cultures instead of only using techniques from one culture.