A new kind of rallying cry went forth from the fashion ramp at the recent Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Africa 2014 when young Mozambican designer Taibo Bacar launched his new collection, titled A Luta Continua. It's name invokes the country's war for independence from the Portuguese, during which the phrase – meaning "the struggle continues" – was used by FRELIMO to rouse popular support. The designer uses it to refer simultaneously to the current socio-political situation in Mozambique and the stage of his brand's evolution.
“Both tell the same story; dress the same woman,” says Bacar. “It is about merging the two worlds that together reflect the growth of the brand. It symbolises the new era of the country, a new future with lots of challenges and opportunities where we also have a role to play and a responsibility to help build and develop our own country and culture.”
It represents continuity, development and the future through his signature marriage of fabrication, colour and subtle accessorising.
The collection carries the DNA of the history of the brand and merges the two worlds of Taibo Bacar’s Haute Couture and Ready To Wear into one, Prêt-À-Couture.
For this collection he played with a variety of materials including organza, plastic, “capulana” (patterned fabric used in local sarongs), synthetic fur, tweed and jersey. He also used embroidery, beading and chain detail for embellishment.
Most of the silhouettes emphasise the waistline, alternating with slim-fit and full skirts. The collection also gives a nod to 1960s shapes with particular focus on shoulderlines.