While looking for different ways to explore and promote Sororum I linked up with director and fellow Ryerson University alum Jessamine Fok. We had worked together before on a previous project and when the opportunity presented itself to create something new we took it. Her cinematic storytelling skills and my creativity and fashion pieces joined forces to tell a story celebrating womanhood, sisterhood, and the beauty of African wax prints.
Fashion & Film
After meeting up to discuss our ideas we started planning for what would become our collaborative fashion film. Jess would make suggestions, I would make edits, and we traded ideas back and forth until we had a solid plan. From there we tackled the logistics of location scouting, soundtrack selection, casting, and production. We all got together on a hot, balmy day at the very end of summer last year and filmed in a remote, undeveloped area.
At the heart of Sororum is the desire to celebrate and promote beautiful ethnic fashion from non-Western parts of the world. When we made this film I explained to Jess that I really wanted to highlight how vibrant and colorful West African ankara is and how confident is can make a person feel when they are wearing it. I wanted to tell a story that would be emblematic of the way I feel when I wear these clothes and the pride I have for them.
I selected Brenda Fassie’s “Vulindlela” to serve as the soundtrack for the film as it is one of my favorite African songs of all time. I grew up listening to it at family parties and whenever it played I knew it meant celebration. While it’s nostalgic quality was a big factor for me, I also love that you don’t have to understand the words to feel the energy behind it.
It was a really fun journey being the creative director and getting and chance to tell this story with Jessamine. I hope you’ll watch it, really take in the visuals and sounds, and feel all the emotions we put into.