While we get ready to hit Social Media Week Lagos with our panel discussion, “Channeling Fashion: How African Media Tell the African Fashion Narrative”, Team SPICE are looking to online’s It haunt, Instagram for those doing the thing, and doing it well.
From top selfie-takers, stylish dressers, travellers, cooks and photographers, and those providing all sorts of life goals, here are the Instagram accounts to follow and find the African story unfolding – the accounts to keep your feed feeling lit and the ones we think you’re going to love.
1. Lisa Folawiyo – @Lisafolawiyo
If you aren’t by now, then for the love of fashion, follow asap! This designer and best-dresser continues to slay on the daily and isn’t afraid to share an outfit pic (sometimes we are gifted with two!) to prove it. Hence, it’s no wonder Ms Folawiyo makes the perfect choice as a speaker at our “Channeling Fashion” panel event at this year’s Social Media Week Lagos.
Expect designer wear. Expect great bags and shoes. Expect mirror selfies that will give good interior goals too. Also keep your eye peeled for cute phone cases, because it appears this accessory is another of Lisa Folawiyo’s weaknesses.READ MORE: BEYONCE’S STYLIST INVENTS SELFIE-PERFECTING PHONE CASE
2. Oroma Elewa – @Oroma.Elewa
Creative genius and editor of popular zine Pop’Africana, artist and image maker Ms Elewa is basically a brilliant mind who supple our feed with the sort of visual food we didn’t know we needed.
She takes photos, looks sublime in the selfies she shares and has a thing for travel and shoes.
Plus, there’s more: a witty way with captioning her images; the tendency to highlight important issues and share her feelings, without filter; and lots of cool kid cameos as she hangs out with other top peoples.
Hit follow and thank us later – but don’t get too attached to her amazing photos, as there’s also a history of deleting posts… no matter how pretty…
3. Tastemakers Africa – @Tstmkrsafrica
African tour organisers, Tastemakers Africa are giving digital tours, daily – via Instagram and their keen eye on all the feeds capturing the best corners the continent has to offer.
A melting pot of beautiful landscapes, portraits and selfies of the special folk we should follow, the account (and the tours) is devoted to “disrupting what you think about Africa” one snap and one trip at a time. Go follow.
4. Yagazie Emezi – @Yagazieemezi
So while we’re talking about telling the African story, how better than via a talkative vlogger who’s busy sharing her experience in returning to the continent after living in the US?
The fully-‘fro-ed or braided, Lagos-based Ms Emezi keeps a visual diary of her story on Instagram, being talented in photography, and also manages a separate account for her cool cartoons. Follow and see yourself fan-girling over what you find.WATCH: YAGAZIE EMEZI LEND HER STYLE TO SHOOT WITH MATAANO
5. Tony Gum – @Tony_Gum
South African social media star Tony Gum has been on our radar a while, with her effortless way with visual content.
The bae has a thing for self portraiture, Coca-Cola bottles and ketchup, with red being a bit of a signature for her perfect pout, too.
We love her artsy steez and you will too. Follow and see if you don’t go double tapping everything she posts.
6. Fafa – @Ndudu_by_fafa
Do you like to eat? Regardless, you’ll like vlogger and cook Fafa’s pictures of “Ndudu” (food), which will encourage you to make pretty with your plate.
The TV Chef and “creative African food blogger” creates recipes for cooking up a continent-inspired storm in your kitchen, and even if you can’t get a taste of what she makes, you’ll admire the plates Fafa puts in front of your face anyway.
7. Fisayo Longe – @Fisayolonge
Another goddess of style, blogstress Fisayo Longe of MirrorMe is one of those people that’s pretty gifted in the art of dressing, and as she travels about the globe in the best of designers, there’s a lot of pretty inspiration for your own wardrobes to take stock of.
She’s petite, elegant and has a healthy set of abs she doesn’t mind braving the cold to reveal (being based in the UK), and you should follow for an idea of what fashion from the diaspora looks like when luxury is your go-to.
8. Adebayo Oke-Lawal – @Theorangenerd
Designer behind Nigerian menswear label Orange Culture, Adebayo Oke-Lawal is another African creative gifted in the art of the selfie – on a level to rival top designers Marc Jacobs and Olivier Rousteing, too.
But more than just looking great, the talent knows exactly what we want to see in a picture, cuing great composition, perfectly-low key styling, and limited filtering to his shots.
And, those who’ve followed for a while now will also note the “Inspiration Journal” posts which provide insight into what the designer is looking at ahead of crafting his garments. It’s a little like having his moodboard in realtime, that we’re privileged to be a part of.
9. Amaal Said – @Amaalsaid
This half Somalian beauty proudly posts selfies styled up in her hijab and makes playing with light look like magic.
Her self portraiture is something to be marvelled at, but her photography extends to female friends too, with the 20-year-old recently telling Vogue she aims to push diversity with her work too.
This is an account not to miss. Believe the hype.READ MORE: INSTA STAR AMAAL SAID ON SELF PORTRAITS, HIJABS & REPPING WOMEN OF COLOUR
10. Loza Maleombho – @Lozamaleombho
Designer and deep-thinker, Loza Maleombho from Ivory Coast has been bitten with wanderlust and blessed with a creativity that inspires our minds – from the traditional-inspired collections she creates, to the series of self-portraits she posts on her Instagram, tagged #AlienEdits.
The photoseries sees the artist, as we can comfortably call her, posting shots of herself with something perched on her head – objects ranging from hats and helmets, to books, birds and laptops – and has even started a movement online from fans doing the same, as well as sending in fan art of her original pics.
Even better is the chance to see the Ivorian traditions that inspire her work. Please follow if you’re looking for something rich to sink your eyes into, or for an alternative version of what one might’ve thought African art and design is all about.
11. “Gold” – @Asiyamigold
Designer, blogger and ‘visual storyteller’ (according to the Instagram bio), “Gold” as she refers to herself on her website, is an all-round creative that we can’t get enough of – what with her eye for style and skills in photography bringing fresh inspiration to our feed.
Check her out if you like beautiful locations and brightly-lit images, alongside elegantly-put captions.
Best posts include those on her recent travels from the UK (where she is based) to the continent, which provide a little insight into what it’s like as a creative to look at one’s homeland having left as just a child.
12. Trevor Stuurman – @Trevor_Stuurman
South African photographer Trevor Stuurman describes himself as a “Global African” and “storyteller” – and we agree, hence he’s on our radar and this list.
What you’ll find in his feed is rich imagery ridden with print and colour – the kind of things he wears while travelling the world and exploring the fashion industry – and with Trevor meeting plenty of likeminded Africans along the way, there’s the chance to discover more cool kids from the continent as you go about
It doesn’t hurt that Mr Stuurman is also a very sharp dresser, and if you follow his account you’ll get just why GQ named him Best Dressed Man of the Year 2015.
13. I See a Different You – @Iseeadifferentyou
The South African trio behind I See a Different You certainly know how to get around – by skateboard or by bike for fun, and to far flung places on the continent and overseas.
The boys are splendid behind a lens, hence they’re Nikon ambassadors, and also stylish, they’re a delight to find in your Insta feed. Follow and find out for yourself.
14. Art News Africa – @Artnewsafrica
Art News Africa – a Lagos-based publication – reports on art and art-related news from inside Africa and across the diaspora, bringing a colourful collection to your screen.
Including paintings, photography and sculpture from past and contemporary artists, the account is a creative’s dream and sure to turn any admirer into a digital art collector in a hurry.
Follow and discover new and old talent from the diversely talented pool that is Africa.
15. Team SPICE – @SPICETVAFRICA
And of course, what would your feed be without Team SPICE‘s daily feed of fashion, style, inspiration and behind-the-scenes snaps of our shows?
There’s plenty of red carpet, backstage and star pics to double-tap, plus a look at what we do on the set of your favourite shows and in the African cities we visit. DO make sure to follow and get to know us digitally.
Want to meet in person? Then head to our Social Media Week event this week, where we’ll be talking about how (like the brilliant Instagram accounts above) “African Media Tell the African Narrative.”
Video & image source: @Iseeadifferentyou, @Artnewsafrica, @Yagaziemezi, @Theorangenerd, @Fisayolonge, @Ndudu_by_Fafa, @Asiyamigold, @Trevor_Stuurman, @Tony_gum, @Lozamaleombho, @Oroma.Elewa, @Amaalsaid