When it comes to the beautifully bright and happy designs of Kahindo Mateene, the buyer is getting a double dose of cultural aesthetics in both American and Congolese. The results are sophisticated clothing with amazing details that flatter the feminine curves of all women. Modahnik is the name of Ms. Mateene’s brand, and her designs quickly grabbed the spotlight after her appearance and role on the Bravo series hit, Project Runway Season 12. She has never looked back and has gone on to global fame for her bold designs and empowering spirit. She has also partnered with MamAfrica, an organization that supports women in the Democratic Republic of Congo with a variety of educational and economic opportunities.
According to VisionaryArtistryMag, a lot of these women are survivors of rape and trauma, and they assist in creating clutches from leftover fabric from the Modahnik collections. Ms. Mateene believes that when you empower women, you empower an entire society. Ms. Mateene is a native of the Democratic Republic of Congo. She is a graduate of the Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago. She has often been inspired by the spectacular Namib desert dunes and the powerful crashing waves of the nearby Atlantic Ocean. NotJustALabel describes Modahnik as design label that successfully blends “mid-century Americana silhouettes with traditional Congolese textiles and fabrics.”
At the 2016 Harlem Fashion Row runway collection for New York Fashion Week, Ms. Mateene drew applause for her elegant and stunning designs. Blue was the stand-out shade for soft prints, along with bold black and white patterns. One can clearly note the beautiful mix of delicate and strong appeal in the Modahnik label. You can check out Harlem’s Fashion Row here at Essence to hear Ms. Mateene describe the woman she designs for. It’s refreshing to see a young, super-talented fashion designer like Kahindo Mateene creating socially conscious clothing for women. We’ll no doubt be hearing and seeing more from this beautiful lady who inspires all of us.