Our speaker for October will be Elizabeth-Yemi Akingbade, founder of fashion brand Yemzi. Elizabeth-Yemi takes inspiration from the iconography, colours and patterns derived from West Africa to produce luxury eco-conscious clothing and accessories. She shares her design skills and experience with young girls from marginalised backgrounds through workshops.
Elizabeth-Yemi graduated from the University of The Arts London in 2013. The following year she launched Yemzi with a small range of illustrated organic tops. Her first collection (2015) set the premise for an African inspired, print-led, contemporary aesthetic. She uses her artwork to adorn luxury fabrics.
Influenced by her British upbringing with a working-class white foster family in the English seaside, she describes her work as reinterpreting and recontextualizing her rich Nigerian heritage.
Each item is hand sewn in limited quantities In London by skilled seamstresses. Her oil paintings and fine-liner mark-making inspired by iconography, patterns and textures from West Africa are digitalised to create trans-seasonal fashion prints.
Sadly, despite much planning and a fair amount of hoping, recent WI guidelines have meant we are unable to meet in the Crypt. Do come and join us on Zoom to find out more …7.30pm on 1st October, email in and we will send you the link for the meeting.
Flower & Produce
As most of you will know, the de Beauvoir Gardeners will not be running their usual, fantastic Flower & Produce Show this year. However, they are running an event on Sunday September 27th, there will be stalls selling plants and a competition for artists to create works based around Pets, Wildlife and Flowers that will be displayed on the railings around the church. All profits from the plant sales will be donated to De BeauvoirFood bank. We will miss the dog show but hopefully it will be business as usual in 2021.
Alongside the event, we are holding a Jam And Marmalade table sale from the garden of 22 Northchurch Road. We have a selection of jams and marmalades including cherry, plum, blackberry and apple, gooseberry and elderflower, mixed berry jam along with Seville marmalade. Prices will start at £3 for smaller jars, we have a card reader and card transactions would be preferable but cash is fine too. A percentage of our profits will also be donated to the De Beauvoir Food Bank. Come along for a socially distant chat and maybe a jar or two of jam. Sunday September 27th 11am – 1pm on the drive of 22 Northchurch Road.
Book group also continue to meet on Zoom, on October 20th at 8pm.
The book for the next meeting is Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyememi.
Reviews have said that the book sparkles with wit and vibrancy. Boy, Snow, Bird is a deeply moving novel about three women and the strange connection between them. It confirms Helen Oyeyemi’s place as one of the most original and dynamic literary voices of her generation.
Boy, Snow, Bird has been well received by the mainstream media but has subsequently been vilified by members of the trans community for having a transphobic ending (“I threw the book across the room”), but we didn’t realise this when the book was chosen by our group.
Solace Women’s Aid
We have been in touch with Solace and they hope to be in a position to accept physical donations towards the end of the year.
However, in the meantime, we could support the women and children living in their refuges by buying gift cards (maximum spend £20) which would enable them to buy what they needed. With a gift card they can choose items for themselves, in itself an empowering act. If you would like to donate a gift card to Solace then we are setting up a collection point (email in for details) and then we can send a package of gift cards off to Solace.