Expressions of Accra Diaries: Dei D’zines – The art of Crochet

Ever wondered about crocheting? The complex weaving processes of yarn, thread, chord, and African fabric in Dei D’zines’ case requires a rare patience, and an artisan’s skill, to produce stunning patterns through very complicated stitching.

Crochet is a very old art that cuts across many cultures, and in the current rage for African print, Dei D’zines stands out from the crowd, in bringing it back to life with rich Ghana-made textiles.

Her motifs are complex and very polished in their rendering. She plays with all kinds of materials; buttons, beads, etc, which contribute to the ‘wow’ effect.

Dei D’zines clutches are almost Victorian in their rendering, and very cutesy and flatteringly feminine with her signature embossment of flowers and bows.

Can you describe your collections?
DEI D’zines produces Ghanaian handmade crocheted accessories such as ladies handbags and clutch purses as well as earrings which come in various colours and sizes.

I enjoyed watching fashion shows. I quite remember my favorite at the time was ‘Fashion on the move’. I used to enjoy collecting pieces of fabric from my mum’s seamstress and sewing dolls and clothes out of them.My grandmother taught me how to crochet. I’ve always enjoyed arts and crafts. But I wasn’t able to pursue it academically after JHS.

Who would you say passed on the fashion genes to you?
My grandmother did. She taught sewing and handiwork and still sews some of her own clothes. She taught me how to crochet.

Describe your tutelage in crocheting?
I studied most of my work through research and observation, and constantly worrying my seamstress, who taught me a few sewing skills.

Did school influence your fashion interests in anyway?
Yes, it did. While on campus, I studied various new trends and was able to pick up a few things.

When was Dei D’zines born?
I started making bags after JHS, mostly using fabric, but I didn’t have enough resources and encouragement to continue so I put it on hold. I only took it serious around April 2012, when I was encouraged by family and close friends, after I had produced a few bags out of boredom, while sitting at home after graduation awaiting National Service.

What materials do you usually use? What inspires your use of those materials?

Most of my creations are developed using chord and African print fabric. African print is being used a lot these days. Each design is uniquely handmade using chord with a touch of beautiful African wax print designs to showcase our rich and unique culture.

Is your focus mainly on bags and clutches?
I also design earrings.

Please describe three of the toughest challenges you had as a beginner?
Crochet takes time to make, and even more time and patience to teach because learning it wasn’t easy for me.Finding people with a little knowledge about it to train and work with was hard. So I had to do most of the work myself. Getting publicity has also been tough. Trying to get my design out into the fashion industry with well established names has sometimes been difficult. Some special accessories for making my products are also difficult to find around.

Who is your target market? What do you find is the response to your designs?
Currently, it focuses on ladies: teenagers, working class women, students, but I’m working on something for guys as well. People are mostly amazed at the fact that I’ve been able to turn grandma’s hobby into a beautiful creative product which is unique and they love it!

Can you describe for our readers exactly what goes into designing?
Each accessory is inspired by things around me, and are made with the aim of giving the client a unique and stylish look.

Have you done any charity work?
Expressions of Accra is my first since starting Dei D’Zines this year.

Can you describe for our readers exactly what goes into designing?
Each accessory is inspired by things around me, and are made with the aim of giving the client a unique and stylish look.

What is your ultimate goal for Dei D’zines?

To be well represented and accepted locally and internationally as a household name.

Naa Dei, specializing in landscape design at KNUST, is currently pursuing a Masters in Environmental Science in KNUST.

Dei Dzines would be showcasing her latest designs at Citi FM’s Expressions of Accra – Threads of Time. Come check out her newest on Saturday 27th October 2012.

Come check out her newest on Saturday 27th October 2012.

By: Nana Korantema/citifmonline.com/Ghana