Last week I launched the Afri-love Women Facebook group, for creative African women balancing self-care and professional excellence.
When I started this blog, almost 7 years ago, I always had a vision that it would be more than just a one-way conversation. That it would lead to activities and initiatives in the real world. In late 2015, I held the Afri-love Sundown Sessions – 3 intimate evenings of live music, co-hosted with musician Sirena Riley. Late last year, I co-hosted a Nairobi brunch for women creatives, together with the Nzinga Effect. Both events were successful in many ways and, I received such great feedback from attendees. I knew that I wanted to create more opportunities for interaction with like-minded people – in real life and virtually as well – and the Afri-love Women Facebook group is step one.
Continue reading “Real talk for creative African women – join in!”
There are few things I enjoy more than being by the beach and Zanzibar is one of the most beautiful that I’ve experienced yet. I really think I’m designed to live by the coast. Swimming in the wild ocean whose grandness awes and frightens me and yet, floating and moving through the water soothes me so. Relaxing on sandy beaches, watching the world go by and surrendering to the natural pace of time. Finding nourishment from the fruits of the sea and, in East Africa, the delicious Swahili cuisine!
I know babymoons are technically supposed to happen before delivery but, I’m dreaming of a postpartum Zanzibar vacation this Autumn. It helps that a handful of my friends are planning trips there this year. Answering their requests for tips has me researching and getting inspired myself!
Here’s my wishlist of where to stay…
Continue reading “Zanzibar dreaming: my wishlist of where to stay”
So far, this year has found me either: on the road; preparing for being on the road; educating myself about and getting to grips with pregnancy; and preparing for the arrival of my baby. Needless to say, “routine” is a word whose meaning I’d totally forgotten. I have a feeling that, once baby comes, I won’t even know how to spell the word!
I’m a person who both hates routine and thrives on it. Or rather, I hate the idea of monotony – of doing the exact same thing, over and over again. Yet, I crave some sort of structure. I’m almost OCD about it: creating lists is one of my favourite pastimes!
Not too long ago, I discovered a way that has been working for me; a balance between having order but still retaining some dynamism in my days. Continue reading “My daily routine – pregnancy edition”
Happy new year! I hope you had some time to rest and rejuvenate as the year turned. A good chunk of my holiday was spent in Moshi, Tanzania. I stayed at my late grandparents’ home – resting, reading and spending time with family. I came back to Nairobi with renewed enthusiasm and clarity! There are several big (and slightly scary) adventures – design and otherwise – on the horizon this year, for me and for the Studio. I look forward to sharing them with you.
The first one starts next week, when 3 creative friends and I set off for a 15,000km+ road trip through southern Africa (see below).
As we prepare to set off, I wanted to share some highlights from 2016. Many of you have been a part of these projects and endeavours and I thank you deeply for your different contributions. Continue reading “Lulu Kitololo Studio design and illustration highlights from 2016”
Regular readers may have noticed my blogging hiatus, as I reconfigured my life and business. However, Afri-love subscribers have been less neglected, thanks to A week of Afri-love: a weekly email I started a few months ago, where I share 5 Afri-love-worthy things. Each edition includes:
- Buy African: featuring exquisite African-made/made in Africa goods
- Something to look at, read, watch or listen to
- Some visual place to get lost in (usually amazing Instagram feeds that will fuel your imagination and take you places!)
- Events across the world
- Last but not least, an “expand” item – something that I’ve come across that has been useful for me in my quest for better health, creative excellence and success in my business
For those who don’t receive these nuggets weekly, I thought I’d do a round-up of “expand” posts, every 2 months, selecting just 5 of my favourite items.
Here’s edition number one! Continue reading “Expand in creativity, business and life – September round-up”
This post is sponsored by online money transfer service WorldRemit
It’s been over 15 years since I left the place that I still consider my home: Kenya. As much as I’ve appreciated my experiences of living in the US (New York) and in the UK (London and Manchester) – and especially all the people I’ve met, who’ve made my life so much richer – Kenya remains my home.
I periodically reflect on this notion of “home”. What is home? For some it’s where they come from and for others, it’s simply where they live, at the present time. For me, the whole idea is something far less tangible.
When I am at home, I feel it. It’s in how my body just seems to naturally relax, feels more vibrant and literally glows. It’s in the ease of interacting with people and being understood (and this is not even to do with language but rather, our shared cultural experiences and values). And of course, the joy and comfort of family, and people who have known you for what seems like forever.
While these aren’t things I can carry with me, each time I return to my London base, there are two particular ways in which I’ve managed to keep home very close: Continue reading “Staying connected to home: bringing your heritage into your space and into your work”
I'm excited to share something I've been working on with you. I've curated a series of intimate live music gigs taking place on the last 3 Fridays of this month, in London.
As the days get shorter, nights get chillier and London settles down and braces itself for the winter – I dream of sunny days, vibrant colours and the soulful energy that I feel, back home.
Black History Month is the perfect occasion to launch the Sundown Sessions – conceived in the Afri-love spirit of celebrating the work of amazing African and diaspora creatives.
Join me and engage with inspired musicians who, will transport us to faraway lands. Featuring resident act Sirena Riley and Tom Donald; Adriano Adewale (Friday 16th), Namvula (Friday 23rd), Muntu Valdo (Friday 30th), with Djs Africathy and Zezi Ifore.
Continue reading “The Afri-love Sundown Sessions: 3 intimate evenings of live music”
This month marks 5 years of running my business. It's been a hell of a ride – high moments, challenging times and everything in between. All with a great business partner and an amazing team by my side. But now, it's time for a change …
A key part of the Asilia
ethos has always been about following your heart and doing work you love. We’ve constantly strived to practice what we preach. That’s why we love working with other passionate people and why our self-directed projects are so important to us.
Over the past 5 years, these projects have evolved in different ways. Some have been more satisfying and successful than others – Afri-love
, Afriapps and Black White Simple
being the ones that have most resonated with the wider world.
Products of change
These projects, along with our experiences working with clients over the years, have taught us important lessons; opened up new opportunities we couldn’t have foreseen and; challenged and expanded our visions, when it comes to the contributions we want to bring to the world.
In being true to ourselves, our passions, our new circumstances and environments, we have decided on a new future for our professional paths.
Continue reading “Goodbye Asilia: new business directions”
NOW Gallery will be celebrating London’s diverse creative landscape in a new cross-cultural installation, Home Affairs.
The exhibition is a collaboration between furniture designer Yinka Ilori, fashion designer Christine Mhando of London-based CHiCHiA and creative consultant Arieta Mujay. It features four theatrical, visually compelling conceptual spaces, brought to life with curated film, archival footage and performance. Framed by the language of traditional Nigerian & Swahili parables, the spaces will be filled with thought-provoking furniture, indigenous plants, designed objects, garments and wallpapers inspired by bespoke Khanga textiles. There will also be artwork by The installation will also be artwork by Jason Barka and Berjo Mouanga; a mural by myself, Lulu Kitololo; hand-carved wooden stools and bowls by artist Gary March and; on opening night, spoken word performances by the Bazaar Bohemian, of Project Tribe.
Art director/brand consultant Ola Shobowale (aka @imustcreatenow) is also on-board, helping to bring it all together.
Dates: 20th August – 4th September 2015
Venue: NOW Gallery, The Gateway Pavilions, Peninsula Square, Greenwich Peninsula, London SE10 0SQ
Join us this Thursday evening for the NOW Later opening night
You can expect:
Continue reading “EVENT: Home Affairs – a Cross-Cultural Installation”