You don't have to be a Marvel Superhero movie fan to notice the roaring opening success of  Black Panther. This movie tells the tale of the new king of Wakanda, a secretive but highly technological African nation harboring a metal which imparts superhuman capabilities. He has to face a vengeful challenger and naturally, save the world in the process.  Lots of action all round (see trailer ) but what really caught my eye were the amazing costume and jewelry designs. I can't wait to see the movie soon.

Ruth Carter is the African American and seasoned costume designer behind Black Panther with over 40 films to her credit. She teamed up with Douriean Fletcher, an LA-based jewelry designer, who created the movie's jewelry design and armor.   The outfits King T'Challa 's all female elite bodyguard, the Dora Milaje, wear are particularly striking.

We are well aware of the African contributions to the art of beading. Herringbone stitch is also known as Ndebele stitch, named after the South African tribe. The Zulus are also famed for their unspoken language of beads. See these past posts :

Ruth Carter and Douriean Fletcher were both inspired by the many tribes in Africa. They took those inspirations and put a futuristic spin on them. Ruth explains in this video some of her creative ideas.

 Douriean Fletcher's Instagram showcases some of her work. She said in this LA Times interview : “I worked in the costume section. I had my own workshop. So any time [cast members] would come in, I might’ve had two torches in my hand or a hammer — with a safety helmet on. And I’m really petite, so it was probably weird to see this little black woman just hammering away.”

Douriean Fletcher working on Black Panther jewelry
She also shared some of these posters and magazine covers below which shows in better detail the artistry and workmanship behind the designs especially for the female characters.  Princess Shuri played by Letitia Wright,  is Wakanda's teen tech expert. The regal Angela Bassett is the Queen Mother.

 Check out her website for her licensed Black Panther jewelry.

The movie trailer :

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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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