Janelle Tomeko Grimmond, African Journalist, African Fashion Designer, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMN

Out of Africa: Afro-Guyanese Fashionista Janelle Grimmond Showcases Pieces Inspired By the Continent | OkayAfrica DIASPORA—From bright beads to bold prints and beautiful colors, African fashion continues to inspire the world.



No one knows this better than seasoned fashion editor, Janelle Tomeko Grimmond. The Guyanese-born, New York-bred editor has spent the last decade working for major brands in fashion and media as diverse as Ralph Lauren, Vibe Magazine and Nylon.

What’s the one fashion lesson that those experiences taught her?

“Everyone is inspired by the continent.”

In fact, since as far back as the early eighties Western fashion brands were heavily looking to the continent for inspiration. From vintage pieces at Halston and Norma Kamali, to trending printed wrap dresses at Donna Karan. In even more modern times, coutouriers like Jean Paul Gaultier have paid homage to the continent with a collection, literally titled “Hommage a L’Afrique.”

Janelle Tomeko Grimmond, African Journalist, African Fashion Designer, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMNPhoto | Kobina deGraft Johnson

Janelle Tomeko Grimmond, African Journalist, African Fashion Designer, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMNPhoto | Kobina deGraft Johnson

Janelle Tomeko Grimmond, African Journalist, African Fashion Designer, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMNPhoto | Kobina deGraft Johnson

Janelle Tomeko Grimmond, African Journalist, African Fashion Designer, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMNPhoto | Kobina deGraft Johnson


Born and raised in Tema, Ghana Kobina DeGraft Johnson immigrated to New York at the age of 19 years of age. After graduating college with a BS in accounting, Kobina discovered his true passion for photography. He had a gift to captures people, places and moments in a light that others may not see. In 2013 he founded, Anibok Studios, a production company that took on personal projects, media events and celebrity interviews. Quickly advancing to video and cinematography. After just 2 years in the game he was working along side industry professionals such as Christina Millian, Cast of Love and Hip Hop, Michel Blackson, is just a few to say the least. Kobina has made quite a reputation for himself thus far in his career. Always looking for opportunities that will take his craft to the next level, Kobina strives for excellence in every piece of work he produces. “Living life through the lens provides me with a creative platform to express my thoughts about what is truly beautiful and what really matters.” (Website).