It is all about socks! The Akuko brand is on the forefront with its unique style. Akuko means story in igbo language. The roots are in Nigeria and the base is Sweden. The founder Arinze Prosper Emegoakor created with his team vibrant bamboo socks that carries stories which connects the African diaspora with the mother land. Through storytelling, aesthetics, movement and style we celebrate and highlight “Afropresentism” – the black presence in diaspora. Inspired and introduced to storytelling by his late grandmother. 

About the founder – As a black man in the western world, I am fully aware of the prejudices and stereotypes about people of African descent. I lived with constant fear of being misunderstood or judged. I gradually perfected the art of navigating the society unnoticed. It was perfect until I started projecting the same fears to my son.

“No Nkemji! Stop running, don’t touch that, stop shouting!”

Those were my words to my son on the street of Malmö, he was just 6yrs old. I couldn’t bear the sad look on his face, you see he wasn’t doing anything wrong. He was just being a child. That broke my heart, how can I raise a free and liberated child when I am not free myself?

Stories that empower 

Akuko’s first collection is inspired by Ogene, a musical instrument but also a tool used by the town crier to call for gatherings in communities of eastern Nigeria. All collections will be carefully designed to tell stories that enlightens and empowers.

The Ogene is a gong or bell which is commonly used as a “master instrument” in a bell orchestra in Igboland of Nigeria. It is an instrument of the struck idiophone class and is made of iron by specialist  local  blacksmiths. The bell has a flattish, conical shape, and is hollow inside. Ogene comes in different sizes and could be single, double (ogene mkpi abuo) or tripple (ogene mkpi ato). The sound itself comes from the vibration of the iron body when struck with a wooden striker.

Bamboo – for the quality & the climate 

Akuko wants to strengthen communities, and that includes all part of the production chain. That’s why they have chosen to produce their socks in bamboo. Cotton cultivation is infamous for its depravation of land and heavy use of pesticides, chemical fertilizers and excessive use of water, which has destroyed and displaced local communities all over the world. 

Bamboo textile is very soft and gives a luxury feeling. It requires less washing than most cotton and is noted to keep its bright colors significantly longer. Bamboo also helps to regulate your body temperature, it keeps you warm in cold climates and cool in warmer environments. This is due to its breathability and high absorption abilities. Also, the fiber is odour resistant and anti-bacterial.