It is fair to say that times have changed immensely over the past decade within the fashion industry, with regards to the way fashion is interpreted, created and accepted in society. African Culture and fashion is one sector which has increased in popularity amongst the inhabitants of the Western society, with the effect that it is now one of the fastest growing and developing economies within in the African Continent. African Culture and fashion has owned its position on the stage and claimed its spotlight. It is making a statement stronger then ever with ambassadors as Queen Maxima, Beyoncé & Obama and one thing is for sure. It is here to stay.
Just now, there is an ongoing narrative of what African fashion is. Certain individuals amongst us see it as traditionally hand crafted and tailor-made items of clothing. On the corners of the streets of different African countries, you will still find authentic sewing ateliers. However, now-a-days it tries to break away from the traditional image including expectations it once had and is ready to take risks. African Fashion is diverse and indeed every country has its own blueprint and its corresponding style. What you are able to recognize from these various styles are still the bright colour and fussed designs that ´pop´ out your eyes in reaffirming their identity. The notion still remains that every single detail can be caught by the eye if you free up your mind and pay close enough attention to them. It can be noted also that bright colours aren’t a distraction or gambit for trying to create chaos. Better yet, they are a flow of emotions which tell you a poetic story - if you are ready to listen to it. More than clothing, every individual design is a centre piece that grabs you by the hand and fills your heart with warmth.
More fashion brands like Junya Watanabe and Valentine are inspired by the different styles within African fashion and as such are implementing these elements in to their own collection, so the diversity within the world of fashion is finally accepted.
It comes as no surprise that there are many varieties of style of African fashion which have claimed its stage and visibility through different aspects. Since 2014, there has been an African Fashion Week Amsterdam, established by a young aspiring businesswoman Diana Tambe. At a young age, Diana moved from Cameroon to the Netherlands where she started off as a model. As an aspiring fashion professional, she always redesigned her own clothes (and later those of friends as well) and after increasing her contact portfolio in the fashion and entertainment industry, she decided it was the right move to make a shift into her own designing career with her own clothing line called Blackpearl Secret. According to Diana, more people from the Western society have an open mind to these styles of fashion. For instance, the Queen of Netherlands is one of the many ambassadors that represent the emerging face of African Culture.
As the interest in African fashion increases, more and more aspiring young designers reveal their flair, as more digital platforms rise from the dark to be enlightened by young artists who are provocatively showcasing their talent. African fashion consists of a wide variety of looks that can help individuals to express their style.From classy to elegant or edgy to extravagant you have the power to be flawless with your look.
Guest Article: Abigail Josepha