Our daily experiences and ideas shape our views of the world. Through this perception, we are able to express ourselves. One of the most prominent forms of expression is fashion. If I view the world in a sad or melancholic way, odds are I will wear clothes that are dark coloured and so on. Hence, we come to the question, what influences the youth fashion culture in Nigeria?
Sadly, it may seem like most youths are not thinking of fashion as independent minds. We are more concerned with the trends that have been fed to us by the western world. Sometimes, there isn’t a complete understanding of what the trend is about. “If everyone is doing it, so do I” attitude is the worse kind ever. We have to try and become aware and take our place in the global fashion industry.
One medium that has made these ideas more rampant is the internet. Ideas can cross boundaries instantaneously. Most Nigerian youths are overwhelmed with fashion information and little is done to put our own fashion out there. What happened to the Adire and beads that our parents used to rock? It seems that is only left for the wedding because they have become so historic that they can only be used once in a year.
People have been fed with the idea that the western way is the right way. It is almost inconveniencing for a lady to tie wrapper in her home because it is too much. This has suddenly become old fashion. You go to the mall and you see young people in skinny jeans and high-tops, this was never in our culture. We live in a society where women have to be quite conservative but all that has gone out the window. The less we see the better but that is definitely not the case. Where did these come from?
The positive part about this is that with recent times Nigerians are becoming more open minded to fashion. We do not have anything against the western fashion. The only thing will be that practicing this should not come at the expense of Nigerian fashion. If we do not imbibe this culture, then who will? This pressure, whether we want to accept it or not, lies in the hands of the youths. We can personalize our fashion, creating a fusion between the Western culture and our Nigeria culture.
Written by Nkem Ikeh
Images: adacreate.tumblr.com, bellanaija.com, nigerianyouthsinqld.blogspot.com