Traditional African Fashion

 

 Africa has a culture of extremely rich and scalable fashion. Local production, although essentially traditional, is often creative and dynamic. Globally, the continent seems to be a growing source of inspiration for fashion designers. Paradoxically, African designers are struggling to establish itself in this market.

Africa is the scene of the most spectacular dress practices that are, including in textiles, jewelry, hairstyles, or any combination of these things. There are embroidered tunics and woven garments to the scholars of West Africa, blankets, richly embroidered with pearls of the South and the vibrant patterns kangas to the east, which are among the most famous African ornaments .

In the popular imagination, both in Africa and elsewhere, these clothes symbolize the African culture. They are the result of interactions and global historical changes. In short, they participate in the fashion circuit. The boubous migrated north to southern Africa, with the religious influence, political and economic Islam.

In the seventeenth century, the weavers of Kente détissaient Italian silks to integrate them into new materials, in the early sixteenth century, Portuguese traders, Dutch and English found in the countries of South Africa an extremely thin clients and knowledge to their beads and blankets, the Kangas are the result of centuries-old trade across the Indian Ocean.

As with any mode, the required result from changing influences, tastes and fluctuating markets. Careful observation of the garment and its context gives an idea of ​​local identities and global trends, innovation and tradition, processing styles and changing attitudes.

This culture of fashion, so rich in Africa, continues today in a wide range of markets and shapes. The continent is home to many contemporary designers, some of which are part of international networks of fashion while others are involved primarily in local markets. All draw their inspiration from diverse influences to meet the demands of their markets, some working in styles typical of other local and from the international fashion trends. Contemporary African fashion is the subject of increasing attention both in academic and commercial as contemporary African art, the production mode of the continent is both very popular and at the forefront of most scholarly research .

An emerging literature has begun to broach the subject of the work of designers of high fashion African, with van der Plas and Willemsen (1998), Revue Noire (1997), Mendy, Ongoundou (2002), Mustafa (2002), Africa C'est Chic and Rovine (2004).

Other recent studies have explored the local markets vested in the design of clothing in Africa, revealing how these practices reflect the evolution of the creation over time. This analysis of local practice in the creation was illustrated by Rabine (2002), Bastian (1996), Gondola (1999), Hansen (2000), Picton (1995), Reindeer (1995), Rovine (2001) and by Perani and Wolf (1999). All demonstrate the complexity of the production of local fashion, exploring, most of them, the various forces at work at the aesthetic, economic, social and political in the production and marketing of changing styles.

Finally, the elegance is often the key word in traditional African fashion. The women are beautiful and without excess. Fashion in Africa and boubou always evolve in the sense of tradition and style of "African" ...


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