The Quest for “Glam” Stylish or Inappropriate?

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A few weeks ago I went to see a movie with my sister and her boyfriend at the Palms Shopping Mall. I was already having a great time and was more than excited to be finally getting to watch Olympus Has Fallen. A few minutes later we were
seated in the not so dark hall and ready for the amazement those who had watched the movie promised. The next thing I knew, my chair started to shake. It wasn’t from the effects of the movie, that hadn’t even started. This annoying vibration was coming from the girl sitting beside me.

Apparently, this girl who couldn’t have been more than 16 years old had on the shortest pair of shorts I had ever seen in my life and a cropped top. The cold was increasing, and as Olympus started to fall, her legs started to shake even more. At this point I’m thinking to myself, why would you wear such clothes knowing fully well that you were going to be in a cold place? Would it be that bad if you had taken a jacket along? Or are jackets not as trending as your cropped top?

After the movie, my movie companions and I walked downstairs to get something to eat. Being the small amebo that I am, I was looking out for her to get a full look at what she was wearing but I couldn’t find her. Why? Because almost every girl I saw had on almost the same thing.

What is it with some people and not dressing appropriately? Now, I am not talking about her wearing something that shows me she likes lace underwear. Nope, I’m talking about appropriateness for the weather, place, occasion etc. Why wont people dress weather friendly? For example, there is a certain hip hop rapper who dresses like he is a member of  the Naughty By Nature, even though the weather here is unsuitable for such dressing. Is that his personality/trademark? Or is he simply unaware of the weather here. Do people dress for weather or are they simply following what music video vixens are wearing.

On the social media there was a lot of talk about Banky W’s video shoot photos. “Why are the girls wearing bikinis?”  ”This is nudity“. It’s the beach, if you don’t wear a bikini or swim suit you might as well sit on of pile of coals and light yourself on fire.

Why is it that we are eager to dress like Rihanna, Beyonce, Wiz Khalifah, Kanye West and maybe someday North West, when we are trying to build an African fashion mentality?

I discussed this with my friend and even though we couldn’t come to one conclusion she believes that “if African fashion has to grow, we have to learn from people who are in the fashion business and have been for a long time. You don’t build a house without learning how to build first. So, when it comes to dressing we are simply doing it according to what we have seen over the years. Now, I would rather wear a leather jacket because I know somewhere in the world Kim Kardashian is wearing it, than because I know Genevieve has it in her closet“.

She also talked about some girls who wear body con dresses to every occasion – polo tournament, white body con dress; music concert, red body con dress; wedding, blue body con dress…frankly I know what she is talking about. Some girls just need to throw their body con dresses away for infringement on the Terms of Use.

My question is, how can we learn African fashion from places that aren’t African? How can we wear clothes and style trends that were patterned to foreign weather conditions in ours. Is fashion really that universal that we would wear a fur jacket no matter where we are? Why don’t we decide to dress Nigerian weather friendly or Canadian weather friendly or South African weather friendly? Are trends bigger than comfort and do they take appropriateness out of the picture? Let’s discuss.

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