*bbm whew face* so I’ve finally finished reading Barack Obama’s, Dreams from My Father after about 2 years. Don’t judge me, lol. It was my travel book, so I only read it in the airport or the plane, when I wasn’t sleep. It surprised me, how much our experiences with our fathers paralleled. No my mother is not white and no my father does not have 4 wives (not that there’s anything wrong with that…iKID). I’m speaking more so from our interactions, their influence and our struggle to find acceptance and answers.
Visiting Nigeria for the first time was both humbling and amazing. It’s difficult to fully express what the experience meant to me and how it changed my outlook on family, tradition, and culture. I was able to spend a few days in the capital, Abuja and my remaining weeks in Port Harcourt mixed with a day trip to Aba.
Now, I speak very little of my native tongue, Igbo, but thanks to friends and family I managed not to get ripped off too bad or get kidnapped. That coupled with my $1 haircut, and brief bout with the runs *thanks Imodium A-D* I’d say it was a great trip. Unfortunately, I did NOT see my father (this makes year 22 ) but I know his lessons and principles help guide my path, and the culture of Nigeria heavily influences my perspective on fashion.
Nigerians might be some of the flyest people I know…and I can say that speaking from first hand experience. *pops dashiki* As a stylist I’m not afraid to mix different patterns, colors, and textures. In fact, I rather enjoy it. Spending over two weeks in Nigeria only confirmed where I draw this inspiration. It’s from the children walking to primary school in their uniforms, from the older lady at the market selling stock fish in her traditional, from the young boys playing football, from the bride preparing for her nuptials searching intensely for her husband amongst the crowd and from the father walking with his family to church.
Check out the images below to get a glimpse into my journey and to understand how Nigeria planted the seeds of style in me. Enjoy.