What is your take on Androgyny?? A lady dressed in male garments? Or an asexual silhouette?? There are innumerable takes on the trend but one factor loomed huge and inexplicable to me..Please take a cute minute out of your hectic schedules and kindly google Androgyny..
You are probably inundated with fancy images of women dressed in Tuxedos, jeans, bow-ties and cropped hair..As a fashion Consultant/stylist based in Africa, I have been guilty of the same generalisation.. I remember styling editorials or individuals in my take on the Androgyny trend.. It obviously veered in the tuxedo/pants or a stark dress and butch accessories direction.
Never did it cross my mind to look inwards and imagine Androgyny with an African spin.. Here I am today, doing just that.I am wearing a Vintage Baban riga/Agbada I scored from my dearest dad. I love the intricate work on the garment and the colour..
The Grand Boubou as it is commonly called usually comes as a four piece, with a long sleeve shirt (Danshiki), flowing buba, pants and a matching embroidered hat. They are quite popular in the Western African Region.It is worn very popularly in Northern and Western Nigeria for ceremonial occassions.
A male in the full four piece regalia is quite a commanding site to behold. I opted for just one piece of the garment; the wide open stitched sleeveless gown. I folded it over my shoulders, mimicking a motion I had seen countless times growing up as I watched my dad admiringly.
I felt quite grand and awesome in this outfit..and would certainly wear it again in different ways.. I may wear the other garment (Danshiki) over jeans.. Or repeat this look with a white shirt underneath.. The possibilities are endless and it excites me no end to conjour different combinations..
In all this I learnt a very important lesson.. To always remember to see the absolute big picture. I love my tuxedos.. Baggy boyfriend silhouettes and so forth… But what about the other side of Androgyny? The androgyny stemming from our own culture and traditions.. It should not be overlooked…
.. In some of the pictures below, I am with my adorable God daughter; Maya.. She warms my heart to no end. She is my friend Ejay’s daughter and the whole God mother journey has been quite a dynamic one.. Maya is quite a poser!
Have a great Monday!
Happy Eid Mubarak!
Photography: Kola Oshalusi
Shoes: Sam Edelman