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Top tips for making good use of long forgotten traditional wear..

Oct 15, 2014 | Fashion, WIWT

This article is mainly about utilising every garment in our wardrobe to its utmost “capacity”. My focus is on the traditional garments .. Still, the general theory from this applies to all garments in our wardrobe.. Worry not my non-traditional garment wearing readers, this post is for you as well!!.

In Africa, or at least I speak from the point of a resident of West Africa, most parties or significant events are celebrated with the commissioning of Aso-ebi. In broad terms, Aso-ebi is fabric  delegated by the celebrant to family members and friends. The chosen fabric usually coincides with the theme/colour of the event. The purchaser of the Aso-ebi makes a style with the fabric solely at his/her discretion. Most times they end up being styles (speaking for the ladies) such as; long dresses, tops with wrappers, long skirts.. the list continues..

The beauty of traditional fabric is its rich and luxurious appearance or in some cases just a really catchy Ankara print. This also is its undoing.Most times, asides the traditional parties, it is not worn on a regular day or to another sort of event.

The resulting effect of this is a wardrobe full of traditional wear we hardly everwear . How tragic is that?? .. Also, how wasteful is that? We have to take a long hard look at the pieces in our wardrobe and come up with creative ways of making it work for us on mainstream days. Where do you work? Can any of them be worn on work days? The top perhaps or even a print dress? Maybe not? Still..there should be a solution..It’s time to get creative.!!

For this post, I am going to concentrate mainly on long skirts.

I have many long skirts in my wardrobe, a by blow of Aso-ebi parties .. I have recently started wearing them to formal events and even to work or hanging out with the girls and they end up being pretty cool and quite versatile.


The skirt in the picture above is quite old and  is from a dear friends wedding.I teamed it with a black body suit from Asos. To reduce the sparkly and glitzy feel of the ensemble, I teamed the outfit with a big silver vintage bag. It sort of lent the outfit a more mainstream look and almost made it a legitimate average day time look.


Do you have an Asoebi skirt in your wardrobe and never worn it? Please unearth and rewear! Reduce waste, utilise samples..

Here are some additional tips:

a. Team your skirt regardless of the length with a really cool T-shirt.

b. Go denim.. Tuck in a denim skirt! or knot it over your skirt..

c. Wear a cropped top over it..

d. Throw a vest over it.

e. Tuck in a crisp white or black shirt and a chunky neckpiece..

f. Team it with a camisole and a blazer..

The possibilities are endless…There is so much you can do with your pieces.. I would be giving tips on blouses in the not too distant future. Please fill in the contact form and submit if you have any questions, need help or have any queries.

Did you miss my  re-use ,reduce and recycle post? It shows how I paired a rich velvet long skirt from my wardrobe. Here’s a link:  https://www.zinkata.com/re-use-reduce-recycle/

Have a great day !! PLease subscribe, share or simply drop a comment.



Ezinne Chinkata

Photography: Kola Oshalusi

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