FASHION AND CULTURE GO HAND-IN-HAND AND ARE TWO SIDES OF THE SAME TRENDING COIN!
The more you learn about fashion and new cultures of the geography you are targeting... The more you can create fashion trends for that culture.
Without even saying, culture and fashion – together – can help you learn about the future of global consumerism along with its effects on trends.
HOW CAN WE SAY THEY’RE CORRELATED?
As we know, adhering to the latest fashion means you’re wearing what’s trending. After all, the fashion industry’s goal is to make the audience look good.
For us (customers), fashion is about making a fashion statement – through a combination of accessories and clothes. This statement alone can set any one of us apart from the rest.
And a statement is a language – but this time, not a form of verbal communication. Instead, our fashion is self-expression, a nonverbal form of communicating of where we come from or who we are. So in this sense, fashion can portray our individual culture also, in one way or another.
BUT DOES CULTURE INFLUENCE THE FASHION INDUSTRY?
Yes, it does. Cultural changes influence the fashion created by the people in that specific culture or location. For example, all over the world, there are various cultures comprising of millions of people following different fashion trends.
And without even saying, no two are the same. And no culture is static – just like fashion. It is dynamic, constantly changing with time passing by.
The culture of the people ensure that the fashion accessories and clothes meet certain goals or objectives. Culture also influences design and fabric selection. For example, designers can choose from and make use of indigenous materials abundant in a particular place. This will create a strong local identity.
That’s not all though. Today, many people also desire imitating celebrities, who may or may not have the same cultural influences as they have.
On the other hand, there are people enjoying the art of fashion. But most people tend to follow the cultural trends of their locale. What they wear or how they get their fashion pieces together is influenced by their geographic location.
For example: people living in extremely cold climates have thick fashion clothes in order to adapt to the drastic weather while remaining stylish.
As fashion constantly changes, designers keep up with the trends, modify designs and choose fabric, colour and texture to adapt to a certain culture (or trend) at the same time.
And with that particular culture in mind, designers can create fashion accessories and clothing. At the end of the day, culture influences fashion and vice versa.
Designers can only move towards creating a new design based on what they know about culture.
So when culture meets fashion, there is an unlimited opportunity to explore designs and come up with the latest fashion trends.
People from around the world wear their cultures proudly upon their sleeves. They do not shy from any opportunities to showcase the brilliant vibrancy of their roots. Whether a modern twist on a traditional outfit, or a traditional touch to an ultra-modern dress, it’s always a pleasure to wear your national attire.
Here are some men and women who don their traditional dresses with a feeling of pride and joy:
ELFAZ MELESSE BAILEY
The traditional garb in Ethiopia has a unique and diverse appearance. Ethiopian garb is a beautiful, high quality, handmade cotton called Shemma, which is woven in long strips and sewn together. Shiny threads are often woven into the fabric and patterned frequently. Habesha kemis is a dress designed with woven borders of coloured handmade embroidery and matched with crosses called Masekel.
Masekel is commonly used as a tribute to this historical country’s most popular religious subsect – The Orthodox Christian...This garb can be seen in most parts of the country. Traditional clothing is worn on a daily basis by many people in the countryside. In larger cities, western- styled clothing has become increasingly popular over the years. However, many Ethiopians inside and outside the country, proudly wear their local clothing for special events such as weddings, holidays and for church ceremonies.
The saree and lehenga are 2 traditional attires worn by women in India. Sarees are 6 metres of embroidered cloth, wrapped around women with pleats and folds. Lehengas are usually 2 or 3 piece attires consisting of heavily embellished blouses, long skirts and shawls.
Originally from Mangalore in the state of Karnataka in south India, these traditional dresses come in simple cotton material to lavish silk, organza, jute and nylon. Indian women love enhancing these outfits with extensive jewellery and herbal hand tattoos (mehendi). Sarees and lehengas are the preferred outfit for weddings and festivals across regions and religions.
BOBO F. AJUDUA
African men have a unique outfit which they wear on cultural events. The agbada is a 3-piece embroidered outfit consisting of a pair of trousers, a long- sleeved shirt and loose, open-sleeved gown, usually all of a single colour. Sometimes, the men top off the outfit with a hat.
These traditional dresses are worn during religious ceremonies, marriages and festivals and come in materials ranging from regular cotton to silk and other synthetic cloth. The Yoruba Agbada is handwoven and is considered sacred as it is sometimes passed down across the generations. It originates from the Igboland and Delta-city states in Nigeria.