There is no telling that the renaissance of the Nigerian streetwear industry has been meteoric. Within these Nigerian brands, we’re seeing themes of unsullied elegance, Y2K aesthetic resurgence, armored glamor— all of which are offering quintessential Nigerian Gen-Z and millennial style expression. But this strutting emergence isn’t credited to Nigeria.
The streetwear culture can be traced to the early ‘90s when baggy jeans, tight nylon quilted vests, neoprene jackets, and platform heels all became trends. With hip-hop stars like Jay-Z, Tupac Shakur, and Nas bringing this style into the spotlight, the young Millenials in New York and California leaned in. Now almost 32 years later, the culture has become a global rave, the Japanese street fashion has gotten mainstream, the skateboarding scenery in several countries has bloomed, and the music jams are even more phenomenal.
In Nigeria, the biggest consumer of streetwear fashion could be credited to the alte subculture— a community of young Nigerians whose fashion style is unconventional and plays with expedient and ungendered subversions; think stars like Ashley Okoli, Teezee, Lady Donli, and Odunsi the Engine. While the streetwear culture keeps blooming in this part of the world, yielding enormous sartorial experimentation and promoting genres and subcultures, we should keep in mind that there are designers who started this journey and are leading the forefront of this movement, proving how worthy they are by connecting communities through fashion. Here are five Nigerian brands you need to know
For Asiafa Oghenefego and Asaju Samuel— the creative directors of David Blackmoore— creating a fashion brand that possesses a unique resonance between personality and culture is revolutionary. Founded in 2015, David Blackmoore is a Nigerian streetwear brand with a fusion of contemporary and traditional design aesthetics. The design duo wanted to tell a redefined story of fashion and they sought to change the Nigerian streetwear industry by creating clothes that are multidimensional and afro-futuristic in nature. “We needed to propel Nigerian streetwear culture and serve as a voice through fashion,” they tell Teen Vogue. “Growing up in a third world country like Nigeria where most of our resources are being exported and less emphasis is shed on the homegrown products, we thought we could be that change we wanted to see, making a powerful brand that keeps the Nigerian streetwear industry fully represented on the global market.”
In just seven years, David Blackmoore has released several collections, launched campaigns, amassed a huge clientele both home and abroad, and styled celebrities like Skepta and Burna Boy. In 2020, the brand caught the attention of the late fashion designer Virgil Abloh who worked together with them to create handcrafted denim for the Off-White x Street Souk campaign theme I Support Young Nigerian Women. “Moments like those kept us going and weathering the storm because if we could and are still doing it, the average African dreamer can also do it. We didn’t go to any fashion school nor did we study abroad, David Blackmoore was born out of the deep desire to make our dreams reality,” they say.
Source by www.teenvogue.com