This Spring/Summer 2012, luxe designers like Michael Kors, Roberto Cavalli, Burberry and Balenciaga returned to Africa to source inspiration for their respective collections. This resulted in models stalking the catwalks in pieces that were injected with tribal-mask prints, safari and khaki shades, raffia trims and intricated beading.
Maybe it was my recent trip to Lagos, but I am feeling especially ‘Afrocentric’ right now. However, I have found that I do not need to spend thousands of pounds to illustrate this. Through the years, I have learnt that accessories can be the quickest and cheapest way to reflect a trend.
For those strapped for cash, I suggest the following low-cost methods to follow the Afrocentric trend-
1) Get a cornrow hairstyle. I have opted for the following style which I created and had the hair salon, Afro Lydia bring to life for me. It cost me 55 euros-
The great thing about cornrows is their versatility, for those who rather not cornrow their entire head, you can opt to do one or however many rows you want and leave part of your hair out as Shakira illustrates-
2. Those who rather forego costly Donna Karen and DSquared2 bead accessories can opt to get beads in a local habberdashery or market. I got these cost-friendly wooden beads from my local market and put them in my cornrows which further accentuates the Afrocentric Trend-
The beads are held in at the back with elastic bands, and at the front by braiding all the cornrows into one and binding the braid with elastic bands.
3. I also advise you to buy jewellery with tribal undertones. These earrings were a gift.
A lot of higstreet stores like Topshop and Accessorize are currently selling ethnic jewellery.
4. I am really into tribal headbands right now and have them in almost every texture you can imagine. They too are a very cost effective way to follow the Afrocentric trend.
I got this multi-coloured beaded headband from Claire’s. Yes, as soon as you enter this store you are often blinded by its neon teeny-bopper glory but with a good hunt, one can often find some great finds that are adult-friendly-
Their tribal headbands start from prices around £3.50, and if that’s not a bargain, I don’t know what is! Claire’s currently have a Sale, so what are you waiting for?
So that is how I am flying the Afrocentric Flag at the moment. How about the rest of you? What tribal or African-inspired pieces do you have in your closet? Are you lusting after any ethnic pieces at the moment?