Africa is one of the most culturally diverse places on Earth and the traditional clothing found here definitely sustains this idea. The multitude of cultures is best exposed in the traditional clothing that is nothing less than a mirror of the cultural heritage and history. Finding out about this topic is very easy because some of the patterns became so popular that renowned designers adopted them. But there are many other costumes that are to be discovered. We have listed some of the most interesting traditional pieces of clothing from this continent in order to enrich your cultural knowledge.
The colors and patterns from the cloth used to differentiate one tribe from the other in the distant past. From black and white cloths to very vibrant colors, every possible pattern can be found in Africa. The graphic patterns inspired many designers and we can find adaptations of these traditional patterns in everyday fashion. Beads used to be a piece of decoration very popular. The beads used to be made from glass and they enhanced the beauty of the woven cloths.
Batiks are a piece of clothing that is still very popular in Africa. It is a very big soft cloth used to make intricate head wraps. The colors are very vibrant, and the patterns of the batik usually matched the rest of the outfit. There are still many African women that wear these very interesting and fashionable pieces of clothing.
Tunics are another traditional piece of clothing very popular in Africa. They were worn by both men and women. They are basically a long shirt that sometimes reached the ankles. The tailoring and the pattern differ from one region to the other, but the base color is usually white. The neck tailoring is different for men and women and it is usually decorated with hand-sewn models.
Kaftans are a very comfortable piece of clothing that was originally worn only by men. In modern times women adopted this attire and made it even more beautiful. It is characterized by vibrant colors and intricate patterns that usually match the batik for an amazing outfit. The fabric is very light but yet resistant and comfortable.
Dashiki and Madiba shirts are unique pieces of clothing. They are loose shirts that reach the knees or the half of the thigh. They are worn by men and women and the models are truly amazing. The V-neck is usually decorated with beads and intricate hand-sewn models. The colors used to show the tribe and the social status but in the modern times the emphasis is on the beauty of the model.
Kaba is a long wrap-around skirt very popular in Africa. It has a very long history and it is still worn by many women. The skirt is tied at the waist with strings that match the color of the dress. It is a very comfortable choice. The patterns are very interesting, and this skirt usually matches the upper piece of clothing. The material is light, perfect for a comfortable and loose piece of clothing.