During Lagos Fashion Week, a UNESCO assessment forecasts that Africa’s fashion sector will develop rapidly to meet the demand for its art both locally and internationally. However, it also warns that the lack of foreign investment in African art may limit the continent’s potential.
According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, Africa’s yearly exports are valued at around $15.5 billion. However, if suitable investments are made, the percentage of revenues from the fashion business could quickly increase in only ten years, according to the Associated Press.
Africa’s population of 1.3 billion, which is expected to double by 2050, according to UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, means that the fashion industry will only expand as a reachable and “powerful lever for the promotion of cultural diversity [and] also a way to empower young people and women.”
According to UNESCO, the continued expression of African heritage in movies, fine art, accessories, clothing, and textiles drives the fashion industry.
According to UNESCO, African fashion bands are in more demand globally due to the accessibility and demand of e-commerce. Africa leads the world in mobile device web traffic usage. Therefore, young people may promote on social media and get traction by showcasing African culture through their fashion companies.
Lagos Fashion Week serves as an illustration of how well-liked ethnic fashion is. According to Omoyemi Akerele, the founder of Fashion Week, Africans want to wear Africa, who spoke with the AP. It’s adorable to observe because things haven’t always been this way.
Even though Lagos Fashion Week was started in 2011 to encourage more people to purchase and wear Nigerian clothing, Akerele was unprepared for how much of a cultural phenomenon it would become.
“Ten years later, that’s all people want to wear.”
By setting aside space for a fashion display and then hosting an open market where customers may buy from local businesses that promote and showcase African ethnic customs, the event brings different designers from across the continent front and center.
Participating at Lagos Fashion Week, designer Ejiro Amos-Tafiri stated that she uses her business to honor “the sophistication, class, and uniqueness of every woman [in African stories].”
People are starting to understand that Nigerian culture, especially in the fashion sector, is rich in culture as they get more exposed. Therefore, Africa is the next frontier, she said.
According to Azoulay, the exhibition is only one illustration of the young African designers’ constant ambition to introduce their creations to a worldwide audience.
“A new generation of young designers is making waves in the global fashion industry by redefining the standards of luxury and balancing them with the needs of regional, sustainable fashion and cultural heritage.”