African Clothing and Their Hidden Significance

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People all over the world love and represent their heritage in various ways. Food, lifestyle, languages, clothes, all of these reflect the past of the people along with their personal preference. Every new generation of youth needs to remember where they come from. The struggles and celebrations, everything is a part of the past that we cannot erase. Indeed, it makes us even wiser in our day to day life. Clothes specifically are not just a fashion statement that people wear just for the sake of style. Traditional garments have specific colors and designs that showcase its rich culture. Just like for every other community, African clothing is a way for Africans to display their heritage proudly. Read ahead to understand a few of the hidden symbols in their clothes.

Mudcloth: African Clothing-

Mudcloth is a very old style of art which comes from Mali’s Bamana culture. In this art form, after weaving the cloth, they dye it with fermented mud to give it its unique colors. It serves as an effective camouflage for the hunters of the community, and it doubles up as a status badge. The people wrap it around women after their initiation into adulthood and after childbirth to absorb dangerous forces. It is full of significant designs that represent the important aspects of their history. For example, the cloth shows its people’s famous battle of the Malian warriors against the French. The crocodiles are an important part of their mythology, along with a lot of other objects and mythological concepts.

The Importance And Meaning Of Colors In African Clothing-

The meaning behind the colors varies slightly with the different groups of people you are studying. But the common significance of the hues in Africa are as follows-
Gold- It is a very popular color that you can often see people wearing. This represents wealth and fertility, and so people love to flaunt it in their outfit.
Red- This bold shade is seen as the color of blood, and it represents tension. The tension can be in either the spiritual or political world.
Blue- This color is known to bring peace and calm into the mind of the viewer. Also, they see it as a harmonious color in African clothes. It is the same shade as the sky and represents love and peace.
Green- Usually signifying prosperity and life, green is a medicinal color. This is probably because of the herbs that act as medicine for the people.
White- This color signifies purity and spirituality, and it looks amazing in clothes.
Africans keep a lot of store by the color of their traditional clothes, and they do not take it lightly. If you choose one such dress, you need to take a lot more into account than just what shape suits you.

Kente Cloth-

This is one of the more widely seen clothes that African people wear. It is essentially a bright fabric that they weave into panels, which are three to four-inch-wide. Next, they sew these individual panels together to make clothes for women and men.

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