It’s official, African fashion trends inspire clothing and design across the world. Because of the diversity and rich cultural heritage of the continent, there’s so much inspiration to take and translate into clothing trends.
Trends change around the world every year, from colors that are in, clothing styles, shapes and cuts. Even though 2021 has felt a little more subdued than other years, fashion hasn’t stopped and we’re 100% here for it. Looking good can make you feel happier and more confident which we all need in these uncertain times.
Here are some African fashion trends for 2021 so that you can keep on top of the fashion trends and ahead of the game with your latest looks:
Sleeves with Volume
Voluminous, puffy sleeves (of all different lengths) are great for making a statement. Plus they work for any occasion, whether you want to be dressy and elegant or you want to keep it lower key. Try a sheer sleeve or bell sleeve for a touch of trend that’s easy to wear for everyone.
Side slits have been everywhere for a while now, and show no sign of going anywhere soon. Trousers, dresses and skirts have all been slashed at the side to show a little leg without showing off too much. The slits are also great for keeping cool and keeping your skin protected from the sun.
Show Off Your Shoulders
Having your shoulders on show is a great way to show a little skin in a classy, understated way. You can even add a little highlighter or cream to your shoulders for a beautiful, intoxicating glow. Whether you rock this look with a top or a dress, it’s guaranteed to turn heads and make a simple outfit instantly feel more glam.
Keeping it Kimono
A kimono or wrap is great to wear in the African climate as it keeps you cool in hot and humid weather. Floaty, breathable fabrics make way more sense to wear as they let the air circulate around the body, cooling your skin down. You can pick up a kimono in any fabric or print - cotton and natural fabrics are the best for cooling. It’s also a great trend to dress up or down, depending on the material and design used.
Oversized fits have been a big trend, with the rise in street wear and loose shapes. Whether it’s jeans, jackets, dresses or tops go oversized for a comfortable, easy-to-wear African fashion trend. You can pair your oversized outfits with fitted accessories and closer silhouettes if you don’t want your entire outfit to look oversized.
Bold, Traditional Prints
Bold, traditional prints in contemporary clothing and fits is a style that never truly goes out of fashion in Africa. We love to showcase our rich heritage and beautiful craftsmanship with bright, bold prints and patterns inspired by tradition.
This trend is still about showing off bold patterns, but it has more muted tones and a little more stripped back than the bold colours often used in African print fabrics. This style works really well in summer and can be used to add a little pop of excitement and fun to an otherwise plain outfit. We love a full-floral maxi dress for a really beautiful look.
Jumpsuits are so easy to wear and perfectly versatile. You can wear them day or night, dressed up or down. Floaty jumpsuits are even easier to wear thanks to their more voluminous shape (which also makes them cooler). Make sure you get the right fit, and keep legs long, loose and chic.
Wave goodbye to your necklaces for the season as this is one African fashion trend that doesn’t work with them. Necklines are a little higher this season, with halters and turtlenecks seen on tops and dresses. Go for fitted shapes and interesting colors so that you don’t feel too wrapped up.
Ruffles are back for summer in everything from dresses through to tops, trousers, skirts and accessories. Make a bold statement with this fashion-forward look that focuses on volume, texture and layers of fabric. The bigger the better! If you’re rocking the ruffle, try and keep it focused on one part of the outfit like a neck, sleeve or skirt as all-over ruffles can look a little overwhelming (you might even find it unflattering).
Lime green is the color if you want to be seen this summer! Say hello to this bold, bright, refreshing color and wave goodbye to boring neutrals and plain clothes. Whether you wear it as a pop of color, or head out in head-to-toe green, just make sure that it’s lime to be ahead of the trends this year. This is a great one to combine with bold, traditional African prints.