One of my all-time favorite little books is, “Love, Loss and What I Wore,” by Ilene Beckerman. As an enthusiastic fashionista, I always think about my style regardless of context. This book made it okay for me to consider paying attention to my fashion and style irrespective of my emotional and psychological state. Fashion is something I’m passionate about and try to keep up with. Not necessarily with the trends, but with keeping my style fresh and exciting.
This summer, I had a whirlwind trip to Africa, where I learned about myself and the people of Ghana. 2019 is the Year of Return for Africans in the diaspora who were taken as slaves. It marks 400 years of enslavement of African people which made it a great time to be in Ghana for the accompanying activities commemorating this occasion. My second stop in Africa was in Kenya where I gave back to the community with humanitarian work and my last stop was my home country of Zambia where I did some serious mourning for my dear late sister Violet. All through this journey, I was sure to be impeccably styled. I find that when I pay attention to my fashion and style, it boosts my self -esteem, in other words I feel good about myself. So, in Ghana where I was hanging out with my colleagues in the world of biomedical sciences research I went for lightweight fabrics like silks for warm sultry Accra days and nights. For Kenya, where I was in the remote rural villages where most folks are facing hunger due to prolonged droughts I took on cotton fabrics like chitenge to match the location, and for Zambia my home, all bets were off – everything from denim to sundresses where on the menu. I was thinking of this little book during my travels in Africa.
As I write this, I’m on my way to New York City- where it is fashion week. Although I will not be attending this time around I will be sure to follow along on social and other media platforms. My style there will be different from what I wore in Africa but I hope to pull in elegance with it. It’s fashion week in NYC after all.