There seems to be two style go-tos that Nigerian men love; the trusty trad, which lets face it have the uncanny ability of hiding a multitude of sins, and then there’s weekend casual wardrobe of jeans, maybe shorts and a polo or tee. But how can you be sure that you have what are the true wardrobe essentials covered? Luckily for you, I’ve put together a list of the items that every stylish man should have as the bare minimum to provide a solid foundation for the rest of their wardrobe.
The bomber jacket
But we live in Nigeria I hear you shout. But really, what’s the difference between a bomber jacket and a suit jacket really? A men’s staple for eons, bomber jackets really do inject an element of street cool to any outfit. Even better is that the humble bomber jacket had something of a renaissance in 2016, with styles in nylons, suedes and prints becoming fashionable. A style that is relatively slim fitting is perfect for achieving that smart-cazh vibe.
The navy suit
When it comes to suits, blue is the new black. Perfect for all climates (rainy season or harmattan!) and all occasions, weddings or formal drinks, the navy suit is a must have. While finding the perfect shirt or tie to wear with your suit may be daunting, you’d be surprised to discover that there’s a whole plethora of styles and colours to really make your suit pop. From classic white to pale blue or pink shirts; to black, navy, red green or stripped ties, the choice really is yours.
To say all men should own at least one pair of white trainers really goes without saying. Whether you’re a Converse Chuck Taylor man, an Adidas Shell Toe aficionado or a lover of Nike Cortez, you’ll be unable to count the times you wear you trainers. To keep your shoes box -fresh-white for as long as possible, show your sneaks some TLC by ensuring you wipe them lightly with soapy water after each wear and wash the laces as often as necessary.
Trad with a twist
When Banky W wore a red agbada to The Wedding Party celebratory event a few weeks ago, I loved it. It made me think that Men need to wear more trad with a modern spin. As with western fashion, anything goes, as long as you maintain the key shape and most importantly, you’re comfortable. Whether you like agbada, full trad, or just kaftans, make it your own.
The Oxford lace-up
Often referred to as the most elegant men’s shoe, a wardrobe without at least one pair is sacrilege! The defining characteristics of an Oxford, namely the closed lacing style and a low style that reveals the ankle make for a shoe that is both formal and timeless.
The olive chino
Take a second to think about this. While at first it may seem odd, the olive chino is a great item for your wardrobe. Teamed with a crisp white shirt and loafers, or worn with a T-shirt and trainers, you’ll astound yourself with how much wear you get out of your military inspired coloured trousers.
Funmi is a fashion, beauty and lifestyle consultant who has worked internationally, strategising for a range of brands including the Arcadia Group and Jumia Nigeria.