We are at the start of the Nigerian rainy season and over the last three years we’ve seen the conversation around whether the Nigerian fashion industry should ditch the spring/summer, fall/winter fashion schedule and embrace seasons that reflect our realities here. I’m sitting pretty on the fence on that one but we do agree that you have to dress for the season you’re in. We can’t (and wont) ask you to throw out your wardrobe and go shopping for one that is more rainy season appropriate but we will show you a few hacks for taking your style from dry to rainy without losing your swag.
Sure, rainy season is maxi sundress season but having to constantly tug up your dress to avoid it getting stained or splashed on must be someone’s idea of hell. So let the other girls have the maxi dresses and cuff your hems up a few inches. Midi dresses and skirts are now a socially acceptable way to go through life in most countries, not to mention a lifesaver in Nigeria where a little rain might become an ankle-grazing flood. And while capri pants have been colonised by middle aged yummy mummies you can also take on cuffed pants by wearing culottes, which are still very much on trend.
I don’t think you’re ready for these jellies
So, jellies (a fancy name for basket weave rubber sandals) are back in a big way. They’re literally everywhere and have become a summer accessories in more temperate countries, especially the festival culture. So you’d be bang on trend, not to mention rainy season ready if you rest your genuine leather sandals/slippers and invest in pair of jellies. Don’t worry about looking like you did in your awkward years of secondary school. Jellies have undergone a tremendous glow up and come in all colours of the rainbow, plus glitter if you’re so inclined. Glitter and functionality? Sign. Us. Up
Splurge on that fancy PVC raincoat.
The practical girl knows that always having a raincoat is the only way to survive the rainy season. But when have fashion lovers ever been practical? So, you might as well compromise if you’re going to capitulate to functionality by splurging on a high-quality PVC raincoat. PVC is either transparent or slightly tinged with colour so that outfit you worked so hard to put together will always be on display even though you’re entirely protected from that freak rainstorm. Even better, it’s a raincoat, so while it might cost you a pretty penny, you’ll still be getting good use out of it ten years from now. Maxivive has a great selection from their 2016 Rain/Wet collection. Cop you some.
The rains are a blessing only to those that come ready. We know you’re definitely that guy/girl.
Go for gloss with patent leather
Formerly the preserve of the military, the patent leather shoe has outgrown its restrictive origins and become a fashion staple. The glossy finish of patent leather means that it is waterproof (for those unexpected splashes), doesn’t smudge (important when you need to wipe your shoes clean and can’t deal with polish) and is always in fashion. If you’re so inclined, you can fight the dourness of the rainstorms too by choosing a bright and dandy colour, preferably neon.
DIY your umbrella
We’re sure by now you’ve already shopped for your umbrella and with a whole wardrobe full of vibrant prints; you’ve opted for an understated black umbrella. Fear not, understated doesn’t have to mean staid or boring. You can jazz up your compact umbrella with one of the hugest trends of 2017, exaggerated appliqué. Most of them require ironing on (which might mess with the permeability of your umbrella’s tarpaulin, so opt for appliqué badges that can be glued. You can make it fun and choose symbols that are an extension of your personality, or you can stick to the man by turning your umbrella into a faux-Gucci. Just make sure you have fun with it.