Welcome back! In case you missed the first part of this post, be sure to read "Ankara/African Print in the US Workplace: Yes, it's "Professional" (Women's edition)" first so you can get the background story for this post. This post is all about showing you the different ways and styles that men can wear ankara print in the workplace and still look (and be taken) professionally and credibly. Please don't relegate wearing your African-inspired attire to "Black History Month," or for "special" presentations. Our outfits are not "garbs" or costumes. They are just regular clothes just like you would wear jeans or a dress shirt or even a blazer; you can swag in it too.
A recent interaction with my colleague about a passing comment that African clothes/African print was not as "professional" in the workplace as suits or other business attire prompted me to write this blog post. I wondered how many Americans in the US think that African outfits are NOT, or can NOT possibly be professional enough to be taken seriously as business outfits in the workplace. What do you think we all wear in the board rooms in Nigeria and other African countries? As long as you keep the colors (and patterns) matched and your jewelry and other accessories to a minimum, there is no reason to not rock African print for your 8 to 5 grind. It shouldn't just be relegated to "Casual Fridays," or "International Day," as though it's a "costume" and not part of your regular wardrobe.
Ladies, here are 4 simple tips to keep in mind when you're ready to wear your ankara/African print outfits to the workplace.
As promised, here is part 2 of "I've Just Bought My African Fabric, Yay! Now What?" Part 2 showcases some great women's designs, men's designs, and couples designs to give you some inspiration for your designs. Looking for what you can do with just 1 yard of fabric? Well, I've included some pictures for that as well. I would also encourage you to link pictures in the comments section of designs you also like and are maybe dying to get made! Enjoy!