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Atoke’s Monday Morning Banter: In Living Color



One of the most challenging parts of Monday is getting dressed for work. I mean, it’s not so much the fact that I’m dreading 5 days of heading out to the office but the fact that I actually have to look appropriate for work.  A lot of times, finding what to wear is dependent on my mood, other times it’s basically what’s already been laundered. Then there’s the issue of color. Blue? Does it signify that I’m peaceful? Red? will it give a sense of boldness to take on the week? Brown? Does it show that I’m just feeling bleh and dowdy? Urgh! Most times, I just end up settling for black because I’ve grown comfortable with it and it allows me play around with accessories and my shoes.

Having studied law and gone to law school in Nigeria, I have gotten used to just sticking to black and white items as is required of law students and lawyers.  So I found that by default, I ended up buying things that were either black or grey.But a little color never really hurt anyone does it?

When you go for some weddings, the colors on the back drop are absolutely beautiful and you just feel calm or excited depending on the mood or tone the couple is trying to evoke. Other times you see some color combinations that just make you wonder if the idea was to scar the guests forever. There are some times when it seems like there’s a competition of colors with different families (factions) trying to mark their territories and stake their place at the wedding. So the bride’s mother’s family’s colour is lime green, the bride’s father’s family have chosen purple AND lilac, the groom’s family has chosen cream and coffee brown – the whole place looking like someone went wild with a tube of poster color.

I asked my friend what her favorite color was and she said she didn’t have one. So I said, “How did you choose your wedding colors?” She replied with “I don’t know. I just chose orange and gold. I liked the combination”. The idea of colors tickles me to no end. So I asked a a few people what their favorite colors were – guys and girls. I got a diverse range of responses.”Orange, fuschia, red… anything that pops”/ “Black, it gives a slimming effect”/ “Black, it goes with everything”/ “Yellow, it makes me happy”/ “Black, because it’s very versatile”/ “My favorite color changes every time but right now it’s orange. It’s so bright and shiny”/

Then, I had the people who said “Forest Green”/ “Fuschia Pink”/ “Teal”/”Champagne”/ “Mauve”… at this point I exclaimed “Abeg which one be Mauve again?”. One guy surprisingly said “Yellow”. I was surprised as some colors are deemed feminine. There are also those colors that have double-barreled names – “Powder Blue”/ “Army Green”/ “Royal Blue”. I think we just use those ones to confuse guys.

Anyway, I wish you a brightly colored and beautiful week ahead. Please share your favorite colors with me and why you like them so much. Also, share what colors you don’t quite fancy and why. Let’s just have fun on this lovely Monday morning (almost afternoon sef)

Be happy, be safe, be good!
Peace, love & cupcakes.


Photo Credit:

You probably wanna read a fancy bio? But first things first! Atoke published a book titled, +234 - An Awkward Guide to Being Nigerian. It's available on Amazon. ;)  Also available at Roving Heights bookstore. Okay, let's go on to the bio: With a Masters degree in Creative Writing from Swansea University, Atoke hopes to be known as more than just a retired foodie and a FitFam adherent. She can be reached for speechwriting, copywriting, letter writing, script writing, ghost writing  and book reviews by email – [email protected]. She tweets with the handle @atoke_ | Check out her Instagram page @atoke_ and visit her website for more information.


  1. Neo

    June 3, 2013 at 11:57 am

    I dont have a favourite colour (well my wardrobe would say red/coral) but i believe colours have certain effects. For instance i feel sexy and powerful in red, yellow says im happy and i want to play. Blue just has me feeling calm and confident and black is my go to, fall back colour. Half my work dresses are black so if i cant be bothered to put together an outfit i throw black on. I dont think there’s any colour i dont like, more like shades….

    When it comes to wedding colours, na google get me. For instance i had no idea what chartreuse was until last month (its basically lime green btw. Ya welcome)

    • Tolani

      June 3, 2013 at 1:55 pm

      “Sexy mama, beautiful mama!”

  2. pearl

    June 3, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    when I was younger, I use to so like ”pink”…, now I sometimes feel pink is childish or so….I love Purple, because it’s always nice on me…..I like mild colours too!…

    • Bimpe

      June 3, 2013 at 1:25 pm

      same here

  3. Laila

    June 3, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    “………….it’s not so much the fact that I’m dreading 5 days of heading out to the office but the fact that I actually have to look appropriate for work.”

    ARE U FOR REAL?? Heck, love what you do or get out and do what you love. Life is too short to be droning away dear. Find your spot in the Universe and you’ll be excited dressing up everyday – its not rocket science.

    • salsera

      June 3, 2013 at 12:21 pm

      i’m sure she meant the journey to work not the work itself

    • Molly

      June 3, 2013 at 12:25 pm

      Relax sweetie, its not that serious you know???

    • Bleed blue

      June 3, 2013 at 12:55 pm

      Laila…LOL at your superfluous motivational speech. Please your interpretation of Atoke’s text is a tad bit too grave.

    • Atoke

      June 3, 2013 at 1:06 pm

      Lolll @ superfluous! LOL Even me sef begin fear sey Osanobua, e pass dis tin when ah tork so? LOL

    • enenebe

      June 3, 2013 at 1:17 pm

      Please nne take it easy. its about colours just concentrate on that path. If you have been reading any of atoke’s post you will know that she definitely does not sound like someone who hates her job. Infact the inspiration with which she writes goes a long way to show she loves writing. So please say ur favorite colour. Mine is pink, all shades of blue and all shades of brown

  4. eniola

    June 3, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    Been waiting for your banter Atoke – mwuaaah! Growing up, it used to be purple cos i never saw a dull one, but now anything goes. Plus my new job requires selected colors, black, grey,brown and navy blue. So i lost my favoritism in colors. Every other day, my mood decides what i wear, but recently I’ve noticed that i seem to overdress on weekends and public holidays, in the spirit of ” i have an opportunity to wear you today” So even if it is to pay a friend a courtesy visit two streets away, i’ll be fully dressed. LOL.

    • Lamide

      June 3, 2013 at 12:34 pm

      Lmao…..I can relate to your post.

  5. Andrea

    June 3, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    i love white!! bleh right?lol….it just makes me feel confident
    I just know how to make it look funtastic…today i have on a white shirt with a print scarf on my neck,brown pants ,beige coloured heels and an orange bag(sue me!!)…and im working it!!…lol
    Back to work…muahh!!

  6. brendz

    June 3, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    @laila….puhleeezeeee!!!!! which one concern “love what you do” for dis matter? She is talking about colours! biko! – dreading going to work is a loaded statement, it could be traffic or parking spaces or long hours or whatever-she-feels-dread-for! Focus on the colours (red, blue, green etc) and say your own its not that hard!!!!

    back to the subject, i am in colour block mode( in my mind) even though most of what i have is black for work( plenti plenti black skirts). Trying on new colours in shoes tho! hot pink, electric blue, colours of the union jack….etc

  7. Gbemmy

    June 3, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    My best color right now is red thinking about the reason can’t find any I am just loving red now , my wedding color was petroleum green and exquisite red …. I actually don’t know where my mum’s friend got the name ( petroleum green) from but I just love the suspense and the expression when people ask me my colors and I tell them, I decided to add exquisite to the red just for the fun of it ..

    • enenebe

      June 3, 2013 at 1:14 pm

      Looool! i love the mystery

    • Ready

      June 3, 2013 at 1:45 pm

      You’re one of them! The confounders. Petroleum green bawo? Is petrol even green or are we talking about petrol pollution green? I heard ceres green or something, and all I could think of was the juice.

  8. Gbemmy

    June 3, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    The petroleum green is almost like green and the exquisite red is normal tomato red

  9. pynk

    June 3, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    have found salmon or red look striking on me. So does indigo. totally rocking them.

  10. Motun

    June 3, 2013 at 1:03 pm

    hm, my favorite color right from childhood is yellow but now i feel to bright wearing it so i prefer to see it on other people, weird right? my latest attraction is Orange, damn, that colour brings out the best in me…

  11. Ruby

    June 3, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    My favourite colour has always been Nigerian Green….Don’t assume that it is because I am ‘over’ patriotic. I love it because it represents life and just have this cool effect on me. It is definitely going to be one of my wedding colours. 🙂
    The colour I don’t fancy is (..I dont even know the name sef) “dirty” white…that is ‘it was white” white. It is just dirty.. If the colour changes, please ditch it.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      June 3, 2013 at 1:37 pm

      And your avatar happens to be the same bright green. Who you dash money to at BellaNaija make dem do am for you? Don’t mind moi, I’m only joking 🙂

    • Ruby

      June 3, 2013 at 2:36 pm

      Lol….BN is in the spirit.

    • Masked

      June 3, 2013 at 4:19 pm

      I finally see someone that shares color love with me….I just love Nigerian green, it stands for Nature, fertility….Green surely depicts life and ofcos I’m a patriotic Nigerian:-)

  12. Ruby

    June 3, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    NB: Please Atoke, don’t make me refresh the browser as long as you made me refresh it today before I saw your Monday Morning Banter… have a colourful week too

    • Mariaah

      June 5, 2013 at 2:59 pm

      Here we go again.. Ur avi is still greeen!!! 🙂

  13. Berry Dakara

    June 3, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    Fave colors – Pink, Purple. I like Yellow and Blue as well.

    I’m not a big fan of green, orange or brown, even though I have clothes/shoes in those colors. I wasn’t big on red either, but people say I look good in it, so…

  14. lovemi

    June 3, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    Orange. Burnt orange to be precise. Orange mixed in with your flower decor is the business right there but I don’t know if I fancy it as aso ebi.

  15. Mz Socially Awkward...

    June 3, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    Atoke, having also thread the same NLS path with you, I now vehemently DETEST any outfits in plain black or white (unless there’s a monochrome thing going on & I can throw some metals in there). Chai, law school…

    I used to have a non-african friend in Uni who always asked me, “Why do all Nigerian boys like to wear bright colors, like pink shirts?” I never had an answer to give her although, after she said it, I started to pay attention and it does seem our naija men ain’t afraid to rock some colors on their dark, chocolate selves. I think it’s kinda sexy, to see a man who can rock shirts (not suits, oh, that one pass me) in so-called feminine colors and own their look…

    And speaking for myself, I have no faves, I just love a good splash of color. Being African is such a gift because I ain’t scared of vibrant colors the way my oyibo sisters are and I’m often changing up my office look (no grey trousers and black cardigans for me during the work week, thanks very much… unless I can “spice2 it up somehow).

    I’m also the uniform cordinator in my choir & dem don see something for my hand, especially the guys who drew the line at wearing yellow shirts… we got to a compromise, sha with yellow ties but abeg, just because we dey wear choir uniform no mean say we must to dey punish ourselves… Gotta keep looking good as we approach our Lord, leading His people in praise!

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      June 3, 2013 at 1:50 pm

      Should that have been “thread” or “tread”? My learned colleague, feel free to correct moi, the brain hasn’t fully kicked in this Monday morn….

  16. FOB

    June 3, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    I love toasted yellow and garnished blue….it brings out my sunkissed complexion…… lmcao

  17. Laila

    June 3, 2013 at 2:21 pm

    Point made, point taken. I guess not living in Lagos, and not having my morning commute as a ‘stress-point’ in my day makes the ‘wet blanket’ opening scream at me……… Anyhow, I love black. I love how it just swallows everything else

  18. Toolz ni

    June 3, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    Am loving green now

  19. Ronnie

    June 3, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    I really just love colour. I don’t have a favorite colour but I like to look in my closet and see colour!! Like most people though, I like to have a number of black outfits for “those days” otherwise I rock any colour very well 🙂

  20. Karonwi

    June 3, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    I think my color preference depends on the type of dressing. I will wear a red/purple shirt not red/purple pants.
    for dresses, any cool non-shouty color will do

    I love Atoke’s monday morning banter!

  21. Naveah

    June 3, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Living in New York one tends to aim for Black, Grey, Brown, Beige especially since it is cold about 9 months out of the year and with snow, the subways dark colors are safer. However, in the summer I tend to go bright and colors with White topping my list just because it doesn’t attract heat like black and I just feel cool, clean and elegant in it. My other favorite colors are Blue (Cobalt and Turquoise), Fucshia, Green (Forest/Hunter), Red and Yellow.

    As for my wedding colors, I went for Orange and Purple flowers with white thrown in to break it up a little. Orange is the color of my husband’s favorite team and purple represents royalty and the robe Jesus wore at his cruxificion was purple.

  22. luvly

    June 3, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    growing up I was in love with pink and blue but detest red, but now its blue and gold for me (still don’t like red)

  23. Retrochic

    June 3, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    I love black, subtle colours, peach, mint green, all shades of green, turquoise blue, wine, nawao for u guys at Bella, WTH is Garnished blue

  24. Abiola

    June 3, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    i love Jade (Green ) n Purple, Green cus it means life n growth : Purple means royalty..deres ds special attraction anything i c ds colors..#lovestruck# i already told my mum that my wedding color will be Purple and Green#straight Face# even though i still play around colors but me love my fav.. @Ruby..think we are in the same shoes as per ‘refreshing’ Atoke don jazz us…lol

  25. Mariah

    June 3, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    I’m reading some very weird colour name’s…Lolz!!! chartreuse? Lolz!!
    Anyway, i love 3 universl colours, i feel fabulous in red, black gives me endless opportunities to accesorise and finally, white! i love i love. i still plan to ensure my dream home is an all white affair, you know, chairs, beds, kitchen and every every!

  26. dp

    June 3, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    i love color green, my wedding color was mint green and sunflower yellow, the place was so colorful and sweet, it was the happiest day of my life

  27. Tito

    June 3, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    Crimson Red, Jade, Hermes orange

  28. meee

    June 3, 2013 at 4:47 pm

    Abiola am so with Ÿ̲̣̣̣̥ø̲̣̣̥u̶̲̥̅̊ on green and purple as my wedding colours. Always said that, but now that d wedding sef s here I don’t know ow to combine d two o. Biko I need ideas if U̶̲̥̅̊ can combine d two. Thanks

  29. Bisqo

    June 3, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    I love turquoise blue, purple, orange and black!
    Turquoise blue on me makes you “look twice”.
    Purple is royal and on me… pops!
    Orange is warm and complements my skin tone.
    Black is slimming, versatile and mixes/matches very well with my favorite colors…

  30. dami

    June 3, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    @Ruby is that u? Me I love bleck

  31. Adedayo

    June 3, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    It was pink bcos pink girly.then it was green, then yellow, then teal….

    Now, its basically whatever color my latest purchase is…

  32. Red

    June 4, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    My favourite colour is Yellow. But I never wear it, lol. Seems too bright. I like brown too. Not a fan of bright colours sha. I’m big and I don’t like to draw attention to meself.

  33. Abiola

    June 4, 2013 at 6:17 pm

    @meee…it depends on your choice of material,you know velvet is trending, first of all,you need to know if its velvet or lace

  34. passerby

    June 4, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    I love melting chocolate brown, very deep purple, black. No specific reasons

  35. hmm

    June 5, 2013 at 7:56 am

    @ mee who needs advice on how to combine green and purple for her wedding, here is a link to the picture of a bride who combined it well.

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