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‘In Nigeria, Does the Hat Make the Man?’ – Vogue.com features Photographer, Lakin Ogunbanwo’s new Photo Series

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Wearing a hat/cap has become an essential part of a Nigerian man’s dressing. Though it’s mainly for traditional attire, modern men such as DJ Spinall (who’s also known as ‘the cap’), have put their own spin on it and now wear it with jeans and a T-shirt. However, it’s an accessory that tells you a lot about the man behind the cap, what tribe he’s from and what he represents at a particular occasion, the respect he commands. It’s a phenomenon that merges Nigerian culture and fashion, something that makes us unique in our own way.

lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_12-lakin

Creative photographer Lakin Ogunbanwo has made Nigerian men and their different hats the theme of his new project which was featured on Vogue.com. According to Vogue.com, this new photo series is currently displayed at Nataal’s New African Photography exhibit in Red Hook, Brooklyn.

There’s historical symbolism, or what Ogunbanwo calls a “silent hierarchy,” tucked inside each and every hat: The towering red cap of the Igbo tribe, for example, is the reserve of men at the upper echelons of chiefdom—the taller the crown, the higher the wearer’s social standing. Impressive in both shape and size, the conical abeti aja takes its curious yet playful title from the Yoruba phrase for “dog ears,” and is often worn on special occasions with an agbada, a grandiose cape that is equally audacious in its proportions. – Vogue.

Lakin told Vogue, “It’s only until you leave West Africa that you realize that people elsewhere aren’t dressing their head with the same importance that we do here. For Nigerian men, a hat adds a sense of confidence, it’s like a personal crown.”

See the Photos

lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_01-lakinlakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_02-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_03-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_04-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_05-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_06-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_07-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_08-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_09-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_10-lakin lakin ogunbanwo vogue bellanaija may2016_11-lakin

Source: Vogue.com

Eki is the Editor for BellaNaija Style and Lifestyle Editor for BellaNaija.com She has a Vogue Fashion Certificate from Conde Nast College of Fashion & Design and also attended Central Saint Martins, London College of Fashion and the University of Kent. Eki headed the Design Operations at a top Nigerian womenswear fashion brand before finding love at BellaNaija Style. Eki loves all things creative. Follow her on Instagram @ekiogunbor BellaNaija Style: [email protected] | @bellanaijastyle BellaNaija Beauty: @bellanaijabeauty BellaNaija Living: [email protected] | @bellanaijaliving

4 Comments

  1. Oni

    May 12, 2016 at 8:56 am

    Surely complete the native dressing for me.

  2. CLEOBRIGGS

    May 12, 2016 at 4:20 pm

    lovely. Would like to see more than WAZOBIA hats next time though…. Love it all the same

  3. Ready

    May 12, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    Love, love, love this.

    Although I think fashion can sometimes be contrived and the smallest of things can be exaggerated (Stop the brakes! Polka dots are back! or “What your life has been missing: denim!), I love features like these. They shed so much insight and elevate the ordinary to the extraordinary.

  4. Chinny

    May 12, 2016 at 10:55 pm

    Eki, you missed the Niger-Delta hat,

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