Of Another Fashion

An alternative archive of the not-quite-hidden but too often ignored fashion histories of U.S. women of color

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This is my mother, Alice Antwi. She grew up in Kumasi, Ghana. She describes herself as someone who went “with the flow” of fashion which, for many Ghanaians at that time, meant Western fashion. But back then, she told me, you wore whatever you had at the time. It is not like how it is here in the U.S. You can’t just decide to wear wedges and buy them whenever you want. Maxi dresses, mini dresses, and midi dresses were all in style. My mom also wore traditional prints and head wraps. She had a lot of her clothes made for her. She looked at catalogues and found a pattern that she liked. Then she purchased fabric - often colorful fabric because she likes colorful things. She then took the fabric to a tailor who made the dress for her.

She didn’t have much to say about this particular outfit in the photo above except, “We wore headgear all the time. It is part of our dressing.” This photo was taken in 1975 in Ankofol when she was a nursing student doing a rotation at a psychiatric hospital - just 5 years before she moved to the U.S.

Submitted by Ama Kyere (Ellicott City, MD).

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    This is my mother, Alice Antwi. She grew up in Kumasi, Ghana. She describes herself as someone who went “with the flow”...
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    People love my mom’s fashion!
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    This is my mother, Alice Antwi. She grew up in Kumasi, Ghana. She describes herself as someone who went “with the flow”...
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    Gorgeous! =]
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