The fashion accessories market is developing in West Africa

The fashion accessories market is developing in West Africa

Fashion is not just about clothes. There are also accessories such as bags, bracelets, scarves, earrings, belts, shoes and others.

Accessories are essential for a successful dress style. For a very long time, they have been collected. They are found in wardrobes and international podiums. Which woman has never wanted to have beautiful earrings and bracelets matching her outfit? Around the neck, on the head, or on the wrist, fashion accessories are multiplying over the years, to the rhythm of our desires and our creativity.

At a time when more and more industries are experiencing a decline in sales, the fashion accessories sector is stabilizing in several African countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.

Why accessories change everything?

According to Wikipedia's definition, fashion accessories are items of clothing that are attached to the main garment in order to emphasize certain features or to modify it. In addition to this practical or symbolic side, the fashion accessory enhances the outfits we wear, bringing this touch of style that will make the difference. We have all been in a place where someone else was wearing the same outfit as us. But rarely the same accessories and the same outfit. For people who want to be or who are at the forefront of fashion, these accessories are never underestimated.

Let’s take the watch. With the advent of smartphones, their sales have fallen sharply. However, when we have enough money to buy a nice watch, we do not hesitate. This is perhaps because we find on the market every time watches that are up to date and that follow the differences trends in order to regain our wrists.

Over the last years, we have been witnessing a new trend: accessories customized with loincloth. Customers can now choose for themselves what their belts, kits, glasses cases, hairbands, etc. will be made of. How fun is that!

It is probably because of some favorable arguments that fashion accessories have remained in our habits. Who are the precursors? Difficult to say. In any case, it will not do much for us in this article. However, one can only wonder about the future of customized accessories with loincloths.

For now, the sector seems pretty good. The arrival of custom accessories in loincloth has also allowed the creation of new jobs. Indeed, we find on the market specialized designers who are mainly in the accessories business.

The African apparel and textile sector is the second sector to create the most jobs after agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa, according to the African Development Bank. In the light of many and rapid changes in this sector, this is not surprising.

A near end for fashion accessories in loincloth ?

Ten years ago, we did not expect to have so many custom accessories on the market. Most fashion accessories were either leather, pearls, wool, plastic, etc., and most importantly imported.

But that was another time. From shoes to bracelets to glasses cases, earrings and bags, we find today all kinds of custom accessories in loincloths. In less than ten years, the success is immediate, especially with women.

Will there be a day when the textile will be so rare that any meter would be worth gold? Certainly not, if we rely on the efforts that are being made by the various public and private decision-makers to revitalize the African sector. In addition, we must know that with only a few meters of loincloth, we can realize some accessories. If the answer to this question is no, can we consider that fashion accessories customized with loincloth have a future? As usual, things are not as simple as they seem.

Certainly, we don’t have to worry about a textile shortage anytime soon. On the other hand, there is a problem that could slow or even stop the development of custom accessories with loincloths. It is intellectual laziness. In fact, designers have to be very creative in order to capture customers. Because if in 5 or 10 years most of them continue to manufacture accessories with Wax loincloth as they currently do, it may have a great resemblance between the products.

And then nobody will want them.

It is therefore important that designers think to vary as much as possible the materials used to make their accessories. Apart from European industrial fabrics such as wax, java, fancy, super wax, etc., there are also other types of traditional loincloth like Kenté or Kita, bogolan, Baoulé loincloth, Ndop, Faso Dan Fani, Rabal or Kan Vô. Sometimes, combinations may be necessary to obtain ever more creative creations and continue to develop this sector in sub-Saharan Africa.

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