Clothes are a fantastic mode of expression. They can speak volumes about someone’s personality, preferences, sense of humor, and even self-esteem.
However, the 21st century brought about a Westernized, one-size-fits-all corporation-driven fashion style that reduces us to carbon copies of magazine models.
Ethnic fashion trends are the polar opposite. So, why not ditch the jeans and T-shirts for something more unique?
Let’s first discuss what this term even means. In a nutshell, it’s a style that embraces a certain culture’s trends, celebrating the heritage behind it. Ethnicity can refer to any group in society that shares a legacy.
Now, there’s a thin line between adoption and appropriation in Western cultures. Still, with some sensitivity and consideration, it’s quite possible to embrace another culture’s clothing trends without causing harm – and why wouldn’t you?
One look at the amazing, vivid, and oh-so-different trends you’ll find around the globe will get you out of your beiges and navy blues in a second.
Plus, you don’t have to go for full African or Indian attire. You can take some elements to incorporate into your everyday outfits for a unique aesthetic.
It’s impossible to record all instances of the ethnic trends that just wow you with their appearance. So, let’s settle for listing a few to get you inspired.
This garment originates from India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Pakistan, and Nihal Fashions mentions that it’s one of the most loved and in-demand attires in the world. It can signify special events in more traditional families and cultures, but many people also wear them regularly for their everyday tasks.
The sari consists of a single piece of fabric that drapes across your body. The mixture of cotton, silk, synthetic, and other materials painted in vivid colors can be a novel solution for a fancy event.
People wore traditional Japanese robes, kimonos, and yukatas for important festivals and other formal occasions. Still, it’s a super-comfortable thing to wear, and today, these exist in all patterns and colors your heart desires.
The Maasai people in Kenya and Tanzania wore these sheeted garments mostly in red mixed with colorful floral patterns. Shuka used to be a ceremonial piece of clothing, but modern fashion adopted it, making it accessible for everyday wear.
Maasai Bead Jewelry
The same tribes are popular for their bead jewelry, which determines people’s social and marital status. Today, you’ll mostly find it in glass, with various colors standing for different traits, from health (white) to bravery (red).
These knee-length, woolen skirts were traditionally boys’ and men’s wear in Scotland. You can see them today on formal occasions such as weddings. Plaid skirts are a wonderful example of how the kilt lives on in the modern world, too.
How to Rock Ethnic Trends
One look at the shops could inspire you to try these trends yourself, but you might stop and think – how can I do that?
If attention makes you anxious, don’t fret. There are ways to incorporate such styles into your everyday attire without having all eyes on you.
- Combine saris and sweaters. If you usually wear your sweaters with blouses or dresses, why not put on a sari instead? Throw on a neutrally colored jumper on top to add balance.
- Switch your scarves for dupattas. Scarves do wonders for keeping you warm, but they’re sometimes so dull! Drape a vivid dupatta over your shoulders instead.
- Throw denim on top. If you love full-blown ethnic outfits but feel too self-conscious about them, put on a denim jacket. The mixture of western and traditional styles is super stylish.
You could also start small by playing with jewelry. It’ll feel more natural with time. After all, what purpose does fashion serve if nobody even notices it?
In A Nutshell
People have neglected ethnic styles in fashion for too long – let’s bring it back. Our world is growing more multicultural with each passing day, so why not embrace the mix of cultures that comes on with it?
Give it a shot to see how it feels – you can always go back to conventional outfits if you find it too much to handle.