#OwnYourCulture is a social media movement launched by fashion consultant, Chepkemboi Mang’ira of the blog MissVavavum in 2015. The movement seeks to “decolonize fashion, one necklace at a time” by asking users to style a traditional cultural piece with contemporary clothes.
It showcases ‘traditional’ ornaments as fashionable pieces, in a bid to show the fashionable-ity of traditional jewelry and reconnect to what fashion was and looked like in Africa before European colonization.
Since it’s 2015 launch, the movement has built up a large audience, especially, among East Africans, gathering the contributions of over 1300 followers. Most of them sport headgear or neck-pieces, showcasing a variety of styles that reflect the diverse cultures of the continent.
The campaign “restructures what fashion is to the African people. Besides the prints, our ornaments are timeless and equally spectacular.” – Mang’ira in an interview with Afrosartorialism
“Owning our stories, representing who we are in the media and reflecting our rich heritage and culture are the core fundamentals that #ownyourculture is built on.”
The campaign has grown immensely with more and more people from Africa wearing their ornaments with pride and boosting the creative economy in the process. #OwnYourCulture is now also on Facebook.
Image credits: afrosartorialism