African Outfit

Parents in African Outfit
Parents in African Outfit

 My parents and three older siblings immigrated to the United States from Nigeria in the 90’s. Like the women from the From Out of the Shadows: Mexican Women in Twentieth Century America by Vicki Ruiz, they came to Southern California because they had family here to stay with while getting on their feet. However, my parents were not fleeing from any danger or poverty but wanted the coveted American Dream.(Which they achieved) Luckily where we live, we have a decent-sized Nigerian community around us, allowing us to stay plugged into our culture. Before Corona Virus every few months there are big events such as birthdays, anniversaries, and weddings, that let us all meet up and catch up with one another. These events give us a reason to dress like our ancestors and submerge ourselves in the feeling of being back in Nigeria. My item is traditional clothes because it allows us to feel connected to our culture and origins, in the same way going to a party does. While wearing our outfits is only for a few hours, looking at these clothes hanging in my closet reminds me that I have many deep roots that I know and will find out more about. I hope one day to have my children and their children wear my African Outfits to make them feel special and a part of something greater. I am proud of my roots as a first-generation Nigerian that hopefully will have many more generations down the road. 

Place(s): Nigeria, America, California
Year: 1993

– CA.

Relationship:  Im/migrant who arrived as a child Im/migrant who arrived as a child