Although the term afro boho, or afro bohemian has become a popular phrase, we realize that it can be offensive to the Romani race..specifically when used for financial gain of those who do not actually share the culture. Therefore, we would like to introduce a different term we call Afro-chic.
If you've seen the term Afro-Chic, and thought to yourself..."what the heck is Afro Chic?"...then this blog post is for you. I'm betting there is a good chance that once I've explained the history and context of it, a family member (or even YOU) will pop in your mind as having this aesthetic in their home and/or in their closet.
Lets break down the 2 terms:
Afro (Short for African)- African influence through art, fashion or ethnicity that combines a balance of natural elements (wood, plants, fur, etc) with African prints, symbols, and other artifacts.
Chic is a ultra stylish way of dressing, decorating or designing.
Afro-Chic style peaked in the 1960's with the emergence of African Americans interest in the African Diaspora and access to travel. Celebrities such as Malcom X, Bob Marley, Richard Pryor, and Michael Jackson...over several decades from the 60's to the 1980's visited Africa and came back with a different view of the world and brought back vivid depictions of their experiences to black people in America. There was a connection, and renewed pride that resulted from these visits to the motherland, as our people watched documentaries, listened to performances and speeches by leaders, artists and comedians. This was at a time when segregation and racial inequality was at an all time high.
African Americans pride was shown in the form of dashiki's, natural afros, black beret's, afro picks and man other symbols and African artifacts to embrace their blackness.
Afro-Chic style has lasted well after the 1960's in various pockets of the U.S and in other communities around the world. Artifacts such as African masks, adinkra symbol jewelry, mudcloth textiles, and bold handmade baskets has become staples in homes from the U.S to London to Australia.
Welcome to the sisterhood. Welcome to the evolution.