Subscribe to Newsletter
Monthly Newsletter: Join more than 3,000 African literature enthusiasts!
Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our "Guide to African Novels."
Adichie 2

Half of a Yellow Sun film promotion. Jumpsuit: Gozelle Green. Shoes: Jimmy Choo. Hair by Temi with Nafy Afro Puffy Hair.

Adichie officially asked us to care about what she wears and how she looks when she did the fashion manifesto bit  in Elle Magazine and sent in her photos for consideration as Fashion Bombshell of the Day. I can’t say we were not a bit surprised by such a bold move. But the author of Americanah has done a fairly good job blending her high-profile literary status with an interest in fashion.

For fans dying to share Adichie’s fashion universe, Chimamanda Style Files is a gift. It’s a blog run by “her team” and features updates on Adichie’s style. Want to see what she looks like in an Alexander Mcqueen jacket at a New York City literary event? Curious about her team of Naija-based tailors? It’s all there.

Adichie12

Hay Festival of Literature. Top and shorts: Gozelle Green. Shoes: Alejandra G.

But why should Adichie care that we care about her Jimmy Choo shoes or her Obalende tailor? Are we not supposed to love her simply for her books and her brain? Does it feel a little weird that Africa’s literary sweetheart is asking us to pay attention to her body?

Adichie10

Tenement museum in New York City. Dress: Tailor Amaka in Ajah, Lagos. Hair by Khadeeja using Eon afro puffy hair.

 It’s probably no news—I’ve commented on this issue several times before—but I think it is perfectly legitimate for African literary celebrities to open up about their lives. As an African literary blogger, I’m all for anything that gets fans and readers to connect with African literature. If Adichie’s Isi owu hairstyle makes her more approachable, gets you interested in her message, and possibly in her work, it’s a win-win situation.

Adichie11

Baileys Prize Ceremony. Jumpsuit: Designed by Chimamanda. Made by Tailor Samson in Agungi. Shoes: Jean-Michel Cazabat.

Besides, don’t underestimate the value of a thriving fandom. Gone are the days of the solitary artist creating masterpieces in seclusion and living in disdain of the masses. These days, authors are starting to realize that having some level of notoriety helps. It helps with book sales, but it also helps with getting their message out there.

Adichie has an army of young readers. They love her work. They’re drawn to her feminist gospel, including the ideals and politics she’s mobilized around her image. Being open about her style is simply one more way of connecting with these fans.

Adichie4

At the end of the day, the truth is: after proving yourself as a brilliant novelist, there’s always a good bit of style and sexiness left over for flaunting. When you’re African and literary, nothing stops you from being glamorous.

Adichie

Women’s Development Center. Keynote Speech at Governor Obiano’s One Hundred Days in Office. Dress: C & Samson. Shoes: Ann Taylor.

 

 

Images via Chimamanda Style Files 

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

5 Responses to “Keeping Up With Chimamanda’s Swanky Wardrobe” Subscribe

  1. Oyin Oludipe 2014/08/11 at 09:53 #

    Spectacular Woman

  2. Baju Wanita Karir 2015/02/17 at 18:49 #

    amazing woman.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Half of a Yellow Sun; Boko Haram; MDGs | Catherine Onyemelukwe - 2014/08/22

    […] It was Brittle Paper that alerted me with an article Keeping Up With Chimamanda’s Swanky Wardrobe.  […]

  2. dressed to write | semper aliquid novi africam adferre - 2014/08/30

    […] the dress? Well, I am not so sure anymore after I have read this article on Chimamanda Ngozi […]

  3. Adichie is Vogue UK’s Fashion Star of the Month! | 30 Looks + Her Style Inspiration | Brittle Paper - 2015/03/04

    […] Hankering for more on Adichie’s fashion?  Click HERE. […]

Leave a Reply

I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

Monthly Newsletter!

Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our
"Guide to African Novels."

Archives

Watch This Poetry Dance Film of Kayo Chingonyi’s “Kumukanda”

kayo chingonyi - the guardian

Zambian poet Kayo Chingonyi’s first full-length collection, Kumukanda, is receiving praise. The Guardian has hailed its “lyrical elegance” and “many […]

Photos | Nommo Awards 2017: How Africa’s First Ever Speculative Fiction Awards Ceremony Happened

IMG_7063

The announcement of the winners of the inaugural Nommo Awards took place at the ongoing 2017 Ake Arts and Book […]

Goodreads Awards 2017: Vote Chimamanda Adichie’s “Dear Ijeawele” and Nnedi Okorafor’s “Home” in the Final Round

Nnedi-Okorafor BELLA NAIJA

Earlier this month we announced the online voting for Goodreads’ 2017 awards. The first round saw nominations for four authors having massively […]

#AkeFest2017 | Follow Brittle Paper’s Coverage of Ake Arts and Book Festival

ake festival (1)

  Ake Arts and Book Festival is happening in Abeokuta, Nigeria—has been happening since 14 November, to end on 18 […]

Opportunity for Writers and Visual Artists | Apply for the 2017 Artists in Residency Programme

Applications are open for the 2017 Artists in Residency (AIR) programme, an initiative of Africa Centre “seeking high calibre African artists, in […]

South African Literary Awards 2017: All the Winners

The winners of the 2017 South African Literary Awards have been announced. Here they are, with excerpts from their citations. […]

Thanks for signing up!

Never miss out on new posts. Subscribe to a digest, too:

No thanks, I only want the monthly newsletter.