Nigeria is a nation brimming with an excess of one hundred and seventy million individuals from the six different geopolitical zones, viz: North East, North West, South West, North Central, South East and South South.
Each zone is made up of so many tribes, each possessing its unique culture and tradition. For this reason, the tailoring and fashion designing industry in the most populous African nation is perennially busy, round the clock, every day of the year.
In addition to this, the industry constantly churns out tokens of its creativity to meet up with the needs of other affiliated industries. In the entertainment industry, for instance, the actors and actresses need to be on top of their game in terms of fashion. Here, they endlessly patronize tailors and fashion designers.
These fashion designers, in a bid to dress up their celebrities to justify the large amounts that they charge, or to upstage their competitors for the attention of customers, try as much as possible to exhibit high levels of creativity.
Despite the above, it is very unfortunate to note that the indigenous fashion industry in Nigeria is fast collapsing due to daily Westernization of fashion trends. In the past, traditional attires were favored and much more in vogue among people of all ages than today.
In contrast, these days, youths especially, love to wear imported clothes, and copy the culture and lifestyle of Americans, thereby typically skewing away from the use of traditional wears. “Aso oke”, “adire” “kembe”, and other traditional lies are now increasingly scarce; and those available are diluted with a Western touch.
Regardless, the tailoring industry in Nigeria has a teeming number of practitioners, and is a very lucrative and prosperous industry. People must always dress up-it is inevitable. Here, money must always flow into the industry.
However, the fashion designing industry goes beyond just the physical attires that people put on. This aspect of the economy is intertwined with many other fields of endeavor, most notably agriculture. Even though it seems absurd to refer agriculture to fashion, all we have to do to see the correlation is to ask ourselves pertinent questions. Where is the leather used in making shoes and bags derived from? From hides and skin of animals, of course. Where are the cotton and wool used in making clothes sourced from? From cotton and sheep farms respectively. In essence, it is very important to note that, not only is this industry not self sufficient, it is also very dependent on some other less glamorous and seemingly primitive sectors.
In conclusion, the opportunities in the tailoring and fashion designing industry in Nigeria are almost infinite. From direct retailing of products, to establishing of fashion schools, to employment of models, to promotion of celebrities, the fashion industry in Nigeria is very rich in prospects and patronage-it can never be sidestepped, when highlighting the highly lucrative sectors of the economy of this West African giant.