For those of you who don’t know, I work in the advertising industry as a creative director, it’s my first big love, way before fashion. So every now and then a commercial gets made that brilliantly combines the two, my friend Aviv from He who says hmm shared it with me via twitter the other day and I was blown away. Here it is:
Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t blown away by the ad, it’s very pretty, but outside of the very wanky and fake brand message, I was blown away by these Sapeurs and decided to do some research. These guys are incredible, in a world of poverty their purpose is to be elegant. In fact Sapeurs stands for Societe des Ambianceurs et des Personnes Elegantes (the Society of Tastemakers and Elegant People). And when they go out, they turn the streets of Brazzaville, the capital of the Republic of the Congo, into a fashion runway.
I mean, imagine how we struggle in our giant malls filled with global fashion to find the right outfit and these guys go against all odds to look good in a world where everything is bad. It’s incredible! I don’t wanna give too much away as there is an incredibly mini documentary I want you guys to check out. But I will leave you with this little quote by Papa Wemba, a rumba musician from Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo) who popularized the culture in the late 1970s and early 1980s: “White people invented the clothes, but we make an art of it.”
Okay. Stay fancy.