Four ladies of Fashion of Tarkwa Gold Coast c.1920

“The women now take great pride in arranging and dressing their hair in a variety of modes, and it is usually covered with many gold ornaments. The Coiffure-maker and dress-maker are two of the greatest friends of these devotees of fashion.”

Flowered silks and satins of the negro aristocracy
“The customs of the leisured ladies of the Gold Coast bear testimony to the assiduous of fashion-plates. There are two classes of native women, the ‘lady’ and the ‘cloth woman’. The former is supposed to be educated, adopts English dress, and is above menial occupation. The latter wears only a cloth, is generally illiterate, and consequently becomes the drudge.”
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**Photographs by P.A McCann

These 19th and 20th Century Gold Coast [old name for Ghana] Fashionistas have made my day, no…my year, no…my life!!! I’m thrilled to bits and inspired for life by the shear beauty of our ancestors’ swagger !!! Just look at them!!! The way they carried themselves; their fashions, the attention to detail, the hairstyles, the accessories and the umbrellas!!! Its just suddenly dawned on me that the few British women who dared to venture into, ’The Dark Continent’ would have had parasols -and that’s where we probably got the umbrella thingy (something that my own grandmother also carried on special occasions -when she wore that incredibly many layered stiff wig with the gold ornaments on -its all coming back to me). Its soooo lovely to see our past -no, and truly special to see how we dressed and so forth. Enjoy…xoxox

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