Nothing is particularly new under the sun, and that’s why it’s no secret that fashion and expression seem to recycle itself every couple of decades. Lagos is the melting pot of some of the new, some of the old, and some of the in-between.
The concept for our June edition for the vintage theme focuses on the duality of retro fashion. Each piece was selected to give you a refresher course on color palettes that fit the era of the 80s to the 90s and how to incorporate it into your every day ( or night) ensemble.
While fabric reinvents itself, modern fashion embraces the human body openly, with no limitations as never before. The fluidity of gender identity, expectations, and what we thought we knew and have set standards for shows itself as something that can be broken down and rebuilt again, especially as bodies continue to explore and create fittings for themselves through revisitation of the past and reinvention of the future.
We begin to use fashion to start conversations that question traditional gender norms, hyper-femininity, or masculinity as the case may be. Style, expressed as such, helps us reimagine an alternative (less) gendered universe where a body can be diverse and limitless.
This style book was curated with Retro Addicts IG: @retro_addicts
Photographer IG: @g3gallaries in Lagos, NG
Models IG: @tamara.doubrah and @raufuabiola in Lagos, NG
That Green Tea has the reserved rights of the content ( images and written statements) published on this website.
The #EatDrinkFestival Abuja edition is the second event that That Green Tea experienced in a more official capacity thanks to the EDL team. The first coverage, #EatDrinkLagos can be found here
James Beard once said that food is our common ground, a universal experience (for everyone because we all eat) and this was brought to life at the Eat Drink Festival held in Abuja for the first time after being hosted in Lagos for the past five years. The event which saw the coming together of food vendors, mixologists, chefs, food enthusiasts, and bloggers had something for everyone who came to Harrow Park with an empty stomach and a full appetite.
Most vendors familiar with the Abuja festival spirit would say that “Abuja people come out late,” which they did. But few hours into the festival, crowds were gathering, holding conversations, and dancing to the music while the vendors were doing their very best, from setting up their stand to organizing their wares in the most eye-catching manner to make sure that everything went on smoothly in their stall. An interesting concept which most of them employed was the switching up of things with their menus.
While Waffle Stop stuck to something simple to give people an easier going and fun experience, Jaka’s Grill who has been playing out the dare of owning a food business for the past five month, used the opportunity to up his game by launching a full menu with new and exotic additions like extra delicious burgers which are so cute you could eat them whole.
For lovers of a sweet tooth, Buttercream Abuja brought their best sellers and most popular indulgence; my favorite was the banana bread which literary breaks down into several pieces of joy as you chew. Legal Tender Cocktails lived up to its name, a lawyer owned business, it gave us the sunny side up of things with drinks like a Beauty & The Beet, Mojito, Glow Up which were100% non alcoholicand geared towards freshness, a healthy lifestyle, and tremendous benefits for your skin all at very affordable prices.
The interesting about the festival for me, apart from the cook-off, Chef Punshak’s demo, karaoke, and virtual reality pods was the cashless policy of the event.
Thanks to the introduction of wristbands, where all your monies are stored up, vendors and customers were saved the stress of exchanging of currencies, standing in queues and worst of all, looking for change! (We know how stressful that can be).
How far can your love of food take you? The answer is very far because it was surprising to see that some vendors such as Korede Spaghetti, Ette’s Barbeque came all the way from Lagos and boy, did they leave their mark. Korede, a photographer and dancer who when forced with the dilemma of having to choose between three passions, chose the stove, gave the attendees, spicy hot spaghetti and his special; Korede ponmo ( for you non-Nigerians, this is cow skin. Yes. Cow skin. Keep it pushing) sauce which came with a side of fresh fries.
Ette’s Barbeque would give the feel of home with roasted items such as plantain popularly known as Boli and yam in extra spicy sauce.
Everyone can say that they had fun in the event, mainly because there was something for everyone who showed up. If you wanted alcohol, there was the Crazy People’s Cocktails or Entrees Cocktails that came in pineapple or extreme colorful mixtures. If you wished for sugar and more sweetness, Ice Pops which sold out by the way and Yougurberry was your go-to stall.
Of course, there is no Nigerian event without the signature Jollof rice, which thanks to Corperate Jollof, wore a tie and pretty good shoes with its original taste and flavor. Pow, a PanAsian restaurant gave us a feel of what it meant to have intercontinental dishes such as Pow special fried rice which contained eggs and Szechuan chicken, which was spicy.
Not only did the festival allow people to network, but it also created the perfect ambiance for friends, loved ones, and families who needed a place to unwind and chill. Most attendees testified that they didn’t expect the festival to be so all out and they look forward to the next one, I know I do.
All images were captured with permission by Shade Olaoye for the blog and are therefore the property of That Green Tea.
All vendors mentioned are welcome to post this on their respective media channels.
For any enquires and collaborations, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Can Social Media Control Political Narratives? This was the discourse to kick start the fourth session. Moderated by Broadcaster/Political Enthusiast, Ezugwu Chukwudi, the panel had in attendance Founder, Rise Networks, Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji; Lawyer/Politician, Faruq Abbas; Founder, Let’s Make Impact, Ferdy Adimefe. So when I thought it was about time to hit the bar of boredom, is that political issues are filled with long talks with nothing to excite one, it turned out I (as well as many others) was wrong.
The youthful population of Nigeria spends a staggering amount of time on social media. The question is, what do they do online? Chukwudi reeled out the top ten search words on YouTube by Nigerian users in recent times with “Yoruba movies,” “Arsenal,” “Chelsea,” “Movies,” “Wizkid,” amongst others making a list.
Toyosi took the floor first, with her deep voice, dropping punch lines that rang in everyone’s head, causing people to make all sorts of exclamations, because she was speaking the hard truth about the realities of Nigeria. In her first few words, she said: “we live in a society where the future of a yahoo boy is brighter than that of a degree holder.” She held that our youthful population spends a lot of time doing trivial things; “Social media for the Nigerian youth is overrated.” She points out two categories of young people in Nigeria.
On the one hand, are the educated, smart, and exposed ones, which form the inconsequential minority and nonchalant to elections. While on the other hand is the more significant part of our population, they feed one time a day, poorly or not educated, and are at the mercy of our politicians. These are the ones who will stand outside under the rain and sun on election day to vote for politicians who give them food or cash. “As long as our people are poor and uneducated, social media will not drive any political narrative.” In essence, social media cannot shape the political narrative.
For Ferdy, it takes more than social media to change the narrative. Staying online and talking does not change anything; it takes more than a tweet to change a nation. Action must be taken as we must play a big part in the process. Those in the Senate constitute a large part of our problems. They are overpaid and underworked people. We, therefore, must use social media as a weapon to effect a change.
Faruq appeared to be expressing his frustrations with the whole political scene, sharing his experience as a contestant in the Osun State House of Assembly race and strongly condemning the act of people collecting things from politicians in exchange for their votes, because we end up not having the right to speak against them as we have compromised our values. However, he shares the view that social media can change the political narrative, of course. But for him, the truth remains that we are not using it as we should. He, however, tasks users to engage politicians on social media by asking them logical questions that affect us.
My earlier prejudice disappeared into thin air as the session turned out to be the most engaging.
There is a whole lot more that can be done on social media, acquisition of knowledge, jobs, and so on. As the conference was about coming to a close, this was the issue up to discuss signifying the fifth session. ‘Creating Additional Value Using Social Media,’ was the topic, and media personality, Olayemi Ogunwole (Honeypot) was to moderate the session. The panelists include Nollywood Actress, Mercy Johnson-Okojie; Media Personality, Tolu Oniru-Demuren (Toolz); and On-Air Personality, Dotun Kayode (Do2dtun).
Dotun opined that social media is about selling perceptions. So what impression of you do you give on social media? A lot of things can be learned on social media, however, depending on whom one follows. Does being popular automatically translate into having influence? For Mercy, they cannot be separated. For Toolz, one could be famous and not necessarily influence people. Having an impact is people wanting to do things because you did the same things.
I sought an interview with one of the panelists from the first session, Digital Manager, Ndani TV, Oyinkansola Ewumi, and asked her a few questions.
• One might argue that the social media space is a whole different world on its own, do you see a connection with ourselves as individuals – does social media affect us one way or another?
Ans: “Yes, indeed, social media does affect us all as individuals in one way or another. It affects the way we think, it affects the way we perceive others, and it also has a way of changing our view of the world as a whole.“
•How engaging do you think the online social community is in Nigeria?
Ans:” I think the Nigerian community online is still growing. You have pockets of people spread across platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, e.t.c. And while the number is not as substantial as we may think it is, (Statista.com puts the number of Nigerian internet users at 92.3 million), – Nigeria’s population was 190.9million as at 2017 -, the prospects for Nigerian internet users in the future is excellent.
As it is, the Nigerian online community on platforms like Twitter have been instrumental to affecting actions in real time – governance and social engagements -, and acts like this can only grow more prominent in the nearest future.“
•Where do you see the future of digital media in Africa?
Ans: “Well, I think the future of digital media in Africa is bright, and with time, Africa may emerge as a force to reckon with in the digital sphere. From Kenya to South Africa, and Nigeria, more Africans are taking charge of the digital narrative, creating more content and pushing the boundaries of engagement across various industries.“
The path to growth, if explored, can only get better. More Africans will be looking to develop their skills in digital, and hopefully, this would translate to the growth of other aspects of the economy and would mean a better Africa for Africans.
With all this shared knowledge, one can only confess that Handle It, Africa, being a great initiative, is living up to its expectations and is needed for this present generation that is so engrossed in social media. I look forward to what the conference has in stock for its fourth installment.
Olatunde received his Bachelors Degree in Philosophy from Lagos State University. He has a passion for social media and engagement and makes his debut as an intern for That Green Tea blog.
Follow Olatunde on IG: @olatundeh_ and Twitter: @olatundeh_
All images featured in this post are the original works of Olatunde and property of the blog. Any individuals featured were part of a public event were photography was allowed.
Building an online presence is very much a necessity in this day and age. With an estimate of well over 4.3 billion internet users and over 3.4 billion active social media users, the online space has reduced the world into a global village. Social media today has gone beyond being a place for us uploading our ‘dopest’ pictures and exchanging ‘bants,’ it has become a lot more, even so, a knowledge tool. How then should social media be optimized to ensure growth, personally or collectively?
Handle It Africa with the motto: Reach. Connect. Engage is an impactful conference geared at revolutionizing how social media is used, consumed, and deployed effectively to realize desired results. The meeting convened Olufemi Oguntamu, the lead consultant at Penzaarville Africa, a social media marketing agency. With years of experience as a social media strategist, Oguntamu understanding the power of social media decides to convene this conference, pulling big weights from the social/digital media, entertainment, and political spaces to discuss the role of social media in these corners. With its third year running, Handle It Africa with the theme, ‘Social Media: Extending the Frontiers,’ expands the standard of sharing knowledge to maximize the benefits of social media, which has established through the years. This third edition which took place on the 17th of May, 2019 at Oriental Hotel in Victoria Island, Lagos, witnessed a massive turnout of enthusiastic young individuals seeking knowledge about social media and how it can be optimized for business growth and for building strong personal brands.
With an ambiance right for networking, after registration, everyone appeared to be engaged in discussions with one another, exchanging pleasantries, taking pictures against the backdrop, basically sharing good moments in general.
In the convener’s speech, “Today’s advancement in technology has had a comparable effect on social media. Trends are leaping in bounds, and only those of us who keep up can maximize the benefits of this growth. Our endeavors to harness the benefits of social media need a strategic approach, and this edition tackles all the best ways to not only maximize the benefits but also solve attendant problems.”1
The conference was designed to feature five-panel sessions, tackling five different topical issues that encapsulate what goes on in the social space today.
Session one with the topic ‘Creating Exciting Content that Wins the Clicks,’ featured panelists such as Akah Nnani, an Actor/Youtuber; Mc Lively, a Comedian; Food Content Creator, Winifred Emmanuel; Digital Media Manager, Ndani TV, Oyinkansola Ewumi; and moderated by Content Creator/Filmmaker, Adenike Adebayo-Esho.
Putting out content on social media is one thing, creating that which wins the clicks; that is one that goes viral and rings up thousands of likes and comments is another. This has got to be a budding issue for content creators. Akah was quick to point uniqueness as key to this problem, as he holds that social media is saturated and so one needs a content that stands out. In essence, find your selling point. An example is Winifred, who chose to base her content on food, thereby making it her niche.
One might ask, how does one get the much-needed attention on social media? According to Oyinkansola, what is needed is a robust online presence that engages and relates to people.
As a comedian who is famous with thousands of followers, Mc Lively emphasized that to “blow” is not as important as staying relevant. You do not want to be that person whose video or content goes viral or “wins the clicks” just one time, and then you become non-existent. It is imperative that you put effort into building yourself.
Wrapping up the session, Akah stresses the importance of consistency.
Session two started on a loud note, with the introduction of Tobi Bakare, ex-Big Brother Naija housemate. The girls couldn’t seem to get the hang of themselves, as the very handsome, stylish and sexy Tobi was making his way to the podium. Alongside Tobi on the panel were Amalia Sebakunzi, Marketing Director, Eat ‘N’ Go Limited; Terver Bendega, Regional Marketing Manager, Africa, Bolt; Sisi Yemmie, Food & Lifestyle Influencer. The session tagged ‘What Do Brands Really Want?’ was moderated by Chidi Okereke, Team Lead, Thisruption Communications.
No doubt, there is an increasing trend online with brands opting for “social media influencers” to help create awareness about a particular product or service, instead of the usual advertising on TV, radio or print media. There seems to be some friction between brands and social media influencers, where brands feel the influencers do not do enough as expected of them in discharging their duties, and influencers, on the other hand, feeling brands demand too much and even more, the demands do not match the pay.
For Terver, influencers are used to market or create awareness for something. It is therefore important to understand why you’re adopting influencer marketing as a brand: what do you hope to achieve?
Sisi Yemmie, however, was quick to the point that sometimes, the brands are inflexible, wanting influencers to stick to the script. For her, there should be room for some level of flexibility to enable the influencer be creative carrying out his/her duty.
For Tobi, brands should begin to engage influencers on a long-term basis; this allows for organic marketing. As a result, influencers will be able to create content naturally at any point in time, which most likely ignored as the influencer becomes a part of the family.
Amalia believed that the essence of influencers is to create original content for the brand. And most importantly, to drive awareness.
In all that was said, one thing stands out. And that is Tobi stressing that as an influencer, one needs to learn to say no at certain times. You cannot be an influencer who accepts jobs from any and every brand just because money is involved. Your focus should be on brands that their campaigns align with your image and persona, to realize a seamless synergy.
The third session started on a high note, with the moderator, Tomike Adeoye, a TV Personality, stepping out with a high spirit and oozing so much excitement. She succeeded at keeping the vibe in the room nothing short of one hundred all through the session. If ratings could be tallied, I think she would easily pass for the best moderator of the day. ‘Unleashing the Power of Lifestyle in Social Media Campaigns,’ the topic was, and the panelists were introduced. Ozinna Anumudu, TSC Agency Founder; Mimi Onalaja, TV Presenter, and Timini Egbuson, Actor. Now here we go, screams from the ladies because of course, fine boy Timini was on stage. I rolled my eyes while in my mind, I kept wishing they could just shut the hell up! I am not a kill-joy, so I would let them have their moment. LOL
There is a crucial role in which lifestyle plays in campaigns on social media. Brands look out for influencers whose lifestyle on social media fit their image as a brand and would do a seamless job with their campaign.
Lifestyle for Ozinna is what you are when people are not watching. However, there are two kinds: organic (natural) and created (mostly found on social media).
Instagram has got to be the best social media platform because it allows for the sharing of pictures and videos, supported with words, Mimi says when asked which she considers the best.
According to Timini, find what social media platform works for you and make the best of it.
Keywords from this session are from Ozinna and Tomike, holding that it is crucial to stay true to yourself and understand that social media is not real life. Tomike sharing the same view adds that life is not all about the likes and the comments.
For starters, it is crucial to introduce Dike Chukwumerijie for those who are not familiar with the name. He is one of Nigeria’s leading performance poet and the founder and creative director of NSW (Night of the Spoken Word) Simply Poetry which uniquely uses performance poetry; interacting with a live audience.
NSW debuted in 2013 and has since, ran through to recent times incorporating other major shows as it goes on like the, Made in Nigeria (MIN), Let’s Be Honest, Man Made Gods and other shows which help Nigerians mark special periods.
My first contact with Dike happened three years after his debut of the NSW show when a mentor purchased for me his book, Urichindere and a compact disc of his just-concluded NSW show which was held in Abuja.
Reading Urichindere, a book narrating the growth of a boy to man stunned me into realizing how stories are told differently. At the time, I graduated secondary school, and I could connect with the joys and fear of Urichindere as he went through his. Extensively, the book captured so much, ranging from the experiences that come with being a broader, a teenager in those politically uncertain times, a secondary school lover, and a child birthed by typical Nigerian parents.
As I read the book, I would laugh, cry and, snap my fingers when something hits home. I remember posting soon after, that it should be included in the reading syllabus for all secondary schools, I still hold that feeling. As for the disc, it cracked after too much playing. Dike would come on stage, tell stories with poetry, all the while, having either dancers who would interpret his words with their movements or a guitarist who would create sounds.
There was always something that accompanied his acts, there was joy, there was a pain, there were strong emotions I could not contain, and I knew I had to be part of this.
And the opportunity came, in my first year at the university when Joy, a member of the team contacted me to help create awareness for the MIN show he was bringing to Enugu. The experience was a dream, I distributed flyers, ran radio ads, spread the word on social media and the day of the event, I handled the press.
I remember having goosebumps so many times during the show as Dike burnt “102 years of Nigeria’s history to 120 minutes”, with poetry. He took us through the military regime, the 80s, 90s, and the present. Through the civil war, told stories of love lost and gained, gave us narratives of what it meant to study abroad as at that time. As he did all these, he made us cry, reflect and laugh. I shook, and as I fixed the phone on him, taking pictures, making videos and quoting him for social media, I knew my dedication and loyalty was stamped.
Perhaps these are the first things I learned from Dike, how to be utterly committed because the joy in your heart leaves you full. Over the years, whenever I was free from school, I would readily volunteer to be part of any show that held at that period be it in Abuja, Enugu or Lagos. If my physical presence was not possible, I would offer my resources offline, sharing, posting and spreading the word because I believe in Dike, I believe every Nigerian should experience him more than once.
From the show, I would learn how important it is to tell our stories, not necessarily the big ones that make it to the history books but the small ones too; about a mothers love, a boys dream, a fathers nature or a girls passion. I would learn that every story mattered and that no one person had the monopoly of experience; we are all connected. That is why you would shake your head or snap your fingers as you listen because something has just hit home.
Through Dike, I would learn values, that goodness in heart and spirit is the most important of all. Because positive ideal and love are sufficient enough to hold us, that meritocracy is what we should all gun for not nepotism, tribalism or godfatherism.
It would constantly resound that to see the change you want to happen; you have to become it. A clear example of this, is the fact that Dike has never subscribed to the norm “African time,” his four is precise, never earlier or later and if there is just one person seated, in his words, “I give my 100 percent to that one person.”
The entire organization is proof that consistency helps you build sustainability. How one meeting after another, held no matter what can create a well-knit community of the most reliable and trustworthy persons. Evidently as a creative in Nigeria, finding a community is essential. Noncreatives included, it is always special to be with people who hear your language, listen to your thoughts and help you project your crazy ideas. Simply Poetry is one of such communities.
The whole process uplifts my spirit, makes me understand that things can be better because I know 15-20 people who are all ripple effects trying to be better. And when each show ends, when we are all climaxed and overwhelmed, it is time to press repeat and do it over again.
Look out for my posts every (other) Wednesdays and follow me on IG: @shade_mary_ann_olaoye