Waridi Schrobsdorff on African identities and fashion

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The new column! Waridi Schrobsdorff was born in Kenya and has lived in Berlin for many years. She is now writing for VOGUE about African identities, special features and the continent’s (fashionable) talents.

This is the first episode of Waridi Schrobsdorff’s new VOGUE column

Being born a Kenyan, my entire family, going back to my grandparents, are all born and raised in Kenya, and live there to date. I am one of the rare ones who made their journey overseas to pursue my mission, starting from Abu Dhabi to Dubai. Having a Muslim background, I dressed as an Arab girl, so there was no question of my heritage, even though I am an African. Arriving in London, I was not considered an African. When people would ask me where I was from, my answer would always be that I’m a Kenyan. English people had more knowledge of Africa, so being Kenyan was understood, but I was not seen as African because of my lighter complexion. My mixture is Arabic from Yemen and African from the andi Tribe.