Learn about the inspiration behind lifestyle brand Riveriswild and their new F/W collection exclusively on OkayAfrica.
Meet Riveriswild, a lifestyle brand that acknowledges the chaos of life, respecting its unpredictability and honors our differences and connections along the way.
"The name of our brand symbolizes the chaotic fluidity of life," Wale Akinbiyi, Riveriswild's creative director, says. "I was born and raised (for the first 15 years) in Lagos, Nigeria, and had to move to Washington D.C. for high school and college—that transition was a truly defining moment in my life. I've heard horror stories of that time period in the lives of my friends, difficulties fitting in, victims of bullies etc. At first we began creating to help others breeze through that 'fresh off the boat' phase with their dignity intact and their culture, proudly on display. Now we've matured to strike a perfect balance in both worlds, the west and the motherland, and choose to live as ambassadors of our born and migrant homes."
Akinbiyi mentions that along with producing apparel, Riveriswild seeks to give back by championing the global water crisis cause. "We have been donating a portion of all proceeds to water based charities," he says. "We also throw an event called the Nativeland Gang to encourage others to live as humanitarians no matter how small their impact seems."
The brand's F/W collection, A Marked Memory, was influenced by fading memories Akinbiyi has from his formative years spent in Nigeria.
"A fragmented memory is just as fascinating as a strong and vivid one but often goes unexplored," he says. "We chose to explore and give it priority this time around."
This collections gives us nostalgic, vintage vibes—with muted colors and typography that calls to mind album art from Nigeria's disco era. The oversized fit gives the collection the streetwear touch.