Traditional Chinese, Benin costumes on show to promote two countries’ clothing cultures

Benin costumes
Benin costumes

A show of traditional Chinese and Beninese costumes was held Saturday in Cotonou, Benin’s economic capital, attracting more than 200 Chinese and Benin audiences.

During the event, which was hosted by the Chinese Cultural Center in Benin and organized by the Confucius Institutes at the Abomey Calavi University in Benin and Lome University in Togo, 30 students from the Confucius Institute at the Abomey Calavi University, in an innovative form combining runway show and scene play, presented more than 50 sets of traditional Chinese costumes, such as hanfu, the traditional clothing of the Han ethnic group, and qipao, a traditional Chinese dress for women, and other ethnic minority dresses.

Benin is an important cotton-producing country in Africa. Beninese fashion designers Afiavi Ella Adankpo and Yao Patrice Tomede displayed 30 sets of Beninese traditional costumes, which combine Chinese embroidery skills with Beninese cotton cloth.

“I’m very excited to show the Beninese people the Chinese culture I’ve learned in university through this traditional fashion show, which is also the cultural exchange between Benin and China,” said Elie Djihokin, a student at the Confucius Institute at Abomey Calavi University.

Aboudou Maman, foreign dean of Confucius Institute at Lome University in Togo, said that the traditional costumes of China and Benin have something in common, and holding such cultural exchange activities will give Beninese people a chance to understand Chinese costume culture and can better promote the cultural exchanges between the two countries in the future.

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