“The eyes are a window into the soul” – forget that. Clothing is a window into the soul, especially for Mayowa Adedeji, an NJIT graduate student. Mayowa, or “Mayo – like the condiment” as he calls himself, has a simple style, and he carries himself with dignity.
Mayo has a rather elaborate, contemporary fashion. He defines it as a mode of expression of his “desire to constantly embrace [his] uniqueness and weirdness.” Even if his fashion is different from what is considered to be normal, it is still sophisticated. For example, his favorite color to wear is black “because of its simplicity, versatility and the fact that it’s a reflection of where [he is] currently at artistically.” Mayo is also quite particular with regards to the materials of his clothing, especially for pants. With all the thought he puts into his outfits, it is no surprise that fashion means a lot to him.
Where does Mayo’s fashion come from? To say that there is one source or origin would not be truthful. He says, “Because I’ve lived in multiple different areas and around different cultures, I think the way I dress is an amalgamation of all of those different ‘lives’ I’ve had of my own Nigerian and specifically Yoruba culture, I at times mix certain native clothing items with more western items.” This conglomeration of styles is truly a beautiful thing. They allow the way he dresses to tell a story. Each piece of clothing or accessory has a small narrative of its own that paints the larger picture of his life. For example, Mayo’s two rings are extremely valuable to him. “They serve as reminders and even a form of stress relief at times.” Some may wonder about the story behind those rings and why they are so meaningful. Nevertheless, they contribute to the sense of quietness and mystery around Mayo.
Even with the cold weather upon us, Mayo knows how to keep it classy. He knows that dressing in layers doesn’t have to detract from one’s sense of fashion. He says, “I love being able to wear coats and sweaters that complement the rest of my outfit.” So to all those who lament over not being able to wear flip flops or crop tops, don’t forget that the fall and winter seasons open a door to new styles. Bring out that cute cardigan or scarf that’s been patiently waiting in your closet!