The Congo Dandies: living in poverty and spending a fortune to look li… online

“La Sape” is a unique movement based in Congo that unites fashion-conscious men who are ready to splurge money they don’t really have on designer clothes. Dressing in stark contrast with their surroundings, these elegant ambiance-makers become true local celebrities… but this fame comes at a price.

The Republic of the Congo in Central Africa can’t boast of high standards of living. Yet, there are men here who are prepared to spend a fortune on designer suits. They call themselves “sapeurs” – members of the “La Sape” movement. “La Sape” comes from French and stands for “The Society of Ambiance-Makers and Elegant People”. For its adherents, it’s all about style and elegance, the right combination of colours and textures, brand-names and the highest quality materials. They derive true joy from showing off their attire on the streets of Brazzaville – the country’s capital and the centre of the “La Sape” movement. Walking down dusty streets lined with clay houses, they turn heads and feel like kings. And there’s no price they won’t pay for this.

In fact, behind the image of success these dandies project, there are often stories of significant financial troubles caused by their extravagant hobby. To afford the price tag of their designer clothes, “sapeurs” have to save, borrow and even steal money, sometimes bringing ruin to their families. But even the grim consequences of their indulgent dressing habits often don’t stop “sapeurs” from spending money they don’t really have. They are in constant competition with each other and investing in their image is more important to them than improving their living conditions. Dressing smartly becomes a true addiction that is very hard to conquer.

However, some “sapeurs” do strive to find a balance between looking chic and being reasonable with their spending. They insist that the “La Sape” movement isn’t about designer suits but rather developing impeccable taste. They make an emphasis on learning to dress well but within one’s means. This way, style and elegance will demand fewer sacrifices from their devotees and will be accessible to more sophisticated men.

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22 comments

  • lesetja mapokga 1 mes ago

    I want a relationship that can hold on like that button 4.40.. 😂😂😂🤣🤣🤣🤣😭😭😭

    Reply
  • Team Ghast 1 mes ago

    This is an extremely exaggerated documentary… Propaganda to the max.

    Reply
  • Allen Bryant 1 mes ago

    Where do they go dress like this to a pit

    Reply
  • Alexandre Machado 1 mes ago

    05:28 why the fuck he tried to kick the dog?!

    Reply
  • nik rckz 1 mes ago

    It's not same in india . 😂 we have great savings

    Reply
  • Valentine Sohtun 1 mes ago

    Reminds me of a certain dandy who once chided me for my sense of dressing or the lack of it. 🙂

    Reply
  • Toothless Bull Dog 2.0 1 mes ago

    Kinda reminds me of pimps or Zoot Suit.

    Reply
  • Limuru Road heroes 1 mes ago

    much of the problems in congo DRC is that the french colonialism is stemmed deep in their minds..and the method of colonialism by french as assimilation, not direct rule..this obsession with a frenchman ails every congolese even the learned ones..thats why they cannot take hold of their nation and own it..the man that attempted to sever that bond was killed in 60s, and the nation was aborted..sad..

    Reply
  • Roger Gardner 1 mes ago

    All Flash No Cash

    Reply
  • Markiemane Bang 1 mes ago

    Upptiy ass niggas jus like in the hood lol

    Reply
  • Mubashar Qadeer 1 mes ago

    My father had 3-4 pairs of trowsers and few shirts but he made sure to feed his family…

    Reply
  • Aldione Sobreira 1 mes ago

    For me and Incomprehensible but the culture or attitudes of a group of people who decide to spend what they do not have, to dress as they think "good", but some facts are not hilarious, as the citizen who had a jacket which did not fit in it 4:40.
    Another fact and misery in this place comes to be frightening.

    Reply
  • Car Lover 1 mes ago

    Why don't you feed the families and others if you got enough money, this like the west , when most women instead of feeding Thier kids, they spend Thier money on logo clothes etc, and the gullable west, are being told to feed Africa, I rather feed my dog,

    Reply
  • Luqswl 1 mes ago

    Just humerous how they were better off spending millions (of thier currency) to buy such "Fancy" clothes to be the "bling" in thier town but does not think about thier living situation, future, transportation and family.

    Reply
  • Harlem Antoinette Rising from the ashes 1 mes ago

    Sounds a little like French

    Reply
  • Cee Tee 1 mes ago

    These people are ridiculously stupid. Live in filth yet want to spend more on clothes than food and shelter, very sad…

    Reply
  • John Lewis 1 mes ago

    You have on a suit that cost a pretty big amount but don't have a closet or running water to flush the toilet

    Reply
  • mokonzi2K6 1 mes ago

    A complete certified idiot …

    Reply
  • Jarlei Sassi 1 mes ago

    Are these guys the first world feeding?

    Reply
  • Quincy Scott 1 mes ago

    Sir sir sir why? I don't understand sir get a job sir! Move to do better sir?

    Reply
  • homiedre87 1 mes ago

    hmm… but look how you living bro!

    Reply
  • Jay.G 1 mes ago

    are you sure those are expensive and first hand? it looks like someone's donation, like someone bought it and ditched after a decade.

    Reply

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