So this may or may not have something to do with my recent obsession with The Great British Sewing Bee (expats have to get their thrills) and contestant Chinelo’s amaaazing style but right now I am completely obsessed with African print.
Chinelo rocked some amazing textiles on the show and I was bowled over by her bright and colourful style. Since watching the sewing bee (and don’t judge me by the way, have you seen Patrick?) I have been looking everywhere for fabrics or garments with some of that fabulous African vibrancy.
African prints were initially created as a way to identify tribesmen – hence the bold patterns and colours making it easy to spot an outsider from far off. Traditionally both men and women wove these magnificent cloths and there was a deep spiritual aspect to both the weaving and the patterns woven by the craftspeople.
Nowadays a traveller looking for African textiles is more likely to come across wax prints – generic imitations of the traditional textiles and easy and cheap to manufacture. However the vibrancy of the original cloths is not all lost in these diluted version and the fabulous designs have trickled into the world of western fashion – meaning that we can all have a taste of wonderful African style.