WHAT ARE AFRICAN PRINTS – A walk into African Prints (Fabrics)

Our food, our music, our dance and a lot of things make us stand out as Africans, yet among these is our native African prints which stand tall.
African prints (fabric) have deeply embedded in them native stories, proverbs, wise saying and more which communicates not just fashion but unity, togetherness, love, determination and true Africanism.

Very often, Africans are depicted on old pictures as naked people, walking around without any clothing.

Akyekydeɛ akyi (The back of the tortoise)

This seems to be quite at odd with the fact that the Dutch textile company VLISCO has been installed in Africa, more precisely in Togo, since 1846.  So how could pictures from the 1800s and early 1900s only show naked Africans?  The BBC recently ran a story on VLISCO and African textile tradition actually being European.

Sika Wo Antaban (Money has wings)

For starters, before VLISCO, Africa had a very rich textile industry as noted by Kankan Moussa‘s entire delegation being clothed from cotton woven with golden threads in 1300s during his pilgrimage to the Mecca (this will be a story for another day), or the Kanembu clothing tradition which dates as far back as the 800s. 

EASTERN GHANA – MAY 13: Kente cloth is display in eastern Ghana, May 13, 2004. Ghana is the most tourist friendly country in Anglophone West Africa, boasting warm and friendly people, interesting history and beautiful scenery. (Photo by Jacob Silberberg/Getty Images)

It is misleading to believe that the Wax hollandaise is the only fabric worn by Africans, when we know that the Bogolan rises from a long tradition of weavers in Mali, or the Kente cloth of Ghana

  1. S3 wo b3 ka me hu as3m a fa akonya tinase (Stool)
  2. Akyekydeɛ akyi (The back of the tortoise)
  3. Sika Wo Antaban (Money has wings)

It may seem obvious that African Prints (fabric) are for fashion, yet they can be used in many other way.

se wo b3 ka me hu as3m a fa akonya tinase (Stool)

Used for Pillows.
The unique designs in African Prints (fabric) make is suitable for bed side pillows, arm rest, back rest

Used for decoration
The diversity in colors make it perfect for both interior and exterior decoration. They give a near perfection look for weddings, birthdays parties, graduations and or funeral ceremonies decor. Good designers can use them to add a touch to already made apparels.

Used as Gift to present to love once’s
Until recent, it seems to be as if only Africans values African prints (fabric) yet the narrative have changed if not changing.

Our crew spoke to a number of Non-African to see what they will prefer as gift from GHANA and almost all of them list African prints (fabric).

Non-African have also realized the beauty and uniqueness of these fabric and will love to present them to both Non-African and Africans. In GHANA it is a custom to present African Print (Fabrics) to your in-laws when going to marry. Tip, If you have an In-law who is an African just surprise her with one.

Occasions to wear
Listed below are some occasions you attend in your African Prints (fabric).

  1. Wedding
  2. Graduation
  3. Naming ceremony
  4. Funeral
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