ORIGIN OF AFRICAN PRINT FABRICS

African fabrics are loved for their unique designs, colours, and hand made qualities. The African fabrics have deep and exciting cultural meanings. Generally, Africans use four different types of clothes depending on the tradition and value. The African clothes the tie dyes,weaves,batiks and the popularly know African industrial prints. This article will concern itself more with the African industrial print fabric and it’s origin.

The African print fabric is popularly called Ankara. The ankara has gained recognition in the countries of the world.  Since 2010, the African print has gained worldwide recognition in the fashion industry. The ankara is mainly connected to Africa for its motifs and patterns.

Since the global recognition of the Ankara, there have being some suppositions as to the true origin of the fabric. The Ankara was originally called Dutch Wax Print, the Dutch were the producers. It is however worthy of note that although the Dutch Wasx Print was manufactured for the Indonesian markets, the fabrics found more expression in the West Africa. The Manufacturers of the Dutch wax were quick to spot the business opportunity in Africa and they decided to start making the fabrics to comply with the African heritage and culture. The Dutch continued to make their fabrics with the African lifestyle in mind and that was the birth of African print.

Ankara is one of the most popular and cheap traditional fabrics in Africa. It is popularly used in African and beyond. And, although many may like to contend the origin of the Ankara as purely European and not African, one will not be mistake to also state that Ankara is an African fabric considering the culture and lifestyle it represents rather than the place where it was first manufactured.

When you look at the African print, the African culture and style comes to mind. Africans are also naturally drawn to the Ankara as indigenous to them. One cannot wish away the influence of Dutch on the African print, Ankara, but the game has since changed and the Ankara is now in the hands of Africans to will and to do. And they have decided to continue to use it for the promotion of their culture.

 

Credits:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/ninara/