African art is visually stunning with textiles and fashion playing essential roles. Unlike fabrics from many other parts of the world, African print tells stories about heritage, sense of belonging, and place. Read on to learn more about African prints and current fashions we love for African Fabric Month in September.
African Wax Prints
In todays Fashion, African print is not necessarily synonymous with any given country. It more so means vibrantly colored and textured fabric and vivid batik patterning. African prints include traditional designs, such as:
These designs are referred to as “wax prints” because they are achieved through the technique of batik. When a cloth is batiked, hot wax is used to create patterns on it. When dipped in a dye vat, these areas of wax patterning remain resistant to the dye and create a design.
African print fashion is popular with people of all ages. From special events to daily dress, Nigerian styles bring fashions to life. Of course, a handful of trends have become synonymous with Nigerian style.These trends include:
-The Skirt and Blouse
-Fit and Flare Dresses
-Lace and Guinea Brocade Matching Couples Outfits
Let’s take a look at some fun, sophisticated ways to style each of these African-print-inspired pieces.
The Skirt and Blouse is the modern cut for the West African women. The skirt is usually worn tight, in a fit and flare cut, and matched with a looser blouse. This outfit is also called the "up and down”.
Fit and Flare dresses in African prints create a powerful fashion statement while allowing the wearer to remain modern and modest. These ensembles are also highly versatile. They can be dressed up with heels and jewelry for a night out on the town or paired with sandals.
Generally, Kaftan is the name for a woman blouse and Dashikis represents the scope of mens African shirts. Although kaftans did not originate in Nigeria, they are enjoying a huge moment right now across African and the world. Dashikis come in sophisticated cuts, such as the “Ajdaba,” and make a stunning outfit for men attending special occasions, such as award ceremonies and weddings. Our favourite looks right now are denim jeans paired Kaftan and Dashikis. It is an effortless look that commands attention.
Lace and Guinea Brocade are more high end materials. West Africans, especially Nigerians enjoy wearing matching clothes to ceremonies and celebrations. It is not unusual to see a party with hundreds of attendees wearing matching material in different cuts. Lace and Guinea Brocade are some on the materials worn for more formal events.
Not sure where to begin? Contact us today to learn more about African prints and how to make them the showstoppers of your wardrobe.
Lola’s African Apparel offers authentic African clothes made in Nigeria by Nigerians. We are recognised for providing the highest quality African fabrics and contemporary styles and we have a great selection of Authentic African fashions to choose from.