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Prints and Petticoats
A few weeks ago we invited a group of young content producers to take over See Africa Differently throughout September, with articles, photos and more.
So, Jennifer Amankwa, Huda Ismail and Nsofwa Kangwa headed to East London in search of the finest African fabrics...
What’s all the fuss about African print? Whether you’ve seen it on worn traditionally or have spotted a high street spin on it, it seems like people can’t get enough of it. We here at See Africa Differently took a trip to two fashion and design hot spots to get the low down on African print.
Tucked away in the buzzing business hub of east London lies Petticoat lane (a lane which sadly isn’t full of petticoats) home to an array of African print fabric shops.
Walking into an African fabric shop is like standing in front of a pick and mix stand, it’s all about colour, texture and choice. After speaking to some of the shop owners we learnt some prints and symbols used in certain fabrics have meanings; from everyday sayings to proverbs.
Within walking distance stands Spitalfields market which had a recent touch of African culture when it played host to this summer’s Africa Fashion Week London!
Just wandering through Spitalfields market you can instantly see how African culture has played a major influence in western fashion. Marvin Browne has been designing and making clothes for over ten years and can be found at Old Spitalfields Market. This season many pieces feature bright African prints. The Antiguan designer incorporates traditional African print and transforms them into modern, high street must haves including shift dresses, maxi dresses and bags. The bright colours and bold patterns of the African print is what inspires him.
Whether it’s been rocked at an African wedding or on a lunch date with the girls, it seems that people can’t get enough of print. So move over little black dress, the African print dress is here and we love it!
Nsofwa Kangwa, Huda Ismail and Jennifer Amankwa
What do you think? Comment below.