African

Here, we give you a sample and brief description of the various different fabrics we work with to design our unique artwear, as well as how to care for the fabrics.  The samples shown here are not necessarily still in stock; rather serve as examples to give you an idea of each type of fabric.  We are constantly scouting out new unique and stunning fabrics for future artwear to keep things fresh and exciting!  You can check back frequently on our SHOP! page to see new fabrics we are offering for our CUSTOMIZABLE pieces...

AFRICAN FIGURINE PRINT:

Colorful cotton fabric accented with African figurine detail. 

Care Instructions:

Machine washable. Tumble dry low.

 

AFRICAN MOTIF:

Cotton fabric - some with glossy finish - adorned with African symbols, vibrant colors, and overall African-influenced designs. 

Care Instructions:

Preferably hand wash or dry clean.

 

AFRICAN KENTE CLOTH:

This is a type of fabric made of interwoven cloth strips and is native to the country of Ghana, where it was first developed in the 12th century. The "kente cloth" is of the Ashanti people and is the best known of all African textiles. It is a royal and sacred cloth worn only in times of extreme importance. Kente was the cloth of kings. Kente comes from the word “kenten”, which means "basket." The Asante peoples also refer to kente as “nwentoma” or "woven cloth."  The icon of African cultural heritage around the world, Asante kente is identified by its dazzling, multicolored patterns of bright colors, geometric shapes and bold designs, and each color of the kente cloth has a symbolic meaning:

- BLACK: maturation, intensified spiritual energy
- BLUE: peacefulness, harmony, love
- GREEN: vegetation, planting, harvesti ng, growth, spiritual renewal
- GOLD: royalty, wealth, high status, glory, spiritual purity
- GREY: healing and cleansing rituals; associated with ash
- MAROON: the color of mother earth; associated with healing
- PINK: a mild, gentle aspect of red associated with the female essence of life
- PURPLE: associated with feminine aspects of life; usually worn by women
- RED: political and spiritual moods; bloodshed; sacrificial rites
- SILVER: serenity, purity, joy; associated with the moon
- WHITE: purification, sanctification rites, festive occasions
- YELLOW: preciousness, royalty, wealth, fertility

Care Instructions:

Machine Washable. Tumble dry low.

 

AFRICAN METALLIC GOLD/SILVER:

Cotton fabric with African symbols and designs, using metallic gold or silver as an accent.

Care Instructions:

- Preferably dry clean.
- Can be machine washed, but separately the first time.
- No ironing (does not need ironing, just flattening) to avoid metallic gold being ironed off by the heat.  If must iron, iron on wrong side with plain cloth in between.

 

AFRICAN MUDCLOTH:

Mudcloth is traditional cloth crafted by the Bamana people of Mali, West Africa. Cotton is hand woven and then dyed with mud, roots, and herbs. Geometrical designs symbolize rivers, leaves and shells. This is accomplished by use of the ancient art of block printing, which dates back thousands of years.  Each color in a mud cloth sheet has its own meaning. Different people give different meanings to the patterns or color combinations in mudcloth.  Some meanings differ depending on the region, ethnic group, or individual, but there is always a meaning behind the symbols.  The most traditional coloring has been the black background with white designs. This type of mud cloth is typically used for story telling or the portrayal of a proverb. A color popular among hunters and the Fulani people is rust. It is said that rust represents the strong supernatural powers that protect the hunter; and signifies blood either from the hunt or from warfare. Because mud cloth is made from the soil it has been useful to both groups as a form of camouflage. White mud cloth is typically worn by girls and women in ceremonial events and is perhaps the most difficult to make as it is easy to stain with the dyes.

Care Instructions:

- Mudcloth can be cleaned with good results by hand washing, dry cleaning, or machine washing.
- It is always wise to test a swatch or small piece of any fabric to make sure the cleaning method and detergent is compatible with the fabric.  
- Be aware that some dry cleaners will not clean hand made fabrics.  
- If machine washing, place fabric in a lingerie bag and wash in cold water using the gentle cycle and a mild laundry detergent.
- Machine wash with warm water and mild soap.
- Avoid the spin cycle.
- The water will turn dark, so it is advised to wash the fabric by itself at least the first time. You may have to rinse the machine before laundering other clothing.
- On initial cleaning by any method, there may be some fading (this is normal given the traditional process that is used for dyeing this particular fabric).
- Dry flat or hang dry.
- Mudcloth can also be pressed using a steam iron with good results.
- Iron on the wrong side using the setting for Cotton, or use cooler settings.

 

AFRICAN TRIBAL/ANIMAL PRINT:

Prints with traditional African tribal symbols or with leopard, tiger, snake, zebra, or other safari-style prints.  Some cotton and some rayon. 

Care Instructions:

COTTON: machine washable, tumble dry low.
RAYON:

- Dry-cleaning is best option for cleaning, however some can handle a hand wash in lukewarm or cool water and mild soap.
- Do not wring or twist to dry, but rather shake or smooth out and place on a quality hanger to dry.
- For ironing, press on a cool setting if needed.