In my last two fashion posts, I've shown some of the designs coming out of South African designers. Like most designers worldwide, these are heavily influenced by the fashion world of New York, Milan and Paris. For this post, I want to swing things around and look at some fabric coming out of West and Central Africa. I basically love this stuff! When I was in Maputo in December, my friend and I came across a fabric shop called Casa Elefante and basically went nuts! I literally have tons of fabric sitting underneath her desk in Nairobi (they don't do me much good here in Sudan) waiting to be made into some nice dresses and skirts. I really need to head west to places like Nigeria for the experts to work their magic!
Anyway, there is this company called Vlisco. Based in the Netherlands, this company has been in the African fabric business since 1847 (way back in colonial times) and have shops in Togo, Benin, the Netherlands, and soon Nigeria. Below of some images reflecting some of the designs that these beautiful fabrics can be shaped into: