The UK Based Designers Experimenting with West African Textiles

“With the global demand for African art and music steadily rising, it is no surprise that design from around the continent is also making an impact. West African textiles, in particular, are beginning to appear in both the UK and US markets as the appetite for high-quality and sustainable products continues to grow on both sides of the Atlantic. In recent years African fabrics, with their hand made and low-impact origin, have been increasingly making their way into designer collections as well as high street shops.

“Young designers are experimenting with west African fabrics, and fashion designers like Matthew Williamson and Kenzo have launched collections using the material,” says Eva Sonaike (, a London-based designer of Nigerian heritage whose collection includes cushions (£75) and pouffes (£399), all covered in original fabric inspired by west African wax cloth. “I think it is part of a broader west African creative renaissance: the region’s design, music, fashion and films are attracting interest and drawing in people from all over the world.”

Retailers are also sitting up and taking notice. London boutique Darkroom ( has launched African collections, including cushions made of Ghanaian fabric, and high street retailer Habitat ( is set to launch a textile collection with Malian-made designs in September. . .”

The Financial Times has the full story.


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Founded in 2007, Ladybrille® Magazine is a California based pioneer digital publication demystifying the image of Africans in the west through contemporary African fashion and celebrating the brilliant woman in business and leadership, with an emphasis on the African woman in the diaspora. Our coverage includes stories on capital, access to markets, expertise, hiring and retention, sales, marketing, and promotions.

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