History on African Ankara Fabric.


African Ankara Fabric/Cloth commonly known as Dutch Wax or Holland Wax originated in Indonesia. Initially the fabric was produced by the Dutch in the Indonesian Textile Market. The fabric is created through a dyeing process called Batik. Batik is a technique of wax-resist dyeing. See video of Batik Batik technique of wax-resist dyeing - YouTube

 The Ankara fabric was made popular is West African Countries after the Dutch realized the demand for the fabric was higher in West African than in the Indonesian market. The fabric became so popular it started to make its way into the African Fashion industry. 

Prior to around 2010-2020 Ankara was commonly known as strictly native attire. The Fabric soon became known for its vibrant, colorful designs that signified the culture and tradition of African people. Through each print, pattern and color there’s a story. The colors, the pattern each represents a symbol of the people. For example, some people wear the fabric as “asoebi” for special occasions such as weddings, birthdays, baby naming ceremony and others occasions . Asoebi is a Nigerian word meaning “Clothes of the family". See photos below. 

Photocredit: Klala Photography

The Ankara fabric is a 100% cotton and is commonly sold in 6- or 12-yards quantity. Fabric companies prints serial or registration numbers on the selvage to protect the design and show the quality of the fabric. It is so versatile it is used to craft different accessories such as headwraps, earrings, bracelets, hats, and different type of clothing.

With the development of technology and the growing buzz of social media the fabric has gained international acceptance and is worn by celebrities and many different people in the world.

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Nell'z Closet Brooklyn, Do not own/claim copyrights to any photo,video or media used in this Article. 


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