Archive for June, 2012

African Wrapper (Wraps/Lapa/Iro/Kitenge)

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Some types of African Wrappers at Dupsie's

African wrappers are relatively long and wide pieces of fabric wrapped around the waist or chest. Some also wrap them around the neck. They can be worn either to formal occasions or casual events. Depending on what country you are in Africa, the terminology may be different. Kitenge in kenya, Iro/Wrapper in Nigeria, Lapa in Liberia and more.  African wrappers come in different fabrics. They come in:

Brocade – Brocade is a 100 % cotton fabric with patterns in the fabric. They usually come starched and have a sheen.

African Print – African Print fabrics are mostly 100% cotton. The fabrics can range from Bold designs/patterns to simple patterns. There are also several textures of African Print: Wax, Super Wax, Tie Dye, Batik and more. African print fabrics have found their way into fashion houses to make dresses, ties, pants, shirts and more. They are also often used for decor.

Aso Oke – Aso Oke, pronunced, Ah-Shaw-Okay, Aso “clothing” , Oke “Elite” Aso Oke is a jean like material. It is a hand made fabric. It is woven on a loom with both hands and feet using generally silk and Net threads. There are several other types of threads used to make Aso Oke. For instance, Damask Aso Oke is made with a mixture of several types of threads. Damask Aso Oke is commonly used at Weddings or very special events. Aso Oke Wrappers are common amongst the Yorubas, one of the major tribes in Nigeria.

Lace – is a heavily patterned (embroidered) fabric sometimes with open holes made by hand or machine. They very often have rhinestones (glittery stones) or Sequins (Glittery circular discs tied together with strings. The background of the Lace fabrics can be Voile (100% cotton, soft feel), Organza (silk like but a little more stiff), Poly-Voile (relatively rough fabric), Net and more.This fabric is common amongst Nigerians (Nigeria is a country in West Africa)

George – is a fabric with patterns in intervals. The fabric is mostly plain. This fabric is common amongst the Igbo Tribe in Nigeria.

Kente – Kente is a handwoven material. The process is very similar to the process of making Aso Oke. It is know as Nwentoma in Ghana. Kente is a popular traditional cloth made in Ghana with Silk and cotton threads. It is very common amongst the Ewe people of Ghana. Kente Cloth is worn at times of extreme importance in Ghana. Kente Print is an imitation of Kente Cloth and is much cheaper.

There are several other types of African Wrappers not mentioned in this article. However, many of the types of wrappers not listed above fall into one of the first four categories above.

African wrappers are also very often used to secure infants at the back of adults.The wrapper is tied over the back of the infant and around the chest of the adult and secured by folding the ends of the wrapper that overlaps over the chest of the adult.

African Wrappers are very common across rural areas as well as urban areas in Africa.

Click here to see some more African Wrappers

Take a look at the video below. It shows you a couple of ways on how to tie an African Wrapper.

Mud Cloth (Bògòlanfini)

Monday, June 18th, 2012

Some Designs in Mud Cloth for Ladies

Mud Cloth is the official traditional clothing in Mali. Mali is a french speaking country in Western Africa. Mali’s flag consists of three connected vertical rectangles with colors – Green ,Gold and Red respectively. Mali’s population is about 14.5 Million. Mali’s weather is dry and hot from February to about June, rainy and humid from June to about November and cool from November to sometime in February.

Mud Cloth is a traditional hand-made dyed Malian cotton fabric made out of fermented mud. Mud cloth is also known as “Bògòlanfini” (some also call it Bògòlan). Bògòlanfini simply means “mud as cloth”. Mud Cloth fabrics usually have intricate painted symbols or patterns on them. While some of the symbols/designs are abstract, most of them have significant meanings. Mud cloth feels like a “Jean” fabric. However, it has a dusty feel to it which is an easy way to identify its authenticity. The smell of the dye is also evident before laundering. Mud cloth can be worn both in the summer and in the winter. Mud Cloth weighs relatively heavier than a regular cotton fabric.

Mud Cloth is very often used by hunters as a camouflage because of its near earth appearance. It is also used to wrap children up at birth, at special events and more.

Mud Cloth Dashiki and Robe

Andinkra Symbols are very common symbols on Mud Cloth. Andinkra are Ghanian (Ghana is a country in West Africa) symbols.  Mud Cloth is widely used around the world in fashion houses, upholstery, decor and more. Mud Cloth are most commonly used to make Jalabiyas (Long Robes) Dashikis, Dresses, shawls, hats, bags and more.

Click here to see more Mud Cloth Designs


Happy Father’s Day

Saturday, June 16th, 2012

An African Father and his daughters

It’s that time of the year we appreciate our Fathers all around the globe. It is impossible to duplicate the bond between Fathers and their children as well as their spouses. The role of a Father is to cater, protect, and be a role model to his family.

In light of this, we want to say a big “THANK YOU” to all Fathers out there playing their roles. We pray God gives them the strength, health and the blessings to continue to play their roles as Fathers. For the Fathers that are no longer with us, may your souls rest in perfect peace. We appreciate all the teachings and the leadership.

Again, Happy Father’s Day from Dupsie’s.

Click here to see specials

African Clothing

Friday, June 15th, 2012

African clothing and African attire have come a long way. There is a wide array of various different African clothing and these come in different styles, colors, design and materials. There are clothing for women, clothing for men as well as suitable clothing for kids. The clothing are designed to suit various occasions and functions, such as formal wear for formal occasions, casual everyday wear and even exotic African wear. There are plenty of accessories as well, such as head wraps (Gele), belts, caps, hats, African shoes, bangles, bags and many more.

There are a good number of able, respected and experienced African wear designers. They have learnt to blend traditional African attire with modern trends and materials. Most African designers use traditional African prints, designs, batiks, patterns and many others. Most of these were usually hand sewn without the use of modern machines to put them together. However, modern African clothing often use modern machines and designs to come up with the attire. Designers of official, authentic African wear are now attending design schools in order to develop and generate even better quality clothing.

When looking for suitable African attire, it is best to consult some of the renowned names in the industry. It is also good and advisable to search for authentic African wear for certain occasions. Most customers around the world love African attire for general and official functions. Others love African attire for their elaborate weddings with exquisite African clothing designs for bridal parties (Aso Ebi)

. African Clothing features prominently at African Weddings, not just in Africa but across various African communities around the world. Weddings are usually great social events and are a major forum for display of fashion, accessories and great clothing designs. There are also great African jewelry that adorn African wear. African jewelry has vast origins, with the jewelry originating from most parts of Africa. Fashion may also vary from the East to the West, north and south.

Couples or families that intend to host an African wedding may benefit from using great, modern African wear for the occasion. The entire ceremony may come with an African theme. This may be expressed in the food, decor, style and theme of the entire wedding. There are African clothing consultants and African fashion designers who can provide invaluable advice to the interested parties. Official African events, especially overseas but on the continent as well, can be graced by an unofficial African wear that attendants can wear. Attendants can choose varying African clothing for various occasions.