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Luxurious Tasselled Silk Masquerade Clutch Collection by Textile Designer Banke Kuku

Landing on Banke Kuku’s gorgeous website is like entering a tropical paradise. The vibrant colours, the patterns, the textures are just mesmerising. Honing in on her Masquerade Collection of tasselled clutch bags Banke has taken her brand’s signature silk prints and woven together strips of the fabrics to form the bags, which are then finished off with a playful complementary string of tassels.

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Chic Contemporary Batik Cushion Collection by Tonga Textiles

I am loving this chic collection of contemporary batik cushions on Mbare, whom I have featured previously. Created by Tonga Textiles a Zimbabwean textile company the collection features stylized geometric shapes and patterns in a modern colour palette. Created from 100% cotton the designs are produced using a resist painted dye technique. Sadza* is used to hand paint the patterns on the fabric, which is left to dry. Once dry paint is applied and then the fabric is baked in an oven to fix the colours. Once dried the sadza is removed revealing the finished textiles. The mix and match […]

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Duro Olowu’s Vibrant Patterned Textile Collection For Soane Britain

Fashion designer Duro Olowu has designed a textile collection for furniture brand Soane Britain. The collection sees Olowu’s signature style of colourful clashing patterns meet the furniture maker’s quintessential English sensibility. The collection came about after Olowu posted a picture of the Soane Britain storefront on his Instagram page. Founder Lulu Lytle saw it and reach out, beginning a conversation that uncovered a mutual interest in a love of pattern, deep respect for craftsmanship, and brought forth similar ideas for a textile range.

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The Elaborate Ancient Craftsmanship Of Handmade Batik Textiles

Batik is an ancient textile production technique with roots in Indonesia. In Africa batik has a long history and is still used today to produce local textiles with techniques that have been passed down from generation to generation usually mother to daughter. The Creation of Handmade Batik In Ghana is a fascinating visual essay that takes the viewer through the elaborate process. Part of a Google Arts and Culture feature the story was documented by Rahmée, founder of The Justine Project who travelled to Ghana to the Accra studio of Kwame a local batik artist who took her through the […]

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Skinny laMinx Fabrics Take You To The SunnySide

South African textile brand Skinny laMinx turns up the heat with their latest collection. The SunnySide is a feelgood collection that encourages us to bring a little sunshine and positive energy into our everyday lives. The collection of dining and kitchen textiles features bold patterns and colour prints in the Skinny laMinx signature style, which blends midcentury style, pattern and colour, with African chic.

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7 Designers and Artists Inspired by Scarification

Contemporary African designers and artists inspired by scarification and referencing the ancient African tradition in their work. Scarification is the process of superficially cutting, scratching, etching or burning permanent designs into the skin. This form of body decoration is a practice common to West Africa where for centuries the resultant markings expressed a form of unspoken communication such as rank, tribe, beauty, and strength. Patterns in the form of scars would range from simple markings to those more elaborate and intricate adorning the face, chest, torso arms and legs. Scarification is not for the faint-hearted, undergoing the practice was said […]

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9 Designers Crafting A Well Made In Africa Aesthetic

Atelier Fifty Five spotlights the work of 9 dynamic designers whose innovative use of Africa’s diverse craft heritages is translated into modern sophisticated products for contemporary living. And in doing so are upholding the banner of Well Made In Africa. Re-imagining techniques and materials these designers are paying homage to the skill of making things by hand thereby recognising how craft is at the heart of true luxury.

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Tribal Textiles Zambia x PATTERNITY A Modern Approach To The Traditional Batik Fabric Technique

PATTERNITY is a London design and research studio that was founded on a love of pattern, how patterns are all around us in everyday life and sharing that with the world. The studio brings ideas, people and perspectives together. The studio has collaborated with Zambian textile company Tribal Textiles, who invited founders to visit their studio in Zambian to create a handmade homewares collection based on the company’s batik fabric technique.

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Seven Inspiring Modern African Design Collaborations

Collaboration is a powerful thing, the meeting of ideas to create new ones and at times offering up unexpected viewpoints. Collaboration offers those involved a chance to learn, pick up new skills and show off each other’s skills at their best. And in this spirit I have rounded up seven inspiring modern African design collaborations that have come together over the years:

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AMWA Designs Patterned Textiles Bring A Touch of African Wisdom to a Corporate Restaurant

On Friday 8th March I got to unveil the new look atelier 55 to a group of exceptional African women entrepreneurs. Organised by Lionesses of Africa the Lioness Lean In London event was held in partnership with and at the offices of top-tier law firm Hogan Lovells. Being a breakfast event it was an early start, but it was great to catch up with familiar faces, make new connections, and to hear the stories of some truly inspirational creative women. Most of all it was a celebratory event of laughter, some emotional tears, exchanging thoughts, and lots of head-nodding. Among […]

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Dedani collection

It’s cold here at the moment, and when the temps dip towards the minus figures, it’s all I can do not to spend the days hibernating, drinking tea and snuggled under a blanket for some much-needed warmth. The cosy cashmere and wool blend blankets from Dedani Collection would be perfect allowing me to hibernate in style. Dedani Collection is a South African textiles brand that is creating handcrafted interior and fashion textiles from luxurious natural fibres. 

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Pino Nord’s Bold Afro Scandi Graphic Black and White Prints Made In Kenya

Bold graphic black and white prints with a distinctive Afro-Scandi aesthetic characterise the designs of Pino Nord, a design lifestyle company based in Nairobi, Kenya. Pino Nord draws on the minimalism of Scandinavian design, and fuses this with the vibrancy, boldness and artistic expression of daily life in Nairobi, and from this fusion comes a style that Pino Nord calls Tropical Minimalism.

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Nzuri Textiles Weaving a Brand of Sustainable Luxury

  Nzuri is an ethically conscious luxury textiles brand that is immersed in ancient hand weaving traditions from around the world. The brand, founded in 2013 by Eno Jonah, is driven by an ethos to preserve traditional craftsmanship, cultural heritage, and the integrity of small industries.  And is inspired by a love of travel, which enabled Eno to learn about the beauty, and value of textiles in different cultures across Africa, Latin America, and Asia.

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Eva Sonaike’s Tips On Decorating With African Fabric

African textiles offer a fascinating array of colours, patterns, and textures that can instantly transform an interior. But with so much on offer, it can sometimes be difficult to know where to start especially for those of you who may be unfamiliar with the fabrics. So to help you get started we caught up with London based textile and interior furnishings designer, Eva Sonaike for her tips on decorating with African textiles. And here is what she had to say…

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Graham and Green Chic African Print and Velvet Cocktail Chairs

Currently crushing on these gorgeous Cocktail chairs from UK retailer Graham and Green. The chairs are upholstered in the front with sumptuous jewel-toned velvets in yellow and teal, and each colourway paired with a complementary intricately patterned African print wax textile to the back. The result is classic design with modern appeal. Cocktail chairs are a 1950s mid-century design classic, sought after for their simple yet chic silhouettes. The chairs make great accent pieces in living spaces, and these will be ideal for those looking to incorporate some Afro-chic interior inspiration.

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Kheyameya Textile Project Celebrates The Ancient Art Of Egyptian Appliqué

The ancient art of Egyptian appliqué has inspired a textile project called Kheyameya. Kheyameya refers to the intricately stitched textiles made by the legendary Tentmakers of Cairo, highly skilled artists who for centuries have created appliqué textiles that were traditionally used to line the interior of tents. As time has passed the number of artists has dwindled and the Khayameya produced today are mainly for home furnishings or wall hangings for the tourist market.

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Design: Designer Ifeanyi Oganwu and Artist Pheobe Boswell Collaborate with Toghal Textiles

Dotted around the lounge at 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair was a collection of colourful, contemporary seating by product designer Ifeanyi Oganwu, African inspired textiles design brand Toghal and jewellery designer Artist Phoebe Boswell. Ifeanyi was approached by Dayo Forster, Toghal’s founder to create a seating structure on which to present their cylindrical bolster cushions.

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