Thursday, 21 November 2013

Wrapped in Style: KITENGE

I vividly remember growing up and seeing children being tied to their mothers back. It is still common practice for African children to be tied to their mothers back and I bet my mum tied me to her back.
In Africa, the industrious (hard working) nature of the mother cannot be over emphasized. It is also expected that as part of her duties, the child is taken care of. The African child is always close-by.
As an African child, you are on mother's back as she goes to the market, goes visiting, and sometimes pounding. I say kudos to African mothers and mothers all over the world.

Now you may ask, "How's Kitenge associated with the African child?" Kitenge is an African fabric worn by women, wrapped around the chest or used as a baby sling (i.e. used to tie a baby to its mothers back). The Kitenge is a plain weave; light-weight fabric which is high tensioned on wrap and has prints on both sides. The Kitenge design forms a continuous print pattern with no distinct border (they have edgings only on the long side).
Kitenge is worn in African countries such as Uganda, Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, and Zambia.
The Kitenge is inexpensive fabric that serves as a perfect informal piece. It often carries patterns with variety of colors and sometimes political or religious slogans.

In modern times, just like the Ankara fabric, the Kitenge fabric or material can be transformed into something gorgeous and breath-taking in the hands of a good fashion designer.


  1. Wow these are such cool and unique pieces! I especially love the skirt in the second to last photo!

    <(") Hoda

  2. Yes, it is so nice and off-the-hook.