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Ankara – Africa’s Global Uniform

Tuesday, October 30, 2018
by Orhue Webadmin

We were just as surprised as you’re about to be, to find out that although the Ankara Fabric is deeply rooted in the African culture, it originated in the Netherlands.

Initially known as Dutch Wax, the prints and key designs on this fabric was targeted at the Indonesian market, but quickly grew in popularity in West Africa. Recognizing our love for the vibrant fabric, the Dutch began to channel production towards the West African Market. To this day, brands like Da Viva, High Target and Vlisco are living proof of the Ankara’s Dutch origins.


Here are facts we’ve never bothered to note:

The Ankara fabric is often called “Holland wax”, African wax prints” “Ankara prints”, and “Dutch wax” .

It is a 100% cotton fabric with motifs and designs with a tribal aesthetic which is why it is often associated with Africa .

It is so adaptable that many accessories and pieces such shoes, earrings, blazers, bags and hats are made from it.


The event was created in 2010 with the sole aim of creating more visibility for the African Culture through dance, fashion, arts, food and music. Since the festival aims to showcase new-age and African designs in Ankara print, established and aspiring African designers alike showcase their skills, products and latest ideas. The African Invasion is another notable development that was coined as a collective name for the global rise of the Ankara trend. Varied and unique accessories are now being spotted in places where they were once deemed unsuitable.

Ankara is making its own way and creating a niche for itself in the minds of fashion lovers and fashion pioneers alike. Ankara is another non- African invention which we have claimed as ours and made world famous.


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