May 24 2017

Preparing for
New York


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Standing at the intersection between product, textile, and fashion design; as well as digital manufacturing, anthropological research and art, Digital Wax Print explores the relationship between digital fabrication and the manual technique of wax resist textile

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Jun 03 2017

Alphabet


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Vlisco production Number — 14/0017 Year of production — 1920 Education is a highly valued commodity in Africa. People wear this design to indicate that they went to school and know how to read and write. They also attach importance to a good education for their children, and they set aside money to provide

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Jun 15 2017

Pagne


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'Pagne cloth constitutes a form of archive, where intimate memories are stored, held in reserve, and always ready to be reanimated with life, story, and sensuous materiality. The cloth as archive can also absorb national memories in its capacity to record events and global connections that forge national identity.' Read more about it

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Jun 03 2017

Hand and Fingers


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Education often crops up in conjunction with other more traditional African themes. A pattern called Hands and Fingers shows the upturned palm of a hand surrounded by rows of detached fingers, with the hand holding twelve pennies. This design is very old, with some sources dating it as far back as 1895, and has been available in various forms from several companies ever since. The education theme is expressed by the twelve pennies, which make up one shilling. In Africa, or for that matter anywhere, what could be more educational than how to add up your pennies? Digging deeper into the Hands and Fingers design we find another universal theme: interdependence. This theme works on multiple levels, from the national and tribe all the way down to the village, the compound and the family. Just as the hand is useless without the fingers, the ruler or village elder cannot function without the support of the

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Jun 02 2017

Long live the…


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In addition to elections and revolutions, commemorative prints have celebrated all sorts of events: births and deaths; birthdays and anniversaries; pop concerts and sporting events; and presidential, royal and papal visits. Cloths have been commissioned and printed for chiefs and dignitaries, governments and NGOs, schools and colleges, companies and trade unions, missions and

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Jun 03 2017

Dice


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Vlisco production number — 14/0575 Production date — 1933 Given names — Ludoking/Dice/le petit dé (Ivory Coast)/Kpékui (Small Stones, Togo) Dice symbolise the importance of making a good plan, reflected in the organisation of the

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Jun 03 2017

Onion Chips
/ Eye of My Rival


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The design represents eyes that are red with tears. Its official name is Onion Chips, but its alternative name is more appropriate: Eye of My

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May 17 2017

14/0663


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Vlisco production number — 14/0663 Production date — 1936 Given names — Record/Plaque-plaque/Nsu Bura (water well, Ghana)/Target Consulaire Gbédjégan (Traditional King’s hat, Togo) This motif is derived from the tie-dye technique and is popular in Mali. This circle motif is copied exactly as it is used by Western fashion and textiles to express an African idiom. More info on this

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