African Real Wax Cotton Fabric

pagne wax african real wax cotton fabric

African Real Wax Cotton Fabric

Although it is often referred to as wax print fabric, the fabrics do not actually contain a stiff wax layer. Instead, the term comes from the coloring process, which involves shielding certain parts of the fabric with a wax substance.

Nevertheless, the Dutch fabric is a cultural treasure in Africa. Its patterns and colors are embedded in local traditions, with many designs gaining nonverbal meanings and unique names.


African wax prints, known as pagne, are often used to convey social status and political allegiance. The designs on these fabrics can be printed with a person’s name, a popular song or slogan, a city or place of birth, or a particular occasion. Wearing a specific design pagne wax african real wax cotton fabric can also signal wealth, such as when a family owns a Mercedes-Benz or a home in a new neighborhood.

The bold printed cotton fabrics associated with West and Central Africa were developed in the 1800s by importing Indonesian batik techniques into the Dutch colonial era. These fabrics are a double-sided cotton that is dyed with block printing using giant engraved copper rollers and waxy resins. These cottons are sold to African women traders who pass back vital market and design information to the manufacturers.

The fabric is then sold in a range of sizes, from 6 to 12 yards (5.5 to 11 m). Its name and registration number are printed on the selvage edges. The fabric is often stiff when you first purchase it, but it will soften over time. You can soften it without the use of harsh chemicals by filling a sink with water and adding salt.

Tribal patterns

Often associated with African culture because of their unique patterns, designs and colours, the fabrics have become cultural treasures. They can reflect tribal origins, marriage traditions and even social status. They can also contain nonverbal messages and tell stories. For example, a pattern called Hibiscus or Topizo is accompanied by the saying “No hibiscus, no wedding.” Another design is referred to as Kofi Annan’s Brains because it was released on the day the former Secretary-General of the UN gave his last speech.

Despite the popularity of these African fabrics, it can be hard to distinguish between authentic wax print and Asian imitations. Inauthentic fabric is usually made of cheap, low-quality cotton that has been mixed with polyester to reduce cost. Authentic fabrics are made from 100% cotton and have a higher quality that can last for years. They are also softer than imitation fabrics and wash well. In addition, they are woven with a tight molecular arrangement and never generate static electricity. This is one of the reasons why they are more durable than polyester textiles.


The vibrant fabrics of Africa have caught the attention of the world. They are worn as clothing, head wraps, and bedding. In addition, they are used to decorate furniture and make banners. They have a distinctive cotton feel and crackling effect. They also have good thermoplasticity, and are water-resistant. The fabric also does not generate static electricity.

Originally introduced to West and Central Africa by Dutch traders, the colorful cotton wax prints are based on Indonesian batik techniques. They became a popular fashion item in the colonial era and were embraced by African women, who wore them to pagne wax african real wax cotton fabric communicate their social status and beliefs. The patterns quickly became a form of nonverbal communication, and many patterns were given catchy names.

Although the textiles are manufactured in Africa, they remain expensive to buy for local shoppers. The Anglo-Dutch company Vlisco sells its products under several brands, including Uniwax. The country’s association of small traders, FENACCI, claims that the company ruthlessly enforces anti-counterfeit measures to keep prices high. However, it is not clear whether these measures are effective.

Fabric quality

African wax print fabric (also known as Ankara and kitenge) is 100% cotton cloth with a variety of designs and colors. It was first produced in the Netherlands at the end of the 1800s when it was industrialized. The Dutch used block printing machines with giant engraved copper rollers to print patterns onto the cloth, which was then dyed. The resulting patterns displayed a crackling effect and were highly popular in Africa, where the textile became a major source of fashion for many women.

The fabrics, made by Vlisco Group in the Netherlands and Ivory Coast, are sold under the Uniwax, Woodin, and GTP brands. While they have enjoyed great popularity in West Africa, they face growing competition from Chinese producers. A local traders’ association, FENACCI, claims the companies are engaging in monopolistic marketplace abuses by imposing high prices for their fabrics.

The fabrics are used for men’s business shirts, jackets, head wraps and bedding. They are also used to make furniture, curtains, and banners. They come in various hand feels: real wax, cotton feel, and soft feeling.


The vibrant fabrics synonymous with West and Central Africa are the result of industrially-produced cotton cloths that have been printed with batik designs. They were first introduced to the region by West African soldiers serving in Indonesia in the 1800s, and then replicated in Europe, particularly by Dutch merchants. Today, the largest manufacturer of pagne is Vlisco, which continues to produce its popular fabrics in the Netherlands.

While the fabric is an important cultural treasure, it is increasingly being replaced by cheaper Chinese-produced alternatives. This is mainly due to a growing discontent over the high prices charged by Vlisco and its alleged monopolistic marketplace abuses.

Despite their popularity, the textiles remain expensive. However, the quality of these fabrics is high and they can be made into a wide variety of items. The most common use of pagne is for clothing. Its patterns and colours can reflect tribal traditions, marriage and social status. They are also used as a form of non-verbal communication by African women. In addition, a number of prints have been given unique names and stories over the years.

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