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Adire: The Love Affair Between Art And Fashion

Adire in Yoruba means tie and dye. According to Nike Art Gallery, it is a traditional Yoruba hand painted cloth on which patterns are made by tying and stitching with raffia or cotton thread, or by using chicken feathers to paint cassava paste on the cloth which then acts as a resist dye, much like the wax method used on the batiks.

Way back then, Adire was worn by women as wrappers. It then evolved into men’s shirts in the mid 1960’s when the V&A ( Museum of art and design) were buying adire textiles. Its success was short-lived and was succeeded by other forms of resist-dyeing such as ‘kampala’.


Today, this beautiful work of art that comes in diverse forms has found its way back into the market and promises to stay for a long while. With the intricate details, artistic nature and cultural background of the fabric, the love affair between art and fashion continues to burn.


Recently we have the fabric being worn by the likes of Nike Davies Okundaye, Michelle Obama, Lupita Nyong’o, Tostos and Adekunle Gold (the poster boy for adire, and finds new ways to rock the fabric). Designers such as Orange Culture, Amede, JZO Fashion, Tzar and many more are constantly incorporating this unique fabric into their collections as well.


To divert from the normal, try investing in an adire fabric or try making one yourself.




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