So most of you know, that I’m not really an Indian, I’ve actually got some Kenyan to my equation! Not too long ago I was born in Kenya!! And spent a good half to my childhood there, it was a magical childhood, filled with good memories!! I rarely go back home now, but nevertheless still love everything about Kenya. I grew up in the sea side town of Mombasa. Growing up I didn’t know I would be working with textiles, but I remember thinking that the colorful fabrics that the locals adorned were really quirky and interesting. So today I take you back to a little fragment of my childhood memories… the kanga!!
Kanga’s are the traditional clothing for East African women, with slight modifications from each region. The kanga is a rectangular piece of cotton, which comes in all colors and patterns, all vibrant. Most kanga’s come with a proverb at the bottom, depicting anything from political to spiritual thoughts. Over the years the kanga has evolved from its traditional style to modern patterns. The Kanga collection has some interesting takes on the kanga fabric.
I thought it would be interesting to see how Kenyan textiles have been incorporated in the fashion scene, and how its fairing up in the retail market. I think that the one brand that has managed to achieve this, is Suno, run by Max Osterweis. His frequent travels to Kenya and years of collecting kangas, inspired the look for his brand. Most of the production is carried out in Kenya and the pattern cutting in NY. I love his cuts and their just so pretty! Perfect for a day at the beach or a sunny day!! I love his photoshoots on his site.