29 Jan African Waxed Cotton Challenge
What’s better than a little black dress?…… A little black dress with a big colorful wrap!
This month several members of The Mood Sewing Network are sewing African Waxed Cotton. I enthusiastically agreed to the challenge having never sewn this fabric before, and when my six-yard piece of Spectra Green Waxed Cotton African Print with Gold Metallic Foil arrived from Mood Fabrics I wanted to use every inch of this luscious metallic textile.Big wraps are such luxury accessories! It took me a while to learn how to wear wraps, but now that I know what to do with them I truly value these versatile pieces. When folded in half the wrap is quite manageable and just large enough to warm the shoulders,
but one flick of the wrist, and the beautiful shimmer of this garment is revealed in full.
I chose McCall’s 3880 from my stash (a discontinued pattern but available on Etsy, Ebay and many other sites),and sewed View D with the 360 inch bias cut ruffle.
I sew ruffles quite often, but could not have sewn one this large without my Ruffler attachment which evenly gathered the entire ruffle in less than 10 minutes.
Because view D is a lined variation I was able to sew a reversible wrap by placing right sides together after attaching the ruffle. Waxed prints are very easy to work with. My one cautionary step was using a press cloth when pressing the metallic side up.
Note how the ‘wrong’ side resembles broadcloth (below).
“The wax prints are part of a nonverbal way of communication among African women, and hereby they carry their message out into the world. Some wax prints can be named after personalities, cities, building, sayings or occasions. The producer, name of the product and registration number of the design is printed on the selvage, protecting the design and allowing reading the quality of the fabric. The wax fabrics constitute capital goods for the African women. Therefore, they are collected depending on the financial possibilities.”
I do not know the message or meaning behind my print but I am happy to pass it along by way of wearing the symbols and design.
Click here to learn more about the fascinating story of African Waxed Cotton.
So here I am wearing what I originally thought was just another piece of fabric, only to be reminded of a deeper meaning connecting women around the world. I encourage you to visit Mood Fabrics’ selection featuring many more patterns, and make your own statement with these unique designs!
All the best 🙂