Fashion Magazine

THE CHITENGE- A GLAMOROUS FABRIC

 

THE CHITENGE- A GLAMOROUS FABRIC

From being a mere wrapper to gracing the international catwalks the chitenge has surely made its mark as a glamorous fabric and gained its place as a fashion icon. The chitenge deserves a big round of applause especially here in Zambia where historically it was just a piece of cloth that women generally used at home. This is the piece of fabric that maidens received as gifts from their mothers to be used for extra covering over a short skirt or dress. The chitenge has indeed changed its status in many ways; once it was just a baby carrier or a commoner that played the role of light sheet, bath robe or just a mat to sit on; the chitenge has now taken centre piece in Zambian design. Many designers will tell you that it is easy to work with and with the growth of the fabrics industry the chitenge blends and matches well with many type of material. The chitenge has different names across the continent and Zambia is a market for this fabric that hails mostly from East and West Africa where it is produced as wax or java.

Zambia’s fashion has evolved just as much as the chitenge itself. With a lot of influence from its former colonisers, Zambia’s fashion was mainly formal, plain and single colours of grey, white, light blue, navy blue, dark brown, dark green and black. The chitenge has come with a variation of colours and design. Men are able to pull off a formal wear with shirts made from the chitenge despite its multi-coloured prints. The womenfolk have extended the chitenge from just representing traditional wear to formal and casual wear.

If you haven’t caught on the chitenge fever yet, you better pimp up your wardrobe with an outfit or two of this bright and beautiful fabric. These days that is where the glamour lies.