Bogolan

The Bogolan textile is indigenous to Mali, where it has been made and worn for generations, it is a handmade cotton fabric, traditionally dyed with fermented mud. Originally in the bògòlanfini production, men weave the cloth and women dye it. The weave of the cloth is normally about 6inches wide, so many of the cloths that we purchase are strips that have been stitched together. Making the bogolan requires knowledge of the technical aspects and also a mastery of the cloth’s many symbols. The recent rise in bogolan’s popularity has changed the lives of some of the women who have these skills, who now sell cloth to art collectors and teach aspiring bogolan artists.

Bògòlanfini is worn by hunters and serves as camouflage, ritual protection and a badge of status. Women are wrapped in bògòlanfini after their initiation into adulthood (which includes genital cutting) and immediately after childbirth, as the cloth is believed to have the power to absorb the dangerous forces released under such circumstances.

In North America, this textile is marketed as “mud cloth.” and you’ll see it is used for a wide variety of products as the cloth particularly appealing to contemporary artists and designers.

We love the Bogolan for its meaning, its story, its origin and that it is only hand made on the African continent.

Fishing Net

For our bags we couple the bogolan material with a fishing net. The two complement each other beautifully.

We resource our fishing nets deep in the backend of the market. Where some guys try and make a living out of selling old, worn-out pieces.

We love to climb onto the smelly piles to find beautiful ‘rest pieces’.

At home, we wash the net and then bring it to our tailor Mohamed. He upcycles it into a bag with the Bogolan – to give it a new life at home with you.

Who would have ever thought – what once caught fish in the deep ocean, will now carry your goods through the day?

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