Other African Fabrics and Textiles

Besides Kente Cloth, there are various other types of African Frabrics and Textiles.  These cloths are generally hand made and require a lot of patience and creativity. Below are some other creative and beautiful types of fabric from Africa you will love:

Kente Lesson Plan for Kids

To teach children about Kente cloth:

  1. First, explain to them what the different colors of Kente cloth symbolize.
  2. Next explain to them what the different patterns mean.
  3. Write down these meanings on the blackboard so that they can remember.
  4. Now provide them with crayons and paper and ask them to draw the kente cloth they would like to wear (this will help them internalize the meaning of the colors and symbols and relate it to their own lives).
  5. Have them show the class the Kente cloth they have designed and explain the meaning of the different colors and symbols they have chosen and why they chose them.
  6. You may want to display their Kente Cloth Art around the classroom or around the blackboard as a border.

Alternatively, you may print out a free Kente Cloth Coloring Book for children to use in creating their own Kente Cloth.

kente1 Kente Lesson Plan for Kidskente2 Kente Lesson Plan for Kids kente3 Kente Lesson Plan for Kids

How to Wear Kente Cloth

Kente cloth was traditionally worn by royalty however in modern times they are worn by everyday people for special events such as weddings, naming ceremonies or funerals. Determining what kind of Kente cloth to wear depends on the event as the colors and weave patterns have meanings. First determine the message you would like to send by your choice of color and pattern and make sure it is appropriate for the event. Once you have decided on the cloth, follow these steps to wear it in the traditional manner.

How to wear Kente Cloth:

MEN (wrap as you would a Toga if the below is too complicated for you)

  1. Put yourself in the middle of the kente cloth by holding opposite ends of the cloth in each hand, with the cloth behind you, adjacent to your back.
  2. Drape the left end of the cloth over your left shoulder. The extra fabric will end up hanging on the inside.
  3. Enfold the fabric from the right side underneath the arm and across the body and place it over your left shoulder.
  4. Take the cloth that is covering the left arm and place it over the cloth on the left shoulder so both arms are now exposed and the bulk of the cloth is lying on the left shoulder. (Wrapping is quite similar to a toga style)
king How to Wear Kente Cloth
chief wearing kente
Kente-for-three-presidents-300x239 How to Wear Kente Cloth
presidents wearing kente

WOMEN

  1. Wrap the Kente Cloth around the body, underneath the arms (exposing the shoulders) and at waist or breast level. Coordinate with a solid colored blouse. You may also wrap Kente around the shoulders to wear as a shawl.
kentewomen-300x200 How to Wear Kente Cloth
women wearing kente
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