Author Archives: dolapo

Anne in Urbanstax

The lovely Anne bought the Nigerian Mulitcoloured Batik from us at the Festival of Quilts earlier this year. Check out out her gorgeous dress. I think it makes a simple yet stylish outfit which can be worn quite formally. You can definitely wear this to work!

What I find particularly interesting is that a lot of people are worried about distinct patterns often present in African batiks and print and about pattern matching in order to achieve a nice professional finish to their garments. Anne executed this quite well and even though the pattern is bold, it lends itself well to the style she has chosen.

Thanks so much for sending us your picture!

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At shows and events where I have Aso-oke on display, I often get asked what exactly it is and what it is used for. A lot of people are often surprised that it is used for clothing and this is understandable as the textile is thick and weighty.

U.Mi-1 (pronounced is a fashion label which has a new menswear collection called ‘The Revellers’. The collection incorporates this beautiful textile wonderfully. This is what they say about the collection.

“The Revellers is the third and final instalment celebrating the Yoruba -the southwest people of Nigeria. It is inspired by the Aso-Oke, a 15cm-width hand-loomed traditional regal cloth worn at festivals and important events. Reminiscent of the dandies from the 30’s jazz era, equally famed for their party revelry, the spirit of summer is seen through voluminous jackets and high-waisted trousers made from strips of fabric that colourful lining peak through. We invite you to experience the Yoruba’s spirit of lightness, optimism and frivolity”.

Here are a few of my favourite pieces from their collection but be sure to check out The Revellers to see more.


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This fun yet versatile Butterfly print is our fabric of the week. It is produced in Nigeria on 100% cotton and features an abstract butterfly print, available in three colourways. The main colour of all three versions is navy blue but each has a slightly different background and highlight colour.

All are available to purchase by the yard by clicking on the images below.

I have made a simple tunic dress from the version with the cream background and it has turned out quite nicely. Easy to wear as a dress in the summer and great for layering with leggings or jeans in the colder weather!

What sewing ideas do you have for an abstract butterfly print?


Butterfly Print Ankara

Butterfly Print Ankara

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Selected looks from the Stella McCartney SS18 Collection. Amongst a larger collection of easy, slightly oversized and floaty pieces, the collection included these colourful African Print looks. It is interesting to see Ankara being used on the catwalk in a more mainstream way with the two Stella’s taking it to the catwalk.

Yes it is bright and colourful. Yes it is is bold. That is what makes Ankara fabric fun and vibrant to design and to wear. You don’t always have to make a statement but when you do, make it a big one!


Stella McCartney SS18

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Knitting and Stitching Show, Alexander Palace

Join us from the 11th to the 15th of October 2017 at The Knitting and Stitching Show in Alexander Palace.

Urbanstax will be at Stand RCH7 with our bright African prints and handmade Batik fabric. So do come and say hello.

As usual, we have a few free tickets to give away, so if you are interested in attending, get in touch via email so we can post them to you. Kindly note that the tickets are valid on all days except Saturday and Thursday morning.

We will send out one ticket per email received on a first come, first served basis. See you there!


Featured Image: Olalekan Jeyifous, Lagos Makoko Canal, 2015, C-print on Dibond, 60 x 40 cm. Courtesy 50 Golborne  

1:54 is an international art fair dedicated to contemporary African art. It is back in London for the fifth edition and runs from the 5th to the 8th of October 2017.

The Art Fair takes place at Somerset House each October and showcases over 150 contemporary artists from Africa and the African diaspora.

Drawing reference to the fifty-four countries that constitute the African continent, 1:54 is a sustainable and dynamic platform that is engaged in contemporary dialogue and exchange.

I went to the 2nd edition of the fair and I didn’t want to leave. There was so much to see with such interesting and varied art work. This comes highly recommended and maybe one day I will be able to purchase one or two pieces.


  • Venue: Somerset House, South Wing, Strand, London WC2R 1LA
  • Dates: 5th to 8th October, 2017
  • Book Tickets: from Eventbrite
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The Alako Archives- Adura Ogunleye

Adura Ogunleye is a creative entrepreneur who blogs about her views on fashion, lifestyle and business on the Alako Archive. She has created this gorgeous look which includes a print vest from our Hand Motif Ankara and skirt from our Green Adire tie-dye. Gorgeous!

I love the mix of  colours and motifs and the layering. I don’t really need many words. The images speak beautifully. Check out more on

The Alako Archives

The Alako Archives- Adura Ogunleye

The Alako Archives


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Great British Sewing Bee Live- Free Tickets

The Great British Sewing Bee LIVE is an event for anyone with a love of dressmaking, textiles, fashion and tailoring whatever level you are. The show hosts hundreds of workshops, demonstrations, fashion galleries, catwalk shows, drop in clinics and a celebrity super theatre, as well as over 200 exhibitors selling specialist dressmaking and textile supplies. Spend a day re-stocking your material stash, learning to sew, master the art of dressmaking, see the judges and contestants from the TV programme plus so much more.

Urbanstax will be there on Stand E21 with our Ankara prints and batiks so come and find us! The show is in just 3 weeks and we have  a load of free tickets to giveaway so you must come!

Join us from the 21st to the 24th of September 2017 at London’s Excel Centre.

We have 5 free tickets (for Thursday 21st and Friday 22nd) to give away, each one allows you to take a friend. So just leave a comment to enter. For more chances to win, see below!

Open to participants in the UK only. We will choose winners at random at midnight GMT on the 14th of September. Winners will be announced here.

Great British Sewing Bee Live- Free Tickets

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Teal and Orange Ankara

There are some of our favourite fabric designs which come in different colourways. The Crevettes print is one of them.

When I first came across the Teal and Orange version of this fabric design, I thought the abstract design resembled swimming sea creatures of some description. I was amused and not too surprised when I found out that the design is sometimes referred to as ‘Crevettes’ which is shrimp in french!

Each colour combination looks so different just with the change of colour. I think my favourite versions are the Brown and Green and the very unique Teal and Orange which just pops. What is your favourite?

Look What They Made- Astrid

From our ‘Look What They Made!’ gallery, the lovely Astrid made her version into a gorgeous maxi skirt. Be sure to send in your creations so we can share your creativity. You also get a special discount code when you. Win-win!

All versions are available to purchase by the yard by clicking on the images below.

Have a great weekend.

Burnt orange and purple African wax print

Yellow and Blue Ankara

Teal and Orange Ankara

Green and Brown Ankara

Pink Ankara


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at the festival of quilts 2017

I am feeling so proud of the Urbanstax stand at the Festival of Quilts 2017. We have met such wonderful and interesting, not to mention, creative people and we are looking forward to meeting more. We are there over this weekend; the 12th and 13th of August, so stop by if you are in Birmingham for the event. We are on Stand G20!

Urbanstax at the festival of quilts 2017

Urbanstax at the festival of quilts 2017



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