There is such a wide variety of African wax prints out there that you are bound to find a colour combination or pattern that is just for you. However, it can be tricky trying to choose a good quality wax print if it is not a fabric you are that familiar with, so we are giving a few pointers. 1 A good wax print will be 100% cotton. If you have the opportunity to buy in person, touch and feel the fabric. Wax prints typically have a crisp but soft handle which makes them both unique and ideal for garments that need some structure (think peplums and sharp collars etc). Nevertheless, try to avoid anything that is too stiff. Though wax prints do soften in the wash, some may not soften much more depending on the manufacturer. If you already have some that isn’t quite soft enough, try adding a little bit of fabric softener to the next wash, this sometimes helps. 2. Typically wax prints are sold in folded bundles of 6 yards or 12 yards. These bundles are usually folded in 1 yard folds. Wax prints on a roll tend to be a tell-tale sign of a cheaper quality fabric probably due to a completely different production method. 3. In a good quality wax print, the colours and patterns are usually almost as vivid on the ‘wrong side’ of the fabric as they are on the ‘right side’ of the fabric. If you cannot see the pattern at all, this will likely be a lower grade fabric and print. 4. The majority of wax prints in circulation are NOT made in African countries but in China, Korea, India and in many other countries. Yes, the history and origin of the prints is varied with Dutch and English manufacturers at the forefront of production and distribution dating back to the 1800s. However a lot of excellent quality wax prints were also produced in African countries and there are a few brands still doing so. If you would rather purchase an African wax print that is actually made in an African country then some brands to look out for are Akosombo Textiles, GTP, ABC Wax, Nichem, UNTL and Uniwax. They are great quality with a vast range of print designs. They are produced in Ghana, Nigeria, and Ivory Coast. Some of these are not so easy to come by as they are out of print or have reduced production capacity. This is something we will explore further on the blog in the near future but worth the extra time to find to purchase. 5. Finally, a not-so-obvious point is that manufacturers tend to present a bundle of fabric as a finished product. If you have purchased or seen a bundle, you will notice that it will have a manufacturers/ brand label on the front, which has details like where it is made, the fabric content, the length and so on, it will also have tabs at both ends of the fabric holding the folds in place. Finally it will have information on the selvedge, usually the brand name and country it is manufactured in. Sometimes this is in two languages. By the way, if you want to get rid of those labels, here is previous post with steps to remove them without damaging the fabric. So those are our tips! Do you have any you have picked up along the way and would like to share? Do drop a comment below.