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Batik fabric from Ghana

Updated: Mar 8, 2021

This week I have been making just the top pattern of the Calvin Wrap Dress by TrueBias. I chose a fabric I bought probably 11-13 years ago while I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ghana. I have been saving it for something, but I didn't know what! It is batik fabric (learn more about batik making from Global Mamas - a fair trade organization in Ghana) with an Adinkra symbol which I cannot find the meaning of. I think it may be a version of Mmomudwan which means unity or togetherness.

I just love this fabric. It's not the type of colors I would have typically picked out and I'm honestly not sure if I did pick it out or if someone gave it to me. Now I'm excited to make it into something that I can wear. And it feels good that the fabric is not one I just picked up at Walmart down the street, but is linked to a memory of a time I cherish.

You can see in the photo that when I cut the pattern from the fabric, I had folded the fabric over on itself in order to cut two of the front shirt pattern and two of the back shirt pattern. That caused the left hand side of the shirt to have the Adinkra symbol facing down, whereas on the right hand side the symbol is facing up (or at least what I think is up). I was a little disappointed in myself, but then I snapped out of it and reminded myself that this is the first time working with a pattern like this! I've learned that when cutting a pattern from a fabric that has a design or symbols like this that instead of folding the fabric over on itself and proceeding to cut, say, two of the front right patterns, you should cut the fabric in two. Then lay one piece of fabric on top of the other with the symbols facing the same way. It will ensure that when you cut two pieces of the pattern, all of the cut pieces will have the symbols facing the 'correct' way or, really, whichever way you desire. I don't believe there is a 'wrong' way to sew.


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