Thursday, September 16, 2021

Bantu Wax Collaborates with J.Crew to Launch New Funk-Inspired Collection

A favourite African brand and known to all those who may frequent the continent’s beaches (and indeed beyond), swimwear label Bantu Wax by Yodit Eklund has launched a new line in collaboration with J.Crew – one of America’s most recognisable highend brands.

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The Bantu Wax for J.Crew collection sees Eklund’s signature African wax prints take to easy two pieces in bright hues inspired by 1970s funk and high-life album covers, and also resulted in the founder (and Style.com contributor) being interviewed for the J.Crew site, talking a little about her background and the beginning of her brand, saying;

“I grew up all over Africa and now spend about 80 percent of my time traveling there for work. In 2009, I launched Bantu. I am a surfer and wanted to bring awareness to the continent’s under-the-radar beaches.
There is more and more pollution because people don’t value the beaches in Africa. I thought if Bantu could expose people to the beaches, we could help preserve the environment.”
“We work with African designers to develop all our prints, which are based on wax cloth. Originally, wax cloth was brought over by Dutch traders; it stuck and has become a vital aspect of African culture today.
We use the patterns of wax cloth and print them on technical fabric in Italy (the suits are all cut and sewn in Africa, though). Our craftswomen are trained to make seven styles of swimsuits, but we have so many prints that it ends up being a pretty big collection.”
“One of Bantu’s aims is to create jobs and help the local economy while also changing the outside view of the continent. We employ around 30 Africans in Ethiopia, South Africa and the Ivory Coast. And this spring, we also started sponsoring a surf club in Sierra Leone called the Bureh Beach Surf Club.

Our tag line Join the Tribe means to start exploring. I hope more people will start visiting Africa and manufacturing there. I hope people’s perceptions of Africa change.”

With the line being ridiculously right for Summer, or anytime one might venture toward a sea, shore or swimming pool, the Team SPICE favourite is easily the “Jammin'” bikini set (£88 for the top and £88 for the bottoms). But you can find your own fave and shop the new range, here.

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Image source: Jcrew.com

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