Africa Fashion Guide
A social enterprise promoting sustainability within Africa's fashion and textile industry.

Cotton Organisations

May 10th, 2020

Your Sourcing Guide to Fashion Made in Nigeria – African Cotton

This week I uploaded a new youtube video with Nigerian fashion brand This Is Us

Such an amazing home grown story with a couple who focused on locally sourced textiles and textile traditions. This story I shared in their interview see it here but I also wanted to share a little about Nigerian cotton which is what they used.

African cotton is a topic close to my heart…if you know me by now you know that is the area of my research for my Ethical Fashion Masters degree i took in 2009.

You see one of the major problems is the value chain of African cotton and that this value is often lost due to the exporting of the raw cotton out of the continent.

The lack of subsidies received by African cotton farmers prevents them from competing well internationally. Cotton in many African countries are the main source of trade and the main export. The importance is that there is the existence of quality cotton in Africa but just around 5% African grown cotton is actually processed in Africa. So the more that is grown and sewn on the continent the better for the textile supply chain and fashion industry in Africa.

At Africa Fashion Guide we developed an awareness campaign through interviews with cotton farmers, cotton specialists, reviews on cotton programs and in particular reviews and highlights from sustainable initiatives like our partner Cotton Made in Africa.

For Nigeria the team at This is Us shared how they are invested in using it and highlight some of the challenges around their decision to use this cotton.

Funtua is the name where the cotton gets its name from the town in Katsina (Funtua) where it is grown and spun. The textile mill, where the fabric is woven, has existed since Nigeria’s cotton industry boom in the 1970s, a joint venture between a Chinese manufacturer and Katsina’s government that boasts 90 percent local staff working under slow but deliberate conditions.

The raw cotton material is a long staple cotton between 30mm to 40mm grown across Nigeria; and cotton yarns are woven loosely using a traditional weave. This loose weave makes the cotton extremely breathable (think linen), malleable and soft (think gauze).

The fabric for each shirt is hand-dyed in Nigeria’s ancient city, Kano, at the historic Kofar Mata dye pits and the shirts are constructed and screen printed at our workshops in Lagos Island,

They use the most beautiful indigo dyed fabric that’s woven in Funtua, Katsina, and hand dyed in Kano at the centuries old Kofar Mata Dye pits.

There are a few designers who use this cotton and our youtube video interview features the amazing duo mentioned “This Is Us” who have a brand focused on Nigerian cotton.

This Is Us Is Promoting Nigeria-Made Cotton Through Design

What do you think?

Would you be interested in purchasing and using African / Nigerian cotton?

One of the immediate ways for myself and the AFG team to help YOU the fashion business owner, with your sourcing strategies in Africa is to give you relevant industry information so you can be equipped. I have recognised from personal, on the ground field research, from setting up my own business in Africa and from speaking with relevant industry bodies, that Nigeria is a GO TO hub for African fashion and is becoming very attractive for retailers and also to source from and produce in.

So let’s continue each week to break it down for you. And then you can be more assured concerning joining our Nigeria Fashion Africa Sourcing Trip planned for October.

if you are spontaneous and serious about setting up in Africa then get in touch right away!

If you like this so far do tell your fashion entrepreneur friends to get access to and not miss out on our month of Source Sundays. They can register at the subscribe button at


Lastly..before I forget, last year I had closed our 4000+ strong group on facebook and have now opened my new Facebook group African Fashion Entrepreneurs with a new focus and new weekly live trainings and am inviting you to get social with me and many others already in the group by joining us there. I would love to get to know your further so do hit the image for quick access.

  • Tuesday’s at 7pm I bring my series called “#FashionInFIVE” Facebook Live where I bring you weekly updates on key topics happening in Africa’s fashion industry from textiles, to fashion shows to business insights and more.

  • Every Wednesday at 7pm GMT/UK Every I bring in the group only Winning Wednesdays specific trainings to help you win in your African fashion business in 2020
  • And Fridays I will share my Fashion Business Friday tips with you.

See you there!

With love from Africa
Jacqueline Shaw

Your African Fashion Business Coach
Founding Director – Africa Fashion Guide Ltd




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