Chitenge, Ankara, Kitenge, Khanga, Sarong, Wrappa, Iro, Kikoy, Pagne, Batik, Kente, Capulana… virtually every nation on the African continent has one or more names for these vivid, multi-purpose, multi-coloured cloths with patterns as vibrant and varied as the nations they represent. Whether cradling a child on a mother’s back, wrapped around the hips respectfully at a funeral or tailored into a glorious outfit for a wedding celebration, Chitenge’s, as they are known in OUR native Malawi, are often times quite literally the fabric of OUR lives.
Zathu, borrowed from a Chichewa word meaning “ours”, is about celebrating Africa and the multitude of cultures represented by these colourful canvases. A country’s most valuable asset is its people and so while Zathu is a brand that showcases products made from African prints, we hope to be more than just a ‘trendy label’. OUR goal is to profile, honour and celebrate African people, places and prints. OUR heart is to be so much more than a hip & stylish accessories brand (although we endeavor to “hook that up” too). OUR desire is to join the conversation already being had by other African designers, fashion activists and communities as we contribute to building OUR continent.
It’s not difficult to list the many ills that plague OUR continent today, but as dire as they are, there are also as many individuals & communities working tirelessly and sometimes thanklessly to combat said evils. So while we may not be in the trenches with the doctors fighting Malaria or along side the peace keepers in war-torn areas, OUR hope is that we’ll be more than just an online store selling cute clutches. OUR ambition is to contribute to those already transforming Africa for the good. OUR intent is to take ownership, not just of OUR colourful cloths but of OUR nations by exercising OUR unique yet equally effective form of activism: CELEBRATION.
We hope you will join us as we celebrate Africa and that you too will be inspired to Colour Your World!