You don’t have to take a plane to find African Fabric – it is as close as the Internet. These fabric sellers know the content of the material they sell. African fabric can be purchased from many other online sites but the sellers might not be as knowledgeable about the content.
Keep in mind that you are buying 6 yards of fabric at once and it will cost from $15 -$100 per piece. Sometimes you get what you pay for – sometimes you’ll find a gem. If you think you might want more than 6 yards order it all at once. The manufacturer may print thousands of yards – but even large supplies sell out quick. I’ve ordered what I thought was a fabric I loved sold by another company, only to receive a print in slightly different colors or the print was a different size. Surprise! Order more up front.
African Imports: The African Imports is an internet store located in New Jersey, that sells African fabrics and many other African items also “ Everything you own or have resold from Africa Imports has helped feed a hungry child in Africa.”
Alibaba: Alibaba is the biggest on-line seller of just about everything. Sort by going to textiles and then to African Fabrics. Unfortunately many of the sellers have huge minimum order requirements – 500-50,000 yards. Some sellers are now offering 6 or 12 yard minimums – check their offerings closely to determine this. You can also find the latest machinery to print these fabrics. There are “batik” machines that have revolutionized the wax application and printing process. On some fabrics the only way to tell the difference between the right and wrong side is by reading the printed information on the selvedge. Manufacturers boast of their capacity to print 100,000 – 200,000 yards per month.
African Premier: African Premier specializes in African fabric designed and printed in Shanghai. They sell African Fancy prints in cotton and African Lace (which is very expensive). I receive their shipments within a week. If you meet their minimum order (currently $200) it ships for free.
AKN Fabrics: A Manhattan fabric seller with a wide variety of well-priced African fabric.
Holland Textile: This company sells Hollandais Wax fabrics.
Tenuci: Tenuci is an authorized dealer of many established African prints including Vlisco and others of primarily Nigeria and West African fabric.
Vlisco: The real Dutch Wax folks have beautiful African fabrics in high quality cotton woven in Thailand and dyed in the Netherlands (and silk). Their shipments from Amsterdam are usually on my Alaskan doorstep within 3-4 days. If you meet their minimum (currently $200), it ships for free.
Yara African Fabrics: YAF offers a wide variety of fabrics from across the continent, distributed from the heart of Harlem, New York City, NY.