For the third time now, I headed into town for a trip to the Sao Paulo neighborhood/ market to shop for some vibrant African fabrics. The market is in a commercial part of downtown that is not very desirable. It’s dirty and is always super crowded. The streets are full of people selling all sorts of goods including fruits and veggies, shoes, dish towels, sponges, brooms, etc. It’s an area of town that gives a much clearer picture of what Luanda is really like, chaotic and poor.
The fabric costs about US$10 and comes in 6 yard pieces, so it’s one of very few things that are reasonably priced here. These fabrics aren’t made here in Angola (as nothing is), but are imported mostly from the Ivory Coast. The shop we usually go to is the second story of a huge clothing store and is filled with shelf after shelf of fabrics from many different vendors. There are so many to choose from! Many fabrics are African colors and geometric shapes, but you can also find Asian prints, shiny gold and silver patterns, or even plaids and stripes. They have some really funny stuff as well, like ones with huge safety pins stamped all over it. Yesterday we saw a money tree pattern. The fabric was actually a beautiful blue color with a nice tree on it, but when you got close you see that their are dollars and coins in the leaves. More fun patterns include ones with airplanes on it, another with chickens, zebras, even the Virgin Mary.
Anyway, it’s a fun and interesting outing. This time I was looking for fabric for my classroom as I have several pillows for my reading corner, but they don’t have any covers. So, the idea is that I will make the pillow covers, but first I have to learn to sew. 🙂 We’ll see how that goes. My friend Angela is going to teach me.