Tuesday, February 10, 2009

You heard it here first :Bantu Wax

On my first day of college, while the football and baseball teams moved my boxes into my dorm and I hit the coffee shop on campus with my Mom. That is where I made my first friend, Yodit. She has the most fascinating background, her father is American and was an ambassador, her mother Ethiopian royalty, and she was born in Germany, educated in Cairo, and somehow ended up in our small little school.

Yodit started a bathing suit line, Bantu. Bantu wants to reinvigorate Africa from the inside out by utilizing an all-African manufacturing process. “It is Bantu’s mission to support and grow the African economy while providing high-quality working standards, opportunities for growth, and a living wage to its workers,” says Yodit. “Hopefully consumers will begin demanding finished products from Africa, a place typically only considered for raw materials.” Because of Bantu’s investment in Africa, it has qualified for the African Growth and Opportunity Act, which allows the company to take advantage of tax breaks from the U.S. government.

Here are some pics from her latest photo shoot:
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Each colorful Bantu swimsuit in this year’s collection is entirely manufactured in Ethiopia, but in the future, Bantu may take its show on the road and produce collections and accessories in other African nations. Bantu’s swimsuit patterns are taken from the centuries-old West African textile industry that originated with the wax cloth in cities lsuch as Dakar, Senegal, Abidjan, and Cote d’Ivoire. The juxtaposition of colors and patterns reflects the weaver’s identity, character, and beliefs.


The suits are available at Barneys New York, and most recently, picked up by Anthropologie

11 comments:

  1. cute swimsuits!!!!! awesome background on them

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  2. these are awesome and i love the background. i have a bit of a love affair with ethiopia too so that is a bonus!

    that model with the 'fro has a totally enviable body. *sigh*

    and what an amazing background your friend has...

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  3. congrats to your friend, sounds like great success is upon her!

    i love the mixing and matching of the left bikini on the middle pic!

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  4. wow, congrats to your friend! i love those suits. i will be sure to pick one up if i can.

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  5. That's amazing! Congrats to your friend! Those bathing suits are ultra cute too. They're also a BIG reminder to shape up! :(

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  6. those are some teeny tiny bikinis! and very cute!

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  7. wow these are so pretty! and you know her? that's wild.

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  8. Beautiful. So Amazing that Anthro picked them up.

    The pictures are beautiful and what amazing bodies. I think I can only admire these suits from a far. They would so not work with my body.

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  9. love them!! (i think this mama needs a little more coverage though- do they have any other 2pcs??)

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  10. beautiful suits, and wonderful business!
    thanks for sharing this.
    now I have to go work out 3 hrs a day, every day until summer so I can think about buying one!

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  11. Yodi's line is AMAZING!!! She and her family are friend's of my family {and are the sweetest ... I love her mom to pieces} and just saw the article in Elle today!! great stuff!!!

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...thanks for the comments sweetness!