Adire (“that which is tied and dyed”) is a resist-dyed traditional cloth originating from the Yoruba people of southwest Nigeria. The fabric first emerged in the ancient city of Abeokuta, a historic center for cotton production and weaving.
Traditionally, adire is made with locally-woven cotton textiles and rich indigo dyes. Artisans create intricate designs by painting or tying the cloth to reserve parts of it and keep the dye out. When the process is complete, these reserved portions remain white or turn lighter blue.
Adire has long been a valuable vehicle for the spread of ideas, with the motifs used in the fabric typically reflecting the current climate of the region.
With its eye-catching indigo patterns, adire fabric has remained a lasting and powerful symbol of cultural expression.