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African Prints More Sophisticated, Subtle In 2011

In 2011, a number of major design houses used African prints and motifs, including Michael Kors, Burberry and Oscar de la Renta.

Style writer Robin Givhan singles out designer Haider Ackermann. A Colombian by birth, he brings a cross-cultural sensibility to his designs. After being adopted by French parents, Ackermann studied in Belgium and lived in Chad and Algeria.

"I would like to see it become more sort of embedded within the fashion industry," says Givhan. "People could ... look at African prints in the same way that they look at tartans or ... other prints that are very much associated with a specific group of people."

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