Britain’s Cutty Sark: from Chinese tea to Ghanaian cocoa

The Cutty Sark is most famous for being one of the last tea ships or clippers to be built in Britain. But its voyages, which started from 1869, were not confined to just China, where Britain’s love for tea exploded, during the mid-1800s. In its later years, this infamous ship also transported wool and coal from Australia. The ship was then sold to the Portuguese in 1895 where it was renamed the Ferreira.

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Belle: a new kind of English rose

With London-born Ghanaian director Amma Asante screening her film ‘Belle‘ this month (June 2014), I thought it was high time I checked out what all the drama was about. I had come across Dido Elizabeth Belle’s story in 18th century England, before and had seen the famous picture of her with her Caucasian cousin Lady Elizabeth Murray. But upon reading about her life, I realised there was so much I didn’t know. Continue reading “Belle: a new kind of English rose”

Tracing identity and ownership through batik

In 2013, fabrics heavily influenced by West African batik-style finally took the world by storm. With the likes of Michelle Obama and Beyonce’s sister Solange Knowles readily sporting such outfits, its popularity has been growing. This celebrity endorsement has helped to propel emerging and established designers even higher into the echelons of the fashion industry and the public’s consciousness. See here.

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