Images: Blankets available from Shnu Tribal & Basotho Blankets

In our latest Country Issue #90, we showcase a selection of our favourite Basotho Blanket patterns, and let you know how you can get your hands on your very own.

Photographer Niel Vosloo, Models Sibu Jili and Hendrik Coetzee (DECO Decor Stylist) Dress by Thabo Makhetha, Blankets from Shnu Tribal & Basotho Blankets

Ideal at the end of your bed, on a couch, as a picnic blanket or even to wear, we are completely besotted with these tactile, functional heirlooms and are thrilled to see them being used in exciting new ways.

Basotho blankets, unique to the Kingdom of Lesotho, were first produced in the early 19th century to replace the traditionally worn animal skin kaross. At the time, they were described by King Moshoeshoe I as ‘a handsome railway wrapper made of light blue pilot cloth, heavy and hairy’.The various designs of the blankets have continuously adapted and evolved with time but have always remained rich in symbolism, colour, pattern and texture.

Photographer Niel Vosloo, Model Sibu Jili, Dress by Thabo Makheta,Blankets available from Shnu Tribal & Basotho Blankets
Photographer Niel Vosloo, Model Sibu Jili, Dress by Thabo Makhetha,Blankets available from Shnu Tribal & Basotho Blankets

We are very excited by the ways that Port Elizabeth based fashion designer, Thabo Makhetha is using the blankets to fashion the most extraordinary items.

Image: Thabo Makhetha Kobo Ea Bohali Range

On an international scale, the likes of Louis Vuitton are drawing inspiration from the blankets,evident in the Karakoram (a jersey come scarf blanket type thing).

Despite the fact that they are being snapped up all over the world and inspiring all sorts of new and wonderful creations,Basotho Blankets remain intimately linked with traditional milestones of family life, such as initiations, weddings and childbirth.They are simultaneously considered as the height of global visual cultural fashion-the perfect accessory for the stylish global citizen-and remain a vital part of the culture of the Kingdom of Lesotho.


To get yourself a Basotho blanket, contact  Shnu Tribal & Basotho Blankets