Kampala Fair: Where Fashion Meets Fair Trade
Visit Kampala Fair, a charming boutique near Kisementi Shopping Centre.
If you are looking for a refreshing shopping experience in Kampala, you should visit Kampala Fair, a charming boutique near Kisementi Shopping Centre. As soon as you enter, you will be greeted by a rainbow of colors and patterns, from the vibrant fabrics to the cheerful crocheted rugs. You will also find Good Glass, a local glassware brand, sharing the same space.
A Passion for Sewing and Social Impact
Mette Islandi, founder and creative genius of Kampala Fair, began by teaching sewing lessons from home. She taught the original students how to sew, and now they are teaching the newcomers. She says, “I wanted to teach the people here something valuable. Having the opportunity to teach others while living abroad is very important for me as an expat. For me, it has always been more than a small training centre, and it is now a business.”
This unique, fair-trade business is operated by Mette and co-owner Louise Graymore from the UK, the business brain behind the clothing and interior line. The Kampala Fair store sells everything locally made. Five tailors and five rug makers make these vibrant fabrics come to life in their showroom, which is located in downtown Kampala.
Don't miss this opportunity to visit this amazing space! The beautiful white woodwork was specially made by Kevin Sutton, a skilled Canadian artisan, and it gives the place a cozy and elegant atmosphere. You can easily find what you are looking for, as everything is arranged by style, and the fitting room is spacious and spotless, unlike any other in Kampala.
A Wide Range of Products for Everyone
As mothers, both of the owners have thought of everything. The dressing room area has a toy basket to keep kids occupied while mom shops. You can even shop at Kampala Fair for your little ones! They have a darling children's line, and Mette explains her philosophy for this line, saying, "Children's clothing should be simple. I don't want a lot of details that hinder them. Simple designs let the child's natural charm shine through!"
Along with their children's line, they also offer women's clothing and home goods such as cushion covers and colourful crocheted rugs. This is a fun detail for me: Many of the women's dresses are named after specific women and inspired by them. They have the classic “Doris” dress, named after Doris Day, and their “Sophia” dress, named and inspired by Sophia Loren, is their bestseller! After checking out a few of the styles in the dressing room, I am now a big fan of the "Angelique Bow Dress" in a maxi length.
There are six different sizes of everything in the store, and their staff will help you find the perfect fit! Sizing is in European sizes, although they are also familiar with US and other foreign sizing charts. In addition to tailoring minor alterations, their fabrics are pre-washed and won't fade after you've bought them.
Their women’s line ranges in price from 65,000 to 145,000 UGX, while their interior line starts at 18,000 UGX for pillow covers, and rugs start at 60,000 UGX for the smallest bathmat and reach 335,000 UGX for the larger sizes. Clothing for children usually costs between 45,000 and 50,000 UGX. The owners recommend shopping at the store in order to get the best deals and ensure a perfect fit. As Louise notes, “We want you to find the right fit.” The goal isn't to sell you something; we'll be honest and tell you what looks great."
"We're very, very passionate about quality control," she says. "We want people to purchase an item because they love it so much!" As a member of the Ethical Fashion Forum, we have been able to sell our products abroad in medium- to high-end stores."
A Global Reach and a Local Pride
There's more to the Kampala Fair than just African crafts and clothing. Besides making lovely items for your closet and home, they also provide jobs that treat employees respectfully and dignifiedly, making Uganda proud. In addition to customers from Brazil, Japan, India, and even tiny East Timor, to name a few, Kampala Fair's products are enjoyed by customers in over 50 countries.
If you're outside of the Kampala area, you can shop online at kampalafair.com or shop with medium- to high-end partner stores and distributors in Kenya, the UK, Denmark, Finland, and Sweden, or select online retailers. For more information, visit their website.
Hours: Monday-Saturday 9:30 a.m.–6 p.m.; Thursdays open until 7 p.m.; closed Sunday. Address: Plot 50 Bukoto Street, Kololo, Kampala
Email: [email protected]
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