Kanga or khanga comes from the old Bantu (Kiswahili) verb ku-kanga, to wrap or close.
The KANGA is a rectangle of pure cotton cloth with a border all around it, printed in bold designs and bright colours. Kangas originated on the coast of East Africa in the mid 19th century and they are still being used by women in these regions as a common garment.
Kanga designs have evolved over the years, from simple spots and borders to a huge variety of elaborate patterns of every conceivable motif and color. Early this century, Swahili sayings were added to kangas. Supposedly this fashion was started by a locally famous trader in Mombasa.