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The major purpose of this study was to investigate the Utilization of Nigerian fabrics for garment making among Academic and Non Academic female staff in Enugu State.The study adopted descriptive survey research design. The study was carried out using Academic and Non Academic female Staff in government tertiary institutions in Enugu State. Six research questions were developed and answered by the study; and five hypotheses were formulated and tested at 0.05 level of significance. The population of the study was fourteen thousand, eight hundred and forty one (14,841)female academic and non academic staff of government tertiary institutions in Enugu state. A sample of 494 respondents was drawn from the population using purposive and proportionate 5% sampling techniques. The instrument for data collection was a structured questionnaire divided into two sections (A and B). Section A contained questions to elicit information on personal data of the respondents while Section B was developed based on the six research questions. The instrument had a four point rating scale of Strongly agree, Agree, Disagree and Strongly Disagree. The instrument was subjected to face-validation by three experts from the Department of Home Economics and Hospitality Management Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. To establish the reliability of the instrument, thirty (30) copies of questionnaire were trial tested on thirty (30) female workers in Abuja. Cronbach Alpha reliability method was used to establish the internal consistency of the instrument which yielded reliability coefficient of 0.82.The researcher administered and collected instrument with the help of three trained research assistants. Four hundred and ninety four (494) copies of the questionnaire were returned duly completed and formed the basis of analysis. Mean and standard deviation were used to answer the research questions that guided the study while t – test was used to test the null hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The findings of the study showed that seven factors guided Academic and Non Academic female staff in selection and utilization of fabrics/garment, four garment styles were utilized by Academic and Non Academic female staff using Nigerian Fabrics and five different occasions where Nigerian fabrics were utilized. The findings of the study also showed six factors affecting utilization of garment made with Nigerian fabrics. The tested hypotheses showed that academic and non-academic Academic and Non Academic female staff differed significantly (p<0.05) in their responses on the factors that guided their selection and utilization of fabrics and also on the different occasions where Nigerian fabrics were utilized in Enugu State. It was found that Academic and Non Academic female staff did not differ significantly (p>0.05) in their responses on the factors affecting utilization of garment made with Nigerian fabrics. It was recommended among others that Tailors and clothing manufacturers should shift from custom made garment to mass produced, quality ready to wear garments. Government should enforce laws intended to reduce the importation of foreign garments and also encourage tailors and fabrics/clothing manufacturers through granting of loans, provision of appropriate machinery, training of staff to mass produce fabrics and garments made from them.
Background to the Study
Utilization of Fabrics has been of considerable research interest. This is because it is the basic material used in construction of garments/clothing which is one of the basic needs of human being Anyakoha and Eluwa (2010). The varied importance of fabrics in daily life can also be understood from its wide usage in furnishing, symbolic communication and commerce. They are also indispensable to industry, agriculture, transportation, space exploration, health services and other areas. It has been source of economic growth to many countries that are into growing of fibres and manufacture of fabrics. These fabrics are being formed through combination of two or more fibres.
Fibres can be defined as the hair-like basic unit of raw material used in making yarns and fabrics. Nkeonye (2009) defined fibre as a unit of matter characterized by flexibility and fitness and a high ratio of length to thickness. Fibres can be classified according to their sources or origins. Anyakoha and Eluwa (2010) classified fibre into two which include natural and synthetic or man-made fibre. Anyakoha and Eluwa stated that natural fibres are obtained from natural sources, either from plants or animal. Those obtained from plant are called vegetable fibres examples are cotton flax and ramie among others. While those obtained from animals are called animal fibres examples are Wool and Silk among others. Man-made or manufactured fibres are produced from the chemical treatment of certain raw materials like wood pulp, petroleum, natural gas and air among others. There are two types of man-made fibres: cellulose base and non cellulose base fibres. Anyakoha and Eluwa (2010), noted that cellulose base fibres are produced primarily from wood-pulp, cotton linter with minimum of chemical steps examples are rayon, acetate and triacetate. While non cellulose base fibres are made from molecules that come from petroleum, natural gas, air and water. Examples of fibre made from non cellulose base fibres are nylon and polyester.
Fabric on the other hand is the product of fibres. Fabric is a flexible material that is made by a network of natural or artificial fibres and yarns. According to Nkeonye (2009), it is a flexible woven materials consisting of a network of natural or artificial fibres often referred to as thread or yarn. Fabrics are classified according to the fibres used in their construction. Anyakoha and Eluwa(2010) classified fabrics into natural and synthetic or man-made fabrics. Most natural fabrics are breathable and never cause rashes apart from being soft and durable. Natural fabrics are mostly the best choices for everyone. They do not change color from Ultra Violet light and there is no warming until the material loses its tensile strength. Anyakoha (2010) further stated that artificial or synthetic fabrics are made from fibres which are either completely made from inorganic materials or organic materials combined with chemicals. Synthetic or man-made fabrics have numerous properties with the purpose for which it is produced and finished. Some are lightweight with ultra sheer while others are moisture wicking and fast drying. Few are very luxurious to imitate some other natural fabrics and some are very strong and tough. Fabrics are manufactured in wide varieties and designs and different designs and effects are produced on fabric with various mechanisms which are helpful to form different weaves and lots of design which enhances the look of apparels. Fabric manufacture is the process of combining two or more fibre using different methods to get fabrics. Examples of such methods are weaving, knitting and crocheting among others.
Weaving is one of the various mechanisms of fabric manufacturing. Murray (2005) define weaving as the method or process of interlacing two or more sets of yarns or similar materials so that they cross each other at usually right angles to produce woven fabric. The author further explains it is the act of causing two or more systems of yarn, warp and filling to interlace. This may be done on a power or hand loom or by several manual methods. After weaving, the most prevalent method of fabric construction is knitting. Its popularity has grown tremendously over the recent years. The knitted fabric has the advantage of stretch ability which provides fit and comfort. It also gives warmth and at the same time porous and provide breathing comfort. According to Murray (2005) there are two major varieties of knitting: weft knitting and warp knitting. In weft knitting, one continuous yarn forms courses across the fabric. In warp knitting, a series of yarns form wales in the lengthwise direction of the fabric. The knitting machine also called knitting frame, knitting loom, or hand knitting machine is used to manufacture knit fabrics. These fabrics are produced on a fixed bed of hooked needles. The Knitting machines can be hand driven or motor powered. The machines come in domestic and industrial models, with either flat or circular beds that produce rectangular or tubular fabrics. The fabric produced by a knitting machine has a more fine texture than hand-knitted fabric. Murray (2005) further explained that another major type of fabric construction method is the crocheting. He said Crocheting is an extremely versatile and popular technique for making a variety of fashion and home decor accessories. To crochet, a hook and yarn are needed. Depending on the type of yarn to be used, a variety of different fabrics can be created. By combining crochet stitches and lighter weight or softer yarns, a delicate droppable fabric can be created. A thicker yarn produces a sturdy fabric. Beautiful textured and raised stitches are especially easy to make in crochet. Fine threads can be used to create lacy projects like doilies or even string or cord. It is started by making a slip stitch, wrapping the yarn around the hook and pulling a loop through the slip stitch. This is the basic chain stitch. A series of chains creates a foundation row and from this base you build rows of stitches. Crocheting can be done in rows, keeping the work flat, or the stitches are joined, creating a ring and work in the round.Many countries including Nigeria produce different varieties of fabrics materials using these methods. The fabrics produced by foreign countries are referred to as foreign fabrics while those produced by the local industries in Nigeria are called Nigerian made fabrics
Made in Nigerian fabric is a general term employed by Nigerians to include wax printed fabrics that are woven and printed in Nigeria (Nkeonye 2009). Made in Nigeria fabrics are in two folds, those produced by traditional producers and those produced by the contemporary fabric industries. The traditional producers are those that do not have formal training in the production of fabrics but learnt their skill by imitating their people who have producing clothe as part of their custom. Example the Yorub as are known for the production of Aso oke fabric and the skills are passed from parents to their children. The contemporary industries are the big fabric factories who employ staff that have formal and informal training in manufacture of fabrics. They are big, more organized companies that use machinery in production of large quantities of fabric materials. The traditional producers produce fabrics such as Adire, Batik, Tie and Dye, Aso-Oke, Akwete, Akwa Ocha, Okene, Ota Ochi, Anger and Atu. Veritable Wax, Brocades, Damasks and Lace are produced by contemporary fabric industries and textile mills. Some fabrics manufacturing industries in Nigeria according to Finelib 2015 include: African Textile Manufactures Ltd. in Kano, Femro 3 Nigerian Ltd. located in Satelite town, Lagos State, ABA Textile Mills Plc in Aba, Abia State, Afriprint Nigeria Print Nigerian Plc in Isolo, Lagos State, Asaba Textile Mill Plc in Asaba etc. Fabrics produced by these textile companies in Nigeria are utilized in so many ways by both men and women for different purposes.
Utilization means to make use especially to make profitable or effective use of. Martins, (2004) described it as an act of using something. Fabric utilization involves deciding what to wear, how to wear, how to purchase or obtain what to wear including methods of sewing garments or making them and when to wear clothes for various occasions. Fabric utilization does not end until the clothing is worn on the body. Fabric utilization of any given individual includes all the procedures involved in planning, shopping and sewing and wearing of clothes. Each of these procedures includes various steps of making decision. If clothing is to perform its varied functions, it has to be appropriately selected for specific purposes or function. Nigerian made fabrics are used in making a growing number of fashion items like bags, shoes, dresses, jewellery and countless accessories. Different styles of these clothing items are utilized in so many areas, occasions, and events by both men and women including the working class either for cultural activities and identities, for occupational identity or traditional activities. Nigerian ceremonial parties, such as weddings, birthdays and wedding anniversaries, are usually adorned with different beautiful styles of Nigerian made fabrics by both men and women, young and old. Aso Ebi, which is usually encouraged by families of both the bride and groom for friends and relatives adds colour and glamour to wedding ceremonies. Nigerian made fabrics are also utilized largely in attires for churches and other religious activities. Various garments are sewn using Nigerian made fabrics and they include skirts and blouses, gowns, blouse and rapper for women suits, short and long-sleeve shirts and trousers.
Garments are forms of clothes, including gowns, skirts, blouses, shirts or tops, and trousers specially constructed from fabrics or other materials to serve different functions for the wearer; including protection, promotion of health, safety and improvement of job efficiency (Ozougwu, 2008). Garment making as one of the occupation in the clothing industry is act of designing, cutting, arranging and sewing different components of a garment. Garment making is a technical accomplishment that requires knowledge of fabrics, principles of clothing construction and skills involved in it (Tortora, 2005). The author further stated that this is the ability to select the correct fabric, colour, design and accessories to suit an individual occasion. A garment that is made will be attractive if it fits well and proper attention is paid to its finer details. Choosing garments and garment styles depends on the occasion for which the garments are meant for. For example the choice of garments for church may not be the same with that for office wear or other social occasions. Garments for churches are made in such a way as to maintain decency and modesty while that for office is mainly such that will uphold work standards, promote decorum and discipline in work place atmosphere, enforce morality and promote free movement. Working class women are among the groups that select office clothing that will help to uphold work standard, promote decorum and discipline and also promote movement in their work places.
Working class women are those who are working under the authority of a boss or are bosses themselves at work. Doob (2013) defined working class women as women employed for wages, especially in manual-labour occupations and in skilled industrial work. The author further said that working-class women include those engaged in occupations that include blue-collar jobs, white-collar jobs, and most service-work jobs. Doob (2013) stated working class to include all those who have nothing to sell but their labor-power and skills. In the context of this study working class women include all sedentary female worker in Nigeria and Enugu state in particular. They are with the age bracket of 25 – 60. These women may include both literate and non literate in private or public organizations or academic and non academic staff in institutions settings. The literates are those that are educated while the illiterates are the uneducated ones. In institutions are found the academics who are the teaching staff of the institutions and the non academics include all other staff that are not teaching or lecturing staff members, examples are the administrative staff, security, technicians etc. These working class women are generally conditioned by society and culture to pay attention to their appearance and how they portray themselves, especially in the workplace.
In Enugu state, women especially the working class women are generally attracted to possess variety of garments but what guide their selection is not known. It is being observed that these clothing items possessed by the women are mostly imported ready-to-wear garments. Though they utilize Nigerian fabrics, it is mostly on occasions like dance troupe, naming ceremony, marriage, chieftaincy, burial, yam festival and other social functions rather than for office clothes except for few who wear them on Fridays as native garments. They choose to appear in simple Western attire because of the comfort and simplicity which is needed in clothes meant for office. Fabrics utilization among working class women are such that stabilizes the work place atmosphere, promotes decorum and has a real and reasonable connection with the successful operation of the work ethics and with the maintenance of work place. Some of the styles sewn with Nigerian made fabrics are not always comfortable when worn to office. Examples of such styles are heavy “george”, “aso oke”, long skirts and buba, blouses tied with two rappers, heavy bead, head gele and other accessories which are most times uncomfortable. Working class women also consider fabric manufacturing, printing designs, quality of printing and ease of care of fabrics to select fabrics for their wards’ apparel (Jones, 2009). According to Ross (2008), a good fabric for making apparel should not fade. This is because clothing needs to be laundered and after many washings, one will not want the colour in the fabric to be washed out. Consumers look at the print on the fabric, to check whether the dye goes through the fibres or is just rolled on and barely saturating the fibres. Ross (2008)said that if the dye is not embedded in the fabric, it will probably fade out after a couple of washings. A solid colour fabric which is the same colour on the front and back because the fibres are dyed are preferred to a print which is rolled on to a plain white muslin so the dye is not totally embedded in the fibres and is more apt to fade after repeated washings. Qualities of some Nigerian made fabrics are low that they tend to wash and lose their original colour and this scare some working class women away from its utilization. Working class women equally consider the cost while selecting their office dresses as some of them earn little amount that they cannot afford expensive clothes. They go for second hand clothes (Okirika) with affordable prices rather than for expensive clothes. Nigerian fabrics are expensive to make and as such working class women do not consider it the best option. This is because it will cost a lot of money to purchase the fabrics together with tailoring the garment. Fashion designer and tailors are other negative contributors to the low patronage of Nigerian made fabrics. Duro,(2015), noted that the inability of fashion designer and tailors to procure the right equipments together with their low skills in production of garments with these Nigerian fabrics has negatively affected their utilization by working class women. This is because they often get disappointed either from delay in getting the garments ready or the inability of tailors to produce customers’ desired design with the accurate measurement to fit their shapes and sizes. These has caused the underutilization of Nigerian fabrics among these important groups of the society in Enugu state and the problems has escalated to grounding of many local fabric manufacturing industries and unemployment of many graduates of clothing and textile. This has also negatively affected the economy of the nation and calls for the need for this study in order to investigate measures to be taken in order to improve the utilization Nigerian fabrics among this group.
Statement of the Problem
Garments are forms of clothes, including gowns, skirts, shirts or tops and trousers among others specially constructed from fabrics or other materials to serve different functions for the wearer including protection, adornment, safety, promotion of efficiency especially for the working class including women.
Regrettably, personal observation has shown that in Enugu state, most of the garments utilized by Academic and non academic female staff are ready-to-wear foreign made garments. There is overdependence on foreign made garment and importation has continued even with efforts of the government to ban it. Though women utilize Nigerian fabrics in social events and other occasion, the greater percentage of their office garments are foreign garments. The flare for foreign garments from the researcher’s finding has to do with the high cost of making garments with Nigerian made fabrics as the money used in purchasing and tailoring the fabric is enough to purchase about two to three foreign ready-to-wear garments or second hand foreign garments (Okirika).
More so, the attendant disappointments from most fashion designers and tailors that make garments with Nigerian fabrics is another unpleasant experience. They often get disappointed either from delay in getting their garments ready or their inability to produce the desired design or styles with the accurate measurements to fit their shapes and sizes.Women equally complain about the low quality of Nigerian fabric as some of them fade. Moreover, the unavailability of garments made from these fabrics in the markets in form of ready-to-wear so that they can easily pick them from the market also contribute to low utilization of these local fabrics. These and many more reasons may have contributed to the low patronage of the Nigerian fabrics among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State. These have also negatively affected the local fabric manufacturing industries in Nigeria as a lot of them are now grounded. The grounding of many of these industries, undoubtedly have increased the rate of unemployment of clothing and textile graduates and this all together has affected the economy of Nigeria negatively. For these reasons, the researcher has embarked on this study in order to find out measures which will help to improve the utilization of Nigerian made fabrics for making garment among Academic and non academic female staff. This will help to improve on the growth of local fabric Industries and increase employment of graduates in this field which will consequently help to improve and maintain the economy of the country especially now that it is dwindling.
Purpose of the study
The major purpose of this study was to investigate the Utilization of Nigerian fabrics for garment making among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State.
The specific objectives of the study are to:
- Investigate factors that guide Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu state in selection and utilization of fabrics/garment.
- Access the garment styles utilized by Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State.
- Ascertain different occasions where Nigerian fabrics are utilized among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State.
- Investigate factors affecting utilization of garment made with Nigerian fabrics among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State.
- Find out factors affecting the quality of Nigerian fabrics.
- Find out measures to improve the utilization of Nigerian fabrics among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions.
Significance of the Study
The findings of this study will be of immense benefit to Nigeria families, Working class of the Nigerian society, Nigeria producers, media organization, State government, Home Economics teachers and students, curriculum planners and fellow researchers.
The findings of the study will be of immense benefits to the Nigerian families and working class in that it will help to improve their skills in fabric consumption and give them the benefits to make wise fabric choice in terms of choosing good quality fabrics. This will go a long way in saving the family a lot of money which would have been used to replace worn out clothing caused by poor consumption behaviour or inappropriate way of maintaining the fabric.
The findings of the study will also help Nigeria textile producers to improve their strength of their business in terms of quality of their product. It will help them to know the area where necessary improvement is needed for their product to suit the consumers and compete favourably with others, nationally and globally so as to remain relevant in business.
The study will help to showcase the superiority or inferiority of Nigeria or foreign made wax fabric, styles and accessories made with these fabrics which will ultimately help Nigerian producers, fashion designers and tailors to redesign their products, producing new ones, developing packages and evaluating channels of Advertisement. This will boost consumerism of home made fabrics. This is needful because Nigerian wax print fabrics symbolize our traditional motif and costume which enhance our identity and contribute in preserving our heritage. Which ultimately facilitate our better understanding of who we really are and not just allow the western culture erode our own culture.
The findings of the study will be of immense benefit to media organization since there will be increase in patronage of their business through awareness the study will create. The Government will benefit through income tax accruing from the marketers and the money that will be paid to state television and radio houses for advertisement of their products. This will invariably increase internally generated revenue of the state. Curriculum planners will benefit from the findings of this study through its provision of relevant information for curriculum review and update to meet societal needs.
The finding of this study will be beneficial to clothing and textile teachers, lecturers and students to wisely select styles and accessories that will be relatively cheap and suit the occupational status of the teachers and lecturer through dissemination of information obtained from the study to schools by teachers and lecturers.
The findings of the study will be of immense benefits to the future researchers who would use the study as a good reference material and for further studies thereby contributing to building a body of literature on the theme. It is also expected that the findings of the study will help to further strengthen the focus of the study of any researcher with keen research interest in the utilization of Nigeria fabrics.
The study sees Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions as a set of people that contribute in structuring/determining the future of Nigerian. In addition, this study through information generated from it will sensitize the working women and entire nation on the need to reduce overdependence on importation of consumable goods like dresses. It will help in the growth of fabric manufacturing industries in Nigeria and employment of clothing and textile graduates and those from related fields which will consequently improve the growth of the economy of the nation.
The following research questions were formulated to guide this study:
- What are the factors that guide Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu state in selection and utilization of fabrics/garment?
- What are the garment styles utilized by Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State?
- What are the different occasions where Nigerian fabrics are utilized among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State?
- What are the factors affecting utilization of garment made with Nigerian fabrics among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State?
- What are the factors affecting the quality of Nigerian fabrics?
- What are the measures to improve the utilization of Nigerian fabrics among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions?
The following hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significance.
H01: There is no significant difference between the mean responses of the academic and non-academic Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions on the factors that guide their selection and utilization of fabrics/garments
H02: There is no significant difference between the mean responses of academic and non-academic Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions on the garment styles utilized among them.
H03: There is no significant different between the mean responses of academic and non-academic Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions on the different occasions where Nigerian fabrics are utilized among them.
H04: There is no significant different between the mean responses of academic and non-academic Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions on the factors affecting utilization of garment made with Nigerian fabrics among them.
H05: There is no significant different between the mean responses of academic and non-academic Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions on the factors affecting the quality of Nigerian fabrics.
Scope of the Study
This study focused on the utilization of Nigerian fabrics for garment making among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in Enugu state. The types of Nigeria fabrics to be focused in this study are veritable wax, adire, asoke, brocade and Ankara. The study will be limited to the following: Different occasions where Nigerian fabrics are utilized among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions, Clothing items made with Nigerian fabrics utilized among Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions, Garment styles of Nigerian fabrics utilized by Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions, Factors affecting the quality of Nigerian fabrics, causes of consumer preference for foreign fabrics and measures for improving the utilization. The geographical scope of this study is all Tertiary Institutions in Enugu state. The respondents of the study will be restricted to Academic and Non-Academic female staff in Public Tertiary Institutions in three Tertiary Institutions in Enugu State; Enugu state University of Science and Technology, Institute of Management and Technology (IMT) Enugu and University of Nigeria, Nsukka.