I studied electrical engineering at AAU, but got into the fashion business because I had the passion for it, I taught myself mostly when I got into the business but I attended SITAM fashion designing school once I finished AAU. I believe School is an important part but not necessary.
I always fit African patterns/ fabrics in my designs. I chose this theme because I admire my culture and I believe in wearing my identity. However, I’ve always had a problem with what people consider as “African” design. They tend to name Ankara or Kente fabric as African but then forget that tilet and menen are also African. I want to push for African Unity. In addition to this, I also hope to see the standards of beauty redefined. A beautiful woman isn’t just the tall, skinny, light-skinned woman. I also consider the everyday woman. ZEWD IS FOR EVERY WOMAN
My designs are very practical and intended for everyday use, with a few exceptions you’d rock at an art show. I make sure the products we make are wearable and functional for our customers and at the same time are up to date with the fashion industry in addition to representing what the brand stands for. Aesthetically we are not too western nor are we too Ethiopian.
My clients are mostly from other African countries, foreigners and the Ethiopian Diaspora. The Ethiopian community hasn’t put much stock into products that are “Made In Ethiopia”; highly because until recently local products were low on quality and variety. Thanks to many thriving designers, manufacturers, and tailors that is no longer the case. Ethiopian consumers are spoiled for choice. I think the Ethiopian population needs to take another look into locally made products and take pride in wearing local.
In addition to fashion design, I am equally passionate about writing/performing. I use my writing to verbally say what I want to say (mostly speak of Africa, my culture, and self-love and acceptance ) and the fashion design helps me visualize what I say. So in a way both complement each other.
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