Mahyeli Culture Clothing
Afro-head: I had the privilege of meeting Fatima the designer of Mahyeli culture clothing . I feel in love with her style of designing and the style and quality of fabrics she used for each piece designed. She shared with me how she came about designing and where she draws her inspiration from. She was born in Cote D’Ivoire and this plays a big role in her style.
Fatima grew up in Cote D’Ivoire in West Africa where clothing is a strong expression of cultural identity. When she moved to the U.S. in 2003, Fatima felt home sick, had a hard time acculturating and was unable to communicate because she didn’t speak English. She spoke only Mandingo and French. To cope with the stress of living in a new country and being unable to navigate on her own, Fatima started using her creativity and fashion sense by mixing original African prints with western materials to create outfits and accessories. This helped her feel more relaxed and closer to Africa. Friends and complete strangers started to ask Fatima for both fashion advice and to buy her designs. Fatima turned her “coping mechanism” and knowledge of African clothing into a business and there MAHYELI Culture Clothing was born. MAHYELI is named after Fatima’s daughter YELI. It’s a combination of “Mah” which means mother in Dioula and Yeli, a name usually given to first born daughter (Yele) by the Senoufo’s tribe Northern in Cote d’Ivoire.
MAHYELI is a blend of African prints with a modern flare creating a unique, chic look that caters to all women and sizes. The vision is to create fashion that makes a statement while being socially responsible.
Take a look at some of her garments below. then in My style check out how I put a Unblushing twist to some of my favorite pieces from some of her designs.