Aline and Leonard met at a very young age in Cameroon, at the high school. Leonard’s father is owner of many shops in the field of printed fabric. He was therefore born in the fabric, grew up in the fabric. While some of his brothers continued in the family business, he chose to continue his studies in the field. So he went to study in Germany where he obtained his degree as a textile chemical engineer. Aline has been passionate about fashion since her early childhood. As the daughter of a baker, she takes more from her mother who used to sell children’s clothes. Aline choose for a multi-skill studies, hence her choice for innovation technologies. The family has grown since 2008 and today 3 little girls now share their every day life: Noémie, Léonelle and Seliyah.
For several years now, the couple has been driven by the ambition to live from their passion when a simple situation came along to give them a direction. They had been invited to their daughter Seliyah’s summer party at the nursery around the topic Africa. They meet parents and teachers in African dress, from traditional to modern. But they remark that they have never met these same people before, whom they come across every day in these outfits. Was it because these items represented a certain value to them that they preferred to keep them for special occasions? Or was it because they were not classic enough and too colourful to be considered as disguise? So that’s how MAWANDI was born.
MAWANDI draws its inspiration from its African origins, from traditional fashion, to create a fashion with a modern touch. The desire is to make this style a global model that goes beyond an identity. The concept is to offer colorful and joyful clothes. These can be combined both subtly and simply with other clothes and accessories for everyday life, as well as for special events. Dressing well but differently, MAWANDI highlights the particularity of its creations and demonstrates the diversity of the clothing style.
The fact that the clothes are not mass-produced is an advantage for consumers seen the fact that each piece is unique. The fabrics are of good quality, carefully chosen by the hands of an expert. The designs are quite simple because they are focus on well-being. Each piece is carefully measured, drawn, cut and sewn by the hands of experienced people.
The clothes are made by fashion designers in Cameroon or other African countries. They are all talented mothers. As for accessories, they know the privilege of the fingers of experienced Senegalese jewelers. They are joined by an association of people with disabilities who make wax bracelets and leather necklaces.
MAWANDI more than a brand is a human adventure. It is also about developing the African human resource which is very important and competent. This by offering employment to people, allowing them to live decently with their families. Wearing MAWANDI is more than just a pleasure, it is also a contribution to the social evolution of others. Each item has its own story and brings to its holders this little bit of another side of the world.