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Women in Africa and the Diaspora: “Loza Maléombho”

Loza Maléombho is the designer and founder behind Loza Maléombho, a New York based women’s fashion line producing in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa. Born in Brazil and raised between Côte d’Ivoire and the United States,Maléombho found an interest in fashion at the young age of 13, designing dresses for her mother, aunts and cousins. She moved to the United States in 2000 and graduated in 2006 from the University of the Arts of Philadelphia with a BA of Fine Arts in Animation. Maléombho wasted no time in thrusting herself into the fashion industry after graduation by moving to New York. She interned with designers Jill Stuart, Yigal Azrouël and Cynthia Rowley before finally starting her own brand in 2009. When asked about her decision to produce in Côte d’Ivoire by, she responded: “I decided to produce in Côte d’Ivoire in order to have control and flexibility over my production and because I realize we do have valuable resources to trade on an international level. I had also hoped to provide jobs and fair living wages to post-war Ivorian women, thus showcasing Côte d’Ivoire’s artistry with positive and lasting social and economic changes.”

You can check out more on Loza Maléombho by visiting her Website and Facebook

-Bilphena Yahwon