Made in Africa
Each lemlem piece begins in the hands of one of our exceptional artisans. We partner with local artisan studios that use traditional African motifs and techniques to create the beautiful, modern designs that lemlem is known for.
Liya Kebede’s homeland, Ethiopia, is at the heart of lemlem.
It is here that local expertise in cotton handweaving techniques make their way into iconic lemlem designs.
Cotton has been cultivated on Ethiopian farms since ancient times. Hand-spinning and weaving of cotton cloth is an important family tradition passed down generations, with intricate patterns often telling stories of social and political significance.
Traditional clothing is handwoven using white cotton with a finely decorative ‘tibeb’ border – which means embellishment in the Ethiopian language of Amharic. It is this tibeb pattern that is a component of many lemlem looks.
lemlem has partnered with a local collective in Kenya that employs craftswomen and teaches the art of crochet - interlocking loops of yarn into intricate designs. Local Maasai women’s associations also partner with lemlem and contribute special techniques in thread wrap detailing and tasseling.
Local artisans use advanced knitting techniques to create cozy, chunky sweaters and scarves, inspired by the country's diverse and vibrant culture and customs.
lemlem has partnered with a workshop that trains women artisans to create rich hand embroidery.
We are continually incorporating local traditions and designs from across all of Africa into future lemlem collections.