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Updated: Feb 19, 2021

WE'VE BEEN FUNDED!

AHHHHHHHHHH!


Yes! You read that right $25k! American Express teamed up with iFundWomen; the women powered crowdfunding platform, to award 100 black women entrepreneurs with funding for our businesses! And if this wasn't enough they are also providing mentorship, coaching and PR opportunities! GAME CHANGER!



I was actually notified a little bit earlier that the media launch, in preparation for the official launch but was sworn to secrecy until the big day on November 20th! This is all still so surreal to me!


This news came at a really critical time for Adorn Me Africa and funding was at the forefront of my mind. No lie, I was applying for a business loan the day before I received the news! If you know anything about being an entrepreneur, you know that it's a true labor of love and takes a lot of sacrifice, time, tears and resources.

When I first started Adorn Me Africa, we decided to choose a crowdfunding platform that valued the company and mission in a unique way and iFundwomen proved to be the perfect fit for us! They were still in beta stage if I'm not mistaken but the platform was well thought out and just worked for our goals and aligned with our values. They also help back and help get funding for businesses on their platform so it was a no-brainer to use iFundwomen here is a link to our campaign page here.

The goal was $15k but we were only able to raise about 4k. We didn't take this is a loss at all we took what we raised and put it to work on becoming operational.

2 years later I get the biggest surprise ever when iFundwomen request a Zoom call, out of seemingly nowhere. So here it is, you heard it here first; the story that launched an empire! I'm so grateful to God for hearing my very honest and vulnerable prayer the night before all this happened!


I can't thank iFundwomen enough for seeing potential in my dream and trusting me with this opportunity! I so grateful to American Express for believing that black women are a necessary part of the entrepreneurial space, and for creating a space for us to tell our stories and for putting their money where their values lie. I am also immeasurably grateful to every single person who contributed to our campaign back in 2017 and believed in us! I'm bursting with gratitude honestly! I will be sure to keep you guys updated on as this unfolds and the non-monetary portion of this opportunity begins! Check out the reel below.


Here are just some of the media outlets that have featured the story!

BLOOMBERG, YAHOO FINANCE & BUSINESS INSIDER



 


We're ecstatic to be part of the We Are Women Owned

VIRTUAL POP-UP SHOP!

#SHOPWOMENOWNED



CHECK US OUT ON THE WAWO VIRTUAL HOLIDAY POP-UP FOR OUR EXCLUSIVE

15% COUPON CODE HERE




 

2020, ONE FOR THE BOOKS!


With all that is happening in our global community, we are hoping that the holidays bring you some joy and allow you to share some joy with others buy shopping The Marketplace!




2020 HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE


This holiday season we have chosen to partner with some really creative and amazing brands, that you will surely fall in love with just as we have!

Our top picks this holiday season are sure to make your gift the most popular! All of our brands are based in Africa and we aim to select the best of the best just for you!

We want to take you on a journey through West Africa and Kenya with our fun pieces! You will specially package and ship for your gift to arrive to its destination on time.





  1. Our personal fav the Buckie bag in large, this cute and super statement making piece also comes in a smaller version which you can find here. The available colors are Mustard Yellow, Navy Blue, Chocolate Brown, Blush and Ice Blue. Shop here !

  2. 1964 Burn Orange Olive Maxi Dress, the color screams Fall and this would go great with a leather or denim jacket as well as some nice knee high pointed boots! Shop here!

  3. Djoude' Denim Jackets are a nice statement jacket for a layered casual look coupled with your favorite kicks, or for a day to night look a long mens collared shirt or a white shirt dress and some ankle booties. Shop here!

  4. Kipato jewelry pieces are just the perfect finishing touch to any outfit. We love the minimalist style and abstract shapes that they are known for! Shop here!

  5. Kaeme is just the self-care kit you need! The intoxicating fragrances that make up their collection of Liquid black soaps, Shea Souffle' and Soy candles. Our curated selection of scents in the Shea Souffle' and Black soap are named Eternal, Goldenflakes and Urbane. Their candles are just as lovely and give any room you burn them in a beautiful vibe just as the beautiful locations in Ghana that they are named after would. Shop here!

  6. You've never seen tie-dye look this good, Larry Jay's SS21 has a look of richness with the royal shades of violet throughout the collection. Shop here!

  7. You never even knew you needed a cloak until you met "Cisse"! Threaded Tribe cloaks selected for you! They are such a great wardrobe staple that you will realize you've always needed! TT cloaks are unisex so get one for Him too! Shop here!

  8. Last but never least a great and thoughtful gift is a lovely array of waistbeads to adorn yourself in or to give as a gift. We offer a variety of beautiful styles and colors, you will have a tough time choosing... we did. Shop here!


 


Our subscription boxes are back like they never left! Get into it!




OUR BOXES HAVE A NEW LOOK AND BEAUTIFUL THINGS INSIDE JUST FOR YOU!


Our most popular subscription boxes are completely curated boxe. This meansthat we use your STYLE QUESTIONNAIRE to curate a box of goodies just for you based on your style and the things you love most about fashion. The boxes are named AMA Love which AMA Grace and AMA Luxe. We'll tell you more about those later!


Our newest box option is the "AKWAABA" which means "You are welcome" in Twi the most common dialect spoken in Ghana. "AKWAABA" is a one-time purchase box and makes an amazing gift option! If you want to gift any box option, you can email us at hello@adornmeafrica.com and we will send you gifting options to fill your box with! We also offer Gift Cards!


We will soon be offering a "Create your own box" option where you can select all the pieces you want in a box and we will package it for you and deliver it to your doorstep ❤️! More details to come! Stay tuned!






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Hey there Lovely People! It's been a while and I have to apologize for going MIA last month. April was quite eventful. As an entrepreneur I have to acknowledge that even though Adorn Me Africa is no longer a one-woman-show we still have some ways to go in building the team that will allow me to be able to have more help in areas like this. We do however have 2 amazing team members that help out at our shop and an amazing content creator that is a genius with our social media feed.

With all that said if I am out of commission for any reason I don't yet have the bandwidth to pass this off to anyone else. The first 2 weeks in April I was home doing my first stint with Covid; which was quite the experience and then I was away for 3 weeks for travel to Ghana because my dear grandmother passed away. She was 89 and sharp as a tack and she lived in Ghana and was kept plenty busy by her 14 of 20 grandchildren who reside in Ghana. The last time I saw her lovely face was during my last trip in November and while I was there she did her usual, guilt trip about me intentionally do everything in my power to deprive her of great grandchildren (typical African grandmother stuff) but also giving her words of wisdom about not working too much and being there for family. I know that she lived a full life and shared in so many experiences that I'll never know about but I do know that she was happy and proud of her family. Whenever I think about her I see her smile and and laugh at my plans to pack her in my suitcase and take her with me.

All in all I feel like I am starting to get the hang of this newsletter thing. I really want it to stay authentic and not just a thrown together thing that we do to check a box. My hope is that I am sharing a little bit about myself and my journey as an entrepreneur and some of the fun and not so fun stuff that comes along wit


h that.

So if I can't be authentic and I have to take a little pause and reset not to worry, I will eventually come back and tell you a little bit about it : )












 

INTRODUCING SPICE OF LAGOS

One of our newest partner brands based in the capital city in Nigeria, Lagos. This beautiful Navy blazer dress is handcrafted and made with Adire cotton. " "Adire" or "Adire Eleko" refers to designs created by the application of starch paste made from cassava flour. This starch resists the dye from penetrating through the cloth. The starch is made of the flour mixed with water that is boiled and then strained.Yoruba people of southwestern Nigeria. The Yoruba label adire (meaning “tie and dye”) was first applied to indigo-dyed cloth decorated with resist patterns in the early twentieth century.




 

BELLO EDU





Bello Edu is a fashion brand designed for women to amplify esteem, purpose and a lust for life. Their brand mantra is to choose minimalism over excess, add value not mass and to be wherever function meets great aesthetics. Led by its founder and Creative Lead, Alima Bello and supported by a small workforce, the brand produces two major collections a year, which are responsibly manufactured in Ghana.

 

EVENTS




1. BAMS FEST - We're so excited to be attending and vending at Bams Fest 2022 taking place at Franklin Park this year with amazing headliners like The Black Alley Band, Chelsea Green, D Smoke, SWV and an equally incredible lineup of local artists! We hope to see you there, its going to be one for the books!



You heard it here first! Adorn Me Africa is co-hosting along with Bow Market our very first event this summer called AfroVybe! AfroVybe is a collective celebration of the beauty and diversity of African culture in our city and we want to invite you!


On July 22nd we will kick-off with a private ticketed mat-style dining experience in the courtyard at Bow Market featuring catered Ethiopian Cuisine, amazing wine pairings and the soulful sounds of the lovely Niuraza from Madagascar.

On Saturday July 23rd our day festival will begin at noon with a DJ setting the Vybe for the day, Henna artist Ardo will be taking appointments at the market, we'll enjoy music by a variety of local African artist and spoken word and poetry by Dzidzor, Poet and Educator. We are partnering with Nibble Kitchen to keep the Vybe going by featuring a West African cuisine pop-up with our friends at Suya Joint and photobooth by @ThaMoneyShot and even more fun to be announced on our Instagram page! Tickets for the seated dinner will be available for purchase June 1st and you'll want to book your slot for the henna artist asap as well so stay tuned and keep an eye on your email. You can also keep updated by following our IG page. We can't wait for you to join us for these Vybes!





HAPPY PRIDE!













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Happy Women's History Month. And International Women's Day. Today is March 8, International Women's Day. And we are thrilled to be highlighting and sharing a little bit about some powerful, incredible history making women that have and are continuing to change the course of history in their nation in their sphere of influence and around the world.


I'm personally inspired by these women because I see how they did not allow hierarchical and traditional ways of doing things to limit their ability and desire to do create and be change for their countries.You can find a few of these powerful women in our Instagram stories throughout the month! We're highlighting Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Samia Suluhu Alhassan and Haijia Alima Mahama. If you haven't already, please add us on Instagram and sign up for alerts about and read about these amazing women as we post all month!



In this month's newsletter I want to focus on a group of women that I had the pleasure of learning about very recently as I was interviewing a designer that we partner from Togo. I started to do some of my own research of this intriguing group of women who created incredible impact in Togo. In fact, they created 40% of the countries commercial business from 1976-1984. The Nana Benz; the famous businesswoman of Togo.


"Nana Benz of Togo, made their mark internationally by trading in wax printed cloth starting in the 1930’s and 1950’s, before independence. They started from nothing to rise to be among the country’s richest. They imported the fabric from Dutch companies based in Indonesia. From there the material arrived on Togo’s shores and the women distributed it throughout West and Central Africa. They became known as Nana Benz because in the mid-50’s through 80’s they had made so much money that they were the only people who could afford Mercedes Benz cars, so much so that the government used to hire their Mercedes Benz for important guests and state functions. The phrase ‘Nana Benz’ came to symbolize the freedom, ingenuity, creativity, pride, achievement, success, and courage of these women.A woman did not become a Nana Benz through inheritance, or society’s choice, but through ingenuity, and struggle." Excerpt from "African Queens of Textiles: the Nana Benz of Togo BY DR. Y.




In learning about the Nana Benz, I was struck by the way that these women out of a gap they saw in the market which was created when when relations between the Ghanaian president, Kwame Nkrumah, and his Togolese president, Sylvanus Olympio, went sour over land and political disputes.


Nana Benz used their ingenuity and strength to create a space for themselves. In a time in my personal life when I am actively and intentionally wrestling with my struggle with social anxiety and the space that I know that I meant to occupy in this world, I find the story of the Nana Benz hugely inspiring and empowering. They didn't ask for permission, they create a pathway to freedom, generational wealth and influence and economic power for themselves and women who came behind them. With the political and economic they amassed for themselves they were even able to play a vital role in the fight for decolonization from France which took place in 1960.



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