Meet Abai Schulze, the Ethiopian-born American Entrepreneur who left her homeland as a child where she was brought up in an orphanage until she was adopted by an American family at the age of 11. Her remarkable personal story, and love of her country of birth, are the inspiration behind one of Africa's newest, most exciting luxury brands - ZAAF.
These handcrafted leather bags are a thing of beauty. Each one draws its inspiration from a particular region in Ethiopia, and is crafted with materials unique to that region. Inspired by Ethiopian heritage and handmade by Ethiopian artisans, ZAAF is a truly authentic African brand worthy of global attention. In an interview with a well known Ethiopian Diaspora Magazine, Gizeyat, she opines;
“While well known European luxury brands will always have their place, there is definitely a pent up demand for creative high-end products that combine contemporary design with unique cultural roots. We live in a global culture, and the fashion world across the African continent is growing exponentially and is populated with absolutely terrific designers.”
Her work is attracting recognition from around the world, and in December 2014, she was awarded the UNESCO Tremplin 2014 Prize for Social Entrepreneurship in recognition of her efforts in changing the lives of Ethiopians through her enterprise. For those who want a handbag that has a unique African history to match its luxury aesthetic appeal, a ZAAF bag is hands-down the ultimate must-have accessory. Good Pickney & Co. is an official retail partner of the the ZAAF collection. Shop the collection here.