A little story behind FEMI HANDBAGS
Words by Tia Muhammad
Photography by Chérmelle Edwards
F un. Colorful. Eclectic. FEMI Handbags is a trendy, African-inspired luxury collection of bespoke leather handbags, clutches, accessories and small leather goods. Created by Nigerian designer, Femi Olayebi, just after learning how to use a sewing machine to make a diaper bag for her first newborn. The new mother soon found herself being sought-out to design diaper bags for family and friends. Taking her “accidental entrepreneurship” to the next level, in 1994 she created parent company My World of Bags, a versatile, multi-function, ethnic-styled and colorful brand of handbags made from anything she could lay her hands on. From there, the rest was history…
FEMI Handbags stands as her distinct luxury leather handbag line and embodies the exuberant approach to the life she leads.
The Adenike Bucket Bag is one of her many unique bags. Rich in both quality and culture, it’s bold aso-oke print trim indigenous to the Yoruba people of Nigeria makes this handbag a one-of-kind keepsake.
A French graduate and translator by profession, Femi consistently pours her creative energy into every product. Designed and manufactured in Ibadan, Nigeria, Femi pays great attention to the minutest details and looks to her culture for inspiration. She cleverly incorporates traditional elements into her sophisticated handbag motifs with the traditionally hand-woven and vibrantly colored aso-oke fabric being one of her favorite go-to touches. For her, the excellence is in the details.
Large and impactful, her Segilola XXL Croc-Effect Leather Tote is eye-catching and demands attention. One of the most spacious handbags from her FEMI line, she brings traditional detail to the handcrafted tote with aso-oke textile.
Welcoming her clients to her world of bold and adventure meets sophistication and elegance, each of the brand’s products fall within the niche of contemporary African style, and can always be distinguished by its individual signature flair.