Côte d'Ivoire, Kenya
An Ivorian accessories brand founded by Akébéhi Kpolo, Ohiri’s conceptual jewelry pieces and bags serve as both sartorial adornments and artistic statements. Their approach is to understand the symbolism of the jewel in certain ancient cultures and to reinterpret it through different mediums, making free, abstract pieces that are wholly unique and thoughtfully sustainable.
Having grown up in Côte d’Ivoire in a family where pride in cultures and heritage was encouraged, Kpolo fell in love with African jewelry at a young age. With Ohiri, she aims to highlight the traditional knowledge and heritage of African art through jewelry, working with local artisans to craft pieces that honor the aesthetics & symbolism of body ornamentation in indigenous cultures. From its signature lip jewelry and shoulder necklaces, to its futuristic ear cuffs and unconventionally sculptural rings, the brand’s aesthetic is organic and bold, their unusual silhouettes creating an elegantly fluid appearance . Ohiri’s convention-defying statement jewelry is crafted from gold plated recycled brass or bronze, recycled silver, gold plated recycled silver, and gold, and the striking pieces impart a regal magic that hints at Côte d’Ivoire’s rich history and culture. Its bags meanwhile are produced using natural materials, including raffia, and their Stool Black Bag was recently spotted being worn by supermodel Bella Hadid
With a background in sustainable development, it’s important for Kpolo to be transparent about where the brand’s products are made and who the craftspeople are who make them. She ensures that all artisans they work with operate in decent working conditions and paid fair wages while also striving to create an efficient production process that has the lowest possible environmental impact. To this end, the Ohiri collections are mostly made with recycled materials, and employ natural pigments and low-impact dyeing techniques in their production processes.