The latest set of designs hot off the Liberian loom features a new clothing line called Piso Collection, founded by Chara Itoka Cooper.
The collection is themed in the Vai tradition of western Liberia, the home region of its founder, and named after the famous Lake Piso, located there. Referred to by many as an “inland sea”, the lake known for its ocean-like currents and its simultaneous elegant, ambient calm. In striking similarity, the fabrics, coupled with the designs that bring Piso Collection to life, send a bold statement that African attire can still command a currents of corner office in the global business environment while turning heads in wonder at such elegance.
Two Fridays ago, Mrs. Cooper launched an initial edition of the clothing line at a soiree at her workshop in Sinkor, a suburb of Monrovia. The event was well attended by a variety of customers of professional scale and taste, both in the Liberian and expatriate community. It was also a perfect opportunity to introduce the socially responsible side of her business, introducing the young Liberian women who are employed by her to produce the Piso Collection.
“Piso Collection empowers Liberian workers through higher wages and safe working conditions,” she says. “Our goal is to contribute to Liberia’s economic growth by creating jobs and developing the textile industry.”
The designs, named in various traditional Vai names such as Bendu, Sinje and Latia, carry a tasteful cut and seam for any shape, height and gender. There’s even the “Bai” wallet for men. Yes the collection caters to men as well. This is no Benson Street tailor shop where Vai shirts are made in the generic one-size-fits all production. “Each design is carefully chosen”, says Chara, “and can be altered to specific taste at the point of sale.” More of Piso Collection can be found on its website, Pisocollection.com.