From unique African print shelving to vibrant colored textiles and ready-made outfits, Claudine Uwamahoro’s shop is undoubtedly captivating, leaving even mere passer bys curiously impressed. To top it all, Claudine’s customer service gives her a definite edge as I experienced firsthand when she welcomed me into her shop with a warm smile, and an offer to a cup of coffee.
Since her childhood, Claudine has loved kitenge (African print). After her contract with the UN ended, she decided to pursue her business and actualize a life-long dream. “People used to appreciate my designs when I wore them, and this further encouraged me to start my business.” Remarked Claudine, who happened to be wearing the very first outfit she designed.
Although Claudine begun by selling her products from her home, she believed that having a shop would be highly beneficial. In March 2017, she opened her shop, Cocomod’ at CHIC Complex. This location, in the heart of the city was ideal for her because it is strategic with ample parking. “Knowing that my customers are able to park their cars at ease and take their time in my shop is important to me.” Noted Claudine.
When asked what makes her shop unique, she remarked “I mix kitenge with other African materials not yet known in Rwanda.” Although she buys unique fabrics and ready-made outfits from West Africa, her clients have the option of choosing a preferred fabric from her shop and having it made locally and professionally by her tailors.
Claudine’s passion for her business is evident. With great ambitions, she plans to invite an expert tailor from Ghana or Abidjan to train her local tailors. Her aim for the future involves producing a wide range of interior décor products on a bigger scale, with the use of high quality kitenge.
Claudine, Owner of Cocomod’
Comfortable Kitenge Sofa
Cube Stools made from unique and durable textiles
Table cover and set
Fabric toilet paper holders
Bread holder and glove set
Hand woven textiles from West Africa
Short Kitenge Dress
CHIC Complex, C068, KN Ave, Muhima, Kigali, Rwanda
Tell: +250788 500 232, +250 788301 250
By Efua Hagan