Window Shopping in Addis Ababa

It was just few years ago that Addis Ababa is start displaying stylish and wearable dresses using the traditional ‘yehager libes’ fabric, design and originality.  Now it’s not only for holidays and special events that Ethiopian ladies wear ‘yehager libes’, because  the local fashion designers are working so hard everyday to give the Ethiopian traditional garment the modern twist and bringing it to the international fashion showground.

These days Addis’s local fashion designers opening up little traditional boutiques at every shopping district of Addis and introducing their labels, though there is a long way to go, I think its good to celebrate how far this Addis Ababa’s fashion industry has comes.  This weekend I set out for window shopping particularly to open my eyes and rejoice in the visual cornucopia of creativity, originality and resourcefulness of Addis Ababa’s fashion designers.

The Amharic word ‘Tibeb’ has got deep meaning and it’s the name of the brightly colored border for the bright white cotton cloth. When the word directly translated it gives the meaning of Wisdom but contains creativity, imagination and divinity in it which sometimes might lost in translation. This is hand made creation, sewn so breathtakingly, and makes it look like wearing work of art deserves this classy Amharic word ‘Tibeb’ in every sense of the way. Its true beauty is found in the details.


Dorze weavers from the southern part of Ethiopia are well-known for creating amazing and quality Tibeb (cotton cloth).  “Shiro Meda” is one of the traditional cloth local market of Addis Ababa, where you can find many and different kinds of Ethiopian traditional cloths and its one of Addis’s tourist attractions too.


Many Addis Ababa’s fashion designers include the Amharic word ‘Tibeb’ to name their business or labels. It won’t be that long to see dresses with Ethiopian touch in the world’s fashion stage but for now let me take you to the simple and ordinary Addis’s own fashion runway through on of my meditative practice, or my way of looking for muse or roaming around to see if I can open up to serendipity and that is Window Shopping in the Addis Ababa city.


Though the main fabric for the traditional cloth is 100% man made cotton and colorfully sewed border (Tibeb), the designers are taking steps in making traditional dresses in different kinds of colors than only white, of course without loosing its original touch.

The original traditional Ethiopian textile is sophisticated and unique here I witnessed Simplicity through one of the windows and like it so much.


The brown scarf with silver Ethiopian cross is unique and creative!


Well two of the above are my favorites the simplicity and of course the apple green color attracted me.

Looking for a little nerve and a bit of verve?



Like the bold colors of red and yellow in combination with the white it gave it sexy look.


Purple with beautifully hand sewn border and which gives the image of one of the eloquent pieces of Ethiopia of the silver cross…beautifully genuine!

For those who want something long with the famous  “Netela”!


Finally I got this urge to see what’s in this little traditional boutique or maybe Serendipity is calling me so I am going to leave you hear…


…hoping you come to Addis Ababa and add the exclusive “Yehager Libes” into your wardrobe.

About Sara Genene

I am a traveler... on an endless journey of self-discovery!
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4 Responses to Window Shopping in Addis Ababa

  1. Adeline says:

    this are realy lovely


  2. Kabo says:

    Please email me the price range for the dresses. Would like to buy to resell in my country.



    • Sara P.G. says:

      Since most of the dresses are custom made, It depends on the material you choose to be used including the design therefore, I can’t really tell you the exact price. It also depend on each shop and designers. Hope it helps.


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