Amira Rasool founded The Folklore with the mission to redefine the e-commerce space by enabling global customers to discover and shop premium luxury fashion, accessories, homeware, and beauty brands that were either based out of an African country or founded by folks of African descent. Her goal was to diversify the fashion landscape within the United States, creating sustainable revenue streams for designers who weren’t being given the global recognition they deserved. Completely exceeding the expectations of her core mission, Rasool has built a brand that has expanded its e-commerce into a three-tiered platform to better empower African and diasporic brands to work with international retailers: The Folklore Connect; a wholesale e-commerce platform; The Folklore Marketplace; and The Folklore Edit, an online media platform.
In just four years, Rasool has made admirable strides. She has pivoted the business from a direct-to-consumer model to working directly with other companies like Farfetch, where her partnership meant tripling the number of Black-owned brands the retailer offers. She has also grown the resources provided to the brand partners, empowering diverse businesses in other emerging markets like South America and India. And impressively, Rasool has become one of the youngest Black women to raise over a million dollars in a pre-seed funding round, raising $1.7 million. Yet before she began evolving the e-commerce landscape into a more inclusive one, she was a fashion writer and editor.
Rasool spent her early career days working with several top media companies such as Time, Vogue, i-D Magazine, Paper, WWD, and Marie Claire as a fashion assistant, subsequently landing the role of fashion coordinator at V magazine before she built The Folklore at just 22 years old.
Listen to the latest episode of Second Life to hear how Rasool’s former career in fashion media led her on a personal journey to scouting brands across the continent to join the platform, ultimately giving the world access to incredibly talented designers from a multitude of diverse backgrounds.