Designed for the urban woman, our styles are high quality, classic, and minimalist while being comfortable and versatile. Evoking a sense of beauty, confidence, and pride in those who wear them, you’ll feel ready to conquer the day while knowing you're making a difference.
Welnere is on a mission to better our world and help women feel inspired on a global level. Your purchases are empowering high potential female Senegalese tailors, seamstresses and artisans with dignified employment opportunities to grow, succeed, earn fair wages and pursue their dreams.
With Welnere, women around the world have the opportunity to live purposefully and joyfully while inspiring those around them to do the same.
Behind the Brand
The founder of Welnere, Sheila, Italian native, now living in Canada, is pursuing her love of business and fashion while supporting women globally to achieve their goals and better our world.
As the daughter of an Italian tailor, Sheila was instilled with great respect for high quality clothing and design from a young age. As a student, she studied Business Administration in France and later went on to work in the nonprofit sector where she fell in love with making an impact on the lives of others. After traveling a few times to Senegal she discovered an opportunity to combine both of these passions.
She had initially started investing in women-owned small businesses, but her desire to have an even greater positive impact led to the creation of Welnere. With her connections to talented local seamstresses in Senegal, Sheila saw a way to bridge cultures by designing styles in Canada that are ethically sourced and sewn by high potential Senegalese women who are paid a fair wage for their high quality work. Sheila realized that every woman truly has a dream and that collectively women have the power to raise each other up and change our world.
The dream of Welnere was inspired by a small sewing shop in Senegal owned by two sisters Habsatou and Aicha.
Habsatou. Since she was a little girl, Habsatou has had a deep love of sewing, a consuming passion that today allows her to joyfully lose track of time. She attended a renowned sewing school in Dakar, Senegal, however, after graduation her work opportunities were limited and she mainly found work sewing traditional garments for local festivities.
Aicha. Aicha worked hard for many years to obtain her nursing degree, only to discover that there were little paid job opportunities. She turned to buying and selling goods, but was still struggling to make ends meet.
Joining forces. Aicha and Habsatou joined together in an effort to gain more control over their lives and their futures by opening their own sewing workshop in Senegal, Gollé. Gollé was created in order for Aicha (now Manager) and Habsatou (now Tailor in Chief) to support themselves and their families.
Welnere provides the creative vision, business acumen and ecommerce platform on which the talents of Aicha and Habsatou can be showcased on a global level. Working with Welnere, the sisters are now able to further develop and grow their local business, hire more young and talented seamstresses and assistants from Senegal, and offer opportunities to more women who will also be able to support themselves and their families and pursue their dreams.
Together, these women are growing their businesses and helping women around the world. With Welnere, you aren’t just buying a piece of clothing, you’re wearing your difference, you’re supporting a dream.
Connecting cultures, empoWEARing women.