This spring Bolé Road Textiles is launching our tenth collection, and as with all of our design work, it is inspired by Ethiopia. For this line, we looked to the captivating walled city of Harar. We were drawn to the region because of the stark contrast between the fortress-like architecture and the fluidity and color of the local dress.
Harar is located in the far east of Ethiopia and served as a gateway to the country. Travelers and traders alike would pass through leaving their influence behind, giving the city a distinct aesthetic unique to all of Ethiopia. There are hints of Middle Eastern, Indian and European traditions throughout the city’s built environment and culture.
The constant procession of outside visitors prompted rulers of Harar to build massive walls and gates around the city, some dating back hundreds of years. Remnants of stone walls still surround the central ‘old town.’
Unlike most of Ethiopia, Harar’s inhabitants are predominantly Muslim. The women’s headscarves and dresses are painted in kaleidoscopic colors, and in busy markets the explosion of color juxtaposed to the rhythmic architecture was an irresistible inspiration for the collection.
For this spring assortment, we are introducing several new products including a large-scale multifunction textile, which can be used as a wall hanging or a bed scarf. We’ve also begun our first foray into leather with a new set of colorful coasters. Most notable is our expanded new rug offering, which came at the request of our most dedicated clients.
The textile patterns of this line vary greatly, ranging from minimal grid forms to ornate geometric embroidery, capturing the essence of the city which inspired this eponymous line. The final scale and proportions of our work are a nod to Mid-century graphic design -- the result, our most vivid collection yet.