The story of NOH NEE, a Munich-based concept store that marries African fabrics with Bavarian designs, is a tale of creativity, culture, and sisterhood. Co-founders Marie Darouiche and Rahmée Wetterich have crafted a unique space that beautifully blends their Cameroonian roots with the vibrant spirit of Munich.
Marie Darouiche: Weaving Traditions Together
Born in Cameroon in 1952, Marie Darouiche hails from a family that could be the stuff of films and novels: a large clan with generations living almost under the same roof, a creative bunch with musical and artistic talents, inspiring each other. Her journey led her to Europe and, fortunately, to Munich.
Marie's deep love for African fabrics accompanied her on her journey. For her, it was a natural progression to create the first "Dirndl à l'Africaine" over five years ago, sewing the traditional Bavarian dress from a colorful "Pagne." What started as a custom-order venture turned into something more profound when, in 2010, she joined forces with her sister and a friend to establish NOH NEE. Marie's hands and heart infuse the atelier with life, surprising every season with new and innovative Dirndl creations.
Rahmée Wetterich: A Creative Path
Rahmée, younger than her sister Marie, arrived in Munich armed with a healthy dose of creativity. After several successful years in the fashion industry, she opened an interior design studio near Nymphenburg Palace in Munich. Her collaborations with exclusive French fabric and furniture producers paved the way for her creative journey.
When Marie conceived the idea of "Dirndl à l'Africaine," she set the foundation for the birth of NOH NEE.
A Harmonious Color Mix
Growing up in Cameroon and now residing in Munich, sisters Marie Darouiche and Rahmée Wetterich draw inspiration from Africa's vibrant colors for their designs. Rahmée shares, "Nature shows us how colors can be combined. Once the framework is set, anything can flourish within it."
This insight naturally led to the concept of melding intricate African fabrics with traditional Bavarian cuts. The framework for their Dirndls is a classic Bavarian style from the 1950s. Marie affirms that with these African fabrics, the Dirndls become an homage to female pride, a tangible embodiment of life's vibrancy. Jackets and accessories further enhance the imaginative scope, giving no bounds to personal style.
Behind the "Dirndl à l'Africaine" concept stands Rahmée's vision of "Colourmix," a dynamic exchange of world cultures. She asserts, "It will play a significant role in the future as people get to know each other, create new things, and see their traditions in a new light."
Since 2013, due to the love women have shown for their fabrics, NOH NEE has extended its offerings. The collection includes coats, skirts, dresses, blouses, and pants - an expansion reflecting their continuous dedication.
Embracing Diversity and Tradition
NOH NEE exemplifies the power of blending diverse traditions to create something remarkably new. Through the artistic eyes and hands of Marie Darouiche and Rahmée Wetterich, this Munich-based concept store bridges continents, cultures, and generations. As they weave Africa's vibrant colors into Bavaria's traditional fabrics, NOH NEE becomes a testament to the beauty of cultural exchange and creative collaboration.
Photo copyright Noh Nee