March 21, 2013

Written by


feven & helena

Forever 21 Square Pattern Earrings $5.80 | Eritrean Cross Necklace

(left) Forever 21 Square Pattern Earrings $5.80 | (right)  Eritrean Cross Necklace

Last November we wrote about  ‘Playing in our Mother’s Jewelry Box’, as a tribute to our mother and our rich Eritrean culture’s love and appreciation for beautiful, bold, and exotic jewelry. Well…it seems like Forever 21 may have gone through our ‘mother’s jewelry box’ too!

At a recent trip to LA’s trendy outdoor shopping mall The Grove, one of our friends asked that we meet her at Forever 21 to look for some “inexpensive earrings.” The twinship loves a good deal, and so naturally we said, yes.

After scrummaging through bejeweled bow tie earrings, spike necklaces, chunky beaded bracelets, and rhinstoned ribbon rings, our friend stumbled over “my perfect Spring earrings! “  Translation: don’t try to bite my [her] style. But who’s really biting ones style?  Those “perfect earrings” looked awfully familiar as they looked very similar to a pair of earrings our mother owns.

The truth is — everything that we do is heavily influenced by our Eritrean culture. We even designed our logo with our motherland in mind. But, to be honest, we felt a little confused seeing something that is so sacred to us on sale for $5.80, mass produced, and in some ways being stripped of it’s authenticity.

We’re…at a loss of words…so what are your thoughts? Can you spot the similarities?


Feven & Helena #twinship

P.S. In addition to the Forever 21 Square Pattern earrings we also discovered this necklace…

Forever 21 Necklace

(left) Forever 21 Bejeweled Cross Chain Necklace $9.80 | (right) Ethiopian Coptic Cross

Related articles

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on email

5 responses to “Cheap Chic or Just Cheap?”

  1. Ms Agelgil says:

    Your article comes at the right time. Have you followed the UrbanOutfitters discussion on the Habesha kemis? The problem is that our cultural products are not protected. Anyone can produce it withouth giving credit. They are in the public domain. Sad reality.

  2. Mennia A says:

    Love it 🙂

  3. […] tweep sent me this article, “Cheap chic or just cheap?” posted three days ago by Eritrean American twin sisters Feven and Helena Yohannes. They show a […]