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Love and peace

Yep! I know the headline is a little bit of a cliché but it truly is a wish worth wishing from the heart anyhow

To reduce more clichés, sometimes pictures are more necessary in accurately describing what one wants to express. So I summed up these photos of moments that I love and appreciate in a very short compilation video. In the hope that love and peace reaches out even further towards everyone but also to you

If you are habesha then you probably understand the words of this song in the video and undoubtedly agree with me when I say that “truly it is no better time to be habesha” at this moment in time of peace and unity. If you have read any of my earlier blogs involving political issues on this subject, then you also know that peace indeed was mine and most likely or hopefully your highest wishes too. No wonder why it feels almost like a miracle has come to us habeshas? Experiencing it here and now in our own lifetime after decades of conflicts is indeed a dream come true to me. Hence the choice of this beautiful song by “Wedi Gebru” says what I feel, better than my own words right now

Since I have brought the issue of gratitudes up, I might as well mention my own thanks to everyone that have helped me and are still supporting my causes through all this process of making mine or our dreams come true as well. Yes, we’re all connected in the end. Your dreams come true is ours too and vice versa. So despite the fact that I have put a lot of work to what I am doing right now and the fact that I have had some major hinderances by some sad and lost individuals, I’ve stil managed to accomplish all things that are closest to my heart (and counting). Even when I at the same time admit that it looks as though I’ve done only tiny steps forward outwardly. Inwardly however my struggles have contributed a great deal to so many new insights and experiences that I can’t wait to unleash in coming projects.

One of them I can reveal at this stage already, is my book that is currently being edited before its release by approximately end of this year

So stay tuned follow Tsuriy facebook/instagram page for other details until then ….

Lots more love and peace

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Belles

If you are an Eritrean or a habesha diaspora from the time before the early 90s then chances are that you have been called “belles” by the natives when you been visiting our countries whether you’re aware of it or not. As you know belles is a summer fruit that has its prime season from about june till august. The diaspora also typically make homeland visits mainly during this period due to the nature of our summer brakes here in the west. Thats why we are or were called belles I was told. I’ve heard many funny stories from both sides of the gap but mostly from those that came back from their visits.

Like when my mom came back and told us she finally got my granddad a pair of new eyeglasses because the poor old man (may he rest in peace) confused all of us due to his worsening eye sight. But when he finally got them on and saw everyone all very clearly he never wanted to put them on again. He said it best himself that we all look very scary so near and close in such details 😀 It was apparently too much of change all at once for him I guess?

The gap that was created between the diaspora and the inhabitants is in a similar way a bit scary when looked at closely beyond it’s slightly blurred surfac. I my self have only been back home to Eritrea 2 times since I left it as a child long ago. The first time I returned was in the mid 90 s shortly after the country’s well longed independence. The turn had finally come for my sister and I to travel alone there as young somewhat naive teenagers and stay with our relatives during the entire summer.

What I remember most of that visit was how annoyed some people (in the arab countries) were already at the transit occasions in Yemen and Saudi airports about our (to us considered normal tourist outfits) dressings with shorts and skirts and maybe the clumsy careless teen style to complement the total culture clash. Our parents did their best to warn us about the culture differences at that time but there was only so much a teen brain could take in so the rest was up to us and our freedom we thought. Shortly after we arrived there, many surely looked at us as if we were aliens from outer space for a period. Later we kind of started to understand that they actually considered us like children if not perhaps a bit dumb, specially in comparison to the local teenagers there.

I also remember how insufficient we felt with our teenage budget for not being able to help back everyone that were genuinely and generously nice to us despite our naive and trouble free venturesome travels everywhere within the country. However what remained the same throughout the whole stay was that which ever city or village we visited we got a bit stared at if not almost discreetly laughed at sometimes simply for the way we dressed and carried ourselves like. We never really got why they found it amusing how we dressed but it was pretty harmless so eventually we kind of adapted to the reaction. In some villages, the ladies even kindly offered us a netsela (a sort of light scarf) to wear like the locals. Not necessarily to cover up anything because we didn’t reveal more than bare arms and legs below knees, but more to assimilate better. It was an act of care and consideration for us

The culture crash was just a total havoc at that time just like we were warned about. The second time I traveled there a time after the millennium shift a whole lot had changed so there were no funny reactions at all about clothing or traditionally expected behaviours. But I could already clearly grasp the huge class difference emerging. The very visible economically different lifestyles created partly by the diaspora was undoubtedly causing a tensions beneath the surface. The growth of darker emotions such as envy, greed, resentment, and abandonment where almost tangible. It was bound to naturally.

I tried to address this concern already at that time with those in the diaspora but was met with negligence if not cold denial and some mild resentment. The problem as I saw it at that time was not that the people were not nice because most of them definitely all were. But it’s the diaspora that were a wee bit too flashy, wild without the littlest minute self-awareness at all. It was so worrying how careless they were of the consequences that I was dreading silently

So on my second visit I didn’t stay there longer than a week and a half and I never went back there again since that time but kind of anticipated the development which by now has fully taken place as we can see. The mass-migrations from Eritrea and around that region in my opinion is hugely thanks to the carelessness of the diaspora distracting people from their usual daily routine hard-works. Off-course everyone was going to want to have as good economy like the “belles” people understandably. Who doesn’t want to come back to their homeland and rave around local parties flashing about at luxurious restaurants.

Everyone off-course want to better their lives and escape the hardships if they see a way out. And after the groundless US economic sanction on the country about 8 years ago the situation have worsen further to what it is today. Many risking their own and their families lives through the horrific Libyan cruelty and the dangers of Mediterranean seas. All just to get to Europe, where the life of the diaspora yet again can be recreated as an aspiration within the natives again an again like a vicious cycle.

There are off course many political aspects that played their BIG roles in the whole story of the mass-migrations we see today and I have written a little bit about that too here but this time “belles” inspired me to observe the whole situation from another perspectives I guess? So I didn’t just choose to write about this because many of us don’t already know the situation or to shame us diasporas and migrants, but to awake the necessary consciousness among us thereby promoting more responsible attitudes hopefully. We should investigate how we are contributing to the problems of migrations first of all. We should as well oversee how we are relating, engaging and what message we are conveying within our people, homelands but also our responsibilities towards our new countries. Take smal steps towards reparing this gap by creating oppurtunites and building healthier and step by steb closer relations plans for example

To give you an opportunity to start engaging in a healthy way is also why I am selling this belles painting with 30% of the profit going to #TsuriyPurpose foundation. If you have any questions regarding the painting or this project and want more insights, economical reports or wonder what other merchandise will contribute to this project then leave a message here or on instagram ’semirasemret’ and Tsuriy’s FB page and I will get back a s a p

Happy holidays

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For my Queens and Princesses

                                  abyssinian-princessf-blue-dressabyssinian-princess

This is definitely not how I dress up like to step out of the house and get some milk from the local store. Particularly in this tiny village I stay totally surrounded by deep nordic forests. Actually on some stressful days I can’t tell the difference between me and the homeless bag lady sitting outside the store collecting change in a paper mug ….I tend to feel. I wouldn’t be surprised if even she would jump out of her seat with a slight shock at the sight of me if she also could see through the battles I go through in life at times. Thankfully it doesn’t happen to often that I feel like this so I am humbly grateful even for my bad days.

But there are many occasions when it is fun and pampering to dress up and live out a little. Even for an earthy and nature loving mom like me. Especially when one is a mom to a little fairytale infatuated princess like my daughter is at this prinsessy age. How can that not be inspiring and cute? It is the ultimate BFF love story between a mothers and a daughters with the unbreakable inspirational circle forever exchanging among both. It sure beats the crap out of feminism with just one hand.

The prints for this collection which I have drawn with a “hand” or two by the way….. are also inspired by real royal stories with bravery, faith and strength of our forefathers/mothers. Far back in the days when the old north east African Abyssinian kingdom by the region where Eritrea and Ethiopia are situated today were once one of the largest empires in the world along with the Romans. https://youtu.be/ad-k2nwJGZ  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abyssinian_people  The typical old orthodox cross like symbols that is often still found decorating the traditional “Tillfi” clothing of this culture today makes no exemption to appear even in my work signifying some “habeshness” off-course but the execution is more modern and most likely western influenced as we are today.

Printed with modern technology as appose to the less available embroidery or weaving technic traditionally used for “habesha” clothes. Unconventional yes, but true to its roots with a dreamy kind off finish and avant guard cut. I hope it will be appreciated by those that have interest and curiosity for my creations on this theme as much as I do. And I truly do/did enjoy creating them. By the way, don’t hesitate to mail/inbox me with your details clearly specified if you want to discuss custom tailored for you, your project, work, home, group etc.

Speaking of creations, I am currently “baby step” by “baby step” having the web shop set up and organised as I have informed earlier and there will be something available for all eventually but I am starting out with the women’s line first, since I am …well… a little old-fashioned mannered…?… Yes, I think women should always come first and be respected at all times. Specially by themselves first, they are after all the creators of men. Gentlemen and boys are definitely in my plans too but I have a family to raise also so I hope fellas don’t feel discriminated by the delay now that men have become so fragile these days : /  Bad Jokes aside, I like to make you all (men /women, girls/boys, old/young, thin/big, black/white neon-green/blue, straight/gay etc.) involved in this project too.

I like to propose a good deal to any one of you who are or know someone to be an aspiring model? Especially if you/they love to pose for the camera and have a spare time to try out outfits for photo shoots to come…? Expenses for a professional photographer, makeup, hair and for any traveling cost within Sweden will be covered. The models keep their selected copies free for their portfolio and have the possibility to be the future face of my brand and be hired with a contract eventually. (If under 18 your parents need to approve first) Have a little ponder about that and I will come back with more details on where, when, what it will be of this quest once I get substantial replies. If you are or know someone who is interested, then don’t hesitate to mail me so plans can be scheduled

And speaking of plans, there are many more details to be planed, refined and defined regarding the ethics and moral of the production sector of my project which I will inform you more on later. But for now I am currently listening to some new projects leaders in Borås Textile Fashion Centre with plans on establishing small modern local sewing factories that may lead to some collaborations. This would cancel out the risk of getting involved with shady, oppressive big organisations abroad. However my principle is, If in doubt abandon cooperation as immediately as possible. My aim is to serve you and your loved ones not only awesomely nice gears that represent you better but also give you an opportunity to practically set standards for our collective ethics on social justice and environmental issues. Not an easy concept in the fashion industry. But not impossible. It’s a try well worth it for our next generation, trust me.

This means the entire chain of not only my products but also someone else’s items, for example any trimmings I order will have to be investigated from my part so I can guarantee it really is clean from partnerships with dealers who use child labour, slavery like exploitations, use of animal brutality, harmful and nature destructive chemicals ans. Off course it puts limitations and delays at this stage of setting up my business. But quality comes before quantity so the wait is well worth it for me in order not to let you wait when you have made your order from me. Patience is my key practice indeed at this stage.

That’s all I had to say for now and I would like to end this update with plenty of wishes for you to have a blessed new year and don’t hesitate to contact me reg modelling or any other ideas and requests. I know I have been really lame on my new Instagram account but you can reach to me also via face book, messenger or just mail below here.